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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

CoC - Certificate of Citizenship

It's only fitting that following my last post, we should encounter a situation that reminded us first and foremost of our need to continually depend on the Lord; and secondly of our need for that very community I just mentioned.

Today we received word that our boys' Certificate(s) of Citizenship, which should have been automatically awarded to them because of their IR3 immigrant visa status, were denied. We had known this was a possibility which had affected other Americans who adopted while living abroad, but still the reality hit me like a ton of bricks. I guess everything had been going so smoothly that the unwelcome reminder of what bureaucratic headaches feel like made me a bit melancholy. I found myself crying in the shower with a panicky feeling that all of a sudden the world had turned upside down.

At the same time, I also found myself thanking the Lord for the reminder of how much we need Him. All of this - everything miracle that has happened, every "Mary" moment we have experienced - is from Him. And this situation, too, will be resolved because of Him and by Him. Of that I am sure.

We still don't know the outcome of our situation but have been reassured by others that even if we have to wait until our return to the States and have to apply for and pay the $400+ dollars for each CoC, we should be able to obtain them. One major concern we had was that another family had received Permanent Resident Alien cards from USCIS for their child/ren and later were denied their CoC on the basis of having those very cards. However, close friends who have adopted multiple times from Korea assure us that their children also received "green" cards but were still able to obtain CoC's afterward.

We do welcome any insight from others who may have faced this situation. We've written to our senator, the US Embassy here in Chile, and others who might be able to help us resolve it sooner than later. We know that God did not bring us this far to allow this "hiccup" to stop us now! :)

Thank you so much for your friendship, love and prayers.


Amanda said...

Just as you didn't expect this "setback", I imagine Mary didn't expect -- after the whole angels, shepherds, and wise men thing -- to have to leave the country in the middle of the night to escape a power-crazed politician, either. But God knew that certain things had to happen to bring to pass what he had determined for that child. And so it will be for your children. God is gracious, and he will show himself faithful, even through this.

Anonymous said...

I do not have COC for Carmelo. I am readopting him in the USA. I still hold US residence in Indiana and am doing it there. It cost around $400 (but the lawyer waved the fee). I should have the new birth certificate in about 6 weeks.

HatchersInChile said...

We did not apply for or receive a Certificate of Citizenship. We took Caleb to the US on an IR visa (I can't remember which one IR3 or IR4) and received a green card. Once we returned to Chile, we took the green card to the US embassy and applied for his US passport which they told us meant he was a citizen. We also applied for his social security card. They took the green card and destroyed it - (cut it up in front of us).

We went round and round with various people at USCIS and even with an immigration attorney. The ONLY person who was able to give us consistent and apparently correct information was a person at the US Embassy in Santiago. I would recommend that you GO there or send someone there in your stead to ask what you need to do. The idea that Americans adopt children from foreign countries and then live in a foreign country seems really beyond so many at USCIS!

In any case, we will be praying. If you want us to help in any way, please let me know!!

Penne Hatcher