Thursday, April 22, 2010

SDA Appointment

We just got back from our SDA appointment where we reviewed Sofia's file and saw our translated dossier here in Kiev, Ukraine. It's a chilly and rainy day here today but nothing could put a damper on our excitement as we drove to the heart of Kiev and to the State Department of Adoptions. On our way, we saw two BEAUTIFUL churches...Santa Sophia Cathedral (how appropriate!) and San Andreas Church just outside of the SDA building. Gorgeous architecture here.

Santa Sophia

San Andreas Church, history holds that the apostle Saint Andrew is said to have preached on the southern borders of Ukraine, along the Black Sea. Legend has it that he traveled up the Dnieper River and reached the future location of Kiev, where he erected a cross on the site where the Saint Andrew's Church of Kiev currently stands, and prophesied the foundation of a great Christian city.

The appointment was VERY brief. We found out that Sofia's parents are married and her mother Yulia was born in 1974 and her father Stanislas was born in 1977. We do not know if Sofia has any siblings. She was "officially" abandoned by her parents, meaning that both parents signed away their rights to her when she was born and also after 2 months (Ukrainian law), so there is not other paperwork needed in order to adopt her. Here in Ukraine it is "taboo" so to speak to have or keep a child with Down syndrome and so it is safe to assume that her parents felt they were not able to take care of her and would not have received any support or help in raising her and therefore gave her away. We will probably never know.

Outside the SDA building

Hector and I outside the SDA building

Right after our appointment, we met another couple from the U.S. adopting a 14 year old girl. She knew about us and was following our cool! We went shopping across the street at a tourist market and purchased a small and a large Ukrainian nesting doll called a "Matryoshka". So cute! Hector bought a nice silk Ukranian flag for the boys.

At the tourist market.

Harry Potter, Elvis and John Lennon, what else can you ask for?

We just finished having a nice little lunch from a market across the street...some garlic potatoes, Chicken Kiev, and a yummy fresh salad made with fresh cheese, tomatoes, cucumber and red bell peppers. Yummy!

We are waiting for a phone call from Serge or Yulia to find out if we will get our referral today (as opposed to tomorrow at 5pm) and if so, we will quickly pack our bags and hop on an overnight train to Sofia's orphanage in Dnipropetrovsk. We might be able to meet Sofia tomorrow morning if we get that referral today. PRAY!


  1. Those churches are beautiful. I loved seeing a picture of you! In Kiev! Wow!!! You'll be meeting your little girl soon - I am so happy for you.

  2. Great pics! So excited that you will be able to see your baby girl soon. Praying that all goes well for you!

  3. Great pictures! :) I hope you received good news and are getting on a train to Dnep! Either way, you'll be meeting Sofia soon! Praying for you and for your boys here at home!


  4. praying for you and anxiously awaiting for you to meet little Sofia. btw, those nesting dolls are awesome, i have a set from my russian friend, but this is the 1st time for me to see all the sports players and other icons...very cool! ;)

  5. SO exciting, you guys! And the fact that all the paperwork (so far) is taken care of... one fewer hurdles for you to jump! SO GREAT!

  6. wow, it is beautiful there! i love the nesting dolls too!
    i got tears in my eyes reading about sofia's parents and knowing that they are married and certainly old enough to be capable parents... how sad and awful that their culture feels that way about people born with Down syndrome! i am just so unbelievable happy that you and hector can rescue sofia and bring her home to be part of your family!!!!!!!!!

  7. Hi,

    Great blog! I really love to follow your story. So awesome to be in Ukraine to adopt. Your little Sofia is beautiful! I will be praying for you!

    My husband and I were missionaries to Ukraine for almost 3 years. We lived 1 hour south of Kyiv (It's no longer Kiev, that is the russian spelling, all the cities names were changed at their independence). Actually, the majority of Ukraine speaks Ukrainian and all things public are done in Ukrainian. You will hear a lot of Russian in major cities, but the majority speak Ukrainian (with some russian words mixed in here and there).

    Saint Sophia and Saint Andrews are beautiful. Did you also see Saint Michaels down the street? Those churches are absolutely beautiful! We have lots of pictures from our time there. I just love Kyiv. Such a beautiful city, rich in history!

    I am really passionate about Ukraine and just love it when people take an interest in this country and the people there. There is such a need, especially with the children.

    May God bless you!