We are really in need of prayers for Jafta. = As you know, we are in the process of adopting him from the fostercare system and it has been a long, dramatic process so far. A year ago, his birthparent’s rights were terminated because they were deemed unfit due to some serious issues, and they appealed that court decision. It was in the appeal court for the past year and we found out yesterday that they won the appeal on a technicality.

In a nutshell, the Dept. of Child & Family Services in LA made a mistake at the beginning of the court process when they originally removed Jafta from the birthparents, and failed to serve them with proper notice. This was a procedural error made two years ago, but because of it, the parental rights have been reinstated. This means they get to have visits with him, and they will petition to be given “reunification services” with Jafta again. Whether or not they are given this opportunity will depend on many factors, but if they are, there is a potential we could lose him.

Obviously we are reeling from this news. The only comfort in this is that all of the caseworkers, attorneys, and even the original judge have expressed that they want Jafta to stay with us. No one wants him back with this family, but if they are granted reunification services, they could follow a case plan and get him back despite the opinion of the attorneys. So our big prayer is that the decision to deny them a reunification plan is put in place again.

Everything is still very much up in the air, and there will probably be a trial sometime at the end of February to determine what is going to happen, but this will be a long, drawn-out process either way. Please keep us in your prayers. We will keep you updated as we learn more. I know that you have all been praying for us during this process and we are so appreciative for your support in all of this.

Mark & Kristen