I've been dragging my feet on writing this post, mainly because I don't know many of the details. The details I do know may or may not be the reality of what's really going on. Let me explain:
A couple weeks ago a "raid" took place at an orphanage in Antigua by government police. Some sources say it was completely illegal and the basis for the police action is unfounded. The police claim the orphanage was illegally getting these babies and do not have the correct documents to prove that all is legit. The overwhelming conclusion is that this has to do with the presidential election in a few weeks. The current president is on his way out and this has caused a bit of instability with Guatemalan adoptions, especially with the Hague just around the corner.
This raid has caused quite a ripple effect for my friends. Antigua was the town that Eliot and I lived in for over 7 months. The reason we all congregate to live there is because of the freedom and safety it provides. A handful of times we got the chance to leave Antigua and take the hour drive to the city, but the majority of those days, we were hanging out in a 9X9 block city. At one point in my early weeks I remember writing to Russ that the 9 blocks get smaller every day. By that I meant that you run out of things to walk to or see pretty quickly. You run out of restaurants to try or places to take your baby. What does this have to do with the raid?
As if the small city didn't already have it's limitations, now fostering moms are being advised to stay at home at all times until the election is over. I can not imagine. There were days when I thought we had cabin fever even when we were safe to roam the streets and now they are being advised to keep the babies behind closed doors? This may be a small inconvenience for those who have infants, but my friends that are still there have toddlers! What does one do with a toddler in prison? Keep in mind these women don't have an overabundance of toys and books like each of our American homes. They brought the minimum, assuming they wouldn't be here during this stage of childhood. They are blessed to have the few things that visitors have brought on trips to see them, which isn't a huge amount.
I really could keep going with this thought pattern but I'll stop and ask you to pray. Pray first for their safety. Then for the heavy hand to be lifted so that they can again return to the carefree days of exploring this tourist town. Then move to praying for creativity for these moms, that they would be able to fill these lock-down days with activities and ideas that would not only amuse their sweet toddlers but also further their development. Lastly, pray for patience and endurance for these fostering parents. They each followed the call to commit to staying in whatever circumstance to take care of their babies.