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'We just have to wait': COVID-19 pandemic putting families in international adoption limbo

Covenant Care Adoptions Services says it now takes about 6 months longer to get through the home study process.

MACON, Ga. — Thousands of adoptions have been put on hold because of the pandemic.

Molly Jett spoke with Covenant Care Adoption Services and two families with two different stories to tell.

Katie and Luke McGee started the adoption process in 2019.

"Leading up to that, the experience was pretty typical to what we had been through before with our previous adoptions," said McGee.

However, in March 2020, the pandemic started shutting the world down.

McGee said, "When we finalized his adoption through court, it was done at our dining room table over Zoom."

"Previously for placement day, all of our family would come into town," said McGee.

The McGees said getting their paperwork approved slowed the process down.

"I remember freaking out a little bit, like, 'What if we can't get into the doctor to get a physical and that delays us from getting a placement?'" said McGee.

However, in April of 2020, they brought Lewis McGee home. 

"We've been incredibly grateful that we were able to bring him home, and the timing of it all," said McGee.

Meanwhile, Tiffany and Travis Rogers were inspired to adopt through China after leading a school trip to Beijing in 2019.

They've said international adoptions are a bit more challenging right now.  

"Paperwork processing in general has slowed down on the U.S. side, like fingerprint processing," said Rogers.

They've now been waiting to get 2-year-old Jesse for almost a year now. 

Rogers said, "In July, we were matched with our little boy, but since July, we just have to wait."

Covenant Care Adoptions Services says the adoption process slowed down in 2020, adding it now takes about 6 months longer to get through the home study process.

"We have to have FBI and GBI background checks and fingerprint checks," said Covenant Care Adoptions Services Executive Director Carol Gledhill. "When it comes to those kind of registrations, those things are taking so much longer than what it usually would."

However, the Rogers family wouldn't change one thing.

Rogers said, "This wasn't a plan B for us this was THE plan for us. To have a face and a name to pray for and to be excited about, it was a blessing and a gift to be able to have that during COVID-19. I am so anxious to see Jesse and start out life together, but at the same time, it's Jesse's story. It's every adopted child's story, and I want to honor that and I want to be able to celebrate that and look back at this time and say, 'Wow, we really honored him and celebrated him while waiting.'"

About 135,000 children are adopted in the United States each year. That's according to the adoption network.

For more information about adopting click, here.