Showing posts with label immigration. Show all posts
Showing posts with label immigration. Show all posts

Twenty Years

It's twenty years ago this month that we made our first move in to overseas mission as we went to Tanzania for an initial two year stint.  Just under a year later we resigned out in the field, were treated appallingly by the organisation we were serving with and ended up staying with some Catholic Fathers at a nearby Seminary.  The last group of people I expected to be genuinely Christian turned out to have a greater concept and handle on Christian basics than the organisation we had served with.  Still, that's a long time ago and much water has passed under the bridge since then.

A Special Day

When asked how today went I simply replied: "Today was one of the happiest days of my life!"

Ever since we left Zimbabwe so abruptly in 2003 I've longed to return to see our many friends that we never got to say goodbye to.

So to be here for the wedding of our dear friends Ziggy & Mercy and to get to meet up with Linus, Emilia and Shepherd was a real privilege.

ID Doc's

This morning was quite a monumental moment as we were in Paarl to collect our "Green ID books" which are the key to so much of South African life.

It's felt like a long journey getting to the point of having these documents and we're really grateful to have them! At last we can open bank accounts, get local a driving licence etc etc. Amazingly, your first ID book is completely free. Now there's something the so called 'developed world' could learn from!

Someone in the UK asked whether having permanent residency means we're now South African citizens and the answer is no. We could apply for citizenship in a year's time but that's a bridge we'll cross then.

Wonders Never Cease


I was stunned this morning as immediately after switching on my cell phone an SMS came in from Home Affairs of all people.

When we applied for our ID books we were asked for our numbers but never really thought that we'd hear from them, based on previous experience!

However, here we are with an SMS telling me that my application is already in Pretoria and is on its way through the system as they process it.

Hopefully it will be ready by mid December as they promised.


This morning at the stroke of a pen or rather the stamping of a passport everything changed, nothing changed and yet everything did change. We're now permanent residents of South Africa.

This is a huge blessing and a massive answer to prayer! No more queueing every few years filing out endless forms for visas and dishing out ridiculous sums of money for the privilege. We feel this is also confirmation from God that we're in the right place.

Off to Home Affairs this morning to follow-up on our application for permanency and to renew our relational visas. Prayers for ease of dealing with bureaucracy appreciated. We also need our permanent residency to come through. We were told it would take two years when we applied two years ago!


Although there is no such thing as a British Citizen (don't get me started on that!) Eli has been granted British Citizenship. We received his certificate of registration today from the British High Commission. This is a real answer to prayer and a massive blessing for us as a family, especially for Eli (he now has dual nationality). As far as we can tell he also has full rights of descendency for his future children which is great. Next step is to get him a UK passport, there always seems to be one more form to fill in.

Home Affairs - Residency

We started the process of applying for permanent residence this morning and so embarked upon a long and slow journey with Home affairs which could take up to 3 years to complete! Hopefully things will go a bit quicker than that as we're applying on kinship grounds and as such the paperwork we have to provide is very minimal.

Serious Prayer Need!

Following the final adoption order for Eli, we applied to Home Affairs to change his name (as ordered by the court) and at the same time applied for a temporary passport in his pre-adoptive name in order to allow him to accompany us on our trip to the UK in June. Home affairs were incredibly helpful and got the passport to us within 7 days but informed us that the name change takes up to 4 months (so will happen by August at the earliest).

Two weeks after we applied for the temporary passport, the British Govt. very unhelpfully announced that South African temporary passports would no longer be accepted for entry into the UK. This has put us in a very difficult position as it is simply not possible to obtain a full passport for Eli until after the name change has been completed.