Work visa approval at the last minute
After much difficulty obtaining a work visa to return to PNG, we just got it! About an hour ago, FedEx delivered our passports back to us with the approvals in them for our return trip on Monday!
About two weeks ago, we were told that our work visas had been approved and that we could send our passports to Washington, DC for processing. I sent them, and a few days later called to follow up on them. It was then that the “fun” began! The lady at the PNG Embassy in Washington stated that she had our passports, but no approval from Papua New Guinea to process the visa. I began to get nervous.
A few phone calls later, it became public knowledge that about 200 visas had been approved for people from around the world, but nobody had been processed due to some unknown reason. Did the phone lines go down stopping the fax from being sent? Did a worker in the bureaucratic system have a hiccup and stop the procession? Did the fax machine run out of ink? Who knows?
The paperwork was re-submitted on Monday, November 23 in Port Moresby, but we had an absolute deadline from Washington, DC of Wednesday afternoon at 1 pm, since they would be closing for the Thanksgiving holidays at that time, and would not return to work until Monday morning (after our flight was scheduled to depart). Wednesday afternoon came and went, but no approval had been received from Port Moresby. Lots of promises came from Port Moresby, but no fax with an approval number on it.
Thursday night, Thanksgiving Day, about 9 pm, my cell phone rang. It was the nice lady at the Embassy here in Washington, DC. She was calling to inform me that out of the kindness of her heart, she felt like she should check on my paperwork. She went into the office that night and found our approval was there on the fax machine. She processed the papers Thursday night, and sent them to us by FedEx on Friday.
We now have the passports in hand and will be boarding the airplane on Monday morning! We serve an amazing God!
Special thanks to the lady at the Embassy, too, for her kindness and help!