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‘It’s a Christmas miracle.’ Salem family brings home daughter from Kyrgyzstan on Christmas Eve

Published: Dec. 24, 2020 at 4:24 PM EST
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - As rain falls from tree branches, collecting in a puddle underneath a dim Christmas Eve sky, some precious cargo is on its way to Salem, Virginia from Kyrgyzstan.

“She has this great smile that takes up her whole face,” said Kelli Moore, over a Zoom call, describing her daughter, Bermet.

Bermet is 16. She’s sitting next to her mom Kelli during the Zoom call. She’s only been able to call Kelli mom for a few weeks.

“It’s been quite a challenge, our adoption process has actually been about 4 and a half years. So I met Bermet when she was 12,” said Moore.

For well over a decade, adoption has defined the Moore family.

“We adopted two children from Guatemala, Neenah was adopted about 6 years ago,” said Ray Moore, during a separate interview.

A missions trip brought husband Ray and wife Kelli to an orphanage in Kyrgyzstan. Bermet caught the Moores’ eyes from the very beginning, but not without hesitation.

“We never felt called to adopt special needs children; we just felt like that was something for someone else, but I was in this orphanage with a bunch of kids, and this one little boy came scooting up on his stomach and his feet were up on top of his butt, and he was everything I was afraid of. And he pulled out a little Matchbox car and rolled it to me. And I said ‘Okay, God, I get it.”'

Bermet has cerebral palsy. Ray says Kelli knew the moment they saw her, she was theirs.

And while that moment may have been serendipitous, the Moores have since faced trial after trial.

“Our agency quit their program, the country shut down their program, there was some mistakes made by our first agency, and then a worldwide pandemic, so obstacles were thrown all the way around,” said Kelli.

But when something is meant to be, it usually works out. The Moore’s story is no exception.

“If you had asked us a week ago, we did not think we would get home until the middle of January. And then everything has come together in a really crazy fashion. And here we are!” said Kelli.

Christmas Day will be spent as a family of six after a 30-hour journey. Bermet, the ray of hope, making the family complete.

“Gosh it’s just something that brings tears to your eyes and you just sit back and enjoy it,” said Ray.

Enjoying Christmas will take on a whole new meaning.

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