Mercy Joins Madonna In London After Adoption Finally Approved


Madonna’s new daughter, Chifundo “Mercy” James, 3, has flown out of her native Malawi on a private jet headed for London. She should have arrived in London on Saturday morning. The little girl was reportedly accompanied on the flight by a nanny, a child nurse and a third aide.

Malawi’s highest court granted the adoption on June 12th, overturning an April lower court ruling that Madonna had not spent enough time in Malawi to be given a child.

The high court said the first judge had imposed too narrow a definition of residency, and praised Madonna for her work with children in a poor country where half a million have lost a parent to AIDS.

Madonna’s Raising Malawi, a charity founded in 2006, helps feed, educate and provide medical care for some of Malawi’s orphans.

Madonna, 50, adopted a son, David, from Malawi last year.

Madonna met Mercy in 2006 at Kondanani Children’s Village, an orphanage in Bvumbwe, just south of Blantyre. It was the same year she began the process of adopting David, whom she found at another orphanage in central Malawi.

The girl’s 18-year-old mother was unmarried and died soon after she gave birth. Since Madonna moved to adopt the girl, a dispute has arisen between the girl’s maternal relatives, who agreed to the adoption, and a man who says he is the father and wants to care for the girl himself, but acknowledged he had never seen Mercy.

Mercy will join big brothers David, 3, and Rocco, 8, and big sister Lourdes, 12. 


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  1. Dnice says

    I think it’s good what she is doing even if I think her motives in adopting Mercy are not genuine. Sorry just my opinion. I think the only reason she pushed so hard is to save face from being denied the right to adopt Mercy the first time. It was a huge embarrassment for her. Send the nanny to get the kid, it doesn’t matter as long as the world knows that Madonna got her way.

  2. traveler says

    Yeah, it would be nice if Malawi changed their laws, but I’d be even more impressed if the U.S. actually changed theirs. This country makes it hard to adopt a child and gives way to many rights to the biological parents. It’s why a lot of people choose to go overseas. I would welcome adopting in this country if the process was improved.

    As for Madonna, I’m not a fan, but I applaud her for adopting in general and adopting an older child in particular. I don’t really blame her for going on tour. This tour has most likely been scheduled a long time and there are people depending on her. I’m sure she wasn’t expecting the Malawian government to change their minds this fast. There probably isn’t a lot she can do about it at this point in time other than make the best of a less than desirable situation. Sometimes in life, that happens. I know someone that went back to work 3 days after she gave birth to her son. She owned her own business and had no choice. Life gives us lemons occasionally. Maybe the tour is also the reason she couldn’t go to Malawi to pick Mercy up. If she had some kind of contract, then she may have been forced to continue with the concert preparations and fore go the Malawi trip.

    At any rate, I wish Mercy and her new family the best. I’m glad that David will have a sibling his age to play with now.

  3. Jessica says

    But then I googled it, and I was wrong!! OMG!! WTF? Who would send their nanny to pick up their child on their adoption day???? It just keeps getting worse && worse.

  4. Jessica says

    I think the nanny that accomponied her on the plane ride was her nanny in Malawi, not someone who would care for her in the US..

  5. oriana says

    I agree with everything Nicki said. This child will have a wonderful life and will be well taken care of. I applaud Madonna for this and for the help she has given to that poor country. The laws should be changed over there for sure. Good luck to this family!

  6. Nicki says

    Madonna does do a lot for Malawi. She is creating a villiage there. She has had fundraisers to get donations to help with it. It is a very great thing for that area of Malawi. I’m sure that helped seal the deal with Mercy.
    Mercy will always have food,clean clothes,shelter and the best education she could. In that respect she is a very lucky girl.

    But I have to change my original comment………..I think it is a good thing that the nanny went and picked up Mercy. This will be the person she will spend most of her time with, besides her brothers and sister. So after thinking about I think the nanny picking Mercy up was best.

    And to whoever said about the huge media storm if Madonna actually went and picked her up herself, not so. The media does not hang out in Malawi, even the rag mag people don’t hang out there.
    The only pics I have ever seen are the ones Madonna asks the media to take, to show how her villiage is coming along, and were invited by her.
    I’m sure with the money Madonna has she has the best hired help available for her children and household. Her older two children look happy and healthy, so I’m sure her younger two will turn out the same. I’m glad the older two are there for the younger ones. I’m sure they will be a close knit group.
    Nothing but best wishes for lil Mercy and her new forever family.

  7. Me, that's who says

    YAY MADONNA! I am still your number one fan, and I think that it is great, what u are doing! GO GIRL!

  8. SbK says

    With all her money, why didn’t she do things to improve the villages and lives of the other people out there? Yes, she has given one child a life that will have more luxuries, but what about all the other children? are they not good enough? And as for going on tour in a few weeks, don’t even get me started. I loathe this woman.

  9. Cocoa says

    Janie – A little defensive? I think you need to relax. Yes, I know now about Malawi adoption laws because of Madonna – sorry, never had an interest in researching it until now. Is that unusual?

    I didn’t know Madonna was going on tour right after Mercy comes home to her. That’s terrible, Madonna should make sure she is there helping her adjust. How could she? That’s a shame.

  10. Jessica says

    #3 Janie–I was not referring to the fact that she did not pick Mercy up. I was thinking more along the lines of what poster #13 Nicelle said. This child was technically not an orphan! She had 2 live relatives and one of them stated several times that she did not want Mercy to be adopted by Madonna. Then even after she gets denied adoption rights, she feels so entitled that she just has to keep pressing it. Why not another child if this one still has family that is against the adoption and the country did not find you a suitable match to begin with?…

  11. NICHELLE says

    That child should stay in Malawi with it’s father. Madonna could give millions to the village. How would you fill if a rich woman came and took your child away from you. Mercy’s grandmother did not want Madonna to take the child and other relatives felt the same way. The grandmother said ( Why can’t Madonna adopt another child instead of her grandchild). Imagine if you had to put your child in a shelter due to financial problems and a rich person from another country took your child and you could not do anything. This child’s parent is not dead. How can you people be happy about this. Madonna just purchased another accessory. She’s trying to stay relavent and make news and also copy Angelina Jolie. I truly believe Ms. Jolie is adopting from the heart to try to give a child a better future. Madonna is going on tour in three weeks. Can any of you happy blogger’s tell me who will be looking after Mercy? Who would give this woman a child. You people are sick!!!

  12. Jem says

    #11. Ronnie

    I agree.

    The nannies are more of a mother than Madonna. What is she too high class to have some some fun with her kids?? She adopted her, she’s her “”mother”” now, so she should start acting like one!

  13. Ronnie says

    I do think she’s done a good thing; Mercy will be getting an education and proper meals
    but the fact remains that madonnas brought this girl into a kind of permanent daycare.
    Mercy’s life will be infinetly better living with madonna but it remains that she will not actually have benefited in an emotional way; just like she probably wouldn’t have in the orphanage but even if she doesnt have madonna’s full presence as a mother figure at least she will have be properly looked after.
    I actually dont think that it is because she’s adopted; as far as i can tell, Madonna is not ‘available’ for her “birth” children either. All you ever see is nannies sledging with the kids, having water fights etc.
    Fine, she doesn’t want to clean the kids’ nappies, but if you pass off playing with your children onto a nanny, what is the point of having them at all?

  14. janie says

    Yes, Coco, Cocao, Caca, whatever your name is, that is my opinion…just like you have yours. You probably don’t even know Malawi adoption laws if it blew in your face anyways. Whatever! Thanks to Madonna, you may have gotten your education about Malawi through her.
    Thanks Katty. That’s my whole point. And you’re right, whatever the decision Madonna makes, people will scrutinize it and she will not win either way.
    Madonna , you’re the best and congrats again.

  15. Jem says

    Just my opinion. No body has to accept it. But I was so angry and annoyed when she was allowed to adopt Mercy. Does she think she’s above the law just because she’s Madonna!? She’s going on tour next week isn’t she? So as soon as she brings the child home, she’s away on tour! She could at least spend a few months with her to help her get used to her surroundings. Instead of dumping her on the nanny straight away!

    Sorry guys, you can disagree with what I’m saying, I don’t mind. It’s not really worth getting angry over but I can’t help it. It just annoys me that she thinks she’s above the law.

  16. katty says

    If she had of picked Mercy up herself and there was a huge media storm everyone would be going on about how selfish Madonna is for just not avoiding such a traumatic situation for the child. Either way Madonna wont win. But I think Madonna did a wonderful thing and it’s obvious by her other kids that Mercy is going to a good home

  17. Coca says

    And again, Fame and Fortune wins. #3 Janie – you don’t know her motives for not picking up Mercy herself, those are your speculations and not facts like you make it sound. I do hope Malawi changes it’s too strict law now that they have broken it, otherwise it’s not fair to others who might actually want to adopt a child from there.

  18. lara says

    Whatever happens to the malawi law that Madonna cant adopted Marcy. Well I guess if you’re a celebrity with load of money you can do whatever you want.

  19. janie says

    Oh please people, “Get over it.” Some of you would never even a adopt a child, less from Malawi. I applaud Madonna for being a caring human being and giving all of her heart to love another child. Some of us can’t even love ourselves. She’s not lazy or selfish for not picking up Mercy. She probably realized what a media frenzy it would have created, but opted for a more discreet way for Mercy to come home to her. I’m sure it was hard for Madonna not to have picked up Mercy for security and paparazzi reasons. If you’re going to just make rude comments about another person’s personal decisions, then you are shallow. Go to Star Magazine and make disparaging remarks there instead.
    Congratulations Madonna and wish you all the best!!

  20. Nicki says

    Jessica, I wholeheartly agree with you. anyone who would send (whoever) to pick up your ‘new child’ is, to me, lazy,selfish, and not. doing an adoption for the right reason

  21. Jessica says

    Mercy is precious. That being said, I am in awe at Madonna’s audacity. I will keep my thoughts to myself though bc once i get started, I will be unable to stop myself . Ugh. I find Madonna’s role in this case really ridiculous.

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