Sunday, May 13, 2007

Missing Child: Madeleine McCann

As we've been learning about missing children, one high profile case of a missing child has been capturing the concern of people all over the world.
Madeleine McCann is a four-year-old from Britain, who went on a vacation with her parents and 2-year-old twin siblings to a family hotel/resort in Portugal. On the night of May 3,the parents put the children to bed, and went out to dinner at a restaurant inside the hotel. When they returned, the twins were still asleep in their cribs... but Maddy was gone.
The parents found a window open in the room, suggesting that someone had broken in and abducted Maddy.
Although there have been hundreds of leads about where Maddy could be... including a man seen taking pictures of children on the beach earlier that day, and some video footage of Maddy at a gas station with two men and a woman shortly after the disappearance... police in Portugal have been unable to find the little girl.
Several celebrities, including Harry Potter's author JK Rowling and American Idol's Simon Cowell, have put up offers for rewards for Maddy's safe return. The reward is now over nine million dollars!
Unfortunately, the speculations about what might have happened to Maddy are pretty negative. Police originally investigated many different possibilities, including that Maddy might have woken up in the middle of the night and left the hotel on her own, by climbing out the window or walking out the door, perhaps trying to find her parents; or that Maddy had been abducted for the purpose of a black-market adoption. They now think Maddy was probably abducted "to order"... meaning someone, probably a pedophile or a member of a child pornography ring, hired someone to kidnap a child of Maddy's age and description.
Please visit Maddy's family's website to read the latest updates on her case and to see more pictures of her. You can also leave the family a supportive message, or light a virtual candle in Maddy's honor.

I hope and pray that Maddy will be found, safely, very soon... and that she will grow up remembering that when she went missing, the whole world never stopped searching for her!

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