Sarah Mibulano, with mother Louise, shows off her citizenship certificate. (Contributed photo)

Sarah Mibulano, with mother Louise, shows off her citizenship certificate. (Contributed photo)

Sarah Mibulano had a little problem.

The 19-year-old Young Adult Advisory Delegate from the Presbytery of Nevada — who emigrated to the U.S. from Congo with her family in 2015 — had her citizenship interview back in February and still hadn’t heard a word.

“I was nervous,” Mibulano said, “because everyone else in my family got their certificate within a month.”

Mibulano, the third oldest of the family’s six children, had a lot riding on the outcome.

“We came as refugees to this country because my parents wanted us all to have a better life and an education,” she said. “In Congo, my parents had to work hard to make sure were all able to stay in school.”

Yet despite the hardships she and her family endured, Mibulano is already well on her way to fulfilling her — and her parents’ — dream by pursuing a social work degree at the College of Southern Nevada.

“In Congo, God was in our lives fighting for us,” said Mibulano, who sings in the choir and teaches the youth at Emmanuel Faith Chapel, a new worshiping community in Nevada Presbytery. “God was providing for us then, too. We can do nothing without God.”

So that’s where she continued to place her hope as she prepared for the 226th General Assembly.

Then, just a week before her scheduled departure for Salt Lake City, the long-awaited letter came.

Only the date when she was to receive her citizenship certificate was June 28, the same date as her flight.

“I was so scared, I didn’t know what to do,” she said. “But I got help changing my flight, picked up my certificate and got right on the plane.”

The outgoing Mibulano, who loves meeting new people and makes friends easily, said that her General Assembly experience has been amazing.

“I like the way our YAAD team was there for us, standing up for each other,” she said. “I'm so thankful they picked me to be here.”

After she returns home on July 4, Mibulano looks forward to relaxing a little this summer.

As a proud U.S. Citizen.

“This is my country,” she said. “It feels amazing.”