Madonna

Madonna says she wants her son and the 3-year-old Malawian girl she hopes to adopt to "one day return to Malawi and help the people of their country."

Earlier this month, a Malawian judge rejected Madonna's request to adopt Chifundo "Mercy" James because the singer did not fulfill the country's 18- to 24-month residency requirement. Madonna has since filed an appeal and made her plea in the country's Nation newspaper.

"I want to provide Mercy with a home, a loving family environment and the best education and healthcare possible," she wrote to Nation. "Though I have been advised that I cannot publicly discuss the pending appeal regarding my desire to adopt Mercy, I do want to say how much I appreciate the level of support that I have received from the people of Malawi and my friends around the world."

Madonna adopted son David, 3, in 2006 amid some criticism of the decision to waive the residency requirement at the time. Judge Esimie Chombo rejected the 50-year-old's bid for Mercy out of fear that it could lead to child trafficking.