Our visa case was approved on Dec. 14th! They do believe that we are free to marry, intend to marry, are not terrorists or criminals, have established a relationship, and have met in person. This is the first of three steps.
Probably next month, the State Department will ask Victor to apply for a visa, including a medical exam. They will conduct more background checks. That is Step 2. If all goes well, they will interview Victor in person at the U.S. consulate in Mérida. That is Step 3. After that, he should get the visa!
I knew Step 2 was for Victor to fill out the lengthy online visa application, and I assumed this week's notice would say to do so. I was prepared to go to Yucatán very soon to help him, since his answers have to be in English. But no, Step 1 was handled by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), part of the Department of Homeland Security, and Step 2 is with the State Department. So right now, USCIS is sending our case to the State Department, and we have to wait to hear from them. This could happen in a few weeks, but with the holidays upon us (and with Trump's downsizing of the State Department!), it might take longer. Sigh.