I write this blog while flying over the Atlantic Ocean on our way back home from Uganda. The curtain has closed on our 6 week medical mission trip there for 2013. As I have thought back over this trip, I have remembered that there have been many blessings, many trials, many heartaches, many laughs, many new friends, many answered prayers, and many kilometers traveled.
In our first week, we went to Kachungwa, where we found many sick kids, many with malaria and a severe anemia. God helped us to navigate the Ugandan medical system to find blood for them, during a time of severe blood shortage. Your prayers and support made a difference, potentially a life-saving difference, to a girl named Prossy.
|Prossy as we loaded to take her to the hospital.|
In our trip the next week, we were able to meet Saidiah again. She had been on my heart for more than 2 years. She has now been seen and evaluated in a Jinja hospital and there is a plan for her to have a surgery to repair a large umbilical hernia in August, while she is in between school terms.
|Sadiah in January of 2011|
|Sadiah in May of 2013|
In our third week of this mission, we were able to introduce our friends, the Loughridges, to what we are doing in Uganda.
It was a blessing to work again in Uganda with Jerome as he is the one that originally introduced me to this great country. Thanks again Jerome. We said goodbye to the Treat family and April Berry at the start of this week and we received Jake and the Gash family the next day. We made a road trip to Rushere and met Kevin.
Kevin, and his heart wrenching story, made such an impact on me. Due Unto Others support has made a way for Kevin to travel to Kampala and he has started into a long process of surgical care and skin grafts to repair the severe burns that he had been living with. For those of you that have been praying for Kevin and that have given towards his care, expect to receive a big hug from him some day in heaven! When we saw him yesterday, he was doing better. His scars that were holding his shoulders to his neck were released. The skin above his eyes had been released and grafted so that now he can close his eyes. Kevin is a precious boy and I think God has a big plan for his life.
The next week, we took off on our 10 day roadie to SW Uganda, doing 8 clinics in 4 locations.
We cared for many sick patients and identified some that need special care and have arranged for this through their local pastors. On this trip, we met Ken Gallyen and have been divinely linked to his ministry (Call2Africa). We hope to work with him on some projects in the future.
This last week, we spent our time hosting clinics in areas very close to our home base in Gaba. We were able to see Nakiganda, Jamil, Tendo, and Shakib again and see four more examples of God’s provision for these 4 beautiful children through our Due Unto Others partners. It felt somehow awkward as Shakib’s mother bought us gifts to say thank you and Tendo’s mother made us all bracelets with our names on them, Jill a purse, and me a “missionary shirt”. I have to tell you though, it was a huge blessing to read a letter that is addressed to me, but is really meant for all of those that participated in Tendo's care.
After we are back in the USA, there will be ongoing care for Kevin, Shakib, Sadiah, and several other new That One Persons that we identified this year. Please continue to pray for them and I will try to keep you updated on their progress. Through this 6 week trip, our team treated over 4,000 people that would likely have not gotten needed medical care. Through the associated evangelism, we saw God draw at least 200 Ugandans into a saving relationship with Him!!!
Working and serving in Uganda has made such a big impact on our family. Our world view has forever been changed and I think that we know our God in a more personal way through our time spent in missions. I would encourage you and your family to find a mission project to be a part of. This could be a local mission or a foreign mission. We invite you to partner with Due Unto Others as you feel led. We hope to host 3 teams for 2 weeks each next summer. I truly believe that God gives us a blessing if we dedicate our time, money and energy to trying to bless someone else.
I apologize for not being as diligent with blogging this time as I was last year. Given our short time in Uganda, we operated many more clinics each week than we did last year. I also spent much of my free time researching and doing some brainstorming/legwork on the potential “Mud in your eyes” ministry that God laid on my heart last year. I will be giving you an update on this in the coming days. Please also continue to check our blog as I will try to retrospectively tell you some stories about our That One Persons from this year.
We plan to be more diligent about traveling to share what God is doing in Uganda over the coming months. Please contact us if you think that your church would like to hear our story and about how God has used our entire family to show His love through medical clinics and how this love has led to expanding the Kingdom of Heaven!
1 in 5 Ugandan children dies of a preventable cause before their 5th birthday. What if we could reach That One Person?