Still, much of the western world believes we have a moral imperative to reach out to those who are less fortunate...to the hungry, the sick, and the poor. Christian churches feel this mandate intensely, none more so than the members of our team from CLA.
In Loborsoit we witnessed the disabling effects of poverty, hunger, chronic pain, and untreated illness among strangers who welcomed us with trusting and hopeful hearts.
I owe many thanks to the team for their support, and to the people who invited me to be a part of this effort. This is how it all began:
One day, back in October 2011, I received a call, out of nowhere, from a total stranger from a church I didn't belong to, asking me if there was the slightest possibility that I might consider joining a team of nurses, aides, and therapists traveling to a remote village in Tanzania to run a medical clinic. Liz Fite's call that day was the answer to a prayer of mine. I'd been to Africa before and I ached to go back. She'd gotten my name from a patient of mine who was kind enough to think of me when their team found itself without a doctor. Meet Liz Fite and friend:
This is multitasker and genuinely all-around nice guy, Curt Harris, who organizes everything for every mission the church sends off--passports, visas, flights, meals, and transportation. I swear, seeing 700 patients in a tent without running water or electricity takes less energy than what this man does every day!
Meet John Bongiorno, president of WorldServe International. He has a talent for seeking out the neediest people and for working tirelessly on their behalf. His passion is providing clean water to villages like Lobosoit, and for supporting efforts to establish schools and clinics where there are none. He's also a pretty darn good big game hunter, and an honorary Maasai elder.
I would be remiss to forget Talek who kept us safe despite the hyenas that prowled the camp in the dark!
And finally, a prayer of gratitude goes out to the Lord (if you believe in Him) or to the power of the universe (if you're not convinced yet) or to fate, chance, or luck (if you must) for the opportunity to do this work, for the invitation to witness Mother Nature in all her glory, and for our safe return.
If you are interested in learning more about our trip or more about the work of Christian Life Assembly, go to http://www.christian-life.com . If you are called to do this kind of work, don't hesitate to get involved.
"You haven't really lived
until you've done something for someone
who can never repay you."
(God bless you!)