Every year I return to Cartagena, God has something new to show me. This year, God taught me about joy. During the medical mission week, we hosted mobile clinics in some of the poorest neighborhoods in the city. Our services included general medical physicians, vaccinations, HIV testing, and vision clinics. They survive in some of the worst living conditions, without access to electricity, fresh water, or even an emergency room. Gang violence is an every day occurrence and yet, they were filled with joy. They waited for hours in the sun, sitting on uncomfortable chairs, or even a dirty concrete floor, for just a few minutes with a doctor. For many of them, this is the first and maybe only time they will receive a doctor in their entire lives. The expression on a patient’s face is transformed when he or she is heard and listened to by a doctor, a doctor who wanted to be there and wanted to help. Or when they were fitted with inexpensive reading glasses and could read for the first time in years. Even if there was not much we could do to help them medically, we could offer prayer and spiritual support. To some patients, that was more important than any pill we could offer. Joy is contagious and the people of Cartagena reminded me to rejoice in all circumstances.
– Alyssa Osenga, Nursing Instructor, USF
a very dear friend has been on medical missions for many years – and always such heart-warming stories come home with her – thank you so very much for sharing yours
we honour all of you at Bridges of Hope International and you are in our prayers
God Bless you for sharing your story – and your life – in the work that Jesus left us entrusted with- may many more follow – regardless of what it ‘looks like’ to others – for as Mother Theresa is famously quoted for:
“you see – in the end – it was never between us and others – it is between us and God.”
Thank you for making Him smile – in so many ways!