May 13-18, 2012
We were so very blessed to again host the Medical Campus Outreach group from the campus of the UGA Medical College in Augusta, GA. This 49-member team, comprised mainly of dental students and teaching professors, did outstanding dental work this past week in the pueblos of Nuevo Valentin, Esperanza, Buena Vista, El Chino, Santa Ana Zone I, Huaysi and Nuevo Horizonte on the Tahuayo River. Three of these pueblos were still under water and had to be transported to one of the pueblos on higher ground to do the work on their teeth.
This group came to the Amazonia with the goal of speaking about the love of the Lord Jesus with each patient while they were in their dental chairs, as well as reducing pain and suffering. These young men and women were absolutely the nicest, kindest and most dedicated you will ever meet and the staff and leaders were great as always!
Besides the Christian witness of the dentists working with the patients, others prayed with the people at other times in the clinics and led about 5 to the Lord. One of the young dental student also gave her heart to the Lord on this trip as Alex, one of AMM interpreters, prayed with her to receive Christ as her Personal Savior. That was a sweet trip outcome for this group!
Matt, the Administrator for MCO and Gary, one of the members of the teaching group, who were so easy to work with, along with Jessica and her husband, Chad.
The team leaders, Jessica and Trent, did a great job seeing to the needs of the team. Trent shared this with me. He is a 4th year dental student and always likes to be in settings like this to learn any new technique or tidbit of information that will help him be the best dentist he can be. However, on this trip, his duties were to be a team leader and serve the team rather than working as a dentist.
One day it rained all day and it was so muddy and nasty out and when he tried to find his shoes the next day he couldn’t. Finally he realized that our crew had cleaned everyone’s shoes after dark and he said that touched him, because it showed him a true servant’s heart and he said after that he served the team with a lot more joy and gusto! Even filling their water bottles was fulfilling for him!
He also related to me that he and his wife, Toni, attends a really small church and that they were the first members of the church to be sent out as short-term missionaries when they went to Trinidad last year and that the church had helped them with the cost of the trip.
This year, however, the trip cost more than the last one and they were really concerned about the financial part of it, but he said their church surprised them and said they probably wouldn’t have to worry about the finances, as they were going to support their mission work. Talk about relief!
Someone said, If you are a real Christian, you are either going or sending someone to carry the gospel throughout the world in obedience to the Lord’s command!
What a great harvest this church will reap one day on their giving to missions and for sowing into the lives of these two young people who love the Lord! What a privilege!
* Isaiah 6:8 KJV “Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then I said, “Here am I; send me. by Public Domain biblegateway.com
Stan Anderson, who is a veteran of coming on these AMM trips, told me of a single mother in the pueblo, who had been battered before her husband left her and their 7 children to fend for themselves. She had twins and one died of pneumonia, but said the other had died from witchcraft. Her story touched him deeply, as he said he could see her pain and suffering in her eyes. He said he watched her as he prayed with her and she sweetly and genuinely accepted Christ as her Savior. I look forward to going back and seeing what God does in her life in the days ahead, because it reminded me of a similar story.
This other story concerned a young Mexican girl living in poverty in Sonora. She married at 16, had 2 boys and then was deserted by her husband. With 2 boys to raise alone and without education or other skills, she moved to the States to live with a relative, who was willing to take her and the children in. She spoke no English and had $7.00 to her name. She worked as a waitress making tortillas on the midnight shift and saved a little money here and there until she bought a tortilla machine for $500.00, a fan and a corn grinder and then started her own little tortilla factory in Los Angeles, bringing in $36.00 her first day of business.
The factory grew into a multimillion-dollar concern and hers became one of the principle Mexican supply companies. She and some other business people also started the Pan-American National bank, specializing in loans to Hispano-Americans wanting to begin their own businesses. Before all was said and done, Romana Acosta Bañuelos was chosen to become the 34th Treasurer of the United States of America, personally hand-picked by President Nixon, with her signature appearing on every legal tender bill printed. That being said, who knows who this little single mother of 7 out in a little jungle pueblo will become or where she will end up if she follows hard after the Lord!
Also, on the team were missionaries to Cusco, Dr. Ike and Joanne Holton. Joanne told me of a lady who approached her and Nan and asked what the posters were about that another 2 students, Shayla and Tunisia, had. They were teaching on how to properly brush teeth with all the teaching aids they had brought. The lady asked if Nan and Joanne could accompany her to the 3, 4 and 5 year-old school. They did and there they met the director of the school, who asked them if they could teach the little kids about brushing the next morning.
They arrived at the school Friday morning and they were waiting on them. They did teach them about brushing, but also got a bible story in. They also took them gospel bracelets and had some puppets to teach with and they were so warmly received that it left an impression on her.
She had wondered how she would contribute, not being medical, and she found she had made a difference to the school director and had made the kids feel special. God orders our steps to be where He wants us to be, whether functioning as a top-notch oral surgeon or in a pre-school doing very basic education. Those kids loved it and won’t soon forget it, I’m sure!
The dental clinic was set up under the big tent, a few school rooms and in malokas, which are typical, round open-air buildings with a thatched roof. They held 5 days of clinics, doing cleanings, fillings and extractions on teeth that couldn’t be saved, as well as smiling, hugging and loving on the people!
There was a lot of packing, set-up, re-packing and storing on the boat again! Everyone work really hard. Without complaints, I might add.
We so appreciate these dental professionals who come here ready to do all in their power to be diligent, helpful and willing to work hard to make their trip successful and I know they surely succeeded!
I can still see their smiling faces all around the boat, especially in the dining room!
WE THANK YOU, MCO, from the bottom of our hearts for making AMM your Perú headquarters for the week in your work of helping the River People…. and this ministry!!!
Total attentions: 606
Great work, guys and dolls! Looking forward to the next time!!!
Love, Mike and Susie Nina Rumi, Perú, South America