Saturday, September 4, 2021

A Tale of Take-Out

People working overseas will go to great lengths to get take-out, especially when certain restaurants are not available. Indian food is one of the those foods our family loves. 

I was recently in the capital to help present the new surgical training program (PAACS) to the Health Minister. A trip to the city means one thing to my wife - access to food. Armed with her shopping lists and a cooler bag, I was tasked with traversing the city for ingredients unavailable in our rural town north on the island. Along with cheese and chicken, I was given the Indian restaurant wishlist.

So after purchasing some coveted sauces two nights prior and freezing them in the hotel freezer, they made their way to the International Airport, through security, and aboard a Helimission flight north, where two excited families will enjoy Butter Chicken, Tika masala and Tandoori! 

If groceries are this complicated, you can imagine the hoops we jump through to bring surgical equipment and medical supplies to our site. Along with the ingredient-search, I spent many hours visiting medical suppliers and pharmacies to research sourcing the necessary medications and equipment to better serve our community in Mandristara. I am surprised that we are able to so much surgically with such limited access to resources.

However, because of donors like you and partners like Samaritan's Purse, we have a container of life-saving medical equipment and supplies en route to help us serve here. 
Last summer, I had the opportunity to drive across the closed US border to get to the World Medical Missions warehouse in North Carolina. It's an incredible warehouse, larger then Costco, with shelves stacked with supplies obtained for the express purpose of serving hospitals like ours. I was able to select equipment that will be foundational in helping us better teach and operate.

Of course, it has to get here. You can imagine the effort that requires when simple ingredients take Herculean effort to obtain! 

After months of complications and delays, we have received word that this container should "land" at the coast of Madagascar in the next couple of days.

So please join us in praying for this process. It will arrive at the port, and face a potentially costly customs negotiation. Then, it will day a couple of days travelling ridiculously rough roads before finally making it here. I may need to leave our already understaffed hospital for a long drive and a few days of discussions to help the process along.

But once here, we will have equipment and tools to fix what is broken, build what we need, and hopefully bless and improve many lives as a result. 

And, my wife will be thrilled to see her christmas decorations and homeschool books. "Happy Wife, Happy Life", they say.


- We are actively seeking a missionary teacher for our older children. 
As the english community grows with many young children, our older children need educational support moving into the higher-level grades. Our current teacher already spans 6 grade levels, and as our oldest begins middle school, we are aware that our ability to be his primary educational support is limited. 

Please share this need if you know of anyone, young or old, who has a heart to teach and support english education.

We are happy to share more details and discuss what this could look like!

- The children begin french school next week - English school when their books arrive on the container!

- Julie will be more involved in teaching this fall. Our teacher is visiting England, but current border closures are keeping missionaries from being able to get back.

- These closures also mean we are short-staffed at the hospital. Please pray that we have stamina and grace for the work and the wait.

Thanks for supporting this vital work here in Madagascar. We are so grateful for this community who loves and cares for us and this project.

By Jesh (and Julie)