February 4, 2019

Rewind: Monday, Jan 21

La Cana

Medical Team
After breakfast and devotions, we load our gear. The drive to the barrio is not too long.
But there was long wait for the keys to the school that we are to use. A school that apparently has not been used for a very long time. The keys arrive for one room and we find it full of trash, broken furniture etc. We set a crew working to clean it up. Meanwhile we discover that the key we have will not open the other room. So we begin the “military” method of obtaining access: hammer, pliers.

As the pounding proceeds, I go on recon to find the baƱo. Down the road, turn right, follow a gentleman to the first house on the right. Follow the path around the house, around the next house and voila: our tin shed with a toilet. The toilet is simply sitting over a hole, but it give the aura of a bathroom.

Back at our Clinic-to-be I hear a change in the method of unlocking the other room: the crew found a sledgehammer and axe.

Curious villagers gather and my team is getting restless as the pounding and crashing continue. Those who are not engaged in hauling trash out of the first room or gaining access to the second begin singing. Jesus Loves Me, This Little Light of Mine, It Is Well with My Soul and back to Jesus Loves Me. We try Head, Shoulders, Knees, Feet song in Spanish but apparently don’t have the words quite right. We keep trying till all our voices are drown out by the thunderous crash as the guys have unlocked the room.

Set up goes fairly smooth. Dannie gets the prime position behind the building under beautiful trees, there isn’t even barbed wire. Well, not very close anyway.
Some of our first timers are a bit confused, looking like deer in the headlights, but they soon join in moving more furniture, opening up our pharmacy, finding our supplies: one suitcase filled with “Emergency supplies” one with “Triage” another “Donations” (items to be given away to the villagers).

Patients begin rolling into Triage before the doctors are ready or we have a group prayer which is the way we always open Clinic. We are able to shoo the folks out and we join hands for prayer and more singing.

A little later one crew heads out with Pastor Enol for a home visit.

Then delight of delights for me: a patient has an abscess that needs draining. Between Dannie, myself, Sally, Scott, Logan and others we assemble our sort of supplies, flexibility is the key.
With no anesthetic the operation is completed and Dannie begins her dressing while Sally gives the patient an injection of antibiotics and our ministry assistant gives discharge instructions.

Time for lunch which we eat on the run as we prepare for a house call. It’s another circus as we try to get supplies together for more wound care and what ever. We are able to take care of several patients and share the Gospel.
On the bus ride home we swap stories, share Twizzlers and laugh a lot.

Back at the Guesthouse we have delicious rice and beans for supper. The local vendors come with jewelry, baskets, and dolls for us to peruse.
We finish the night with card games, a raucous game of “spoons” and more laughter.

Our God is so awesome!

January 26, 2019

Saturday, January 26

Good morning!  The first of our team is already heading home, the rest of us will be departing to the airport shortly.  We leave Santo Domingo at 2:42 pm and will land in Chicago at 10:03 pm with a layover in Miami.  We will be back in Portage sometime Sunday morning or afternoon after stopping in Janesville to drop off part of our team.

Our guesthouse hosts shared Romans 12:9-13 with us Friday morning and challenged us to apply it to our lives everyday.

Romans 12:9-13
"Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good.  Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor; not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer, contributing to the needs of the saints, practicing hospitality."     NASB

This week has been a wonderful opportunity to serve alongside a wonderful team we call family.  God has blessed our family with growth within ourselves and around us.  Today we are sadden to leave our home and family within the DR and know we will see them again.

Friday, January 25

Today was a day for saying until we meet again.  Thursday afternoon was our last day with our ministry assistants and Friday morning we took our group picture and had a chance to thank Jon and Alyssa for welcoming us into their home and taking wonderful care of us while we were there.  We also had the opportunity to thank Cora for working with us.

We spent an hour and a half in the colonial zone before heading to our hotel to repack, reorganize, rest, and prepare for the return home.  Many enjoyed the pool, walking, and soaking up the view.

Dinner at Meats and More, we went at staggered times as the space is small and it gives the staff the time to catch up.  Afterwards a visit to Sweet Frog was enjoyed by many.