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On August 14th, 2017, the Evangelical Baptist Health Center of Boiffo opened its doors for evangelism and patient care. Our initial staff were one doctor (Steve) and one nurse (Kat), four nursing assistants (Moustapha, Ozifa, Yacoubou, Annatou), two pharmacy assistants (Affoussa and Anne), a laboratory technician (Latifou) who is also being trained to provide dental care, two apprentices (Garba and Moussouliath), and an administrator (Ibrahim). Two men from the church in Boiffo (Sinka and Noufou) come every day to share the gospel story with waiting patients. The initial staff members have been with us for two years, and are now fairly well trained and doing their jobs admirably. Over the past couple of years, our team has been joined by Arissou (lab assistant), Esta (a lady from the church who helps daily with evangelism), and Aziz (patient registration). Various doctors, dentists, nurses, and others from Benin, Niger, America, and Europe have come to Boiffo to help for short periods of time. We are expecting next month to be joined by three additional Beninese staff members whose education has been sponsored on scholarship by the mission: Zacharie (nurse with a Master’s degree), Elisabeth (midwife), and Idrissou (nursing assistant). We praise the Lord for a great Beninese staff team and helpful support from visiting foreign staff!

The health center is now treating and sharing the gospel with over 300 patients per week. Since opening two years ago, we have treated over 13,000 unique patients, many of them being treated multiple times for different illnesses or being followed regularly for chronic illness. Almost all of our patients are accompanied by family members, who also hear the gospel. Several of them have made the decision to trust in Jesus for salvation, and a few continue to regularly worship our Savior in church services or Bible studies. Many of our patients come from the rural villages surrounding Boiffo, but many others come from the cities of Malanville and Kandi in Benin and from Gaya in Niger. Some have traveled great distances to come from the interior of Nigeria, southern Benin, Niamey in Niger, Gao in Mali, and Lome in Togo. Patients come from all walks of life, including rural farmers, traveling businessmen, ceremonial leaders such as village chiefs and local kings, government officials such as police officers and mayors, religious leaders of mosques and spirit healers, and many others. One day each week, we divide into teams and visit patients in their homes to check on their health and share the good news of God’s love for them and the way of salvation through Jesus. We and the health center staff have also been active in the community, putting on community health skits, playing the Jesus film on a projector in the village, starting Bible studies, repairing roads, providing food and clothing aid to flood victims, and holding mobile clinics in other villages. We praise the Lord that He has opened so many doors for ministry in His name!

 

Dental1When a team of dental and medical missionaries conducts evangelistic clinics in distant lands we
often hear this question from those to whom we minister: “Why do you come here and do this for
us?”  [Click here to contiue the article.]

Crate1The mission staff has been busy assembling more needed items for the Benin Clinic.  The clinic will officially commence operations in early July with a public opening ceremony and celebration scheduled on August 12, 2017. Tracy (our staff nurse), and Stephen (special projects coordinator) spent hours ordering, sorting, packing, and labeling medications and supplies for shipment.  More than 2,000 pounds of equipment and supplies for the clinic and smattering of personal items were collected and packed into a large crate and two filing cabinets.  All this was transported to a shipper in Maryland to make the long trek to Benin.

We are so very thankful for the Lord’s provision and the ongoing prayers and support of the saints.  Please be praying that all these items arrive safely and that these physical items will result in spiritual fruit for the glory of our Savior.

 

Cameroon2Wherever GDMMissions travels with free clinics, the crowds often form early in the morning,
and by opening time individuals and families waiting to see a dentist or doctor can number in the
hundreds! Click here to read the complete article.

 

TracyRecently God has been teaching me a bit more about what grace means.

God’s Grace in Medical Missions

by Dr. Chuck Hurlburt, M.D.

We all know that grace is unmerited favor. But I like practical, working definitions. So what does unmerited favor mean? I heard a preacher say that, “Grace is God giving us power to do what He wants us to do. Grace is God giving His people power to be what He wants them to be or do what He wants them to do.” And to me that’s a good working definition of grace. Any Christian service must be dependent on God’s grace. Any service in missions is all of grace. God might use us but it’s ultimately all His work. You know, service without depending on God’s grace may appear or feel good and noble but it won’t be effective. Grace is God working in and through us. So serving in missions without God’s grace would be like an ambassador being sent from a country but leaving all his credentials behind. He goes out saying, “ I don’t need my government’s power or authority. I’ll just go on my own power or do my own thing. I don’t need their authority. I don’t need their protection. I don’t need their direction.” That would be foolish! That would be ineffective! As it says in II Corinthians 5:20, we are God’s ambassadors. We would not dare attempt our mission without God’s grace. It would be foolish! It would be ineffective!

(Dr. Hurlburt was the featured speaker at the GDMMissions 2016 Annual Banquet. This article is taken from his comments.)

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