A team of 16 from Lakewood United Methodist Church went on a mission trip to Kenya from September 20 – October 6 to share the love and truth of Christ. We had the opportunity to do many things, such as helping build three homes for AIDS orphans, doing some maintenance at the hospital (mainly painting), visiting with the local church, sewing, dentistry (we had a dentist on the team), teaching some workshops, visiting remote clinics, worshiping and much more. I shared some details below, but team members are welcome to add comments with their own thoughts and experiences.
I also had a chance to visit with Dennis, one of our World Vision sponsor children since 1999. It was an absolute delight to spend a couple hours visiting with him on all sorts of topics. He is an amazing young man.
God is so good and we were blessed throughout the trip.
View all the pictures here. You can view pictures individually, see a larger slideshow or download them. Here’s a sample:
AIDS orphans homes
The main project we do is to help construct homes for AIDS orphans and their caregivers (often their grandparents, but sometimes just someone in the community). These homes give the kids a safe place to live, help them stay off the streets and out of drugs and prostitution, and help them attend school and having a place to study.
In addition to all the great things it does for the children and their caregives, the program makes a great witness to the community. It helps the church evangelize and spread the Good News of Jesus when the community comes out to see the houses being built and dedicated. The local leaders challenge the people to share with each other and encourage one another.
The purpose of the AIDS Orphans’ Project is to provide food, schooling, medical care and improved housing for AIDS orphans and to train their guardians in caring for these children. This project was established in response to the needs of the increasing numbers of AIDS orphans within the region that the hospital serves. Maua Methodist Hospital serves a district of 600,000 people as their only full service hospital. The AIDS orphan children are in desperate circumstances. The hospital is reaching out to them to share the Love of Jesus Christ by helping to care for their basic needs, and by giving hope for a better life.
We got to witness a monthly food distribution for those in the AIDS orphan program. These ladies are incredible. They sing and dance with such joy over receiving a 30-40 lb. bag of grain, then they put it on their backs to carry it several miles back to their homes. What incredible gratitude!
Helping the hospital with repairs, maintenance and construction – financially and with our labor – helps them serve people who can’t afford any services at all. Here’s an example of who this helps written by Jeri Savuto, a missionary at the hospital:
On Thurs. 20 Sept. 2007 Linnet W., a 24 year old mother of two, was brought into the hospital by neighbors. She had been found lying in the bush near her home. The night before her husband had come to their home, dragged her out and using a panga had cut her 25 times. He cut off both hands and her right foot was dangling. He cut off one ear and cut her back, legs, chest, face, and head. He had left her for dead.
When the neighbors brought her into the hospital she was in shock, which had caused the wounds to stop bleeding, and was covered with insects, dirt, debris, and dried blood.
To everyone’s amazement, Linnet was alive, able to talk, and move all limbs. She was cleaned, given blood, and immediately went to surgery. The day of her admission, the Senior Nurses met and were all asked to pray for Linnet. Each of us have visited her to pray and comfort her. Many of the staff bring her food and take part of their lunch time to feed her and spend time praying for her. In my visits with Linnet, I am amazed at her strength, her will to live, her hope and faith in God.
She has a five year old and one year old child. Her husband turned himself into the police the next day thinking she was dead. He is being held in prison.
Linnet will spend months in our hospital. She will need more surgeries and much care. She has no money to pay for her care but she will be taken care of because Maua Methodist Hospital is committed to care for the least of these. At present her hospital bill is already 30,000 Ksh ($448). Maua Methodist Hospital can take care of Linnet and many others without money because of our Advance Special #09613A – Maua Hospital Service Fund, Kenya”. Bill and I are so grateful to each of you who have given to the Service Fund. Usually $150 saves a life in Maua. Today I ask you to join our staff in praying for Linnet. As you pray please remember that a gift of $15 – $20 a month to the Service Fund makes a huge difference in the lives of many. It brings healing, hope, and love.
Money goes a long way in Kenya.
- For $15 per month, you can feed, clothe and educate a young AIDS orphan.
- For about $100 per year an AIDS orphan can be fed three nutritious meals per day. For about $80 per year, she could be in primary school.
- For $2000 you can build a home for a guardian and several AIDS orphans.
- $1 pays for a malaria test for an outpatient
- $2 pays for a doctor to diagnose an illness
- $3 buys medicine to cure a child with malaria
- $10 buys antibiotics to cure a patient with typhoid
- $100 cures a baby with pneumonia and malaria as an inpatient for seven days in the hospital
- $26 provides antiretroviral drugs for one month in the Palliative Care program to keep a mother with AIDS alive to raise her children
- $5 pays for immunizations for all childhood diseases for the first year of an infant’s life
- $10 pays for medication to prevent transfer of AIDS from a pregnant mother to her baby
Should you wish to participate, please send your donation directly to the following address.
Lakewood United Methodist Church
11330 Louetta Road
Houston, TX 77070
Please make your donation payable to Lakewood United Methodist Church and add a note indicating this is to be used toward ‘Kenya Missions-Maua Methodist Hospital’ along with any other specific instructions you would like to provide.
Worshiping in a foreign country is a great experience. The churches we visited sang many of the same songs, but mixed some Swahili songs and messages into the services. The people were passionate, joyful and evangelistic.