Evidence of Salvific Work

DR 2024-5
February 29, 2024  |  Written by Mia Copeland.

Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I; send me!” – Isaiah 6:8

On the third day of the 2024 Medical Mission Trip to the Dominican Republic, we went to the village of JARRO Limpio which was in the mountains, approximately five miles from the Haitian border. My role as a triage nurse was to check in each patient with the able assistance of Nathan Anderson, our Church Business Administrator, who received quick instructions on the role from the nurse in that position.

At the end of the day, as we were packing supplies to get on the bus to return to the guesthouse, I was approached by a woman who requested that someone come to her home to check her grandmother and great aunt. I went to get Mark Watts, a physician and fellow member of Second Presbyterian Church, to come with me to assess them. Mark readily agreed.

When Mark and I entered the home, which was approximately 200 square ft with animals living in the home, we found an elderly lady propped up in a chair with some severe contractures. Her arms and legs were permanently drawn up into a fetal position. She was unable to control her bodily functions and had no supplies for this type of care. The lady lived with her daughter who was intellectually challenged and also required total care. Mark lovingly, and gently assessed the woman as I took her vital signs. He gave thorough yet simple instructions to the granddaughter caregiver.

As we were leaving, the caregiver asked if we could go to another home for Mark and me to assess her mother and provide appropriate medication. This lady was in her 70s and had previously been in an accident with consequent head injury who also required total care. The daughter was the caregiver of three family members who all needed major assistance in order to survive.

Long-term nursing homes for the elderly or impaired are not available in the Dominican Republic. The caregiver was doing the best she could with what she had for these three women. Mark and I were so impressed with her loving attention to these three needy women with obvious love and willingness. We were greatly moved by this experience, and felt grateful that we were able to assist and witness the evidence of love that was shown.

As hard as this situation is, and many like it, God is at work in the love and care from those who take on the role of caregiver. This was an experience that we will never forget and has brought to light our call to serve.

God’s call to serve and heal by the example and teachings of Jesus was answered by all the members of the mission team. The quiet and sincere servitude displayed by all of the team had to have been inspired by the Holy Spirit.

God asks, “Whom shall I send?” And I am glad and humbled the team and I answered, “Send me,” for now I have witnessed transformation.