The medical mission was a greater than expected success. The Philippine doctors and staff were wonderful. The doctors have done over 230 cataract operations plus glaucoma and cross-eyes, for a total of 249 - more than double the 100 we had promised. All this in 5 days. A miracle, praise be to God! There were several complications, but after much prayer, God healed them all.
Maybe more important was the love and friendship between doctors and patients and between the foreign doctors and the Vietnamese doctors. It has been a learning experience between doctors.
The Vietnamese desire doctors to come in and work with their doctors. They do well with the little they have. They need equipment and supplies. If you know of any doctors who are interested in helping and would like to spend a week or two working in the local hospital or doing a clinic, please ask them to contact me by email. And pray, pray, pray for the April mission in Nha Trang. The government has not given its final OK. Also pray for the follow-up on the patients in Da Nang, the 40 foot container of surgical gloves being shipped to Tam Ky Hospital, and for 2 biomed-techs coming to fix their equipment.
The police did not approve my house. They said they cannot ensure my safety on the edge of town, and I must find another place closer to the center of the city. I have found a place to rent, and upon approval will be moved in before you get this report. Pray also for a tutor to teach me Vietnamese.
Some who call themselves Christians are causing some anti-government unrest among the churches, and causing trouble here. Pray that Christians will submit to and pray for their government and country, and that those who are stirring up trouble will come to find God's peace and rest. Many people here and the world over live in fear because they do not know or trust in God.
Pray for Long. He was a street child who now is married to a former street child. They have a 3 year old son. They are both wonderful people. Long can no longer work to support his family because his kidneys do not work. They do not have the money for treatment, and they do not do transpleants here. Long's body is swollen to twice its normal size. He needs a miracle and soon.
There has been a problem emailing the newsletter from Vietnam. I will continue mailings until things are fixed here. It is my desire to cut costs as much a possible by emailing as many newsletters as possible. If you desire to continue to receive this newsletter of our labors in Vietnam, please email me, or write, and ask to continue to be on the regular mailing list. If I do not hear from you by email or regular mail, then you will no longer receive this newsletter. In any case, please keep Vietnam in your prayers.
Lev. 19:10 - "And you shall not glean your vineyard, nor shall you gatherevery grape of your vineyard; you shall leave them for the poor and the stranger: I am the LORD your God."
Deut. 15:7 - "If there is among you a poor man of your brethren, within any of the gates in your land which the LORD your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart nor shut your hand from your poor brother."
L.O.V.E. has made commitment to 3 schools in Ngu Hanh Son District to provide scholarships to 30 children from very poor families. The scholarships are worth about $8 per month, the cost each child must pay to go to school. The income of these families is less than $40 per month, and most have 5 or more school age children.
The schools will screen these children and then recommend them to us. We will follow up with home visitations and interviews of the families before picking 10 from each school. Once the choices are made, we will evaluate the families to follow-up with additional support to provide a better environment for studying and learning. This will include home improvement, nutrition, and hygiene. We will also follow the growth, attendance, and educational progress of each child.
As a retired teacher with 40 years in education, I must tell you, I am very excited about this program. There are thousands of children who cannot go to school without this program. They often hang outside watching those fortunate enough to be able to go. They are eager to learn.
We are already providing 20 to 40 kg of rice per month to several families. The program above will put more families under our feeding program. Some may require house repairs or new houses (some live in houses with cardboard walls and a sheet of plastic for a roof). As God provides funds, we will expand this program. All of these children have special educational needs and are behind other children their age.
L.O.V.E. would like to fund a special summer program for these children to help them catch-up. This would require paying teacher supplements to 3 teachers for 3 months to teach these children in the summer. The cost will be $50/month for each teacher.
If funds are made available to expand this program in the future, we will also need to expand our staff. I feel that the follow-up on these children is verrrrry important.
Just from these 3 schools in one district, we know of 16 children in need of cleft lip/pallet surgery and many with eye and dental problems. Pray for Operation Blessing who will bring doctors, dentist, and surgeons in late July. We are compiling a list of people from the schools and churches to be helped.
Please send financial contributions if you can, but ALL of you can pray. Please pray for the children.