This weekend, the Haitian Donkey will make his monthly trek to Pittsburgh for another course of experimental therapy (thus has to be done in Pittsburgh, under their strict control as it is a study and everything has to be just so). Karen, of course, will go with to keep me headed in the right direction, as the triple treatment leaves the Donkey a bit weak in the knees (and the stomach). Over the years, I have heard stories of Interferon, that it is not the greatest stuff to tolerate, and I guess they were correct, one aches in places he didn’t know a Donkey had places, as the saying goes. The Rintatolamod (who comes up with these interesting names anyway) is tough on the stomach, despite the premedication with anti nausea meds. But, though the week is nothing to look forward to, it seems that a few days later, I have really perked back up this time and able to stuff my face with an amazing array of foodstuffs and enjoying every minute of that part. My Hemoglobin took a major hit and it is struggling to get back to “my normal,” at about 2/3 of normal donkey levels, but even my strength seems better.
As Karen and I head to Pittsburgh, Tom Failing and John Cushman from BCBC will head south to Haiti, where they will be joined by Dr. Fred Brown for the week we are gone. John will follow up on Duane’s work on the generator (Rod serviced it for us, thankfully, in the interim) and hopefully we will have some stability there, as it seems the electrical situation in Haiti remains sporadic at best. Pray for wisdom and strength for the 3 men as they try to make repairs on both the physical structure and the Haitian bodies for the week. Dr. William has been coming to Cayes to help do surgeries with Dr. Moise when the surgeons come, but, thankfully, the strike is over and he is back at the residency program for the normal 90 plus hours of work each week. However, he needs our prayers as he is a bit discouraged with the pressure of the work (Luke, Jose, Jim, Fred and I did our surgical residencies in our 20s, William is in his 40s and more than just maturity comes with age, I fear). Also, having an active family he is away from adds to the stress, undoubtedly. These men are the future of the hospital, so we want to pray for them that they will have God’s guidance and strengthening for the tasks before them.
We have not heard any more about the political situation, but are praying that things will get settled in the scheduled month for elections, October and that the situation will improve. As we mentioned, Dr. Luke, Karen, Tabitha, Micah and myself hope to go in early November, to avoid the political unrest and get the ball rolling at the hospital again. In that same vein, it is almost October already and I would like to ask if you all would be willing to donate to the Rice and Goats Fund again, as I hope to be able to encourage our employees with these. Last year, one of our more sensitive donors was worried that the donated goat would be the center of the Christmas Feast, so I checked it out with Dr. William. He assured me that this would be unlikely, as without refrigeration, the whole goat has to be eaten in a couple days and that is too much money to consume in a couple days. The goat is more like a financial investment, to be grown and hopefully multiply and then to be sold if a medical procedure needs to be done or repairs to the house, etc. Yes, eventually, the little one will become someone’s meal, but hopefully not in the near future. Thus, mostly likely the gift will live to say “baa” another day.
If you would like to contribute to the fund, you can send the money to either Centre de Sante Lumiere, US, c/o Dan Boerman at PVI Industrial Washing, 2886 Clydon, S.W., Wyoming, MI 49519 or Byron Center Bible Church, 8855 Byron Center Ave, Byron Center, MI, 49315 and label it the “Rice and Goats Fund” at either establishment and it will go in the proper designation. Thanks from both the Haiti Team and the employees at Centre de Sante Lumiere in Haiti.
In His Service,
Bill, Karen, Fred, Tom and John