The medical work continues to be challenging, but also rewarding in many ways. The maternity work has had its fair share of difficult cases in the past few months and we give all of the praise to God for so many answered prayers. It was so lovely when, in the maternity ward, I suddenly heard the cry of a newborn and at the same time the patients‘ mother-in-law burst into song, singing in Chokwe: ‘Thank you, oh our Father for giving us your son’. She went dancing around the ward singing various other hymns and praising God for His goodness. I thought that was a scenario probably not likely to be seen or heard in the UK, but it was so lovely and she had us all singing along with her.
A beautiful baby was born some distance from Katoka, but the parents were concerned so they brought her to us. She was a hydrocephalic child and we arranged for her to go to Lusaka for treatment. The father of the child was sick at the time, so the mother set off with her rather elderly father to do the long journey to Lusaka. The child received treatment and immediately responded favourably to the insertion of the stent. On the return journey they had to make use of a motorbike down a steep and rocky road, and the stent was displaced, meaning the child needed hospital admission.
Mutshatsha hospital were unable to help and suggested they proceed to Kasaji, but Dr Kayombo was absent at the time and, although good treatment was given, they were not able to save the child. They made it back to Katoka, but two weeks later the child died. I cannot even imagine what the poor mother thought as she travelled back with a child who was more sick than she had been before embarking on the journey, but I felt like crying when the couple turned up a few weeks later and brought me a gift to thank me for helping them.
We can only pray in these times: that having the freedom to pray with them, share with them and perhaps help financially, we can do something to show God’s love to these needy people.