Monday, November 01, 2010

Advanced timing

Not regarding magnetos or ignition coils, but God's weaving of events. I was on a three night safari flight a while ago. This one left me with a lot of time on the ground, but still miles from a home. I had torn apart Olivia's bedroom wall, promising to replace it when I return. Then a scorpion stung Breanna my first day away from home.

However, day two held the unexpected for me.... Jon, the other pilot based in Loki, called and asked if I could go fly to Duk Payuel. It sounded a lot better than sitting around, and since they just needed a short flight to Bor instead of Loki, the schedule worked perfectly. The airplane was already in Sudan, and they would not have to pay for the miles to come from Loki.

As an aside: When I approached Duk, I saw an older man grazing his cows by the runway. I kept an eye on them, since nothing seperated them from the runway. While about 50 feet above the ground, one of the bulls bolted onto the runway. I came up with the power, but kept the airplane near the ground, and passed around ten feet over the wayward animal. That seemed to work, and the cows gave me lots of room. On the ground, the herdsman had words with the clinic, but I don't think it was anything new.

Tom, one of the administrators for the clinic, told me there were two mothers who needed to go the hospital, and their foundation had a fund that would pay for emergency medical flights, much like our Wings of the Dawn. I told him the timing could not have been better. Here is an e-mail they sent back to the US, and then forwarded to me....

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: *************************
Date: Tue, Oct 12, 2010 at 5:25 AM
Subject: flight took off safely
To: ****************************
Cc: ****************************

Dear ___________,
On behalf of the mothers, Elizabeth and Martha and the clinic staff, we thank you and the Eastern Hills Bible Church for your support of this new initiative.
As most of the members of your church were still sleeping or just waking up this morning, in the small village of Duk Payuel in Southern Sudan, a plane from AIM AIR was landing on the dirt airstrip there. This plane landing in Duk was made possible through their support, and as they were asleep, these mothers and caretakers got on the plane headed for the nearest surgical center, more than 100 miles away. Even during the dry season, the trip on the dirt takes 6 hours, and now, during the rainy season, the trip is only possible by plane. AIM stands for African Inland Mission, a non-profit aviation organization. With a team of volunteer pilots, they serve missionary and church-based groups throughout the region, providing air travel in places many commercial flights either won't go or for which charge a high fee.
As these things tend to just happen by Divine intervention, Jered, the pilot today, said that the plane happened to be available and sitting in Rumbek, just a hundred or so miles from Duk.
One mother had come walking through knee-deep standing water for more than 25 miles to come to the clinic. She had already six deliveries, four of whom died, miscarried. She was now pregnant again, and came to the clinic hoping for something, trusting in the clinic staff and services provided here--the best for more 100 miles around. She was having pro-longed labor and needed an emergency c-section, a function for which the clinic is still unable to provide. The other had come from just a few miles away, and unfortunately, the child had already died in the womb. Still, without surgical capabilities, the mother's life was in serious jeopardy.
They'll go to Bor Town, the state capital, where there's a hospital that can perform the simple operation (a C-section) they need to save their lives, and, hopefully, the life of the child in the womb. All made possible by the dedicate act of generousity made possible by generous people 5,000 miles away who they'll never meet.
The members of church should also know the effectiveness of the mosquito nets for which they donated--since the rainy season began in May, the clinic has only received a few cases each month of malaria, amazing considering the thousands of mosquitos which plague the area. The nets can also provide protection against kalazar, another potentially endemic disease that is affecting the areas surrounding the Duk.
We do ask the members of the church one more thing--for their prayers for these two mothers. We'll try to check in on the status of them, though communication here can take a little while for messages to get through.
Again, from the bottom of our hearts, thank you for this. No mother or child should die from childbirth, and by the will of God and the help of some generous people, we're working to ensure that.

John Dau Foundation
Transforming Health Care in Southern Sudan

"Impossible is what you won't do" - John Dau

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