Today the team went to a neighboring town (pueblito) called Palma Real. We held another clinic in their local church building which was a concrete structure with a tin roof and dirt floor. Today, unlike yesterday, we had quite a few people come for a consult with Dr. Gerardo Rivas.
Ruth, David, Grace and the “Two Abbys” were able to see some interesting cases that some people had. One person had a hole in their heart that caused blood to leak into the opposing chamber causing poor circulation throughout the whole body. This particular woman was a bluish color due to her poor circulation in her body. Another very interesting case you just don’t see every day was a woman who had leprosy! So we laid hands on her and prayed…..Gotcha! Ok we didn’t lay hands on her and pray but the doctor was able to identify the problem and let her know the proper course of action she needed to take. In all we had about 85 people come for a check up with the doctor and we were able to distribute the appropriate medicine to the people who needed it.
Not being a medical professional or student, I went about installing water filters in the town to help the people with their health. Being the first day in that town we were able to install about 5 systems which is pretty good for just showing up and people jumping on the opportunity.
The most interesting thing for me was being able to talk to some Christian brothers and sisters at a house after installing our last filter. The pastor of the church told us the history of the Tojolabal Christians in his area. He himself was kicked out of a town called Justo Sierra some years back for converting. He didn’t give up on his town though and would return to the town to evangelize. Over all there came to be about 40 families that became Christians in that time. However, afterwards the people in town became very upset with what was happening and with the starting of a church there. The Christians were told that they couldn’t have church meetings and physical persecution ensued to the extent that the Christians in town were very afraid to have open church services. At one point the authorities in town corralled the Christians into a basketball court and one by one dragged them out and beat them till as the pastor said “blood ran on the concrete.”
In time God showed them His mercy and protection and delivered them. Many eventually moved and started another town not far away and are much more prosperous than they were before. Now even Justo Sierra has a established church and the people don’t walk in fear but openly share their love for the Savior. There are still a lot of people who are closed to the Gospel, but God is blessing the believers of the town of Palma Real.
It was encouraging for me, Ruth and Abby Rogers as we heard first hand from people who were persecuted for their faith. I could say many more details but this blog post is long enough as it is. Remember to pray for the persecuted church not only in the indigenous parts of Mexico but for all our brothers and sisters in Christ around the world who are in peril every day for their faith.
For the Global Encounters 2011 Medical Team,