Ecuador, Israel, and Peru
I traveled to Medellín, Colombia, (on a Dynamic Women in Missions short-term medical trip) as a translator and medic and worked in several different areas. In triage, I was asked by a patient, “Why does your team do all this if you get nothing for it?”
I asked the Lord to give me an answer that would glorify him.
I answered, “We want people to know that Jesus cares for you. He loves you, and he wants nothing in return.” The patient was amazed and thanked me.
While waiting to translate for Dr. Breen, I sat in the cubical with a patient and asked her about her symptoms. She told me that she hurts from her shoulders down into her arms because she is the main provider in her house, working her ranch on her own with two daughters and a very old father. She has all this pain because of the hard labor she does.
I was quiet and debating if I should pray with her. Finally, I grabbed her hand, “Let’s pray. God does not give us more than we can handle,” I said.
We prayed and cried together. She was so thankful for our prayer. I suddenly realized why I was called to so many different areas to help. God used me for more than just translating. I had great conversations, showed compassion, and fervently prayed with patients, showing that these qualities are also part of healing.
By Idalia Lazo, Translator and medic on a Dynamic Women in Missions trip
I experienced missions firsthand as a teenager with my church youth group from World Gospel Church. Since then, missions has become an integral part of my life journey. Thirty mission trips later as I prepared to embark on a Dynamic Women in Missions trip to Colombia to serve as a nurse on a medical team, I asked myself some serious questions.
- Can I keep up with the demands of this trip?
- Will I be able to effectively communicate with my patients?
- Do I have as much to offer now as I did in my earlier years?
Since my recent retirement, I wondered if short-term missions was over for me and would I be able to meet the rigors of the trip.
On the second day of clinic in Medellín, Colombia, God began to answer these questions.
The patient/nurse communication issue was seamless when I was assigned a godly young woman who loves people and the Lord with all her heart. Karen partnered with me and attacked the interview process with thoroughness and enthusiasm.
Furthermore, the clinic environment fostered collaboration and collegiality between the health care providers, the patients, and the local church hosts. What a blessing to see God’s hand on the human efforts to real spiritual rewards!
This was my first experience with DWIM and I was not sure how I would relate and fit in with an all-female team. Once again, God was faithful to lead me to a roommate who could encourage and support me and who I could mentor during the trip. The spiritual depth within the team was powerful and made the experience rich and meaningful.
So, the answer to my question: “am I too old to go?” was clearly answered. God proved himself faithful once again by equipping me physically, professionally, and spiritually to accomplish the tasks set before me in Colombia. Only God knows the future, but I am waiting with anticipation to tackle the next mission, whether going or sending.
To God be the Glory!
By Pam Blesch, Dynamic Women in Missions Short-Termer
For more information about how YOU can get involved: https://onemissionsociety.org/give/dynamic-women
To give to Dynamic Women: https://onemissionsociety.org/give/dynamic-women
A missionary couple who recently helped build a chapel in a small town in Hungary during their last trip to the country is retiring from One Mission Society. The new chapel is the first one in more than 900 years to be built for its residents since the country had been under a Communist rule. Rev. Chuck and Luci Long have been serving with One Mission Society for more than 25 years and were recently recognized at the OMS World Headquarters for their retirement from OMS during chapel on May 24.
The Longs served one term (four years) in Colombia, seven years with Men for Missions (MFM) as the Western regional directors, and they have helped make disciples of Jesus Christ with students at Asbury University and Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky, from 1999 to present day. During their service, they were blessed with three children, Jonathan, Roderick, and Juliana. Juliana and her husband, Jim were present at OMS during the chapel celebration. Son Jonathan serves with OMS in Hungary. The Longs also had many of their grandchildren present to help celebrate with them on their retirement.
Chuck spoke on behalf of the couple to the rest of the OMS staff about the handiwork of God and how he uses precise measurements to create everything and everyone in the world. Long has 43 years of experience in construction and used a meter stick he carries around in his pocket every day to demonstrate the good works that God was doing in the world.
OMS President Bob Fetherlin presented the missionary couple with a plaque to commemorate their faithful service for the Lord and OMS. Staff and visitors were invited to a small reception after the service.
Praise God for their amazing work of intentional evangelism in the world and within OMS.
Thank you, Chuck and Luci, for your many years of service!
By Thaddaeus Ristow, Summer Communications Intern
In Colombia, Bridge to Reading works with Satura Colombia, a network of OMS churches focused on saturating the country with the Gospel. Bridge to Reading empowers churches to use literacy as a tool for ministering to unreached communities. B2R wants to give every person in Colombia and beyond the opportunity to hear, understand, and believe the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The work started in Antioquia and has since expanded into other states. The program designates those who do not know how to read as persons of peace. Our tutors then use a story from the literacy primer Nuevos Caminos to teach one or two students at a time.
Led initially by Jonathan Tobon Restrepo, and now by Ximena Cardona, Bridge to Reading in Colombia has conducted 18 tutor training workshops, trained 184 tutors, and has taught 81 people to read since 2014. Their students are varied in age with some being as young as 16 and as old as 67.
Guillermo, from Amaga, Colombia, has learned how to read with the help of a Bridge to Reading tutor. In this video, he shares his joy as he reads John 3: 1-3. Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a member of the Jewish ruling council. He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the miraculous signs you are doing if God were not with him.” In reply, Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.”
Pray for the work in Colombia, and especially for Ximena as she leads the program. She will be attending a five-week literacy training institute at Literacy & Evangelism International in Tulsa, Oklahoma this summer.
Your giving will go a long way toward providing resources for learners such as primers, books, and pencils, as well as for tutoring resources such as chalk and chalkboards for our learning centers.
Bridge to Reading literacy ministry is a powerful evangelism tool that God is using to help many learn to read the Bible.
A gift of $50 will provide a chalkboard and school supplies for a group of literacy learners.
A gift of $20 will provide literacy primers and will enable one person learn to read the Bible.
While deciding to go to Medellín, Colombia, with One Mission Society’s Dynamic Women in Missions team, I began to hear from God about my role for this mission. I've traveled for years with my church's team to Panama for medical/evangelical outreach, so I assumed the process would be similar, and God would move in the usual way.
I was wrong.
While in Colombia, I saw God working among our team like I've never experienced before. He granted such a gift of unity and transparency among us that allowed beautiful spiritual growth. We openly discussed our fears and strengths and ministered to one another. We knew we were called by God to use our gifts and talents for his kingdom. We all understood that we didn’t need to be perfect to be called or to minister through medicine.
My favorite time was when our team, along with the national coworkers, the local pastor, and church members, gathered together to symbolically transfer the souls won to Christ to the pastor. This was done by a member of our team handing over the large stack of patient encounter forms. These contained their personal information to be used later to follow each patient up, along with their personal decision to follow Christ. What a beautiful gift to give and see what our work and ministry had accomplished.
By Angela Peterson
I came to Medellín to assist the Dynamic Women in Missions short-term medical mission team with translation. I worked in several different areas during the 9-day trip. In triage, I was asked by a Colombian patient: “Why does your team do all this if you get nothing?”
I asked the Lord to give me an answer that would glorify him. I replied, “We want people to know that Jesus cares for and loves you ... yet expects nothing in return.” The patient was amazed and thanked me.
On another occasion, while waiting to translate for Dr. Breen, I sat in the cubical with a patient and asked her about her symptoms. She told me that she hurts in her shoulders and down her arms because she is the main provider in her house, working her ranch on her own with only two daughters and an elderly father. She has all this pain because of the hard labor she does.
I was quiet and debated if I should pray with her. Finally, I reached for her hand and said, “Let’s pray.” I assured her that God does not give us more than we can handle. We prayed and cried together, and she was so thankful for the comforting prayer.
In that moment, I realized why God had called me to serve on this trip. I did much more than just translate. I got to be the healing hands and feet of Jesus through great conversation, compassion, and prayer.
By Idalia Lazo