After a delicious breakfast of omelets, homemade yogurt, and watermelon, the team loaded up on the giant white school bus and headed out into the mountains around 7 am. A long (2 hour) very bumpy ride followed--our Honduran solider guides leading the way. We did take a wrong turn at one point on a very narrow dirt road, but this proved to be no problem for our skillful bus driver, Marco.
Around 9:30 we arrived in the community of El Cipre's Jesus de Otoro, where a long line of friendly faces waited for us outside the gate of a small school. The Honduran Barnabas team swung into action and in no time we were ready to start seeing people at the Vitamin Station, the Medical Clinic, the Dental Clinic, and the Eye Clinic--set up in classrooms and under trees.
259 people were seen in the medical clinic on Monday with ailments ranging from various fungal infections to cerebral palsy and malaria. Many people were grateful to receive medicines as simple as Tylenol to help with the frequent fevers and body aches that are commonplace in Honduras.
The pharmacy team kept things moving bagging and labeling a wide range of medicines. The vitamin team distributed prenatal vitamins and children's vitamins as well as vitamin A to babies. The children were very excited to receive small gifts at this station--including matchbox cars and bead necklaces.
In the dental clinic the team performed 74 extractions. A young man with Down Syndrome who waited patiently at the dental clinic deeply touched the heart of one of our team members, Duane Rohlfsen. At the start of each Mountain Medical Team, each team member is given a cross. The team member is told to wait for a “holy moment” during the week – a moment when that team member is especially touched by someone they meet during the course of the mission. The team member is invited to give their cross to that person. Duane gave his wooden cross to this patient young man in the dental clinic.
All too soon, it was getting dark and we had to close up and make the long drive home--past rice paddies and down the mountain--exhausted but grateful for the ways our hearts had been touched by the people of Honduras.