For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake, he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich. 2 Corinthians 8:9
Today, Thursday, April 27, was slated to be our busiest day. Not only was La Sorto, Otoro Intibuca the largest community with 160 families, it was the furthest away, resulting in a three hour bus ride each way. The group convened for a 6:00 a.m. breakfast and was on the road to La Sorto by 7:00 a.m. Upon our arrival at La Sorto at 10 a.m., our team was greeted with bright eyes, wide smiles, and hugs from the local children, some in their white school uniform shirts and blue pleated skirts.
The community of La Sorto has 160 families living in 95 houses. Like the other villages we have served this week, they have both a kindergarten and an elementary school, with a total of 104 students. The community does not have electricity. Their water source is a river 4 km away. There are two midwives who deliver only in emergencies, and no health center. When medical attention is needed, a trip must be made to La Esperanza Intibuca, 22 km away. There is a low incidence of teenage pregnancy. The most common illnesses are respiratory, stomach, skin problems, headache, hypertension, and chickenpox.
The team set up their clinics in an old schoolhouse, using a generator we transported for electricity. In addition to our other Honduran doctors who have been with us throughout the week, Dr. Juan Lainez joined our team for the first time today. He is a Honduran doctor who volunteered his time to go into the field with us and get to know our organization. Friends of Barnbas encourages Honduran doctors to work alongside the teams, so Dr. Lainez’ presence was welcome and greatly appreciated. The general clinic served 237 people. Vitamins were distributed to 182 people. Deworming medication was given to 177 children. Fifty-one children received fluoride treatments. The eye clinic served 31 patients. The dental clinic served 26 patients, for a total of 32 extractions performed. Nine referrals were made for ongoing medical care. Dr. Paul Settle found a heart murmur in a 10 day old baby girl, who was referred for further medical care. In total, three children were referred for services through the Friends of Barnabas Extended Care Program.
The joy and happiness in this community was evident throughout the day. They showed their appreciation for our services by giving our team freshly steamed tamales for lunch and coffee this afternoon. Their smiles and hugs were contagious. Although this was our largest group we served and was the longest day we have worked, it was one of the most enjoyable experiences we have had so far.
Our team arrived back at our house at 6:30 this evening in time to share dinner and devotions together. Dr. Judy led the devotions, and Ronnie spoke, as well. We talked about poverty and the poor. Dr. Judy said that during the day and throughout the week, her heart had been touched by these people in Honduras who have so few material possessions, who live in financial poverty, but who have such joy and happiness and contentment in their lives. Are they truly poor? We reflected spiritual poverty, as Dr. Judy asked, “Shouldn’t we really be looking at our own lives? Shouldn’t we consciously look at what we have each day?” As we have humbled ourselves and served the financially poor of Honduras this week, our lives have become richer, not in comparison to them, but because of them.
As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, not to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. 1 Timothy 6:17
Keep your life free from the love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave nor forsake you." Hebrews 13:5