Since we returned from Greece, I have put in long tedious hours accomplishing the administrative needs of PAACS – signing 4000+ fund-raising letters; writing, formatting and distributing the junior and senior PAACS annual in-service exams; conference calls, budgeting for next year; and general putting out of fires. Micky and I have spent several hours trying to finish up the reporting and finances from the Greek conference; it is not yet finished. I have also been budgeting for the next conference which will be held in Thailand. I taught for two days in another Advanced Trauma Life Support course in Greenville, NC.
Yesterday, I drove to Kalamazoo to meet with Ed Bos of Worldwide Laboratory Improvement and to work on the PAACS software module. While we were there, Ed introduced me to a friend who is interested in developing some prototypes of ergonomic hand and laparoscopic instruments. It is something I began working on over 20 years ago but never pursued. If anything comes of it, I will turn the patent and profits over to PAACS.
We will stay here until Wednesday and then drive to Wilmore, Kentucky, to visit our friends, Rev. Stan and Katy Key. Stan is the Spiritual Dean for PAACS. The next day, we will drive on to Nashville to visit my sister Cindy and her husband Bob at their home near Nashville before driving home this weekend.
Next week, Sean will attend church camp and I will be attending the International College of Surgery conference in Memphis, Tennessee later in the week. The next week, I will go to the CMDA-CMDE Commission meeting in Chicago.
S3 Ministries has seen some results from its projects. The Compassion Evangelical Hospital in Guinea is one of the three hospitals that we have supported by helping with the Hospital Radio project. This is an exciting project for us despite the slow acceptance of the concept. Pastor Oumar Traoré wrote this paragraph as part of a much longer report of his ministry at the Compassion Evangelical Hospital in Guinea, “We visited 62 people in all, new patients. There were 3 people who accepted Jesus Christ, and M.C. and A.B. who were injured in accidents, but they received physical and spiritual healing. Then T.Y. through preaching and the (hospital) radio, accepted the Lord.”
Dr. Steve Merry, who we first met in our service in Togo at the Baptist hospital there more than a decade ago and who is now at Mayo Clinic and one of the movers and shakers of the CEH project, wrote in his letter, “An exciting first in this report is Oumar's note that one of the new believers specifically witnessed that he came to faith through hearing the Gospel presentation on CEH's Hospital Radio, the Christian programming which plays throughout the clinic and hospital wards all day now in Fulani, Maninka, and French thanks to the creative generosity of S3 Ministries. We've been aware through other patients’ comments of the way that Hospital Radio programming is speaking to their physical, emotional, and spiritual needs and softening hearts for the presentation of the Gospel; so this is not really a surprise but a great affirmation of S3's vision. Thank you Bruce, Micky, and Sean Steffes!”
We are getting similar reports from Bongolo Hospital in Gabon since they recently started their broadcasting. We look forward to seeing it in action when we go there in July. Your gifts to help support Hospital Radio can make a real difference. Read more about it at http://www.s3ministries.com/hospitalradio/.
We have also received shipment of the two trays of surgical instruments. We appreciate those who are contributing to their purchase. One tray has been paid for and we hope that the second one soon will be.
We have also made arrangements for the purchase of the special pediatric scopes for the airway and esophagus for donation to Soddo Christian Hospital in Ethiopia. We were surprised how fast the importation permit was obtained and thrilled that they will be imported custom-free. We are transferring the $13,500 to the company’s bank and hope the equipment will be shipped soon. Since this is very delicate equipment, we will ask them to store it until the new missionary surgeon arrives in January. We have dipped deeply into the reserves to pay for this equipment and any help would be appreciated.
Praise and Prayers:
- Please pray that God will provide the money for the surgical instruments and scopes.
- Praise for traveling safety over the next month.
- Please pray that Sean will have a wonderful week at camp.
- Pray that we can amiably and fairly resolve the billing issues with the hotel in Greece.
- Pray for us as we strive to get all the PAACS and CMDE Commission work done. Pray for the residents who will be taking the exams next weekend.
- Pray that the PAACS search committee can identify the right people for the job.
- Praise God that we got the visas to permit us to visit Gabon!
- Pray for the Paul Grays who are returning to the US permanently after six years of service in Ethiopia. Pray for the next six months at the hospital when there will be no permanent missionaries to support the training program there.
Yours, for the peoples of Africa,
Bruce, Micky and Sean