So our team has unfortunately entered a season of someone almost always being gone from Burundi. We all arrived in Burundi together but now, for medical education and patient care reasons, we can't all leave at the same time. And our terms with Serge require four years in Burundi and one year "Home Ministry Assignment"- which can be divided up flexibly. What is the purpose of HMA? According to Serge, "Home Ministry Assignment provides time for field workers and their families to be physically and spiritually renewed, to reconnect with family and friends, to retool for future ministry, and to reassess their calling in God's Kingdom work."
So, all that to say, Carlan was in the US for three months last summer, I'm in the US for four months now, McLaughlins will leave when I get back, etc. It's sad to not be all together in Burundi, but I'm enjoying seeing family & friends, being back at my home church, "retooling" in several key educational areas to hopefully benefit the Burundian medical students, and representing the team with mutual connections in the US. And I also of course am enjoying the amenities of consistent water, electricity, internet, favorite foods, etc.
Being Stateside, I had the privilege of seeing the final results of the video crew who came out to Burundi from Serge a few months ago. Unfortunately my teammates at Kibuye don't have the internet bandwidth or data to view such things, so they will have to take my word on what a great job the videographers did! I love how beautifully the first video captures what amazing work God does through John Cropsey in the eye ward. He's only the second eye surgeon in the whole country of Burundi and he literally gets to make blind people see! Also, the English voice-over for the patient in the video was a med students who generously and cheerfully worked many hours with the video team and who was greatly impacted by her four months rotating with us at Kibuye to the point that she is now considering missions and caring for the underserved through medicine.
[Here's the link if you can't see the video below: http://vimeo.com/113349898]
And the second video ties in well with the blog Heather wrote a few days ago about cleft surgery and Serge. It highlights the vision of our mission agency and features footage from Burundi and clips of interviews with both John and me.
[Second video link: http://vimeo.com/113346454]