I have just returned from the noisiest Good Friday service that I have ever attended. It was held at the South Sea Evangelical Church (Baptist in this part of the world) in Kindu. They are hosting a worship and study week-end. Their beautiful new church was overflowing with congregations from other places who were very enthusiastic in their worship. It was in contrast to our United Church service last night, which was a very thoughtful reflection on Luke’s account of the last supper. It was led by our new general secretary, who is a very educated man. He spent time in the UK as a marine engineer, before he felt God call him to ministry. I look forward to seeing what changes his appointment will bring to the church.
We have experienced a lot of sickness with high fevers of 40 degrees C. and more. It is so difficult to be sure of the diagnosis with such limited investigations. Happily everyone has recovered with supportive treatment. The doctor who was expected last Friday has not yet appeared with no explanation, but I am off to Choiseul on Monday for 2 weeks, having booked my ticket, once the doctor had given us a date. We managed to get most of the hospital sprayed for malaria yesterday, which will make it much better for patients and staff who had been complaining. Now it is fairly quiet, most people wanting to be with their families for Easter.
Wishing you all a blessed Easter
The hot weather continues despite a tropical storm last night that cooled the temperature for a short while. It has been a much quieter week-end after another busy week. 2 patients went by plane to Honiara on Friday, including one of our nurses with fever and fluid in her lung, which had not responded to treatment. The canoe also went to Gizo with 2 antenatal mothers. Friday is always a busy day for me as the island people take the opportunity of market transport to come to hospital. I have given up trying to get there myself, but managed a quick trip on Wednesday, when I was able to re-stock.
Our new Chaplain is now well established and very active in the hospital and compound. He lost his right arm in an accident in 2014. He realized he wanted to get rid of all his bad ways with his arm and once recovered wanted to serve in health care. He is full of energy. His message to us was “Jesus told us to go and tell, not to go and write and he can still do that” He has a sense of humour and is well liked in the hospital. I feel the hospital is now in good hands with a strong management team in place. We look forward to the arrival of Dr Richard on Friday
It is now 3 weeks since I left home and the hospital remains busy. Gastroenteritis continues, but it seems mainly adults who come early and usually settle quickly. The male ward is full of elderly diabetic men with infected feet. I have amputated gangrenous toes from 2 of them, but one may need further surgery and is going to Gizo by canoe today, with 2 antenatal ladies who may need caesarian section.
It is very hot at present, but intermittent rains have kept the water tanks topped up. The strong winds earlier have affected the market produce, even bananas are in short supply. Still, I am managing fine and very much enjoying the hospitality of Jim and Carolyn, the Bible translators. The Roviana translation has been completed and they are on their final read through after many years of work. They hope it will be ready to launch next year.