Saturday, September 4, 2010

A chance to love

Baraba Paul

Early this morning Paul sat in my Katubi with his father, waiting for me to emerge from a night slumber and start a new day with God’s new mercies chirped by the jungle song birds surrounding us. Paul is a ten year boy and nephew to one of our friends and mission workers. He is like any other child in this area- a big smile, fun loving, lives for football (soccer) and attends school when funds are sufficient enough to allow him to go. He probably misses days during cocoa season to help harvest and increase the family income. This income is used almost exclusively for his siblings and his school fees. They eat on the beans and vegetables grown in the garden. Hunger increases during dry season and subsides in the wet and with the cocoa harvest. He probably has had multiple bouts with malaria and lives with less hemoglobin in his blood than is needed for full physical and mental development. Still, he is a sweet kid, loved by Jesus and in great need today.

Two months ago his family noted a bump in his cheek. After a month, the bump became very apparent. Not knowing what to do, they probably consulted traditional healers seeking to appease the anger and plagues of ancestors. The bump now completely disfigures his face, causing his eye to protrude forward and his tongue to deviate to the side of his mouth. He now does not smile, but looks down at the ground, afraid to see the repulsion in the faces of people who believe he is cursed. But he is not cursed. He has Burkett’s Lymphoma, a fast growing cancer that particularly affects children in Africa. Because it is so fast growing, this cancer can take his life by closing off his airway within a short period of time. Because it is so fast growing, it is also very treatable by chemotherapy drugs. I am so thankful his father brough him to my katubi this morning. I am thankful for a chance to love him in a critical place in his life. It is a chance to pray for him, to share Jesus with him through word and touch, and a chance of physical healing.

However, the International Hospital that usually treats these cases for us is out of funding for cancer patients. They have agreed to take him as a patient and cover all costs except for the medicine. The medicine will cost about $400 dollars per month and the treatment may last 3-6months according to the hospital consultant. The patient’s family is raising money to cover transportation back and forth to Kampala which will cost them a sizable $60 per trip- more than a man's monthly salary. If they can pay the transport, we want to pay for his medicines. However, we need your help. Can you send in $60 dollars to go toward his medicines? Less or more is ok, too. Amy and I will set up a Special Medical Case account at WHM, but until this is completed, please send it to WHM at the following website. Please indicate in comments that it is for Paul.

Thanks for loving him with us. Please pray. We will keep you updated!


  1. Hi Trevor and Amy. My name is Cindy Nore, and I wanted to let you know we will be making a contribution for Paul's medical expenses through WHM. We tried to make the donation on line tonight but experienced technical problems, so we will call and make the donation tomorrow. I just wanted you to know that your post touched my heart and that some funds are on the way to help Paul.

    My daughter Jessica Pety was a WHM missionary who planned to join the team in Spain in February 2008. She was finishing her training at MTI and was involved in a car accident that took her and two others to Heaven. Jessica had initially hoped to work in Africa with WHM but was prevented from doing so because she had lupus and was unable to receive the yellow fever vaccine. I have followed the Myhres blog for years and began following your blog when you joined the team there, and today I felt sort of led to read your blog. I will be praying for Paul and his family and appreciate you advocating for him and for all you do to serve as the hands and feet of Christ there in Bundi. Jess had such a heart for the people of Africa and know her spirit lives on in servants like your family.

    God bless-
    Cindy Nore

  2. Hi Travis and Amy- Cindy Nore again. I just sent a followup email to you guys at your gmail account. If your email has changed, can you please let me know? Thanks - Cindy