There are plenty of needs in the world that we live in today. You can watch the national news on any given evening and see a world in desperate need of help. People are hungry. People are sick. Nations are in political unrest. This is abundantly clear today and will become even clearer in the days ahead. Even more important than the physical needs in our world today, you can see a world in desperate need of the hope that can only be found in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Every once in a while an opportunity arises where both the physical needs and the spiritual needs come together in one project – such an opportunity exists in the small town of Somotillo, Nicaragua.
Nicaragua is the largest country in Central America. It is the second poorest country in the western hemisphere, partly because of the long civil war of the 1980’s and the devastation caused by hurricane Mitch in 1998. The vast majority of the five million inhabitants live in extreme poverty with many suffering from severe malnutrition and starvation. This led Pam and I to start “Because We Care Ministries” in 2000. This ministry helps people meet their need for a Savior, while also helping to meet the critical physical needs of hunger, substandard housing, shortage of water, lack of schools and education, and the lack of churches and strong pastoral leadership. Over the past eleven years Because We Care Ministries has offered general economic, healthcare, and emergency relief to tens of thousands in the Chinandega region of northern Nicaragua.
On one of the many trips that we led into the remote areas of Nicaragua, Pam and I encountered a woman named Maria carrying her daughter (Alba) down a dirt road trying to make it to the main highway. I stopped the truck and discovered that the little girl had fallen and had severely injured her mouth and face. When we asked this mother what she was doing she simply told us that she was trying to get to the main road in hopes that someone, anyone would be able to help her. Miles away from any sort of civilization, and many miles away from any hospital, Maria was carrying her daughter who needed emergency medical attention with only a prayer that someone could help. In God’s providence she found us. We took her into town and the little girl got the medical attention that she needed. That image of Maria carrying her bloodied and battered daughter down a dirt road with nothing but hope had a tremendous impact on us. This encounter and countless others just like it, led us to begin the construction of a free clinic in Somotillo. God gave us a vision to provide free medical services to anyone who could come. Nicaraguans could come and receive various medical treatment from basic family medicine, to minor surgery, to dental and optometry services. People just like the ones who live in a village called Cinco Pinos, which is twelve kilometers (7.45 miles) away, could enjoy free medical assistance. Because We Care Ministries will partner with local doctors there as well as physicians within the Nicaragua Baptist Convention and physicians on teams coming from the United States. They have hosted several medical mission trips in the past where teams came in, helped for a week, and then went back home. This clinic would be open year-round for Nicaraguans to come and have physical needs met as well as a place where they can understand their spiritual need for a Savior.
You can help make this vision become a reality and help meet a tremendous need. Currently the clinic building is unfinished. There are people who are ready to serve and plenty of people who need medical attention. The only obstacle left is to finish the construction of the facility. In order to help meet the financial burden of completing the building, one of the donors for Because We Care Ministries has graciously offered to match any donation towards the clinic up to $20,000. That means that if you can give $100 then he will match it and make it a a $200 gift. If you can give $1000 it becomes a $2000 gift. If we can raise $20,000 then he will match it and make it a $40,000 gift, which will allow the clinic to open up as soon as possible. Will you prayerfully consider joining in this effort to meet the physical and spiritual needs of the people within the Somotillo area of Nicaragua? This matching gift challenge will last through Dec. 31, 2011.
If you would like to help with a financial contribution please send your gift to: Because We Care Ministries
P.O. Box 21806
Roanoke, Va 24018
You may also go to our website and donate online. Thank you in advance for your financial/prayer support. IHL, Donald and Pammie