”What Do You Need Most?”

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LaPresa
An update from MEMO Ministry’s work in El Salvador.

“Jerome, this is the most important meeting you have had this trip!”

Eduardo was referring to the brief tour given by an elderly, spritely town counsellor who showed Jerome the conditions of La Presa. La Presa is a village close to the larger town of Texacuangos, but is separated from it by a steep, often treacherous pathway. The people have great needs and we have the ability to help physically, socially and spiritually.

Dutchaks scrap metal in Thunder Bay, ON is setting aside 1,000ft of hand rail over the next little while to help make this pathway safer. MEMO volunteers will pick it up from time to time and MEMO will start shipping it to the region.

Of course that is the easy part. With the help of the community and town workers the pipe has to be cut and welded and then installed. But what an opportunity to show care in a practical way!

We want to collect child’s and adolescent size shoes so kids can go to school. The Shalom clinic is a 20-minute walk away for serious medical problems. MEMO will supply a “sitting” stretcher to carry patients down the mountain.

Finally, it is possible for us to provide a pre-fabricated first-aid post and church building, with 2 rooms, galvanized walls and a concrete floor, if we receive $3,000 in donations.

There are no churches or significant help from churches in La Presa. The town with its limited resources brings in food once a month.

MEMO wants to be involved in a supportive role in this community in this time and for Eternity. This is its vision and with your help this community can learn that God loves them!

For lots more about MEMO, visit the ministry’s website by clicking here.

MEMO Packing Day (Updated)

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Just a last minute reminder to those of you who live in Thunder Bay area that tomorrow (Thursday May 22nd), beginning at 9am we will be packing our 55th container, this one headed to El Salvador.

There will be a ceremony in which the keys of the ambulance will be handed over to Eduardo (an EFCCM missionary). It will also be dedicated it to the benefit of those using it in El Salvador, and then put into the container.

This container itself has been bought by MEMO and will remain at the Shalom Clinic as a much needed warehouse.

We are also shipping a lot of shelving, digital X-ray machine and needed tools.

If you’re not in the area, please remember to pray for the packers, and the whole process of shipping this container on its long journey.

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Here is a quick summary of the packing, which was another great success!

The container is now filled with:

  • 1,000 lbs of modular metal shelving
  • 5 palettes containing the components of the digital X-ray machine
  • a palette of computers
  • bicycles
  • furnishings (eg a ping pong table)

The bottom of that list is to benefit Cecilia Huezo’s Christian Community Centre in the remote hills of El Salvador.

It should arrive in Tuxecuangos the later part of June.
We hope Eduardo will be on hand to unpack it as he was integral to the packing.

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MEMO Can Do That!

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The MEMO team recently spent 4 days visiting our new ministry partners in El Salvador. The Shalom primary care community clinic run by Harvesting in Spanish Mission, is waiting to be furnished and medically equiped to get its license to operate. MEMO can do that!

This clinic will provide free care to poor people in the community for Paediatrics, Ophthalmology, Gynecology, Emergency room, general medicine, day surgery, diagnostics (lab and X-ray), nutritional counselling and spiritual counselling and social work . There will be health fairs held regularly in the community for preventative medicine. Staffing will come from the El Salvador Evangelical University Medical school as part of their training

This Christian Medical School has 1,600 undergraduate and graduate students! They are planning a large community clinic in the capital city, San Salvador, to be followed by a 50 bed hospital for medical training. MEMO can help to provide that!

The 250 student Amilat Christian School also run by Harvesting in Spanish is needing computers for training, and some new desks and chairs. MEMO can do that!

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The large empty home across the road donated to the Shalom children’s home for use as a residence for 18 year old graduates of the children’s home going on to College and University needs furnishing (beds, couches, chairs, tables, etc.). MEMO can do that!

When told about the Mammography machine and the mobile breast screening clinic sitting in our warehouse, both the Shalom Clinic and Christian Medical School eagerly said they will collaborate in running the program. Teri Benner the director of the medical clinic has already selected the room for the fixed mammography machine and adjacent dark room. MEMO will send that that!

The computer teacher in the Christian School, when he heard of all the computer equipment we can supply, said “I am going to faint!!” The school doctor from the medical school said something we have often heard in Cuba “We have enough doctors and nurses but not enough equipment.”

The needs of these folks in El Salvador fits perfectly with what God has called MEMO to do.

There is a huge amount of work ahead of us!

  • We have to continue collecting medical equipment and inventoring it for customs.
  • We have to collect money for shipping.
  • We will have many days of packing ocean containers for El Salvador.
  • In El Salvador we do not need government permission for shipping things. We only need our partners to tell us what they need. That is such a blessing.
  • Please pray that the equipment and supplies can be put to good use without complications.

A Sample of Superstition

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In her ministry to rural people in El Salvador, Cecilia faces some unique beliefs and practices. The following excerpt is in her words:

“One of the new things I have learned is that a fruitless tree must be put to shame by hanging old shoes on it – it will then have no choice but to give fruit!”

Then she continues:

“The Lord continues to show me the depth of all kinds of beliefs and cultural practices here. People believe that when someone gets sick, more often than not, it is some form of witchcraft act that has been committed against them. Please pray for wisdom and discernment as I address these topics in my conversations with the local people.”

Clearly there is a difference between these two anecdotes. The first is rather humorous, and presents a quirky interpretation of life’s incidents. However, the second isn’t funny at all — it speaks to both a mistrust of community and a deep-seated fear of the whole spirit realm.

May these people in rural El Salvador find that trust in Christ overpowers fear, and brings peace!