2020 REVIEW AND LOOKING FORWARD
Dear MEMO Supporter,
It is New Year’s Eve and a time to look back to remember God’s faithfulness, love and care for the people we serve; also to remember and thank you for being His hands and feet in the amazing miracles that have unfolded over the last year.
We remember the 100 infrared thermometers needed so that schools in the area of Zimbabwe we care for could open and Christian Kids clubs could start up again.
We remember the miracle of walking into Shoppers and meeting a woman who asked if we needed any money. When told about the need for thermometers, reached into her purse and handed over $1400 in cash!
We remember the donation of 100 plus laptops and printers from the local public school board. Tom Baxter has been steadily preparing them for use in Zimbabwe.
This spring we had 2 containers waiting for permission from the Zimbabwe police to be released from Customs. After waiting for a long time, the Zimbabwe Gecko Society representative (Eric Rasper) went to the police station to inquire what was holding up the paperwork. Eventually the police admitted their printer was broken and they had no paper to print the documents. Eric went home, got the printer and paper donated by MEMO, returned to the police station and printed the documents. So not only are the printers useful in schools and medical facilities but also as gifts to local officials involved in caring for communities.
We remember the destitute Wedza boys living in derelict buildings while attending school. Two of our containers were renovated into dormitories for them. This last year we have sent clothes, furniture, bedding, cooking and eating utensils along with school supplies and much more to enable them to continue their schooling in a relaxed, safe and dignified environment.
We remember the 14, almost new, top of the line, doctors’ examining tables donated to us by a local organization who no longer needed them. They are now in service in clinics in Zimbabwe replacing rickety old wooden tables. Having beautiful, functional equipment like that in a rundown clinic give the staff and patients a lift in spirits knowing there is help available in their desperate conditions.
We remember the CPAP machines from MEMO that missionary Eduardo Poulin in El Salvador was able to convert fairly simply into ventilators for Covid-19 patients. Using his design we have sent converted machines to hospitals we serve in Zimbabwe to save lives. These hospitals would never be able to obtain ventilators otherwise. This is an ongoing project and when finished, we will have provided more CPAP ventilators than the entire country had at the beginning of the pandemic!
We remember the request from Dr. Paul Thistle that many couples in the Karanda Hospital area would not get married as they could not afford a proper wedding, including the wedding dress. One day after receiving his email which I had not yet shared, we received 17 gorgeous wedding dresses from a generous Thunder Bay business. They will be shared many times in Karanda.
We remember the donation of 142,000 18gm tubes of Sensodyne fluoride toothpaste for the 3000 AIDs orphans we help care for. My dentist tells me swishing this twice a day will reduce cavities significantly.
I could go on and on with so many amazing stories of God’s provision over this last year. (You will be interested to know a book is being written (not by me) to preserve 17 years of similar MEMO stories.)
In the coming year we plan to ship a container to Cuba as soon as Cuban government permission is granted. We have the money for shipping this container.
We are also planning a container to Zimbabwe in March and funds permitting ($100,000), another 3 throughout the year. These will contain complete dental set-ups for 10 basic dental care clinics along with school supplies and furniture, medical supplies and all the contents of the closed Current River United Church. Even the beautiful stained glass windows from the church will be sent to enhance worship sites in Zimbabwe.
But none of this would be possible without the faithful financial support of so many of you. I say “Thank you!” on behalf of the multitude of suffering people you are helping through MEMO. And then there are our amazing MEMO volunteers who work day after day with no reward other than knowing they are obeying Jesus command; “to feed the hungry, clothe the naked and heal the sick”. When I arrive a the warehouse in the morning, the steps are swept of snow, the heat is turned up and one of them has placed clean towels etc. in the washroom. Dirty, naked dolls are taken home, cleaned up and returned in charming clothes, ready to bring joy to some African child’s life. Untold amounts of linen etc. that are not perfectly clean are taken home, washed and returned with “pride of donation”. No one asks or tells our volunteers to do these or a hundred other little things. They are just done. One day the Lord will say; “Well done good and faithful servant.”
So there you have it!
We wish you God’s richest blessings in your life in 2021.