The memorial at Einsiedeln, Switzerland applauds Theophrastus Paracelsus, the 15th century physician & philosopher as, “erneuerer der medizin, vater der chemotherapie… eigenwilliger denker und demutiger christ, freund der armen” (the regenerator of medicine, the father of chemotherapy… the self-sufficient thinker and humble christ, friend of the poor). The field of medicine is such that it raises its practitioners to such admiration. This Medical Special issue of The CALL is an attempt to present the true calling and purpose of the medical field.
Exhorting that the call to heal the sick is a call from the Master, ‘Caring is our Calling’ shows how the church and missions have been pioneers in global healthcare and sounds the clarion call to venture into new and needed avenues in healthcare. A resurgence to this end is needed and this is possible only when we commit towards an ‘Overflowing Life’ as the lead article suggests so that there may be healing of nations.
The News & Views article ‘Sin, Sickness & Suffering’ answers the cause and connection of these baffling issues and helps understand trials and God’s silence meaningfully. When our sense of value is often tied to our job or possessions, people who are confined become non-performers and are pushed into feelings of inadequacy and low self-esteem. The Get Equipped article ‘Giving Hope: Counselling the Sick’ exhorts to encourage such to help them understand their worth in Christ and teaches the Do’s and Don’ts of counselling at such times.
‘I Want to be a Missionary Doctor’ and ‘For His Purpose’ in the MK Memoirs column are inspiring testimonies of two GEMS MKs who surrendered to God’s will and persevered through to realize the passion to become a missionary doctor.
The Red Hot article ‘Changing Face and Challenges of Healthcare’ throws light on the changes and contemporary challenges in healthcare and sounds the alarm that “Healthcare has become more profit driven from being service driven.” The article also presents the needed areas to focus and develop so that healthcare may not just become profit-based and practice-based, but patient-care-centered.
It is this vision of patient care that drives ‘GEMS Medical Ministries’ and the Magnifying Glass column shows how it accomplishes this vision to transform people by meeting their physical, mental and spiritual needs. Medical mission is pivotal to the ministries of GEMS as the founding of GEMS in itself is the fruit of prayers of two medical missionaries Caroline Paint and Sylvia Beadwell who served in Bihar in the late 60s & early 70s. We also remember and salute the contributions of Olive Jarvis & Joy Bath the pioneers of medical ministries at Dehri-On-Sone and Susie Rollet who sacrificed her life on the Rohtas hills while serving the Lord for the medical cause.
Heaven celebrates the sacrifices of such and GEMS medical missionary Arlene gave her life while serving on the Rohtas hills. When medical practitioners, in these tough places are victims themselves it’s an urgent reminder of the priority of medical care for every missionary. Hence ‘Missionaries Health Services’ is an initiative towards meeting possible total medical care assistance to missionaries across India and beyond.
Young medical missionary, General Surgeon Prerit Thomas Jacob who served at Evangelical Hospital in Orissa, who went to be with the Lord this January 2017 wrote & sang, “Help me to choose, what I cannot lose… Help me to fight till the break of daylight… For the sake of the Call”. This is a high call!
Answering this call, during the second world war the Army Medic Desmond in the heat of the battle on the Hackshaw Ridge, though tired and battered himself kept crying, “Please Lord! Help me get one more… help me get one more” and he carried 75 wounded men to safety! He remained characteristically modest, giving all credits to God for this accomplishment.
Renowned and accomplished neurosurgeon, author & politician Ben Carson writes in Gifted Hands, “I became acutely aware of an unusual ability - a divine gift, I believe - of extraordinary eye and hand coordination. It’s my belief that God gives us all gifts, special abilities that we have the privilege of developing to help us serve Him and humanity.” And he says that knowing God that He sent His Son to die for our sins is very empowering and knowing that He loves me, gives me encouragement and confidence to move forward.
Empowered by His love and encouraged with His presence let us serve humanity; raise up generations to answer this call and bring healing to the nations (Rev 22:2).
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