The story of Jonah in many ways reflects the story of our own lives. In a way he is the embodiment of our own action/reactions to the trials of this world. Initially when asked by God to go to Nineveh Jonah panicked and ran away. Not surprising either since Nineveh was the evil city of Assyria, the country that had demolished the kingdoms of Israel and Judah. But as you know from the story God intervened and interrupted Jonah’s cowardly flight. You remember how in the whale he pleaded with God, “In my distress I called to the Lord and he answered me”, and God gave him a second chance. So now when asked again to go to Nineveh, he obediently went. He didn’t make a particularly brilliant entry or give a particularly impressive account of God’s message, but either the people were convinced by the sincerity of his appeal or God helped out again by softening their minds, or perhaps both. Anyway they in turn pleaded with God, fasted, did penance and seeing how they had turned from their evil ways God relented and Nineveh was saved. Continue reading “The Jonah Story”
Well, what a week! As you read from my previous email, I started off the week with diarrhoea. I continued with this for nearly 3 days. On Wednesday I received the sample results – the lab had isolated the bacteria Shigella – also Continue reading “Sunday 18 February 2018”
Thanks to a stroke of extremely good luck combined with similarly extreme gesture of generosity, I’ve recently had the pleasure of watching an international football match from the stands. It was a welcome distraction that offered me the chance to have a mental rest from the very intensive and occasionally overwhelmingly busy time I’ve had ever since the beginning of the year. It was a completely new experience for me as I had never watched a game from the stands. In contrast to watching the game on the telly, it was stripped of slow-motion replays, close-ups and running commentary. Surprisingly, watching the game in that new way inspired my reading of today’s gospel.
Sorry for the late email – seems as though some people are following these emails quite closely, and when one didn’t appear yesterday, I had messages asking if all was ok! Well, I’m afraid to report, it’s not been that ok this last 24-48 hrs. Went to bed Saturday evening and unable to get warm. Woke up Continue reading “Monday 14 February 2018”
There’s a lot of excitement going on in today’s gospel. The locals are thrilled by Jesus’ presence among them in their synagogue. Then the news of Simon’s mother-in-law having been miraculously healed by Jesus spreads like wildfire in the neighbourhood; and soon after sunset, when the Sabbath day restrictions are over, the house where Jesus is staying is besieged by those seeking either healing or sensation. In a world with neither an effective Continue reading “5th Sunday in Ordinary time”
I am now entering my final 2 months. As of yesterday, I have 8 weeks left. The cataract surgeries are continuing at approx. 15 patients per day. I heard last week that we have operated on our 1,000 cataract patient. Feels like 10,000 sometimes! I have had my usual medical problems to deal with (diabetes, high blood pressure and a handful of dressings). You may remember several months ago that a patient came with an undiagnosed broken leg, who we had to send to the local hospital. They came back this week for their rescheduled cataract surgery with plaster cast insitu which is due to be removed next week sometime. They were delighted to have their operation at last. Glad they made it back again. Surgery slots are now almost full. Continue reading “Sunday 4 February 2018”
Well, another week has passed. We still remain at 15 patients per day because our Cameroonian surgeon is training. I can call this week ‘a diabetic week’ – ranging from one day when there were no diabetic patients at all (I was shocked), to the other end of the spectrum where one patient had a blood glucose reading that was off the scale!!😓 Continue reading “Sunday 28 January 2018”