Tuesday, 30 August 2016
Anne-Sophie is a SIM Australia missionary serving God in Niger, West Africa. Anne-Sophie’s job by day (and often night) is obstetrics at Galmi Hospital. Galmi offers compassionate medical care as a bridge to sharing the love of Christ and proclaiming the Good News.
Niger has an evangelical Christian population of under 0.2% and yet there is freedom to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ. For this reason, SIM’s work at Galmi Hospital is strategic: hundreds of people come through the door each day, and have the opportunity to experience God’s love, and hear His Good News proclaimed.
Aicha is a patient who has had many sessions of chemotherapy over the last two years. She was initially treated by my colleague with an abnormal pregnancy, which developed into a type of cancer. Every week or fortnight, we would do a pregnancy test and ultrasound to see if the disease was still present, and each time it was. Often I would offer to pray for her, which she readily accepted, and I started sharing with her about Jesus, in whose name I had prayed. At the beginning of 2016, having exhausted our limited chemotherapy options, I discussed with her the option of removing her uterus.
Two weeks later she came back for the surgery. Praise God it was a straight-forward operation. After the surgery, Aicha and her mother invited me to visit their village. I asked Warwick and Natalie, SIM Australia missionaries to come with me to visit Aicha’s village. Aicha’s people are herders, and so on arrival we were served fresh milk, then a sweet fermented milk drink, then given gifts of butter and more milk. We met Aicha’s husband, Ali. Warwick had brought some evangelistic resources which he shared with the men, while
Natalie and I shared some time with the women. Warwick gave Ali a Megavoice, a solar powered MP3 player with the Scriptures and some preaching. We spent several hours together, and I’m fairly sure we met over half of the village!
Aicha continued to follow up weekly at the hospital for ongoing chemotherapy treatment. Each time she came, I would ask her what she had learnt from listening to the Megavoice. One visit, she said that she understood what Jesus had done for her, and that she accepted Jesus. We prayed together. I wanted to be sure that Aicha had really understood what it meant to accept Jesus, as many people in this context are happy to add Jesus to their belief system rather than allowing Jesus to transform their belief system.
I asked Aicha to come again with Ali a final time before I left for furlough. We shared a meal together with a local Christian couple who work at the hospital. We spent time answering questions and discussing the implications of accepting Jesus. Ali asked, ‘How do I know if I have accepted Jesus?’ It was such a joy to be able to witness God’s gift of new birth as Ali prayed to thank God for what he has done for him in Jesus.
*Praise God that after months of chemotherapy treatment, three months ago Aicha found out that the cancer’s presence was negative
* Pray for Aicha and Ali, the only Christians in their remote village. Pray that they might grow in their love and knowledge of God. Pray also for their village, that they might come to know the saving love of Christ
* Pray for Galmi Hospital and the staff working there. Pray that God would raise up a Hospital Director, as the current Director will retire at the beginning of 2017.
Galmi Hospital (Niger, West Africa) There are many opportunities to serve at Galmi Hospital. There is an urgent need for people with medical experience, including generalists, obstetricians and surgeons. There is also a need for people to fill roles in support services including engineering, maintenance (electricians, builders and tradesmen), primary school teaching (French-speaking), accountancy and administration. Leave an enquiry here.