Emlyn Hart is a missionary with Iris Ministries in Mozambique. She was a member of my church before leaving for this long-term mission trip, so I have a particular interest in what she's been up to. The following are quotations from the last two postings to her website:
Date:2/24/2006That report from a month ago is followed by this one, from just last week, psted not by Emlyn but by the webmaster:
Subject: Maria has Arrived!!!
As if monday weren’t exciting enough - the rest of the week continued to surprise me. After a few meetings with Heidi and the addition of kitchen chefe to my titles, the baby house seemed to be put on hold. Well, at least for a couple days.
Mid-morning on Wednesday an elderly woman arrived at the toddler house with a baby wrapped in blankets. She wished to leave her here. Born on Monday and still unnamed, her mother had died during childbirth.
Rabia, one of the children’s center directors, and I called Heidi and asked what we should do. We had no place to put a baby - plans for a baby room had been put on hold - and no one to care for her. Heidi’s response was immediate, “I will be over as soon as possible to sign the papers.” What has just happened? What does this mean?
I sat in Heidi’s office with Rabia, Tanya and Maria, the woman who brought her. We quickly decided several things. Cribs would have to be made, a couple educators would have to be hired and the baby girl would stay with me. I becam an instant mom. We named her Maria Esperanca. Maria after the woman that brought her and Esperanca becasue it is portuguese for hope.
The doctor that comes to our clinic a couple times a week is the same doctor that did the cesarean at the hospital. I found out that Maria was born on Tuesday, not Monday. She was brought to us when she was less than 24 hours old!
She has been here one week. I am leanring more each mintue. i am thrilled to report that she is thriving. One of my educators provides her with breastmilk during the day and I give her bottles at night. She sleeps constantly, waking mostly to eat. She still has her nights and days confused. When she is awake she is extremely alert and expressive, making all sorts of noises. I think she is perfect.
Date:3/22/2006I quote these excerpts in the hope that you will remember Emlyn in your prayers.
Subject: Em is Sick...
Hello to all of Em's Spiritual Supporters . . .
I hate to be the bearer of bad news but the need for prayer on behalf of Em and her ministry is now critical. Please bear with me as I attempt to recount some of the details of what Em has communicated via phone over the past coupla weeks.
Approximately 2 weeks ago, Maria, the baby that Em was caring for came down with an infection, was hospitalized and died a few days later. Em is still grieving this loss and attempting to come to terms with the dying process, something that she is dealing with for the first time in her young life.
This morning I spoke with Emelyn who appears to have contacted malaria. In her softly spoken words:
"I feel too poorly to travel to the hospital to receive the actual diagnosis, but I have all of the common symptoms. I am being cared for by my fellow ministry workers and taking medication which my body is not taking very well.
There has been an overwhelming amount of illnesses amoungst the children that we care for, not just malaria. Please ask everyone to pray for our ministry and our children."