June 6, 2016

     After a much needed weekend of R&R the team was off to a roaring start this Monday! We saw 200+ patients at our new location, which is both a school and a church. Our new location is larger and patients were waiting when we arrived in the morning.  At one point around midday we became overwhelmed with patients and learned to pick up our pace as a team to see as much people as possible and still give the best care we could give as we spent time with each patient.  A large storm rolled through after lunch and a ceiling tile fell on the floor in the middle of clinic but we just mopped it up and kept going! Our team is doing very well together and is only improving as we learn more each day.

     Many patients have impacted me while on the trip but I particularly enjoyed being with one older man in clinic today.  He is the pastor of the church we are holding clinic in and because of that is well respected in the community. From questioning I found out he also works in the rice fields while not doing his pastoral duties.

     Side Note: Rice farming is a very popular way of living especially in rural Cambodia. Unlike in the States where most farmers have access to tractors and other machinery to make farming easier, in the poor areas where we are in SE Asia, the rice is harvested manually.  This includes long days in water saturated fields and a process of “cutting, stacking, handling, threshing, cleaning, and hauling” all by hand (see for more info)

     As I was talking to the pastor something about his face made me think of my PaPa, my mother’s late father.  He was not a pastor, but he was very involved in the church. He also in his youth worked long hard hours of harvesting tobacco before the days of harvesters and continued to work hard to provide for his family his entire life. My PaPa passed away when I was in college and this was a hard time for my family because of the family leader that he was. One of the things I took away from that experience was a desire to be like him, and also an inspiration to be a part of the future of medicine that could have perhaps better treated my PaPa’s illness.

     I told the pastor today these reasons that he reminded me of my grandfather and that he was part of my inspiration for becoming a physician. He smiled and I was grateful to share that moment with him. Please be in prayer that pastors and others like him will continue to share Christ’s love.  Pray that our team will continue to be humbled and have the strength to finish out this week with a bang! And most importantly pray for the patients we see, that we may touch them and change them in a positive way.  We miss you all back home! 

Kelly Redlinger, Medical Student

Add a Comment

(Enter the numbers shown in the above image)