A little background first:
Two months ago today, the girls and I landed on American soil. With the news of the ebola outbreak in West Africa, and a patient traveling through the city near where we live, the decision was made to have some of the non-essential staff living on the ELWA campus leave temporarily until the disease was contained. Ebola had arrived in Guinea and Liberia for the first time. Much needed to be done to train hospital staff not only to care for ebola patients safely but also to screen potential victims in such a way as to not further the spread of this disease. John and the other doctors, along with many others worked long hours preparing ELWA Hospital to receive ebola patients. Many organizations and government officials, near and far, worked together to respond to the great needs – mobilizing workers throughout the country as well as sending in personal protective suits and other supplies not yet available in the region. Ready to respond with a newly opened triage tent and isolation unit, the staff remained on alert. Patients arriving with any of the symptoms that could indicate infection with the ebola virus were carefully screened. Although there were cases of ebola in Liberia during this time period, they ended up being admitted at other hospitals throughout the country. By Mid-May, 42 days had passed since the last new case of ebola, a critical amount of time revealing that the outbreak was seemingly under control. Non-essential staff were informed they could return. So eager to go back and yet already planning to be in the States in June, the girls and I remained, eagerly anticipating the day John would join us in America.
REUNITE! John arrives on Tuesday! After nine weeks of separation, we are so excited to be together as a family once again!
CELEBRATE! Before we moved to Liberia back in November, we made plans to return briefly to celebrate our son’s graduation from university. Josh will be graduating on Saturday and several members of our extended family will be traveling to join us for this joyous occasion. We are so proud of his accomplishments!
Head “HOME”!! Yes, Liberia is home to us now. We felt it so strongly when we left our new home in April. There are so many people we long to see and ministries we cannot wait to be a part of once again. This unexpected chapter of our lives has revealed in new ways the faithfulness of God in all circumstances. We didn’t “write this into the script” when looking into the future of our lives in Liberia last November, and yet God has provided and strengthened us in the journey. We are so thankful to partner with the Liberians, showing the love of Jesus, and sharing life together. In just two weeks, our feet will be on African soil (sand) once again.
***Update on the ebola situation: a new outbreak of ebola has occurred in Sierra Leone and there have been new cases in the last ten days or so in Guinea. Here is a link to read more: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/outbreaks/guinea/ We ask that you keep the people of this region in your thoughts and prayers.