Thursday, July 31, 2008

A quick update....still more to come.

Greetings! Sorry we've not been able to update sooner, our internet has been flaking out, so I am actually writing this as quickly as I can before it drops us again!

So things have been going fantastically for the water project! Thank you to all who donated towards the typhoon relief! Things are happening so fast it's making our heads spin! Tim is now reporting that 36 filters are being built per week, over 50 filters have been delivered to Maguindanao and the typhoon region, and 70% of the current production is going out to that area! Praise God!

Tim reports that he is getting messages of "heartfelt thanks" from the people living in those destroyed areas. He will post some later. Right now, we are praying for a flat bed truck for the project so that they can transport more filters than just the ones that fit on our little red truck! Currently, there is another ministry that has a large truck that comes to the water filter shop and picks up multiple filters to take to the region as the red truck just can't hold enough. Keep praying for the project, as we are in a very rainy season and the need for water filters is very high. It's tough to get to the areas in need when it's raining so hard as the roads are muddy and some are washed out.

In other news, I had the awesome opportunity to do well-woman exams for a bunch of Filipinas in Agdao on Sunday. The biggest issue was incredible anemia among the women. We were able to educate them on proper nutrition, feed them a bit of food and do a physical exam to find out where they were experiencing pain. For some it was emotional pain, while others just the pain of hard work....we were able to pray with them and encourage was a gift. I am looking forward to talking with the women again in the near future to get updates and do further exams.

We also got to attend something very special at 6:30 am on Sunday morning!! One of the very first births I ever helped with was a lady named Rezel from a Baptist church Tim and I attended when we first moved here. Rezel and her hubby, Nelmar became our good friends and I was able to attend her second son's birth over 10 months ago! Remember baby Glen? We got to stand in as his "Godparents" at his baby dedication on Sunday. Precious, handsome baby. So here are some pics of "before" and "after"......just one of the many awesome relationships God has given us here in the Phils.

Rezel at MMC in labor...almost there!!
And there's Nelmar with his new son, Glen.
Just a few months later...
And now, almost 1 year! Crazy!
Gwapo baby Glen!

Coming up this week, our dear pastor from Vancouver, Merrilyn Culley, is coming for a few days!!! We are so excited to have her in our home and enjoy her company! She is a wonderful lady, a huge support to us, and a good friend. We are saddened that her hubby, Ernie, couldn't come with her, but we are grateful she is coming our way as she passes through the Phils. God is good to us.

Promise Grace is almost 34 weeks now. We're looking forward to meeting her. And, my sister-in-law, Ruth, is being induced Friday, so they will be meeting their little Levi very soon! We would so appreciate your prayers as we continue to press on and move forward. So much more to update, but I think I better stop. Blessings!

Friday, July 25, 2008

about a buntis....

Greetings! Just above is my continuity (my last one until long after Promise Grace is here!). Karrel became my patient after I pestered her one too many times to get a urine analysis and go the doctor for medication for her awful urinary tract infection. She was not originally my continuity, but she seemed to end up with me almost every Friday....much to her dismay perhaps as I was VERY tough on her. 

When I first started her prenatals, her anemia was so bad that Mercy Clinic would have had to transport her if she went into labor! Her UTI was so severe that no water therapy seemed to help. She struggled to drink more than 3 glasses of water a day and seldom ate breakfast before prenatal exams and some of these women wait for two hours or more to see a midwife!!! Her baby wasn't growing much, either. 

Needless to say, I was breathing down her neck to whip her into healthy shape before her punkin arrived...we argued about nutrition, what iron or multivitamin supplement to take, when to get her urine seemed like all our prenatals were a fight...a good-natured one, though. She was a good sport and would smile her beautiful smile as she told me for the 4th week in a row that, "no, she didn't get her urine tested....and no, she didn't take her iron supplement". 

That is until she got fed up with my bugging her....I gave her a bottle of my iron supplements because my iron levels have been testing high (Praise God!) so that she could no longer use money shortage as an excuse not to take them, I gave her an egg at every prenatal visit to make sure she'd eaten and a BIG glass of water, too. Her baby felt small....

But by early July, her hematocrit SHOT up passed the dangerous anemic stage (YEAH!) and her baby grew so much her belly actually looked pregnant at 37 weeks! Ha ha ha! The only thing left was the doctor visit.....and she went! Got meds! Took ALL the meds! And was no longer having anymore pain. YEAH! AND then....she passed her due date...we waited and waited....we were going to have to stimulate labor with evening primrose oil if she didn't deliver by today (Friday). BUT GOD!!

So I was getting ready to go to Primary Health Care class on Thursday when I got a text from the birth room saying, "continuity in labor". ACK! Fantastic, but I had no idea how far along she was. So I raced to the birth room in my street clothes to find Karrel ALREADY pushing! FANTASTIC! So I quickly changed into scrubs and 20 minutes later, Karrel's baby girl came without any problems!! YEAH, JESUS! Healthy and FAT, her little one was quite vocal with the situation at hand and immediately breastfed! Good baby.

Karrel, despite borderline anemia, did not hemorrhage too bad. She did get pretty dizzy in the bathroom and had to lay down in there while I inserted an IV, but other than that, she did wonderfully and was so healthy for the birth of her baby. When all vital signs were taken and both mom and baby were examined, Karrel ate healthy foods and rested without any issues! Thank you, Jesus! 

To me, Karrel's life and her baby are a success story of God's grace and the benefit of working hard and applying discipline when you really don't want to. She is an inspiration! To think that just a month ago, she would have to been transported to DMC to have her baby because she was severely anemic and had an infection.....but she worked hard to get healthy for her baby...and as a result, in such a short time, she didn't tear with the passage of the baby, she didn't have to be transported, and her baby girl is so healthy! YIPPEEE!

So that's the last delivery for a long time....for now, I am strictly on prenatal exams, well-woman exams and inital prenatals....the birth room has caused me to have too many symptoms of pre-term labor! We've only got 3 1/2 more weeks until Promise is allowed to come! Tim is getting really nervous at THAT thought! :) But we don't want her coming any sooner than that, so birth room duty is out. But I am sure staying busy with classes, assignments, and clinic! Whooopeee! 

Tim and I are having some adventures here and there, too, in between the work and business...just the other day, we nearly had to suture an area of our bunny never seen before!! Having two male bunnies has led to some serious and dangerous bunny fights usually ending up with spattered blood and an angry bunny...BUT, they are both still alive. The story is morbid, so if you wanna know the "rest of the story", you'll have to e-mail us. :)

Feeling BIG and somewhat weak as we enter into the 34th week of pregnancy....nervous and feeling a little lonely...dehydration is constant battle as I sweat through most days....frustrated at times as I doubt my own abilities, but I am constantly reminded that His grace is sufficient and His strength is made perfect in my weakness. My midwife, Lois, is a really awesome support in reminding me of those things when contractions get really strong, when the constipation is just awful or when my herniated disc slips and causes me to keel over in pain....this too shall pass....

Thank you again for all your prayers and encouragements! Please keep commenting so we know you're reading! Otherwise we get lonely! Be blessed!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Joy and Sorrow...

I must confess that I'm grumpy. The new steel molds that we had built last week are still not in use. We had major problems with them and one of the molds actually broke into two pieces when we tried to extract it from the cured concrete. I won't bore you with details, but needless to say I'm feeling very frustrated with the whole thing.

Yesterday I decided to blow off some steam by going out for a photo hunt. I used to do photo hunts all the time, but I hadn't gotten around to it for some time. I took a one hour walk from our house towards downtown (if there is such a thing in Davao), stopping anytime I saw something that struck me as interesting. As you know, I love to photograph people, but I tried to challenge myself to photograph objects and abstract patterns instead of the dozens of people who begged to be in the frame. I'll post a few of the results below, and then let Bethany tell you about her day, which was much more interesting than mine.


Greetings! I am not grumpy! But, however, like a good wife, I am sympathetic to Tim's grumpiness.....enough said, so I move on!

Monday (yesterday), I had the pleasure of doing initial prenatals for some newly pregnant ladies and some baby checks for some recent deliveries...TODAY (Tuesday) I had the privilege of delivering a GWAPO (that means handsome) little boy named Lance. His momma, Jing Jing, came in at 10 am looking uneasy and in pain, but after three babies already, she was controlled, happy, smiling and would only pause her happiness to have a contraction. Seriously, I was thinking this woman was warped! Only 28 years old and getting set to delivery her fourth baby without her hubby nearby (he was 2 hours away working!) and still smiling every time I would give her instructions to pee, drink water, check the baby's heart tones...all smiles.

Until 11 am. Then things got a little more interesting. The smile disappeared and I knew that she knew she was almost ready. But we breathed together....breathed some more....then POP....her water broke and no sooner did her water break that she was on the bed with her baby's head visible! She pushed for one minutes and VOILA! Little baby Lance came out followed by more amniotic fluid than I have ever about a SWIMMING POOL! That little Lance was ushered into the world with a celebration fountain!! We all got a little wet. Eww. And gosh, that birth description was seriously just as fast as the birth was! Maybe not as easy, though. :)

We thanked Jesus for the safe delivery and Jing Jing and Lance are doing great! She made labor and delivery look like just going in for a routine teeth cleaning at the dentist! What a pro! Knowing I was pregnant, she prayed that my delivery would be the same....quiet, fast and without complications! Sounds good to me! :)

And at the same time Lance entered the world, a prenatal patient from upstairs got a giant (baseball size) pus-filled boil lanced on her bum by our Primary Health Care nurse interning here from Sudan! No joke! She just happened to be present when Jenny (a graduated midwife here) discovered her patient could not sit down without tons of pain! They did minor surgery and she went home with a big smile across her face...apparently now we do lancing, too! Bum lancing and baby Lance! Ha ha.

But there was something else going on while this was happening, too. One of our patients came in for a prenatal and no heart tones were found. Upon entering the birthroom, I recognized her immediately as a patient I had done a prenatal on. In fact, I had met her the very first day she came to Mercy Clinic and had the pleasure of doing her first prenatal exam. She had no idea, at the time, how far along she was in her pregnancy and could not remember her last menses. So I sent her in for an ultrasound. At 16 years old, she had trouble coming up with the money for the ultrasound and just continued her pregnancy without a thought. I ventured to guess that she was around 24 weeks at her first prenatal visit. But today, she was 27 weeks....because of the lack of heart tones, she was raced to a clinic with an ultrasound technician and her baby was found to be without a heart beat. The baby had died just days ago.

She had mentioned that she had not felt movement for a week or so, but did not come into the clinic. She came back to Mercy to be referred to the hospital for induction of labor just as Jing Jing and I were bathing Lance. From her face I could tell what the ultrasound results were....

A few minutes later, I went to talk with her as she covered her face to hide the tears....her belly still swollen from pregnancy, a fetal form still evident....but not moving. She said nothing and I started to cry, too. We prayed for her baby and I tried to reassure her that Jesus was holding her baby now and that nothing she did caused this. I am not sure if she believed me because in this culture, it is common for the mother to be blamed for the baby's loss of life regardless of the circumstances. She was in shock. My supervisor, Ate Susan, sat with her a long time and explained the options she had at the hospital and wrote the referral. She prayed with her and our patient left....her face still stained with tears.

It was strange to celebrate the birth of Lance and know that this patient's baby had just died still being carried by his mommy. His mommy never really met him, held him, or even got to enjoy the rest of her journey of pregnancy. This side of heaven, she will never know his smile, his personality, his character.....and yet, she still has to labor for him, deliver him, and still say goodbye. I cannot imagine.....I don't want to release her name, but please pray for her. Thanks.

Thinking about her made me realize just how grateful I am to have made it this far in my own pregnancy. I hit 30 weeks this week and Promise still moves a ton....she wakes me up every night around 3 am and won't go to sleep until 4:30 am....she's constantly on the move even though she has no place to go! Sometimes I think she is mischievously devising her plan to BREAK FREE of her small cramped of now I am currently already 2 centimeters dilated!! But for some women, that can last their entire third trimester. I just have to be careful I don't overwork myself.....but precious is the life inside!

Speaking of which, I must mention (though most of you probably know now!) that there is already a new Stewart in the family born on July 12, 2008!! Hope Liberty Judith Stewart was born to Joshua (Tim's bro) and Esther in Sicamous, BC. We are so excited for them and their growing family! TWO girls now! Fantastic. God is so good. Healthy baby and healthy momma. We so excited to be Aunt B and Uncle Fuzz once again!

A mix of joy and sorrow...always reminding me that the One who sits on the throne never sleeps or slumbers....He mourns when we mourn and takes joy when we take joy.....below is Jing Jing, baby Lance, and her bantay, Michelle. Pure joy.

Be blessed.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Lots and Lots of Silly Little Thoughts

Life goes on as per usual here, so not much to say. Perhaps I'll just give you some random thoughts from the recesses of my largely unusual brain.

Why don't stores in the Philippines carry enough stock? They're always "out of stock". I went to 4 different stores today trying to buy ink for my printer. Everybody had the black and yellow ink, but there was no cyan or magenta. Naturally, I need magenta.

The one year anniversary of our arrival in the Phils passed by without much notice this week. We arrived in Davao City on July 9th, 2007. Time plays funny tricks on me. I think it feels longer than a year, but maybe not. I guess we've accomplished some good stuff. Bethany has delivered 26 babies and has done about 320 prenatal exams. Oh, and she's carried our baby for over seven months. The water project has had a decent start I guess. Tomorrow we will deliver filter numbers 152-156. We've trained about a dozen people from around Mindanao, and we're up to a capacity of 36 filters a week now.

I got to cut in line at the store yesterday. I'm not sure if it was because I'm an "Amerikano", or just because I was only buying a couple bottles of water.

Did you know that they bag each item individually at the grocery store? Buying a cucumber? It gets its own little bag inside the big bag. Batteries? You bet. They might leak all over your chocolate bars. Heck, better bag the chocolate bars too.

Sometimes I feel like a big fraud. We're supposed to be missionaries in this country, not rich white people. Ya, we bless people, but maybe we don't need all this nice stuff and this big apartment to do it. Did you know some of my employees only get about $5.60 a day? Sometimes that makes me feel like some sort of slave driver. The truth is, I pay them the appropriate amount of money for this country, and any more would just cause a whole lot of problems. It still makes me feel like a putz though (I say as I type on my fancy computer in my giant bedroom). Sadly, I don't know that I could live without some of these luxuries that I have come to depend on. So much for selling everything you have and giving it to the poor.

I helped my friend move today. Jimmy is my welder. Some people have a lawyer or a doctor. I have a welder. I like Jimmy. He's a Muslim guy, probably about 55 or 60 years old. He fabricates the steel molds that we use to make filters. He's actually an auto-body man, and general auto-mechanic. Anyways, he was told by his landlord that he has to move his shop by the 15th of July. He found a new property but he doesn't have a truck to move his stuff. I had a free morning so I was able to help him out with a load. It was nice being able to bless someone. I know that I get to bless people all week with the water filters, but that's getting to be routine, so it was nice to do something different to be a blessing.

I never know if the correct word to use is "Anyway" or "Anyways" with an "s". I don't know my grammar very well, but probably neither of those is an example of optimum word choice.

How's this random thought thing working for you? Those of you with ADD are in blogger heaven, aren't you? My apologies to the rest of you.

Speaking of being a blessing; several months ago I was talking with a young man who was visiting from the States. He happened to be with me while Toti and I were delivering a couple of filters. He said something that struck me as stupid at the time, and upon further reflection I have decided that it was, in fact, astonishingly so. We were talking about my work with the water filters when he said something to the effect of "It's nice to do something nice for the poor sometimes." What? It's nice? What the heck was he talking about? It's not nice. It's our job. Not just my job. It's your job too. We were called to this. Serving the poor is not something we get to do every once in a while just to make ourselves feel better. What a joke. What have we come to? I don't want this to sound preachy, but we may as well be honest with one another.

Wow, that came out of nowhere. Sorry. I'll attempt to lighten things up. I love my wife. I think she's beautiful.

I became enraged yesterday when Toti informed me of some trouble in Maguindanao. Apparently some of our filters were held for ransom. Some of the men that Toti has trained to install the filters were delivering them to a village in need. During their hike, they were confronted by Muslim rebels. The rebels inquired about the filters and informed our new friends that if they wanted to continue on the path, they would have to pay a "Reform Tax". I must confess that when I heard about the incident I shouted some choice words. Toti says that the problem was resolved when the rebels learned that the filters were destined for their own village, and quite possible their own families. Stupid men. So greedy. Toti thinks that by keeping me out of Maguindanao he is protecting me from these rebels. I think the opposite might be true.

You've probably read on these pages about the Badjao, a tribe of seafaring gypsies that has settled in many large coastal cities around Mindanao and shifted their occupation from fishing to begging. There are some intersections in Davao where I dread to tread because I know that I will be accosted by these beggars. Sometimes I ignore the poor mothers and their children entirely as they invade my space and roughly poke me or pull on my clothing. Is that Christian? Not likely. Is it human? You bet. When I first arrived in this city, my heart broke with compassion for these people. Somewhere along the way I became hard hearted and just plain mean. I justify my lack of compassion with rational thoughts such as, "They don't want to change" or "They choose to live this way." Those things are probably true, but do they relieve me of my duty to give to the poor? I don't know. I like the way Bethany does it. She carries small healthy snacks in her purse, such as fruit leather or whole wheat crackers. Instead of giving pocket change to the beggars, she gives them food to eat. Maybe I should start carrying a purse.

I've had two more requests for relief for flood victims. One of them came from a group of islands that are on the opposite side of Mindanao. I'm in no position to help them. The other came from Maguindanao, the same province we have been working with in the wake of Typhoon Fensheng.

One more thing about the Badjao, just to demonstrate that I'm not a total jerk. Last week I was in a taxi coming home from work when we stopped at a red light. We were at an intersection that is populated by Badjao children who knock on car windows, waiting for a big score. Naturally a big white guy like me is an obvious target. Whenever one of them gets a glimpse of me they shout "Amerikano!" and everybody rushes to my location. This time was no different. I was doing my best to ignore them when the taxi driver rolled down his window and handed one of them a peso. As I sat their in all my self-centered glory I reflected upon the fact that his generosity made me look like a jerk. Not wanting to look like a jerk, I reached into my pocket to see what I could produce for the grubby little faces that were peering through my window. As soon as they realized that I wasn't as cold hearted as I had led them to believe, they took matters into their own hands. Actually, they took my money into their own hands. If you can believe it, one of them opened my unlocked door and reached in and took two coins from my hand before I had a chance to find one of appropriate value. I glanced down in time to see that he had taken 15 pesos from me (a considerable sum compared to the customary gift of one peso). I tried to scold him and told him to share it with his friend. Instead, the boy crowed and gloated as he showed the coins to his chum. When I realized that he wasn't going to share, I became grumpy. "Ha, I'll show him," I thought to myself. I reached into my wallet and produced a crisp 20 peso bill. I quickly pressed it into the second boy's hand. "That'll teach 'im" I muttered under my breath. Naturally, the commotion had attracted additional children and they were all beginning to crowd around the open door, some of them practically climbing into the taxi. They were no doubt wondering if the stupid white man would start handing out 50 peso bills. Mercifully, the light turned green and I had no choice but to forcefully push the remaining children away from the car. I quickly closed and locked the door while the taxi driver cursed at me in Visayan. I know, I'm an idiot. But it did make for an amusing anecdote.

I think I used the word "chum" in the preceding paragraph. Too much Hardy Boys for Timmybomb.

I wonder what's going to happen with the escalating situation between Iran and Israel. The world is a scary place these days.

Well, I'm getting dangerously close to talking about politics, so I'd better finish this up. Thanks for being my friend.


Thursday, July 10, 2008

A very good week indeed!

                      Cherry, Charie Lou, and family!
                            Little Charie Lou (sounds like a "Who" from Dr. Seuss, doesn't it!?)
                                  Dear Ruth and baby Diane with Ate Rosa - what a great family!

Grrrreeeetings! You all must have been praying because this week has been fantastic! Despite my growing uncomfortableness and my going to bed hours before I want to, this week has been a great encouragement to me. So if you were praying for Tim and me, THANK YOU!

So the week began with initial prenatals on Monday....great fun. This is the part where I get to interview patients for the very first time finding out all their health, birth, and family histories, learn how to bless them, how to pray for them, and discover how they are feeling about being pregnant. It takes a very long time, mostly because we are speaking in Visayan and broken English, but also because it is almost like a first date! So much to talk about! But unlike a date, I also have to do a full physical examination! I doubt any of YOU did a FULL examination on a first date! :) 
Then my dear friends (and interns) Laura and Christy took me out for a BIG McDonald's burger! What a blessing...and a treat! I seldom get those precious outings, but when I do, I REALLY enjoy them....REALLY! Nothing beats a BIG, fattening, and sloppy burger...even if it IS McDonald's in the Philippines! And even better when it's with two very dear friends!

Tuesday came and I had day shift....two labors, one inital prenatal, and two baby checks!! That was just for ME...altogether, 7 labors! Crazy, CRAZY shift, but at the end, I walked lazily home two hours after my shift actually ended and with a wide smile....I had the pleasure and privilege of delivering a beautiful baby girl named Diane to a wonderful mother named Ruth, who had already given birth 7 times! This was her 8th baby and she was only 27 years old! She had lost two babies to prematurity...they only lived a couple of days because she could not afford the cost of the incubator at the hospital. She was delighted once again to receive a healthy full term baby into her arms. Ruth was a powerful laborer and Diane was a FAT 7 lb. 13 oz. bundle of chub. It was the healthiest delivery I had in very long, long time. Thank you, Jesus. 

Wednesday also brought lots of joy! Tim and I had the pleasure of going to our first INDIAN restaurant in the Philippines with my dear friends Tiffany and Jenna who have now graduated and are heading back to Canada soon. What a blessing! And the food was AMAZING! What a treat to eat something COMPLETELY different that tasted (oddly enough) like home! (vancouver, that is!). We were totally blessed. We finished the day with work from home and running errands, the day seemed to go by so fast!

Then today, I picked up another day shift because a friend was sick and couldn't work....what a crazy day again! We were instructed to MOVE the birth room into the postpartum area and the postpartum area to the KITCHEN because apparently the septic tank had backed up and the drain pipe was under birth room bed #2. Lovely. So the 5 of us midwives moved 7 postpartum patients to the kitchen complete with their beds and supplies and then moved the birthing area to the tiny postpartum area! We only had three labor beds available....and just as we finished moving, a labor walked in....and then another....and then another....all the beds were full when my patient, Cherry walked in again after a brief walk to get something to eat. She was laboring with her third baby and came in at only 5 cm....but an hour labor and she was begging me to let her push...and so she did! That baby came out like a torpedo!

Thus Charie Lou was born....6 pounds 8 ounces sucking her hands and pooping. She kept on pooping throughout the newborn exam and bath, too! We just couldn't keep her clean! It was great! Her momma was a trooper and within 1 hour of birth, she was resting quietly in the postpartum area happy and healthy! Thank you, Jesus! Two HEALTHY births in 3 days. 
We had a great prayer time and we were able to give her a gift from all the goodies Laura had brought from the United States! What a blessing! 

Tomorrow, I am set for prenatal exams again and more baby check ups. So looking forward to spending more time with the women! The Lord gave me so much grace this week with an incredible provision of energy and stamina as well as joy. My supervisors were very encouraging and were full of exhortations, too! God is so good. I am feeling like I can work one more day...and then another after that. Even my patients were amazed at the amount of energy I was sporting at 7 1/2 months pregnant and they were so excited they had a "buntis midwife"! 

So to you all, friends and family, that have been praying for Tim and me...thank you! And please continue to pray because it certainly made all the difference this week! God is so faithful!

Next post, Tim will give you all a water update....he is one busy lad!
Be Blessed!

Monday, July 7, 2008


Greetings! Thanks for all the comments on the last post! I was hesitant to post those pics, but the feedback has been a blessing for both Tim and me!

Just a quick update on my two past births...the first with Des and baby Dawn.....I got to see them today and they look fantastic! Dawn has passed her birth weight and is now 7 pounds! Praise God! Des is eager to get into some kind of routine at home as her 4 other children rely very heavily on her. It was good to check up on her and visit a bit.

And then Licsi and baby Eunice (pictured above) are still at DMC Hospital, but despite concerns, they are steadily improving. Licsi's laceration is healing and she is on heavy antibiotics to ward off any infection that may ensue. She admitted to me during our visit that she didn't take her iron supplements and she said she rarely ate vegetables or protein during her pregnancy. Unfortunately, this was not said to the midwives during prenatals. She confessed that she lied because she was lazy and didn't want to eat the food she knew was good for her. She asked if this was the reason for her tearing so bad. Yes, it is. She understood that her next pregnancy would have to be different and that her health needed to be taken care of NOW, not later. For both her baby's sake and for her own!

Then her bana took me 3 floors up to where their baby was and little Eunice was hooked up to an IV, was still on a bit of oxygen, and was sporting a new outfit. :) Her coloring was far better than the night we transported and she was even able to smile a bit. Better each day. I am now waiting for a text message from Licsi letting me know she has been discharged. Thank you for your prayers!

In other news, I am still busy with prenatal exams, have a birth shift tomorrow and getting some new homework assignments done. I've been getting to counsel some passed patients in their marriages and have even seen one couple get back together after begin separated for months with little desire of working things out. God is so good.
With the class above mine graduated and waiting to head home, a lot of changes are expected over the next few weeks. Many of the girls are on furlough now while the others are waiting their turn while doing a great job in the clinic.

Promise Grace is awesome....keeping me up at night, but I am still enjoying getting to know her. Last night she kept me up with the hiccups! Yup! She got the hiccups and the tiny perfect rhythmic bounces got me giggling.....I couldn't get to sleep until I ate an egg, went pee, and changed positions...she quieted down and it was all good. :)
And NOW......
I am passing the computer to Tim to give you an update on water.....

I'll keep this brief. Toti and I made a delivery to Samal Island on Saturday. We installed 5 filters and made some great contacts. One of our installations was for a school teacher who intends to bring bottles of safe drinking water for her students each day.

I was in a Muslim city called Tacurong last week to train a man named Glen. He has is a secret evangelist. His organization trains poor men and women to use computers. As they befriend their students, they begin to share the gospel with them. Many people have come to know Jesus and are now being discipled. During our visit to Tacurong we witnessed a luncheon that was actually a secret bible study. I am so excited to be working with Glen and his team. They're excited too, as they now have a great way to meet the needs of their Muslim neighbors and can bring a powerful and practical demonstration of the gospel. I'm praying that we will connect with more and more Christian organizations who specialize in evangelism. The process of delivering water filters offers a unique opportunity to be in peoples homes and show them Jesus' love.

More filters were sent to the flooded regions in Maguinadao today. We've now got enough filters in the area to supply about 700 people with clean water. We've also got eight people trained to install them, so we can continue to impact the area even when we're not there. I'm praying that we will find the funds to get a big truck soon. Right now we are limited to only five filters per delivery because we just don't have a vehicle big enough to transport a large quantity.

I'll leave you with a couple of photos I took while we were on Samal Island this weekend. Also, there is a picture of Glen and his family.

Tim (and Bethany!)