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  6. Living on Campus / Dining
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September 12, 2023 by
  1. Intro 
    • Two characteristics of God come to mind when I recall my time in the Philippines: faithful and constant. This summer, two teams of four nursing students felt the call to serve at Shalom Birthing Center in the city of Antipolo. Each student brought a unique set of skills and experiences to the team, and the Lord intended to meet each of us in a clear and personal way.
  2. How it all started 
    • In collaboration with ACTION International Ministries, we provided care for pregnant and laboring women at Shalom Birthing Center. After observing the high infant and maternal mortality for underserved women in Manila, Mavis Orton, a British nurse/midwife, sought to devote her life to these women. Working alongside the local church and her team of midwives, Mavis founded Shalom Birthing Center in 1992 and dedicated it to serving at-risk mothers in Antipolo. With the overwhelming influx of patients as the birthing home grew, many lives and souls are saved through this outreach. 
    • Now, through ACTION International Ministries, students from around the world can partner with Shalom and be a part of the Lord’s faithfulness.
      Five women stand together in front of a waterfall, smiling for a photo.

  3. Expectation meets Reality 
    • Now, how did God show us His faithfulness and constancy through this trip? Let’s talk about expectations. When going on a trip to serve, one might have expectations about how the Lord will use them. For us, we thought that our mission would be catching two neonates with each hand, in the pouring rain of the Philippine rainforest, with minimal supplies or support. Unfortunately, I regret to inform you that it may not be that adventurous. Upon arrival, we were told that there were not many deliveries scheduled for that month, but there were many other medical clinics that could use our help.  
    • Though each month is different, we learned that our month would require us to be flexible. During my time with the Lord, I was reminded of this quote from Elisabeth Elliot: “If anything cuts across your own will, tastes, or preferences, see in that thing a chance to die.” And in our death to ourselves, the Lord provided life. Through this openness to what the Lord had for us, we were moved by the Lord’s constant direction of our trip details and His faithfulness in showing us Himself.

  4. His Beautiful Feet 
    • During our time in the Philippines, we served in obstetrics, emergency medicine, and family care. We served on a rural island and in the mountains, encouraging our team and the local church. We experienced the joy of sharing the Gospel with each patient, worshiping with the local church, serving the community with excellence and humility, and forming loving relationships. Here are few highlights: 
      • Leading a Muslim family to Christ 
      • Providing care to closed or underserved communities 
      • Managing or assisting in the birth of a newborn 
      • Providing prenatal care for expectant mothers 
      • Transporting clients to the local hospital 
      • Touring beautiful areas in the Philippines 
      • Learning wisdom from the missionaries and midwives

        Three females sit together at a table, praying.

  5.  Living in the birthing center was one of the best experiences of the trip. Often, missions trips feel like one is taking a small crash course in the country with many other classmates. However, this trip was student-led (with a stateside leader from Cedarville University), forcing us to get acquainted with the culture quickly. Though we were only in the Philippines for thirty days, we were able to have a small glimpse of a missionary’s lifestyle. This allowed us to rely on the local missionaries and midwives for guidance on traveling to and from clinics, where to get food, and where to visit on off days.

    A nursing student dressed in scrubs with blue latex gloves on, smiles for the photo as she holds a swaddled baby.

  6. If you are interested in being a full-time medical missionary, this trip is an excellent start. You’ll learn how to pray for your needs, be resilient in trouble and challenges, ask for help, and implement what you have been taught. Wherever the Lord leads you, remember this: “The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.” (Deuteronomy 33:27). 

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