Posts Tagged ‘Malaria’

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Mounds of Fresh Dirt

November 8, 2008

Our team made it back from the bush today. Brian, Tadd, Steve and Dan all rubbed a crocodile’s back, while it was being kept reasonably happy by a slowly dying chicken. Tim and I had done this before and were quite happy not to cheat death again. John ordered lunch. We ordered two chickens for lunch as well. Chickens ordered for lunch or for crocs all come from the same pen. We’ll have to put some of this video on youtube at some point.

 

The rest of the team was taken back to the guest house, but I had one more stop to make. I had heard there was a new church plant in the poorest area of the capital city, Sector 30. I wanted to meet the man (and his family) that would give his life to work in this area. I’ll post about Sector 30 later.

 

The rainy season has just ended here in Burkina Faso. My missionary friend, Pete Brokopp, was driving me out to S30 and told me we were approaching a cemetery for the poor. The first thing I noticed was all the muslim symbols on the graves. These represent good people who died without faith in Jesus.

 

Thousands of them.

 

In looking at the star and crescent I had looked past something else. Pete pointed out to me mounds of fresh dirt in one portion of the cemetery. “You see those?” My heart sank. How many are there, four dozen?

 

Five dozen? Was it common to have this many at one time?

 

It’s the end of the rainy season. Mosquitoes are at their peak. Malaria is at its peak. A completely preventable disease that I have had, that the man riding in the car has had more times than he can count, and I have preventative medication in my back pack.

 

It cost me $8 US dollars. The remedy, if the disease is caught early is $1 US dollar. If it is caught late, $5 US dollars.

 

Malaria kills 3,000 children a day in Africa. It is estimated that $6 mosquito nets would cut that number in half.

 

In the past two days, I have walked in villages of children that have died in the last week. There are lots of ways to measure success here. Less muslim symbols on graves is one, and less mounds of fresh dirt.

 

Everyone Belongs,

 

Paul

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