Friday, November 23, 2012


Happy Thanksgiving to all of our friends and family at home. This was the first big family holiday that we have missed, but we are thankful for the missionary family and friends that we have here in Cameroon to spend the holiday with. Fitting to the season, we have also had some wonderful successes recently at the hospital.

We had a large potluck Thanksgiving dinner last night.  This shows the spread just as we were about to dig in.  Unfortunately there are no turkeys here in Cameroon, but we ate delicious chicken, vegetables, and desserts.

Now to what we are thankful for at the hospital recently.  This baby was a 7 week old twin who came in apneic (not breathing), cyanotic (blue) and lifeless. He had a severe case of bronchiolitis that his twin unfortunately had already died from. Thanks to one of our pediatricians (JR Young), a wonderful CPAP machine that was donated, and God’s provision, this child was resuscitated. He stayed with us for several weeks and finally was able to make it home.

Baby Victory (aptly named) came in as a newborn with meconium peritonitis and perforation. Stool got stuck in his intestines, causing a hole which stool leaked out of. He was operated on 3 times due to new perforations and leakage. He was only intermittently able to eat. However, he was a strong and resilient baby. He survived all of these surgeries and has gotten up to full feeds. He is still in the hospital due to a wound infection, but he should be going home soon. It is amazing that such a small baby survived so much.

This little one was born at term and expected to be a healthy baby but then we noticed swelling of his scalp, that continued to get worse and worse. He had a subgaleal hematoma (which is a rare type of bleeding that can happen between the skin and bones of the scalp). Babies can lose a lot of blood this way. This baby’s hemoglobin dropped to less than 4. Unfortunately, the hospital at the time did not have the correct blood type to give him a transfusion. We thought he would die overnight, but he held on until we were able to get blood the next day. After the transfusions and some phototherapy this little baby was able to go home with his parents.

We are thankful for our new bedside ultrasound.  This was donated from Angela's dad's office.  We have been using it for quick bedside evaluations, FNAs (fine needle aspirations), and teaching the residents the basics of ultrasound.  This picture is of Chuck and Kamdem finding the mass in a liver before doing an FNA.  Christy Lee (OB/GYN) has even started using it for some urgent evaluations when there is not time for a more formal ultrasound by the hospital techs. 

We are thankful that Isaac really enjoys playing with Cathen.  He is always watching out for her and likes to take her by the hand when we go walking.  Sidewalk chalk is their new favorite activity.  When playing together, he occasionally bulldozes her over, but she is very forgiving.

We are thankful for the new wildflowers that we see on all of our hikes now.  They are a beautiful addition to the landscape, but they seem to signify the end of the rainy season as the rains have officially stopped.

We hope you are as thankful as we are for the blessings God has given all of us.  We continue to be thankful for the support each of you give us here at Mbingo.

Saturday, November 3, 2012


We wanted to introduce to the churches around Mbingo.  We primarily go to church a few houses down from where we live, but like to visit some of the other local churches when we can.

 This is Mbingo Baptist Church on a typical Sunday as church is finishing.  We officially joined this church a few months ago, so it is where we go most weeks.  You can see all the people in this picture crowded on the front lawn to fellowship after the service.

This is the inside of Mbingo Baptist Church.  The service lasts 2 hours or so and includes plenty of singing, some dancing, and a sermon from the pastor.  The service is in English, which makes it easy to listen and enjoy.  We have many hospital employees, some patient caretakers, and other visitors attend each week.  It truly is an extension of the ministry of the hospital.

Isaac usually cannot make it through the whole service, so he gets to go outside and play with the other children.  This is him running with two of his Cameroonian friends.  They love to just watch Isaac and touch his white skin and blonde hair.

Some Sundays, we take the walk to the Mbingo II Church.  Mbingo II is the nearby village where many of the hospital employees live.  It takes about 30 minutes to walk there along the path.  This picture is the view as you approach the village.  As you can see, things are still very green here as the rainy season is just now coming to an end.  As we walk through the village, we see many of our coworkers at their houses and greet them.

This is the Mbingo II Church.  It is basic and still under construction, but it has a roof and some chairs and is a truly African service.  You can see all of the produce to be given in the offering outside the door as people head in for the service.

This is the inside of the Mbingo II Church.  The service is in English and Kom (local dialect).  The music is a mix of English and Kom and there is always plenty of dancing.  This usually occurs around the time of the offering.  They are all certainly cheerful givers!

This is what you get when you try to get a 2 year old to pose.  Angela was taking the picture and asked Isaac to smile.  No matter how many times we tried, his "smiles" involved opening his mouth and closing his eyes.  We thought it was funny anyway.

We always look forward to sharing with you all about our lives here in Cameroon.  If there are other things that you would like to know about or have questions, don't hesitate to email us and we can try to add it to the blog.