A Missionary Expedition comprised of 30 volunteers led by the Shalom Catholic Community arrived in Africa on Saturday, November 9th to assist the population of Madagascar. “Soon after we arrived on Saturday in the early afternoon, we were approached by a distressed father looking for Shalom volunteer doctors because his newborn baby was in the hospital suffering from several life-threatening conditions,” said Jeovana Freitas, the Community’s Councilor for Human Promotion.
At the request of the family, the volunteer health team immediately went to the hospital and found the father’s 17-day-old baby girl in critical condition with hydrocephalus, spina bifida and other complications. The local hospital was unable to provide the care she required.
“Being in a country so far away and lacking modern-day medical equipment, we did everything we could but sadly, the new-born child passed away. Although the father was not Catholic and came from another religious tradition, a person in our team dared to ask if the child could be baptized. The father allowed it. So right there, with the consent of the Church, the infant was baptized. It was a heart-warming time for everyone, because at that moment the little girl was really born”, says the missionary.
On the morning of the 11th, the volunteers received news that the Madagascar child had survived until Easter. In the sorrowful pain of the moment, family members asked the volunteers to come to their home. There they comforted the family and could testify that the child was born for eternity.
Translation: Jhoanna Climacosa
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