Professionals in Missions (PIM) –This is a one day Seminar tailored to equip a particular professional group like health workers, lawyers, accountants, teachers, among others on how to integrate Missions in their day to day career and ministry emphasis as witnesses of Christ. This seminar helps the participants to understand Christian perspectives and gospel approach to their particular career as witnesses of Christ in their lives.
MEDICAL MISSIONS SEMINAR
We give God the glory for the successful conclusion of the Medical Missions Seminar 2015 this Saturday 18 April 2015 at Mulago School of Nursing and Midwifery. We had a great attendance of 120 students doubling the previous year. Facilitators from within Uganda and other East African Countries facilitated the successful seminar. Several students committed themselves to support, pray and get involved in both short term and long term missions.
THIS YEAR’S MEDICAL MISSIONS SEMINAR WAS JUST ANOTHER OF ITS KIND, many learning opportunities as well as spiritual growth.
Samuel Baker Okullo, GLA Administration and Finance Officer talked about the various activities on missions and how the students could get involved. He called on some of the alumni interns to speak to the students about their experiences at the placements.
“It is a call you will not regret,” says Komakech Simon, a Clinical Officer, who served in Yivu Abea in Maracha, West Nile. Meanwhile Robinah Nansilombi, a Public Health Officer, who spend 12 months at Kuluva School of Nursing also in Arua district encouraged the students to listen to what their hearts tell them about missions. She mentioned that it is a challenge to decide to go to a remote area where you have never been. “You will be going to a place you have never been to, listen to a language you have never heard or known and eating food you have never tasted and many others, but the reward will be so great,” Nansikombi concluded.
Solomon Nyakuni, himself an alumni and an organizer of the seminar talked about the experiences and challenges he had before and after the placements. “It took me time to decide and act on the calling to missions. At the time I thought whether this was the best decision to take. I could not forget my ambition to work at least in a clinic and in my case I was privileged to have an uncle who owns a clinic and so a job was guaranteed. But my heart told me something different, the call for mission was singing in my head every day and my heart followed that song,” he concluded saying that he had never regretted the one year he spend as an intern at Namasyolo Centre II. It is worth saying that Solomon transformed this centre as well as the community.
Most of the students were anxious to learn more about how they could get involved as missionaries after hearing testimonies from those who had spend 12 months as GLA missionaries in various health facilities, church and communities that they served.
Attending to the tractMiss Connie Jarlsberg of WorldVenture led on ‘Serving as a Professional Missionary’, students asked several life experience questions which she answered encouraging them to look at missions as a calling from God. She testified her own life from childhood to the call to mission work as a health scientist elaborating that it had not been easy but the grace of God has pulled her along to this date with absolutely no regrets. The medical students were so encouraged that their decisions have been influenced and that they would make decisions more easily now that they have heard those testimonies. It was an inspiring discussion on a topic many medical professionals overlook.
We are forever grateful to Doctors Jeff, Godwin and Richard who deliberated on the various topics at the seminar and also lead discussions on some of the tracts for their involvements with us in responding to God’s mission for all nations. The seminar, which covered topics like Understanding Missions, My Career-God’s way, Serving as a Tent Maker, My Profession as a Mission and Serving as a Professional Missionary were so transforming for the medical students.
It is worth mentioning that we couldn’t have done all this without the various supports of the organizing committee comprising of the different Christian Union leaders across the Country and their different contributors to the program. In particular the spectacular involvement of Sylvia Namutebi whom GLA Executive Director Samuel Opolot duped the ‘Mother of Medical Missions Seminar’ could not go unnoticed. “She is such a vital person in organizing this seminar year in year out,” Opolot said applauding her for all that she has done since the inception of the seminar two years ago.
We concluded the day with the commissioning of the students, which carried such a mighty presence of God as all the participants were prayed for and sent out to impact their various communities. Jeff and Godwin the two doctors who both spoke at the conference encouraged the students to get involved in missions through their various professions. “Your professions deal with lives and getting involved not just as a doctor, nurse or midwife, butas a missionary in your professions complete your calls for holistic transformations of your patients and the community at large,” Dr Jeff told the students amidst his teaching calling on them to seriously consider GLA mission placement projects.The day was a blessing to the students as well as the facilitators. It was clear that the seminar has found its roots and bearing and the anticipation is even greater come next.
MEDICAL MISSIONS 2016….
Every year Global Link Afrika (GLA) organizes a Medical Mission Seminar, a training opportunity for medical students and professionals to explore how they might use their profession to serve The Lord. This year’s seminar which was conducted on 2nd April under the theme, “Medical Missions on the Front Line – Are You a Part?”, brought together 115 students along with more than 24 qualified professionals, GLA team members and other representatives from partner organizations.
In the opening talk on “Mission Thread in Bible” Mr. Samuel Opolot, traced the Biblical foundations of Mission. Not only did he help the participants to see the Mission of God through the Bible, he also challenged the participants to embrace the God of Mission and follow Him in His Mission. He pointed out that when God calls a person, He calls the whole person. He thus encouraged the participants to see every aspect of their lives as part of invitation to serve in Mission.
Dr.Hellen Tukemuhabwe (a pediatric specialist in Mulago Hospital) shared from her professional experience in the medical world as she handled the topic, “The Christian in the Public Health Sector,” She cited a couple of challenges that the Christian may have to contend with in working with public Institutions including; corruption, negligence, lack of work ethics and poor motivation among others. Dr Tukamuhebwa challenged the Christian medical worker to be light and salt to the World, live a life of integrity, and be exemplary to the rest of the people around in the work field. With her own story, she helped the participants appreciate the need to be courageous and not shy away from doing good amidst opposition. She also put great emphasis on the need for Christian Medical workers to put service above personal gain, challenging them to live and work sacrificially in obedience to the invitation of Christ for us to be servants.
Dr. Jeff Mailu, a co-founder and Executive Director of Medical Missions Africa, a Kenya based Medical Missions Organisation, shared his story as a pioneer of Medical Missions Africa. As a medical doctor, his experience was thrilling to the students most of whom were left in total conviction and reflection. He caught the attention of all the occupants of the seats in DLT hall at Medical School in Mulago with his story full of pictorial and audio prowess.
Having a passion for missions, Dr. Jeff and some of his colleagues started Medical Missions Africa. Their aim was to take health services to the needy communities as well as proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ. His testimonies of thousands giving their lives to Christ and being rehabilitated into normal life, with churches planted by the medical missions team was such a wonderful experience to hear about!
He concluded by challenging the participants to acknowledge the power of prayer and let God handle the seemingly impossible issues encountered in the course of work and ministry. “There is nothing that withstands the power of prayers,” he stated.
Asked why the Medical Missions Seminar has been held every year, Mrs. Gillian Edube the Missions Director explains that the seminar is meant to prepare and challenge the students to take on missions challenge now, and not just for future involvement. She emphasizes the reason for the students to know about missions while they are still students at campus, connect their professions to missions now while they are still students.
“That is the reason we come with topics like, Engaging in Cross Cultural Missions, Divine healing, Finding an appropriate sender.” She lists. These help us answer some of the questions that the students might come up with. And bringing professionals like Dr. Mailu who have had the experience helps the student see the reality of what they might want to take on in missions.”
Gillian says there is a connection between long term missions commitments and short term commitments. This seminar is meant to encourage students to take on short term missions which eventually result into long term. She gives the example of Alice Akello who started as a short term missionary and has now taken on long term and is a product of the Medical Missions Seminar. Little wonder, after the seminar, 11 students committed to serving as missionaries, 24 students committed to give financially towards missions, 22 students committed to pray for the missionaries!