“The most important aspect of our mission was not to bring medicine, but to bring hope to the people we served,” said Bonnie Holley, a rising third-year medical student who took part in the 10-day trip with the Christian Medical Ministry of South Alabama (CMMSA).
Led by Duane Baxter, team director for CMMSA, the group was comprised of 12 first- and second-year medical students, three doctors and five support personnel. They partnered with an in-country ministry that sends medical teams to a variety of locations in and around Tegucigalpa, the capital city of Honduras.
“The medicines we gave will only last a few weeks, and the people of Honduras live rough, dangerous lives in extreme poverty,” said Holley, who has participated in 10 international mission trips, including five to Honduras. “Our presence for a few days can’t change any of that, but by working with the Honduran ministry we were able to help connect our patients with people in the local churches. Helping to foster the creation of a supportive community that will endure after we have left is one of the key elements of successful short-term mission trips.”
|From left, Kendal Dekle and Elisabeth Potts, both USA |
medical students, and Abby Williams, a clinical exercise
physiologist, play with the children in Honduras.
“What impacted me the most was getting to be around a team of medical students, nurses and doctors who loved God and wanted to use medicine to heal and serve others,” said Brooks Burns, a rising second-year medical student. “I was especially influenced by the older physicians, who would openly pray for their patients and trusted God to guide them throughout their lives. Seeing these things and working with an amazing team has definitely influenced my faith and how I want to practice medicine someday.”
Holley said the trip served as a form of leadership development and career exploration. Her previous international service experience helped her take on an encouraging mentor role with her peers, and her ambition is to do medical mission work full time.
Burns said, “I felt like going on this mission trip would be a great reminder on why I got into medicine, and it truly was. The trip was such an awarding experience, from seeing a totally different culture and meeting so many great people. It provided me with medical experience outside the classroom and has motivated me to learn as much as I can, moving forward.”
Learn more about the Christian Medical Ministry of South Alabama.