Lights! Camera! Action! “Never before on the silver screen has a film been seen of such epic proportions!” These are familiar words to those who attend movies in theaters around the world.
With fascinating prequels and the promise of an unending number of sequels, a premier gathering of Christian medical students and young doctors from all over Ukraine is scheduled for August 14-16. The star of this production is our LORD and Savior, Jesus Christ. An eternity in the making, God has been mobilizing an international cast of actors over the past three years from three different countries, nine different locations within Ukraine and seven of the seventeen different medical schools.
As the production team assembles for the final shoot, we look back at the challenges along the way that were overcome by the mercy and faithfulness of our God: the initial financial backing, the threat of being over-budget, the loss of vital support staff, major speakers canceling. One by one these circumstances provided us with opportunities to grow in faith. And surely there will be additional issues to overcome before the film can be “put in the can.” The prayers of the faithful will assist us and keep us on track.
The main theme of this epic is transformation. The Gospel transforms us individually to be used as instruments of God to bring about change in every aspect of medical care. UMO wants to encourage young Christian doctors — reminding them that they are not alone, strengthening them in their faith, and challenging them to reach their medical schools, hospitals, patients and Ukraine for Christ. As physicians we have the opportunity to bring relief from pain and suffering, but, more importantly, the eternal healing that comes only from knowing Jesus Christ.
Please continue to pray for God to be in the details of this final preparation phase…for travel logistics and for the speakers as they fine tune their talks. And during the conference, please pray that God might soften the hearts and open the ears of the students enabling them to eagerly receive and to willingly respond in obedience to the call from above.
We’ll publish the critics’ reviews in a future newsletter…
This was written for a newsletter we sent out last week. The conference began last night and continues through tomorrow afternoon. Jamie was kind enough to meet the 1:30 a.m. flight and deliver American Shari to the site, about a 40-minute drive from his home. Thank you, thank you, Jamie.
Jeff Crane, our colleague in Ukraine Medical Outreach, also made multiple trips to the site from both the airport and the Inter-Varsity office where he picked up guest speakers from Lithuania and then conference supplies…and Jim! We’re thankful that Jeff was able to free up his schedule to drive here, there, and everywhere.
I’ve only heard bits and pieces, but it appears that there are not only medical students, but also quite a few young doctors. The speakers have challenged them to consider how they might use their medical skills to God’s glory.
With these couple of days being the hottest days so far this summer, I have to believe that the participants are thrilled to be OUT of the city and spending a couple of days in a wooded sanitorium just outside of Kyiv.
Jim returns home tomorrow afternoon and we will have the special privilege of three houseguests: two from Lithuania and one from America. Rumor has it that they have a good sense of humor. Trust me, they’re going to need it.