Not Just Physical Needs…

“Meet people’s physical needs,” some say. Others push back with, “It’s not helping unless you meet spiritual needs.” The reality is, Jesus did both and still does through his Church.

In January, two churches did just that in Quito, Ecuador. But these aren’t two churches down the road from each other. In fact, they are separated by 2,800 miles and two different languages.

So what brings them together in Quito?

SERVING QUITO IS SERVING A SAN ANTONIO-SIZED CITY

Quito is a booming city with big-city needs. With a population over 2.6M, it’s roughly the same size as San Antonio or Portland.

For several years, Puembo Church in Quito has partnered with Fairhaven Church of Dayton, OH. Both are connected through CMI. Last month, 80+ medical professionals and volunteers from both churches united again.

THOUSANDS CARED FOR IN JESUS’ NAME

Together both churches treated 2,652 patients as part of an annual Medical Mission Trip.

Each patient represents a real individual receiving medical care and more. Puembo and Fairhaven volunteers treat the whole person because each one walks into the clinic with more than physical needs. For every set of teeth checked, blood-pressure taken, and shot dispensed, there is a story. Pain. Heartache. Desperation. Tragedy. Hopelessness.

Some of the lives touched included pregnant teens, the elderly and homebound, Venezuelan refugees, and underprivileged families.

Medical volunteers offered services across three clinic locations, including general check-ups, immunizations, dental care, infant care, eye exams, physical therapy, medication, and more.

CARING FOR THE WHOLE PERSON

One volunteer, Polly, shared her story of meeting Elena. Elena is the teenage mother of a one- month-old girl. At 18-years-old, Elena is barely more than a child herself. She and her teenage husband fled to Ecuador last year from Venezuela.

Soon after their escape into Quito, her husband turned abusive. He abandoned her for another woman, leaving Elena alone, desperate, and scraping to survive. After a much-needed medical checkup for Elena and her newborn, Polly counseled with her. She offered more than a temporary pep talk. She connected Elena to the local church that was the site for the clinic.

TOGETHER IS BETTER

This trip captures CMI’s vision of uniting churches to reach influential Latin urban centers. By partnering with supporters and like-minded churches, lives are forever being changed.

§The name has been altered for privacy.