Approaching Ten Years
When we opened the clinic on November 28th, 2007 we committed ourselves in the CEH Mission Statement: "To give the best possible medical and surgical care, according to the means that God provides, with compassion, and to share the Gospel with everyone who comes." As we finished 2016 we passed 90,000 patients consulted and by the ten year anniversary I anticipate we will see over 100,000. Since most patients come with at least one family member we believe nearly double this number of people heard God glorified. We believe that some of each of the 48 tribal groups, "nations" in this one political nation of Guinea, came to receive care at CEH, so they heard His glory declared. Now 138 have professed their personal faith in Christ. Nearly 90% are asking for prayer as they pass through the clinic.
Phase One Nearly Complete The initial plans and dreams for a complete 80-bed full-service hospital were divided into two phases to which I personally assigned costs for each building and activity at levels I anticipated in 2004. I did not know the exact time table but hoped it would be complete in 15 to 20 years. The original CEH Board accepted that document as our working document and goal.
Ward D and E will open in March 2017 In March 2017 we will open Wards D and E marking the half way point - finishing Phase One. The founding CEH Board committed that we would not take on any debt to build or operate the hospital but live and grow according to our God given means. None of us truly knew how long Phase One would take. God provided all of the "means" through His people. The total cost provided and distributed is $2,556,000. The capital development in land, buildings and equipment is $1,588,000. We shipped 19 containers of medical equipment/supplies and construction materials, for about $240,000. Some of the contents were freely donated material so they are not included in the costs cited above. We also paid 10 African missionaries' salaries, and all of the construction staff salaries as part of the routine subsidy to operational costs, ($7,400/mo). Most of the national medical workers earn their salaries from the revenue of the hospital as we strive to mature it to self sufficiency in its operational costs. Some national salaries were subsidized during 18 months of the Ebola crisis. We now have a staff of 58 people working at the hospital. Over the past two years we added the ophthalmology, dental and chaplaincy services. Though we have a long way to go, having just completed Phase One, some are testifying that it has become the best hospital in the interior of Guinea. This is to the Glory of God. He has done it!
We initially resolved to limit our USA administration expenses to less than 10% of revenues. In retrospect several of the board members bore their own travel expenses and HPBC provided a small office. Most volunteers work from their homes and we are able to limit the costs for accounting, financial reviews, promotions to our constituency, mailings, web site etc., to only 4%. We praise God again!
Phase Two Launching
We now begin the second half of the development: Phase Two. We will nearly double the size of the medical service buildings, and build adequate-modest missionary and professional homes on the station. We will put an accent on improving the quality of the medical and surgical services, and continue the West African Medical- Evangelism conferences at Mamou which we initiated with ARC/Mayo. We will seek to be faithful in our witness and compassionate service. Our anticipated cost for this phase is $2,953,000 over the next ten years. We must walk by faith, not by sight, because I do not know where this will come from. But the experience of walking with God through Phase One over the beginning years emboldens my faith for thisnext phase.
As we sought new personnel for the hospital we are in constant prayer to the Lord that He will call laborers as He wishes into the CEH harvest field. One of the most crucial positions in the hospital is a good general surgeon. Dr. Paul S was the most competent resident surgeon whom I was privileged to train at Ferke. He shared with us recently that he and his wife, Elizabeth are feeling God is calling them to Mamou to serve Him through CEH. Elizabeth is an excellent French high school teacher and both of them are vibrantly involved in their church. At Ferke, Paul and Elizabeth became colleagues and dear friends as we concluded our ministry there in 2001. They will join the MIAPE mission team as its newest missionaries this spring, Lord willing. I am requesting our constituency pray for them and to consider taking on the additional support of $3000 per month it will cost to fully cover the support of this gifted godly couple. Let us each pray fervently and then participate as our Lord directs us. May God bless each of you.