First up: What is Mercy Ships? Check out this video that explains some of the basics of the Mercy Ships Organization.
I get the question a lot, "How did you choose Mercy Ships?". It's a hard question to answer because there was never really one moment exactly that led me to this decision. No 'x marks the spot' moment. All along (or at least for the past several years), my thought has been to follow this general direction until either it happens or God leads me in a different direction. As you can see, He never led me anywhere else!
Mercy Ships is doing incredible work on a continent that needs a lot of help (understatement of the year?). But more than that, they are seeking to leave a bit of Jesus wherever they go. Yes, it's wonderful to provide surgeries and heal broken people - most anyone would agree. What makes Mercy Ships different, and what kept drawing me back again and again, is that their foundation comes from serving the poor to show the love of God, and through that, to heal more than just the physical. Can't argue with that...
So what about the Africa Mercy? That is the name of the ship where I will sleep, eat, work and play during my time volunteering with Mercy Ships. This ship was repurposed especially to be used as a floating hospital with one deck for operating rooms and patient wards, several decks for crew cabins, a full dining room, library, gym, Starbucks (!) and much more. Each year, the ship sails into the port of whichever country has been chosen and docks for about 10 months to provide hundreds of surgeries to people in need all over that country. During my time on the ship, it will be docked in Madagascar!
That will do for now as an introduction of much more to come. Up next in this series: Nursing on a floating hospital :)
Please be in prayer for me in the next week or so as I pack up my belongings and say goodbye to my home for the past nearly 4 years. It's a bittersweet goodbye because I know there are great things ahead and this is just one of the many changes I will face over the next several months.
Also pray that the funding I need to make this journey possible would continue to come in (if this is YOU, click here to view my donor page or contact me for more info!) And a huge thank you to those who have given already!