Sunday, April 26, 2009

A quiet Sunday at home at the Mission

Hello Friends and Family,
This is something new for me to share in this fashion some of the happenings about me and my work with the Mayan people in the mountains of Guatemala.

The clinic is closed on sunday and there were a few patients to tend to. Yesterday I took home our 14 year old patient, Catarina, after an extended stay in out in patient space. Catarina developed an auto immune disease of the muscles which paralyed her from the neck down. Fortunately some doctors from Montana were here in January and started the investigative cause for her illness. We ended up spending more that 1000. dollars to diagnose her correctly with a private Neurologist in a near by city, XELA. Catarina had been in our school, Asuncion, last year when she fell ill. It all started with skin lesions. It was a great joy to witness her slow progress but yesterday she walked slowly down the stairs and was helped into the car. She can now walk without a walker, feed herself and requires still some assist in dressing. Her older sister Manuela was her caretaker while in the clinic. She has to take a steroid, probably for life. We will take her to see the Neurologist in May for update.

An elderly man who was bit by a dog last week and in treatment with the local government facility came by to request I give him his antibiotic injections since their service was closed. I gladly did and suggested he come tomorrow to followup with our doctor as it appears he will need further followup other than the penicillin that he is receiving. We do not have access to the Rabies vaccine but the government clinic should have provided it. He was without shoes Saturday but he shared that a kind man had obtained him some new shoes and he was pleased.
I had no translator so tomorrow will bring more information to help him recover.

I just returned from mass in a mountainous village I had not been to since my return in 2006. Panguiney is high above Santo Tomas on a very rough road. The rains have started which made it a bit bumpy. I was glad to have to opportunity to accompany Hazy and take some pictures of 20 little ones who made their first communion in a small decorated home that served as the chapel. We were treated to a delicious beef and rice dish along with about 15 others. This community has about 45 men from the community in the US working as undocumented immigrants. The money they sent home has changed the lives of the families they come from. These workers are also sending home money to build a catholic chapel in the community. We were fortunate that the rain has not started though the sky is grey so it will come. The arrival of the rainy season this past week has extinguished the fire on the VOLCANO PECUL. This is a great relief for the people as it is a threat in many ways to the lives of the people.

Time to rest. Good nite!