Evelyn Davis, 2000 Volunteer

Evelyn Davis, 2000 Volunteer

There is nothing so profound than to experience the joy, humor, strength, and dignity in a people who have little to nothing but their faith in God.

The most meaningful experience I had on the Marion Medical Mission Trip to Malawi was during the aftermath of the disastrous vehicle accident in which I was the driver where eight were injured and one killed. In a state of shock for days after the accident, I did not speak, eat, or sleep much. I shed a lake of tears for the injured and killed, and their families whose lives were disrupted. I imagined their terror and pain. I felt a deep sense of helplessness in my need to make it all better. I was tortured, wondering “What could I have done differently?” I felt guilt. “What can I do to help the victims?” I felt responsibility. “How can I ever compensate for a loss of life?” I felt obligation. “How do I go on from here?” I felt uncertain of how to cope. I prayed in anguish, “My God, why? What is the meaning of this tragedy? What am I to do? What can I do?”

Upon my return to Embangweni, our mission station, I received an outpouring of comfort, concern and support throughout the entire community. At first I was not sure if I could bear to face the families involved. But the outreach of people demonstrated compassion toward my ordeal, and concern for the recovery of Tom Logan. Many reminded me that God has a plan and we each have a part in it. As the community rallied for me, I gained the strength to act on comforting, and doing what I could do for the victims and their families.

I have never witnessed such faith in people so profoundly. The people of Malawi illuminated God’s presence and Christ’s spirit with a faith so ardent and humble that it regenerated me. It renewed my faith and strength allowing me to push forward and proceed to do what I could to fill in for Tom and Jocelyn’ s disrupted plans for the mission, and support the spirits of the people in Malawi who so much love them.

What started as a journey of giving to help people of Malawi ended up to be an extraordinary spiritual journey for me. The gifts I received in return were the relationships I made with the people and the greatest experience of my life.

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I considered how differently circumstances of the accident could have been in the context of my home environment in the United States. I may have anguished for some time with blame and guilt. I expect much of the emphasis would have been involving legal reparations toward the individuals. Perhaps eventually, my wounds would scab over and then leave a scar.

Within the context of Malawi, an individual is regarded as a part of the connected community of Christ. It was not only the lives of the victims that were affected, but the whole community. Everyone prayed and shared their grief together. The focus was on healing. For me the healing was a miraculous recovery of a wound without a scar. It was a healing of compassion through the love of Christ, and the Holy Spirit.

Thank you
I thank you for all your prayers. My thanks to Joyce Heath, my nephew Daron Wong, my niece Marie Logan Collins for keeping me updated. Thanks to my husband who had confidence in me and encouraged me.

I would like to especially thank Jerry Roush who was beside me for the worst of it, Dr. Andy and Felicity Gaston for providing me a place of refuge immediately after the accident, Jim McGill for taking care of many of the details (and there were many), Frank and Nancy Dimmock for handling communication and insurance details, Dr. George and Betty Poehlman for being my surrogate family, Jody McGill, and the MMM Team three gang, including Mary Lou Wood, Rev. MacFarland, George and Gary Lewis for their sense of humor and understanding while living with me. My best wishes and appreciation go to Tom and Jocelyn Logan for their perseverance in their mission and, my thanks for their faith in me.