All posts by Alex Smith

February 2024 Newsletter

Passion and Vision for 2024!

This month marks a significant milestone for me – 25 years since I took a leap of faith and embarked on a life-changing mission trip to war-torn South Sudan. I’ll never forget that first moment after landing on a dusty airstrip, as I stepped off the plane, naked children emerged from the underbrush, running towards me with beaming smiles. I was struck by the stark contrast between their joy and the devastation from a famine that had ravaged their town for the past year. The famine had left deep scars, but during that trip, I witnessed firsthand the resilience and determination of a community on the path to recovery. It was a journey that forever changed my perspective and deepened my faith.

In 2000 – Holding the first baby named ‘Suzy’ after me

The call was clear, and my heart was stirred with a deep love and burden for the people. A passion burned within me to share the hope of Jesus, and my life was forever changed. Years of weeping, praying, and fasting for the church in South Sudan have borne fruit. Together, we’ve witnessed 35 church plants and 45 national pastors arise. We currently have 18 of those pastors in Bible College and in May we will celebrate their graduation as they receive a diploma in Pastoral Ministry. Two IDAT missionaries and two national pastors are preparing to co-teach future classes in both English and Dinka, ensuring that even the most remote villages receive inductive Bible study training. God’s answer to our prayers is a testament to His faithfulness and the power of united prayer and partnership.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6

Exciting developments are underway at our Bible School and medical centers! This year, we’re expanding our educational studies with additional classes, empowering more pastors to deepen their understanding of the Bible. Meanwhile, our community medical centers are breaking ground in two villages, bringing vital healthcare services to those CHE areas.

You too can join us in bringing hope and healing to the people of Tonj! The IDAT Maternal Child Hospital is dedicated to providing quality care and lifesaving treatment to those in need, but we need your help to make it happen.

Newborn in the IDAT Ward

We have a vision to build a second ward that will ensure vulnerable neonatal babies receive the specialized care they require, and allow us to separate them from the other sick children. Together we can bring hope to these helpless babies and their families, providing them with not just access to excellent medical care but also to a Father in heaven who loves and cares for them deeply. Our budget is $80,000, and every gift, no matter the size, counts!! Please consider supporting our vision today!

Transforming Lives in 70 Villages!

Our Community Health Evangelism program is making a remarkable impact, bringing hope and change to remote villages, one household at a time. Every day, we receive inspiring stories and testimonies of lives transformed. One such testimony comes from our CHE trainer in War-Alel village who shares a miraculous experience that happened over Christmas. This is the story of Anek Madhieu Deng.

Pray for Anek

Earlier in 2023, Anek was devastated when doctors told her that her eyes could no longer be operated on and she would never see again. This was a significant setback as she had undergone eye surgeries in 2021 and 2022, which had partially restored her vision.

On the last day of the CHE program before the holidays, the CHE team laid hands on her eyes and prayed for her healing. And then, on the night of December 24, something incredible happened – one of her eyes suddenly regained sight! Anek was overwhelmed with joy and gratitude to God. She acknowledged that this was a miracle only possible through Jesus Christ. She couldn’t stop thanking the CHE team for their prayers and praising Jesus!

January 2024 Newsletter

Happy New Year!

As we celebrate the New Year, we thank God for YOU our partners and supporters. It’s because of you we are now going into our 25th year of serving in Tonj, South Sudan!! We are so grateful for the way you supported us in prayer and partnered financially with the vision of In Deed and Truth Ministries. 2023 was a great year and also a very fruitful one! We started the year praying for a bible school and closed the year in such a positive way, officially opening the Tonj Bible Institute building!

Tonj Bible Institute

Here’s a recap of how the Lord used us in 2023 and impacted an entire community for the Kingdom of God.

In 2023, our Maternal and Pediatric Mission Hospital treated over 46,000 patients, a 15% increase from 2022.

Busy IDAT Hospital Waiting Room

We saw over 10,800 pregnant mothers, an increase of 1,300 since 2022. We delivered 803 babies in a safe environment, which is a growth of 23% from the year before.

Newborn baby delivered safely

We vaccinated thousands of children and cared for 2,662 inpatients who were admitted to our ward, which is almost 1,000 more than last year. Many of these were premature babies in need of oxygen and an incubator. This huge increase is why we need to build a second ward. The cost is $70,000, please pray we can do this in 2024. IDAT is the only hospital in Tonj with incubators and oxygen, rabies vaccines, snake anti-venom and x-ray.

Our 24-hour care literally saved hundreds of lives physically, but we also poured into each patient spiritually, making sure every patient was prayed for and heard the gospel. Many prayed to receive Jesus Christ as their personal Savior before going home or being discharged from the ward.


Our Community Health Evangelism (CHE) program has reached 70 villages in and around Tonj. CHE continues to impact and transform these villages through health lessons and evangelism.

CHE Volunteer training

In those 70 villages, we trained 3,150 CHE volunteers who made 64,283 home visits teaching people about Jesus. As a result, more than 11,000 people made decisions to follow Jesus; 5,352 people joined our bible listening groups, 25 village schools were started, 51 CHE community gardens were planted, 9 boreholes were drilled to provide safe drinking water and our village medical outreach teams treated and vaccinated over 13,000 patients! These numbers are more than double from the previous year and we are excited to continue to expand our CHE program to reach 100 villages in 2024!!

Hebrews 3:13-14 “You must warn each other every day, while it is still “today,” so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God. For if we are faithful to the end, trusting God just as firmly as when we first believed, we will share in all that belongs to Christ.”

Church Plants!

Thank you for praying for our church planting ministry, for sponsoring pastors, and for helping us build our bible school so we can equip more people to share the gospel. We currently have 35 church plants, and 45 pastors, some still in need of sponsorship. Through those church plants, we welcomed 5,000 new believers into the family of God, baptizing 1,500 of those new believers in 2023. To sponsor an IDAT pastor go to:

Pastor Mayom reading his bible

We ended 2023 with 1,300 youth from across our church plants attending a conference and Samaritan’s Purse completing 562 cataract surgeries and opening our bible school! Not a bad year!!

December 2023 Newsletter

Sight to the Blind!

Last month I shared about the amazing cataract team from Samaritan’s Purse.

Suzy standing next to the Cataract Program banner.
IDAT partnership with Samaritan’s Purse

We are praising the LORD that the total number of patients operated on was 562 patients in 7 days, which is 100 more than last year!!

Crowd on of patents wearing hair nets sitting on rugs outside.
Patients came from near and far

This was a really busy two months for IDAT. As soon as the cataract team left we received a small team to come and help Calvary Chapel Tonj with three youth conferences and the IDAT Maternal Child Hospital with three medical outreaches to CHE villages. It’s so awesome how the LORD brings individuals from all around the world.

Volunteers and staff standing by the plane.
Youth Conference Team

Sister Visit!

It was a great joy to have my older sister Wendy and my niece Candice, visit for the first time and help on this team.

Suzy's sister handing a small african child an object
Candice on a medical outreach

Teams enable us to host events and do more outreach without putting extra strain on our staff. We also got a pharmacy stock check done in record time!!  Over 600 patients were seen through the three medical outreaches.

Michael praying for patients with our outreach pastor

This team also helped us do three one-day youth conferences in the different CHE regions of Mapel, Maloney and Tonj.

Tonj Youth perform a skit

We had 2000 youth attend and from them over 250 youth give their lives to Jesus across the three conferences.

It was also wonderful to share two baptisms with this team, one in Tonj, with 129 baptisms, and the other in Maloney with 35 baptisms.

“The LORD values those who fear Him, those who put their hope in His faithful love.” Psalm 147:11

Malony Baptism

Tonj Bible Institute!

After just five months the Tonj Bible Institute building was finally completed. We were blessed to have Pastor Jim, our partner in pastoral training, from Intensive Care Ministries Africa, dedicate the new building. Praying the LORD will continue to bless each person wanting to study and grow in their faith. Our first graduation is in May 2024. Email us for more info if you would like to attend.

Tonj Bible Institute building (above), and the ribbon cutting ceremony (below)
Tonj Bible Institute Dedication

November 2023 Newsletter

Suzy in South Sudan!

Thank you for praying for my travels. I arrived back in Tonj and was able to travel with the medevac patients from Juba to Wau. They are all recovering well and thank God for the outpouring of prayers and support for their healing.

Suzy with the medevac patients in Wau

One of our goals as a ministry is to host teams and long-term missionaries which means improving our current living accommodations on the IDAT compound. In 2023 we received grant funds to increase our solar power. The team from Offgrid Tech arrived and installed it just days before we were hosting the 21-person Samaritan’s Purse cataract team.

New solar power being installed.

Benjamin and Ernest are USA-based Ethnos 360 missionaries traveling around the world and serving mission organizations like IDAT, in remote locations. This two-man team worked long hours, in the hot sun, to install new solar and repair our generators, and service our vehicles. This is truly a gift!

Cataract Team!

One of the blessings of hosting teams is meeting other like-minded Christians willing to sacrifice their own agendas and lifestyle and use their God-given talents, their time and resources to serve others. They are Kingdom-focused, generous, selfless, prayerful, and living out their faith to make a difference in the world. My prayer back in 1999 was to build a platform in South Sudan for such servants of the Lord, so they could come and serve those less fortunate in the world without worrying about security, what they would eat, drink, where they would sleep, transport, etc. Jesus has answered that prayer and fulfilled that vision.

Psalm 37:4-5 “Take delight in the LORD, and He will give you your heart’s desires. Commit your way to the LORD; trust in Him, and He will act.”

It has been an honor and privilege to host the Cataract Surgery team from Samaritan’s Purse again this year. This one-week mission started week’s beforehand with the IDAT team announcing through the radio the upcoming opportunity to towns and villages as far as 100 miles away. Back in 2013, we sent Martin Marop, one of our Community Health Workers, to train with the Tenwek Hospital eye team so he could prescreen these cataract patients. Since then, Martin has completed nursing school and we are so proud of him. He traveled to three surrounding areas to prescreen over 500 prospective patients.

Martin screening patients for cataract

The Samaritan’s Purse ophthalmologist said Martin saved them so much time enabling them to operate on even more patients.

Dr. Ben Roberts operating on a patient

This year we had four ophthalmologists rotating and each surgery took about 5-10 minutes only to remove one cataract.

Dr. Roberts removing bandages post-op
Celebrating sight restored

The best part is seeing patients rejoice and praise God for restoring their sight.

  • Please prayerfully consider supporting this growing ministry.

October 2023 Newsletter

Medevac Patients!

Thank you for praying for our medevac patients. Our CHE manager was involved in a horrific motorbike accident leaving three people requiring urgent surgery. With no adequate facilities in Juba to handle the type of injuries they had, we decided to send them to Tenwek Mission Hospital in Kenya.

Immediately following the accident

I am so grateful for the body of Christ that works in unity to glorify God and be the hands and feet of Jesus in a crisis. It was wonderful to have so much support from other Christian ministries like Mission Aviation Fellowship for the flights, African Mission Healthcare for logistical support in Kenya, and Tenwek Mission Hospital for their missionaries, surgeons, and staff who took such good care of our patients. Last but not least, YOU, our partners reading this newsletter, stepped up and allowed God to use you by generously giving to this urgent need. All three patients are doing well and should make a full recovery with no long-lasting effects.

A group of men sitting on chairs with crutches
Marko, Yai, and Malim after surgery

Beard Family!

We are excited to have the Beard Family from Australia return to Tonj for the third time! They will be in Tonj for 2 months to help with the upcoming cataract team from Samaritan’s Purse and to organize three youth conferences with CC Tonj Church.

A group of people standing in front of a plane
Beard Family arrives in Tonj

We now serve in four regions including Tonj and we are planning youth conferences in three of these regions, with an estimated attendance of 500 to 1,000 youth per conference. If you feel led to help support this event, please email us. We are hoping to raise $5,000. This is an investment in the next generation of adults in South Sudan. Please pray for a good turnout, for a touch from the Holy Spirit for each youth attending, and for long-lasting impact and transformed lives. This year’s conference theme is “Your Identity in Christ”.

The Beard Family is planning to move their family to South Sudan in April 2024 and serve full-time with IDAT. Ben is a nurse and will serve alongside the IDAT Hospital management team to improve services and design systems to make our hospital more efficient and cost-effective. This is an important role for the continued growth of our Maternal and Pediatric Unit. He will also work with the pastors, teaching and leading as needed. Sarah is gifted administratively, serving in her church back in Australia. She will take on many of my field tasks, like hosting teams, procurement, and field finances, as well as coming alongside our national team and working with the women and youth of CC Tonj. Together they will continue to homeschool their three children, Jonah (10) Seth (8), and Ryelle (5).

Prayer and Praise!

We have a team of four coming to help us with the three youth conferences. They will also go on three medical outreaches, visit a village church, and CHE villages, and attend a multi-church baptism. They will be in Tonj for 10 days. Please pray for them as they prepare to serve, and pray for their health and safety while in South Sudan.

We have been blessed with funds to improve our compound living quarters for missionaries who want to serve. This has enabled us to build and increase our current facilities and host large teams such as the 21-person team from Samaritan’s Purse to perform cataract surgeries. One of the things we need for these large teams is adequate power. The solar team from Offgrid Tech is coming to install new solar, service our hospital solar, repair our hospital generator, teach off-road driving to some inexperienced drivers, install solar water heaters and a water pump, and various other projects that need attention. We hope they can visit the new school and design a solar system for the bible school and church.

Praise God the roof is on the Tonj Bible Institute

Pray the school will be completed before December and pray for the Samaritan’s Purse cataract team.

“May He give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.” Psalm 20:4