Category Archives: Newsletters

April 2021 Newsletter

Maternal Care!

Complications during pregnancy and childbirth are a leading cause of death among women in South Sudan, which currently ranks fifth highest in the world for maternal mortality. One of the goals of the In Deed and Truth Medical Clinic is to make childbirth safer and provide a place women can come for prenatal care as well as care for her delivery and post-natal treatment.

In an unforeseen emergency during labor, you can a get a ‘stat’ cesarean section in a Western hospital, in about 15 minutes. Here in Tonj, you’re lucky if it’s an hour, and overnight it will be three at least. Despite this, in the last 6 years we have never lost a baby for want of a quicker c-section.

Mother with healthy twins after a complicated birth

The best is when God steps in and makes it unnecessary, like for the second-born twin here. His placenta was born before him and he was in a position incompatible with birth. His heart tones were barely detectable. We began to pray and also arrange a c-section for a dead baby. Somehow, after minutes without an oxygen supply, he was born naturally, responded beautifully to resuscitation and was discharged a healthy baby, showing no signs of his ordeal. Praise God for His help!

Ward Care!

The 25-bed ward is at full capacity, filled with sick neonates, infants, children and pregnant mothers.

CPAP Baby in the IDAT Ward

This past month has seen an influx of young children admitted with severe dehydration due to vomiting and/or diarrhea. It is scary how rapidly they can deteriorate even within a few hours.

Severely dehydrated and malnourished child on the IDAT ward

We are fortunate to have the resources to effectively treat their dehydration, as well as the underlying cause. We import a special therapeutic milk that aids in building their strength and stabilizes their condition so they can be referred to the government nutrition program to receive PlumpyNut, a lifesaving peanut paste used to treat severe acute malnutrition in young children. We are heading into a season of food shortage and ask for your prayers and wisdom as we treat these precious children. The milk is expensive to buy and has to be brought in from Kenya.  Despite our best care and prayers, some don’t make it but those that do we like to celebrate their victory stories, like Deng! He is a 1-year-old boy who arrived to the ward severely dehydrated and also acutely malnourished.

Deng before treatment

We rehydrated Deng using a feeding tube as he was too weak to drink. We also started him on a careful treatment plan for malnutrition using the special therapeutic milk. After one week we were able to discharge him home.

Deng after treatment

**Pray for the current food situation.

The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’ – Mathew 25:40

March 2021 Newsletter

Medical Training!

One of the most effective ways to fight poverty and boost economic development is through job creation. Our ministry has invested in our own medical staff over the last 8 years so they can fill the primary roles needed in our clinic. Bridging the skills gap in South Sudan is critical if we are to see social and economic progress. Through partnership with African Mission Healthcare (AMH), we have trained five clinical officers, 3 nurses, one pharmacist, one lab technician and one medical administrator. As our clinic/hospital grows, our greatest need is for a medical doctor to serve as Medical Director over the IDAT Clinic.

Gabriel serving as Clinical Officer with IDAT

Gabriel Gojoh, our first medical staff member to get a scholarship, has served with IDAT since 2010. He is a faithful brother in the Lord and started working in the IDAT Clinic at age 18 years as a Community Health Worker while he completed the last three years of his high school education. South Sudan was behind other African countries in education so getting him accepted into a university in 2013 in Kenya was challenging. Thankfully, the Presbyterian University of East Africa accepted him as a three-year student in Clinical Medicine, Surgery and Community Health, where he graduated top of his class out of 30 students. He returned to Tonj and the IDAT Clinic in 2016 and started a one-year internship as a Clinical Officer (Physician’s Assistant). Now he is part of our Senior Medical Team and committed to IDAT Clinic for long term service. Please join us in praying for Gabriel as we make plans for him to train as a Medical Doctor and becoming our future Medical Director. If you feel called to partner with this need please email us.

CHW Training!

Zac and Rebekah Soper are long-term missionaries that joined our team last year from New Zealand. Every January we have a new intake of Community Health Workers (CHW’s) that are used to assist the Senior Medical Staff in the clinic and the ward. These CHW’s come without any medical background or knowledge. It is a huge commitment of our time, every year to train them to serve safely and effectively. Zac developed a 10-week internship class covering everything from infection control and vital signs to anatomy and physiology.

CHW’s in Training

He started a class in January with 21 CHW students who will graduate this month after completing intensive theory and practical work.

CHW’s Practice Injection Safety

“So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.” Ephesians 4:11-12

CHE Training!

Over 400 of our Pastors and Community Health Evangelists (CHEs) from 12 of our 15 villages gathered together at CC Tonj for our first ever CHE Conference!

CHE’s in Training

These CHEs volunteer themselves to travel around their neighbors each week and teach story-based health promotion and gospel lessons which our IDAT CHE trainers have taught them. They also help lead community development projects within their villages such as repairing bore holes, community gardens for widows and orphans, and establishing village schools.

CHE’s Picking Trash in Tonj

People arrived from their villages singing & dancing with great excitement, ready to worship, hear testimonies, receive intense training and intercede for one another.

CHE’s Singing and Dancing

February 2021 Newsletter

Testimonies!

During his Christmas break, IDAT Pastor Santino Bak returned to his home village of Pagol to share the gospel. On Christmas Eve he showed the Jesus film to around 500 people! The next morning many of them returned to hear more about God and as a result 150 new believers were baptized!

New Believers in Pagol

Pastor Joseph Yuot also held an outreach in his village nearby and saw a powerful move of God, including one of the village witch-doctors dedicating his life to Christ. Both communities are hungry for the Lord, and have requesting us to bring our Community Health Evangelism (CHE) program to help them improve their physical lives and grow spiritually.

Baptism of New Believers

‘And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.’ – ACTS 22:16

Our new CHE village in Wargiir is already having a powerful impact. A new believer called Mabior Akech, accepted Jesus Christ as Savior for the first time. He called us to go and pray at his house with his family and to burn all the satanic material and items in his home.

Pastor Santino Burning Idols

His faith and acceptance of Christ was due to our growing CHE program.

Jesus Film Outreach in the CHE Villages

South Sudan has some of the worst health statistics in the world, with 10% of children dying before their 5th birthday. There are also high rates of food insecurity, a lack of safe drinking water, and poor access to education. Emotionally, the South Sudanese have suffered the trauma of the longest civil war in the history of Africa. Relationally there are still longstanding cycles of revenge between many tribes and clans. Many of the villages in South Sudan are living in spiritual darkness having never heard the gospel.  The CHE program teaches health and spiritual lessons using bible stories that promote emotional, relational, and spiritual health through addressing topics such as forgiveness, loving your neighbor, prayer, salvation, and God’s desire for us to live in wholeness.

New CHE Village Committee Graduation

It’s been a long process for our ministry of building capacity and gaining experience in CHE, but it’s so exciting to see, what started as a vision and passion, coming into fruition as we enter the ‘multiplication’ stage of CHE.  Because people have given, we have been able to establish CHE in 10 villages around Tonj. With continued support we hope to expand that to 18 villages this year, 26 villages by the end of 2022 and 100 villages by 2030!

One More Testimony!!

Praise God for another witch doctor putting their faith in Jesus Christ! Deng & Kamic brought their child Muom to the IDAT clinic with severe malaria and were touched by the love of God in our staff, and the words spoken by Pastor Joseph Kuol when he shared the gospel with them. Thankfully, they live near one of our new church plants in Wargiir so will have a place to grow their newfound faith.

Ps. Joseph Kuol with Deng, Kamic and Muom

January 2021 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 22nd 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. What a year 2020 turned out to be! Here’s a recap of how the Lord used US and brought beauty from ashes in 2020 and impacted an entire community for the Kingdom of God:

Mother and baby admitted on the Ward

We treated over 28,000 children as outpatients, and over 7,400 pregnant mothers. We delivered 324 babies in a safe environment, vaccinated thousands of children and cared for 1,263 that were admitted on our ward.

Baby recovering on the Ward

We provided over 9 tons of medicine and 24-hour care, 7 days a week.

IDAT Team unloading medical supplies

Every single patient was prayed for and heard the gospel, so many charms were removed, and many prayed to receive Christ as Savior.

Pastors Counsel Patients

Before discharging patients from the ward, we pray with them, over them, bless them and where possible, plug them into a church.

Ward chaplain Ps. Joseph

In 2020, four new Community Health Evangelism (CHE) Centers were established, increasing our CHE impact from 6 to 10 village communities.

CHE’s praying in the village

20,070 physical health and spiritual lessons were taught at homes in the CHE villages by our CHE volunteers.

CHE lessons being taught in the villages

640 people have committed their lives to Christ and six new churches were planted in 2020.

Church Plant in Wargiir Village

Despite the COVID-19 lockdown and not being able to have church for several months, our pastors still met once a month to encourage each other.

Pastors Sponsored by IDAT

They also ministered in the homes of their church communities. And prepared the new church land for CC Tonj to start meeting. With the new church plants and we now have 13 churches!

Sen. Ps. Mabior, Ps. Joseph & Ps. Ruben encouraging church members at home

When church restarted in September, we had record numbers in attendance. A total of 37,366 people attended an IDAT church in 2020. Newcomers to the church total 2,523!

CC Tonj

We are praising Jesus for the 3,258 people that received salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. We ended the new year visiting all the churches and baptizing new believers, making the total of baptisms 796 in 2020.

“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Matthew 28:19

CC Tonj Baptism in Tonj River

For several months we were affected by tribal conflicts which left homes and food stores burnt, displacing 7,000 people and creating a humanitarian crisis.

Burnt tukul home (tukul is a mud hut)

Some of our pastors were displaced from their villages and three CHE centers were also displaced.

Ps. Judah forced to leave his village

As people fled their homes, they ended up in Tonj with nowhere to shelter and no food.

Shelters made from tarps

The Lord worked this for good and used our displaced pastors to bring the needs of the community to IDAT.  Between the insecurity and flooding we were able to feed and sustain over 4,000 Internally Displaced People (IDP’s) and provide shelter to 500. We will continue to support the food and shelter needs throughout 2021.

Food distribution Outreach

So many responded to the message shared about Jesus being the bread of life, including a witchdoctor.

We ended the year on a high with the IDAT Soccer Tournament being the best we have done so far and such a positive impact on the youth.

IDAT 2020 Soccer Tournament

During the course of the tournament approximately 53,000 were evangelized through the radio broadcast, over 70,000 attended the matches and heard the gospel message. There were 3,716 new commitments for Christ and 2,112 re-dedications.

Please pray for our 15 sponsor kids that lost two of their homes and possessions in a New Year’s Eve fire.

Sponsor Kids Tukuls

Together we made a difference!

December 2020 Newsletter

Soccer Success!

2020 was our best soccer tournament to date!!  The pastors counted over 20,000 people attended the final match. During the course of the tournament approximately 53,000 were evangelized through the radio broadcast, over 70,000 attended the matches and heard the gospel message. There were 3,716 new commitments for Christ and 2,112 re-dedications. It was also reported to us from our pastors that after hearing the gospel at the games, more than 1,000 people started attending local churches and 150 of those joined CC Tonj. The final match was televised and attended by the State Governor and President of South Sudan Football association came from Juba.

Suzy and Governor present the IDAT cup

The Face of Poverty

Tonj was hit hard this year with food crisis, tribal fighting and flooding. We anticipate helping the community with food and seeds until fall of 2021.

Weekly IDAT Food Distribution

The tribal conflicts led to thousands fleeing their homes but the flooding has prevented much needed food from reaching Tonj and many crops to be lost. The washed-out dirt road created a back log of 1,013 trucks stuck for over a
month.  The road is a meter high from the ground and it still flooded.

Eventually the trucks got moving again and the 5-month dry season just started, so we should not experience this problem for a while.

In the meantime, we are purchasing surplus food and distributing it to the most vulnerable people that are either displaced or effected from flooding. We continue to see severely malnourished children every day in the clinic.

Abouch

Abuoch developed an infection called Noma which destroyed her upper lip when she was three years old. Noma is a gangrenous infection starting in the mouth caused by extreme poverty, malnutrition and poor hygiene. Children between 2-4 years old are most vulnerable with only about 10% surviving the infection. They are left with severe disfigurement on the face and as they grow they carry shame, hiding the face with scarves and have difficulty integrating socially with others. It can be a challenge to eat and develop speech. The only hope is for reconstruction surgery which is unavailable in South Sudan. A few years ago, Abouch came to our clinic to register for the Cleft Lip program that our friends at Samaritan’s Purse run each April, bringing surgeons from Africa & USA. Unfortunately, her case was too complex for the Cleft Lip campaign which repairs over 100 cleft lips each year. Thankfully Samaritan’s Purse have generously sponsored her to travel to Uganda for repair. This is her second surgery. We are so excited for her to get this life-changing surgery.

Abouch before and after surgery

Happy Christmas!

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God: and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

We feel blessed to have had the opportunity to serve the people of Tonj in 2020. The Lord did amazing things through IDAT and rescued a community from the brink of famine. We can’t wait for the blessings that are coming in 2021!!

May your Christmas be peaceful and filled with love, laughter, hope, joy, and the Spirit of the Lord be upon you and your family.