Throwing Down the Sticks
Over the three days at the foot of Thaba Bosiu, the famous mountain plateau in the Maseru district of Lesotho, we saw 400 patients, provided 431 medical and 387 pharmacy and prayer services. Many of the people trekked for 6 to 8 hours to reach us from their mountainous homeplace. The first day that we arrived, there were 40 people waiting for us, the second day that number doubled to 80, and on the third day over 120 people were waiting as our van pulled up to the center. We saw patients with a multitude of concerns, including arthritis, hypertension, stomach ulcers, diabetes, tuberculosis, and HIV/AIDS.
"I was sick and you visited me." Matthew 25:35
The high elevation in the country and limited transportation means that a lot of people walk up hills and uneven terrain as part of their daily lives from childhood through to their elderly years. Many suffered severe arthritis, with whom we treated with cortisone injections.
Others we saw were using sticks as canes and sticks as crutches. Watching them throw down their sticks as they were presented new canes and crutches was a heartwarming sight.