Field Report Day One

4/3/2020 - 10:06:56 AM

I had the opportunity to visit eight different locations yesterday with some men from the local church. We have plenty of need and places to take these lunch boxes. Most locations responded right away with how many they would love to have and other details. The atmosphere in the hospitals are quite strange. We had the most luck it seemed talking to the charge nurses in the ER. In the ER there was so much hopelessness, fear, stress, and anxiety; everyone wearing masks and sick people waiting to be seen. Outside every ER several EMS units were always around. It was such a good experience to offer some sort of relief to these heroes. Hearing their "thank you's" and "Oh that's wonderful!" lifted my spirit and made me smile.

Had several opportunities to pray with some of the staff as well. The one captain at an EMS station was such a blessing and he will be a great contact in the future. He runs the largest station in every borough and he was so thankful for what we are doing and that we wanted to pray with him. He told us how the virus is affecting people besides just sickness. Last week they had a skyrocket in Cardiac Arrests. They usually average about 20 a week and last week they had 200. They are overwhelmed and right now. If they do CPR for 20 minutes and don't get a response they must pronounce them dead.

One of the nurses I talked to is a Christian and you could feel the difference in the interaction compared to some of the other people we talked to. She was smiling and cheery even though it is a tough time. It was such a good experience to pray with her and be able to give her some hope that they are not alone in this fight, that there are people behind them praying for and cheering them on.

One sad story was regarding an older gentleman that was there to see his wife who was in for a surgery. They were not letting him in because he didn't know the doctor's and nurse's name that was on staff. The staff at the desk change so much as well that the lady didn't know either. So the man was getting frustrated because he just wanted to see his wife, but in the craziness and chaos he wasn't able to.

As we were driving around we identified three or four hospitals with reefer trucks outside being used as makeshift morgues.

ER Health Screening

The last stop was a place where the need for food is real. These boxes would not just be a special blessing but they would fill a need. In the area around them nothing is open on the weekends. So the staff have nowhere to get food. I am hoping to be able to supply them on the weekends with enough food for the staff. It's a smaller ER so that shouldn't be a problem.

The Light of Truth Mennonite church is who I partnered with when visiting. They have a chaplain hotline where they have a number to call for prayer, Bible reading, or just a listening ear. We were able to give out thousands of cards for this number and leave them at the hospitals. It was a blessing to offer them physical food first, which then allowed us to offer spiritual food and hope as well.

The picture of the tree is something that is beautiful to me. Amidst the craziness of this all there is still beauty and life.

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