AMEN Free Clinic – Napa, California
Published on 09/22/2016 |
Napa, California was blessed by two AMEN clinics this year. After months of preparation AMEN was hosted by Napa Korean SDA Church, on April 24th. As a small church of 150 members, they generously helped 200 patients from the greater Napa area, reaching even as far north as Sacramento. The patients received free services for general dentistry, ophthalmology, optometry, cardiology, hydro-therapy, massage therapy, and dietary & spiritual counseling. Meals were provided all day, not only for the volunteers, but also for every patient who came. Dr. Whie Oh, cardiologist and head elder of the Napa Korean SDA church, led out in the clinic.
On August 5th, the second clinic was held, this time in the gymnasium at the Napa Christian Campus of Education. It was the outreach activity for West Coast Korean SDA camp meeting being held on the campus of Pacific Union College (PUC). Many professionals attending the Korean camp meeting took part in this collaborative effort to minister to the community. Several local churches sent numerous volunteers to help as well. Most of the dentists, hygienists, doctors, and nurses volunteering were alumni of PUC and Loma Linda University. It almost felt like a reunion of friends and classmates. Working together we served 350 patients, some who arrived as early as 4:00 AM. Watching these young professionals, I was struck by the awesome testimony this was to the fruits of Adventist education and the deep seed of service that had grown in many hearts.
This clinic was truly a beautiful collaborative effort of several different individuals and groups. Ole Health reached out to their patient base and provided numerous volunteers to translate, guide patients through the AMEN clinic, and provide follow up care at their clinic. A number of PUC students joined in the volunteer effort, along with members of the Napa Community SDA Church. St. Helena Hospital Clearlake provided a delicious catered dinner for the volunteers, who emerged weary but with satisfied smiles.
High school senior Timothy Bui volunteered to bring his personal audio equipment to provide beautiful Christian music throughout the day, and to provide a microphone for effective communication to the hundreds of patients being treated. When asked why he volunteered, Timothy replied, “I’ve attended similar community events that lacked the quality and appropriate mood with the music selections and poor quality audio equipment. I felt impressed to share my equipment and collection of Christian music to set the right tone and inspiration.”
Pastor Jose Marin, the Hispanic Coordinator for the Northern California Conference, along with a team of volunteers, provided additional translation, as well as spiritual and health counseling. Pastor Marin shares this experience, “As I was observing the smiles on many people’s faces after being treated, there was one lady who approached me. She was a public service worker who did not come to be treated but to see what this free clinic was all about. This is what she said: ‘I have been serving and working in this community for many years, I have never seen anything that’s been done like this here in Napa. Please thank your church for the wonderful work they have done. I hope this is not the last time.’ ”
It is, indeed, a blessing to minister for the Lord. We hope you too will be inspired to serve. God may be calling you to serve in an upcoming AMEN Free Clinic or some other area, but I am confident He longs for each of us to share His love with others in whatever capacity we are called. My prayer is that each of us will accept that invitation.
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