June 24, 2015

Volunteer Finds Healing in Peru


Rachel Milbey served as a volunteer nurse during our 2014 outreach in Peru. 

When my husband passed away, I was in shock…it was so final. Initially, I kept myself busy to stay distracted. But later, I started feeling depressed. Not long after, I looked on Joyce’s website and saw a medical missions volunteer ad. I felt inadequate, but something compelled me to apply, and they accepted me within two days! 

I was scared. But I took that step…and it changed my life. At this medical outreach, I was a part of something so much bigger than myself. It was hard, but it didn’t matter. I realized that giving to others is just such an awesome experience—there’s an energy that lifted me up and propelled me. 

This is my purpose, and I love it. And I’m going to do it until I can’t do it anymore. 


If you’re a medical/dental professional, we’d love for you to join with us on an upcoming trip. 

Hand of Hope is the missions arm of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Our goal is simply to help as many hurting people as we possibly can, to alleviate human suffering and to help Christians grow in their faith.

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June 17, 2015

A Boy & His Sneakers


Ashley Wilkins, R.N., Medical Outreach Director 

I hadn’t noticed ten-year-old Rothtim and his mother until after he had been treated by the doctors and was leaving our Hand of Hope clinic. Then again, once you saw him walk, it was hard not to notice him. 

Rothtim was obviously very small for his age, but also crippled. With each stride, the tops of his bare, calloused feet would scrape against the concrete. He had walked this way his entire life. I can still hear that sound in my ears. Moved with compassion, I ran and picked Rothtim up in my arms. 

Desperately Searching for Shoes
Sitting him down on a nearby bench, I asked his mother if they would be willing to wait while I got him a pair of shoes. She excitedly replied that they would. 

I made a tracing of his feet to get the correct size. I wanted to be absolutely sure that these shoes ¬fit him. With the outline of Rothtim’s calloused little feet in my hand, I headed to the market. 

Finding a new pair of shoes in a developing nation is not an easy task. I located a shop on a street corner and began looking through the limited choices of new shoes. The majority of the shoes were either for girls or grown men, and most were covered in dust from the dirty street. But after some searching, I found two good, clean pairs of shoes in his size. I immediately gave thanks to the Lord because I had found Rothtim’s shoes. I picked out a few pairs of socks and quickly paid the clerk. 

Taking That First Step
When I got back to the clinic, little Rothtim and his mom were sitting on the bench, waiting patiently, exactly where I left them. We washed his dirty feet, put the socks on and slid them into Rothtim’s new pair of shoes. He sprang up and began walking about. Amazingly, the shoes actually acted as a corrective device, which allowed him to walk almost normally! 

Most Cambodians, like Rothtim and his mother, live on just one U.S. dollar per day, making the simple luxury of owning a pair of shoes impossible. For just $10 USD, we were able to purchase Rothtim clean socks and two new pairs of shoes. 

In an instant, with something as seemingly insignificant as a pair of shoes, Rothtim experienced the love of Christ. The smile that stretched across his face was indescribable. And I could not help but smile in return as he and his mother repeatedly bowed to me in thanks. 




Hand of Hope is the missions arm of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Our goal is simply to help as many hurting people as we possibly can, to alleviate human suffering and to help Christians grow in their faith.

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June 10, 2015

Fifteen Days Ago She Began to Go Blind...


Chad Trafton, Staff Writer 

The village of Mazan sits deep in the heart of Peru. It’s one of hundreds of small communities lining the Amazon River.  

By 8 am, our medical/dental team has transformed a local grade school into a fully functional clinic—complete with several examining rooms and a pharmacy—and is ready to see their first patients…and there will be no shortage. 

Just outside the main gates, more than a hundred people from Mazan and other villages wait in line, most sitting on wood bleachers. Some have traveled more than four hours by boat. Many have even spent the night in one of the classrooms, determined not to miss their opportunity for free medical/dental care. 

Celmira sits in the middle of the crowd, patiently waiting like all the others. Her grandson, Maximo, waits with her. She looks concerned, and we soon find out why. Fifteen days ago, she began going blind in one eye. For her, this clinic is a godsend. She waits…and hopes someone up ahead has an answer. 

She gets checked in and sits down with Dr. Budi Bahureksa, one of our volunteer physicians. It doesn’t take long for him to pinpoint the problem—her blood sugar registers 511, at least 300 points above normal. 

“You’re too sweet,” Dr. Bahureksa says, his bedside manner eliciting a smile. “Your blindness is from the diabetes, so we’re going to give you some good medicine. You need to be on this medication all of the time.”  

He gives Celmira a prescription, which she fills at our pharmacy, two doors down. Thankfully, her blindness can be reversed…they caught it just in time. 

The pharmacy is filled with others just like her…a steady stream of people eager to trade their prescriptions for medicines. Volunteer Nurse Kelly Johnston helps keep the operation running smoothly. It’s her fifth medical trip with Hand of Hope, and she thrills at another chance to see the faces of relieved mothers and children. 

“We give them a little bit of hope,” she says. ““It’s a little thing for us, but it’s not little to them. Here they have no options.” 

Texas-native Nurse Mickey Brown agrees: “We’re amazed at how God touches their lives. It’s so fun to be able to do all this…it’s like Christmas.” 

And it looks like Christmas. Heaping piles of antibiotics are all neatly stacked and organized on long tables, ready to be dispensed. The team has come prepared, knowing for the most part what illnesses to expect. 

Here in Mazan, more times than not, they simply learn to live with the pain. But today they don’t have to. 


If you’re a medical/dental professional, we’d love for you to join with us on an upcoming trip. 

Hand of Hope is the missions arm of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Our goal is simply to help as many hurting people as we possibly can, to alleviate human suffering and to help Christians grow in their faith.

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June 03, 2015

My Brother & An Abandoned Baby in Kenya


Laura Matheny, R.N., Medical Outreach Coordinator 

Nairobi, Kenya. I had this trip circled on my calendar. 

Every year, Hand of Hope, Joyce Meyer Ministries World Missions conducts free medical/dental clinics around the world. And as one of their medical outreach coordinators, I’ve gotten a chance to travel far and wide…and watch God work miracles in the lives of people who desperately need help. 

But for me, this outreach was going to be special. 

You see, Nairobi is my hometown. Well, actually, my family is from Louisiana. But from the time I was young, my parents—Don and Amy Matheny—have been independent missionaries in Kenya. In fact, about twenty-five years ago, they founded Nairobi Lighthouse Church. 

The oldest of six children, I returned to the United States when I was 18 to attend Bible school…then eventually nursing school. My heart’s desire was to someday come back to Nairobi with a skill and serve the people there like my parents have for so many years. 

Through a series of events, I stayed in the U.S. and began volunteering for Joyce Meyer Ministries’ medical outreaches. That is where I found my calling. One thing led to another, and today I am privileged to work on these medical outreaches full time. And in the summer of 2013, my work led me back to a place very close to my heart… 

The Day We Met Moses
My dream of being a nurse in Kenya was fulfilled in a way I could have never imagined. Here I was leading a Hand of Hope medical team, working in partnership with my family and Nairobi Lighthouse Church to help so many people in need. 

For five days, we treated more than 5,000 patients in Nairobi’s Huruma Slums. On the fourth day of this outreach, something happened that I will never forget…  

One of our first patients was a two-week-old Kenyan baby. A woman found him abandoned in a nearby field. She appropriately named him Moses…then brought him to us because she had run out of diapers and baby formula. 

Other than a slight eye infection, Moses was healthy and strong. The woman wanted to continue caring for him, so we connected her with a clinic in the area that will follow up on them. We also introduced her to an orphanage affiliated with Nairobi Lighthouse Church—just in case her situation becomes unmanageable. 

But Moses really struck a chord with me… 

Eighteen years ago, a German family attended my parents’ church. They held in their arms a baby who was abandoned in these Nairobi slums. They loved and cared for him, but they were returning to Germany and, without the appropriate papers, they couldn’t take the child with them. 

That day, my parents made a decision that would affect all of our lives forever. They accepted responsibility for the 7-week-old baby—the child who would eventually become my adopted brother, David. 

The day Moses came to the clinic, I ran out to find David and said, “You have got to see this!” David was so touched, and he immediately went out to buy Moses some diapers and formula…then sat and held him in his arms while he fed him. 

As his sister, it was such a precious moment. It was like stepping back in time and seeing David rescued all over again. That day we prayed for Moses and spoke blessings over his life. It is something I will always treasure. 



Hand of Hope is the missions arm of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Our goal is simply to help as many hurting people as we possibly can, to alleviate human suffering and to help Christians grow in their faith.

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May 27, 2015

Pediatrician Washes Feet in Madagascar


As a girl, she knew in her heart God was calling her to someday be a doctor. And this knowledge gave her the determination to become a pediatrician. Medical school is not an easy prospect for anyone, but the fact that she was a young, single mom with a baby put her trust in God to the test. 

If you ask her today, Dr. Lori Buffa will say that she ultimately succeeded because of God’s grace. With an astonished grin, she says, “I know it was God, because there were people in school who were smarter than me that didn’t make it. I know I never could have made it on my own.” 

For Lori, taking care of children has been a ministry, not a career. So when she had the chance to join Joyce Meyer Ministries’ Hand of Hope medical/dental missions team on their trip to Madagascar, she was determined to go. 

It was clear this mission would take her out of her comfort zone. Madagascar is a struggling country due to intense poverty, inadequate health care services, lack of food and clean water, and violent crimes that are common in areas where desperate people live. But the anticipation in Lori’s heart about God’s mission for her on foreign soil kept her excitement and expectation high. 

From the beginning, she was touched by the gracious, thankful attitudes of the people as they waited patiently to receive care. Many needed basic treatment due to poor hygiene; a main source of bathing is a trash-infested lake and skin infections are common. The wound care team treated many pus-filled sores with worms in them. Infected teeth were also abundant, and the dental team pulled multiple teeth, bringing instant relief to people who had been living with constant pain. 

The team spent one whole day washing children’s feet and treating wounds with antibiotics and clean dressings. A generous donation allowed the Hand of Hope team to purchase socks and shoes, so many children walked away with clean, protected feet. Lori, who is a mother of two, shared that it was a humbling privilege to wash feet of children who had never had a decent bath before. That’s a tragic situation for any parent to have to experience. 

As a medical volunteer, Lori invested her money, time and heart to share Christ and love people half the world away from her home. And she’s praying about when she can go on her next God-appointed mission, which is inspiring and admirable, but not completely selfless determined that God sent me on this trip for ME, not so much for Madagascar,” she says.” 


If you’re a medical/dental professional, we’d love for you to join with us on an upcoming trip. 

Hand of Hope is the missions arm of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Our goal is simply to help as many hurting people as we possibly can, to alleviate human suffering and to help Christians grow in their faith.

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May 14, 2015

He’d Saved for Years to Build Their Home – Nepal Earthquake


Tuicha, a truck contractor, has worked hard all his life to provide for his family. He’s in his early 70s, but has had to continue working to care for his son, who is differently-abled. 

Though life has not been easy, he had recently saved up enough to start building his own home. Though it would be small, they were very happy. 

But when the earthquake hit Nepal on April 25, all of that happiness crumbled right alongside his home. 

Heartbroken, they wondered how they would go about rebuilding their shattered lives. As rescue teams and aid started to trickle into Lalithpur district, Tuicha felt a stirring of hope. 

Hand of Hope, Joyce Meyer Ministries World Missions, has been able to reach out to many people and among them was Tuicha. As they handed out food supplies, blankets and first aid, Tuicha’s wife was thrilled. She now had the supplies she needed to cook her family a proper meal! 

Because of your generosity and the kindness of our team in Nepal, Tuicha and his wife are filled with hope about the future and believe they will be able to rebuild their home again very soon! 

Hand of Hope is the missions arm of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Our goal is simply to help as many hurting people as we possibly can, to alleviate human suffering and to help Christians grow in their faith.

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May 12, 2015

Water Filters Bring Hope to a Community – Nepal Earthquake


A few weeks ago, they were living happy, normal lives. Today, they stare at their water supply, fearful to drink even a sip because of broken pipes and contamination from the sewage lines. 

After an earthquake rocked Nepal on April 25, many went to live in makeshift shelters, and had to look to each other for food, supplies, blankets, tents and first-aid. Even as help started pouring in to the nation, Bhulbari, a small town had not received aid and its people were beginning to wonder if help would ever come. 

Our team observed this, and not only brought them food and supplies, but also a few clean water filters. 

Working together as a community, the people made sure that each person would receive their share of clean drinking water. With each filter proving to be of use to several families, the people of Bhulbari now have a reason to hope that with time, things will get better. 

Hand of Hope is the missions arm of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Our goal is simply to help as many hurting people as we possibly can, to alleviate human suffering and to help Christians grow in their faith.

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May 04, 2015

Emergency Relief & Medical Care Reaches Families in Nepal


Last week, our Hand of Hope Asia team visited Kolkana, one of the areas that has suffered the most devastation from the 7.8 earthquake in Nepal. 

Families are desperately trying to salvage their belongings from the rubble. And with many homes partially or completely destroyed, they are left to sleep out in the open, where it is raining and temperatures can drop to 14 degrees Celsius (57 degrees Fahrenheit). 

Our team was able to provide 75 of these families with emergency provisions of rice, noodles, pulses (legumes) and sugar. They also provided blankets and tents to those living without shelter.  

Helping Pastor Samuel
We’ve met with Pastor Samuel, our Hand of Hope coordinator in Nepal, who is living in a tent at the church grounds, along with his family and other families from his church. 

We also worked with him to pass out essential relief items to 30 families at his feeding center in Lalitpur, including food, toothbrushes, toothpaste, soap and blankets. 

First Aid Medical Care
Our medical volunteers have partnered with the Red Cross to set up an emergency First Aid clinic right in the middle of the inhabited area, so the people are able to easily access it. 

They found many people didn’t seek medical attention right away and tried to care for themselves, tying rags and pieces of cloths around muscle tears, sprains and wounds. The medical team was able to assess the people (many of them elderly) and provide medical care to treat their wounds. 

Future Plans
Work in Nepal has only just begun and our team will continue to assess needs in areas like Dolkha and Sindhupalchowk to provide assistance to villages that haven’t yet been reached. They are also looking at long-term options to rebuild homes and churches destroyed in the earthquake.  

Thank you so much for partnering with us to reach out in disasters like this. It’s because of your donations that we are able to be on the ground immediately providing relief.  


Hand of Hope is the missions arm of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Our goal is simply to help as many hurting people as we possibly can, to alleviate human suffering and to help Christians grow in their faith.

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April 27, 2015

Disaster Relief Efforts Underway in Nepal


This past Saturday, April 25, a 7.8 earthquake struck outside of Lamjung, Nepal, killing thousands and leaving many homeless, injured and crying for help. Damage has been reported throughout much of Nepal, as well as areas of India, China and Bangladesh. 

Our Joyce Meyer Ministries, Hand of Hope coordinator in Kathmandu, Pastor Samuel, who also lost his home and church in the quake, is already distributing 4,500 blankets to those sleeping on the streets. We have a team flying into this area to assess future needs for all those impacted. They’re also taking as many medical supplies as the airlines will allow and will begin providing immediate relief. 

Another team is driving into Kathmandu, bringing with them medicine, food and other supplies. This team is made up of Nepali volunteers (mostly medical) and will provide relief, including tents, blankets, rice, dal (a dried lentil, pea or bean), salt and water. 

Please pray for everyone affected by this devastating disaster and that our team would reach as many in need as possible! 

You can help provide relief for disasters like this one. Donate today! 


Hand of Hope is the missions arm of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Our goal is simply to help as many hurting people as we possibly can, to alleviate human suffering and to help Christians grow in their faith.

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April 23, 2015

Offering Hope to Society’s Outcasts in India


Rachael Athearn, Staff Writer 

Most people probably think of leprosy as an ancient disease that’s mentioned only in Bible stories and age-old folklore. 

But the painful bacterial disease is very much a reality today for people like Marimuthu, who we met recently in India, as well as many others around the world. 

In leprosy’s early stages, small areas of the body become numb and prone to injury and secondary infection. Instead of part of the body falling off—like many myths have portrayed—a person with leprosy suffers through a long process of injury, infection, pain and amputation. 

But what’s even more devastating is dealing with the incredibly harsh stigma associated with the disease because it’s so misunderstood. 

People are afraid that if they have any contact with a person who has leprosy they’ll catch it—even though most people have a natural immunity to the disease. And in India, to contract leprosy means you’ve almost instantly become one of society’s outcasts. 

That’s why it touches them so much when someone is willing to reach out and offer them hope. And tucked at the base of a pristine tropical mountain range in Coimbatore, India, we partner with Embrace a Village to do just that. 

That’s where we met Marimuthu, who came from a nearby leper colony to receive medical care for his hands and feet. Because of their condition, both he and his wife made a living begging on the streets. 

Two years ago, his wife went into the city to beg and never returned. Sadly, he has no idea what happened to her. 

This sweet man with a radiant smile now comes to Embrace a Village to receive medical care, as well as rice for himself and his son. 

Marimuthu is just one of almost 3,500 leprosy patients who are being cared for weekly as we clean their wounds, feed them, provide care for their children during the day and even bury them when they pass away. 

And all along, we are sharing the Gospel with them and seeing many lives transformed by His unconditional love. 

Thank you so much for helping us share Christ and love these beautiful people in India.

Hand of Hope is the missions arm of Joyce Meyer Ministries. Our goal is simply to help as many hurting people as we possibly can, to alleviate human suffering and to help Christians grow in their faith.

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