Camilo says that his beloved wife of 65 years, Margarita, was once very beautiful, and even though she is now old, she still is beautiful because in God we are all restored. He also says she married him because she fell in love with him. As he speaks, she giggles, and you can glimpse the young girl in her eyes.
Camilo also says that while they only have each other, their four children in heaven pray for them and that one day he knows that he and Margarita will see them again. He then tells us that all four died before reaching 9 months old.
They are waiting to see the Faith In Practice surgeon for Margarita who sits uncomfortably in her wheelchair. Every few minutes, Camilo adjusts something for her, raises her mask, pulls her sweater closer to her.
Margarita and Camilo at the Mobility Clinic Margarita and Camilo meeting Linda at the Obras
Thirteen months ago, Margarita fell down a ravine. Since that time, she has been in pain and unable to walk. Camilo and Margarita’s town look out for this charming couple, so they arranged for Camilo and Margarita to attend the upcoming Faith In Practice Mobility Clinic.* A wheelchair would significantly improve both their lives.
Once in the mobility clinic, which includes a medical check, it became clear that something was very wrong. So, we arranged for an x-ray and discovered that Margarita had a broken hip. Of course, we gave her a wheelchair, but we gave her more than this— an opportunity for a surgery to repair her hip so she might walk again.
Knowing that the Parsley/Woolf team was arriving on May 1, Josh Greenman, our Director of Partnerships, immediately contacted Jaime de Leon, Director of Surgery Program, to see if Margarita could be triaged for the team. Snapping into action, Josh and Jaime arranged for this older couple’s transport to the Obras hospital and on March 26, Margarita was evaluated and scheduled for surgery. On May 2, the team saw Margarita, and everyone was so hopeful for this beautiful couple. We all watched as Camilo stood and danced singing, ‘Jesus is my friend, who loves me’, and Margarita gazed up at him. Unfortunately, it was not to be. Margarita needed some physical therapy first.
Typically, for medical mission, the story would end there, but not so for Camilo and Margarita and Faith In Practice. Working with the municipality, we are arranging for physical therapy in their town, with monthly visits to the Obras Hospital. And, as the Guatemalans would say, ‘Primero Dios’ Margarita will return for her surgery during the Heinrich/Pond Orthopedic Team which will serve with Faith In Practice from June 19-26.
Margarita and Camilo reuniting with Josh at the Obras Our Mobility Clinics are so important, on their own, but they also provide the avenue to healing in so many ways. There are so many for whom a wheelchair or a cane or a walker would be a dream realized. Never could they imagine more. But that is not true. It is not true for Camilo and Margarita who will welcome the Heinrich/Pond Team in June.
We will keep you posted in June when the team arrives to receive the blessings of this beautiful couple.
*To create efficiencies and leverage partnerships, Josh Greenman, our Director of Partnerships, contacted three different municipalities asking them to bring those in their communities to a central location for all three. Camilo and Margarita’s community, Palencia, brought them to the clinic held in San Jose Pinula who hosted the clinic.
Visit our Welcome Home webpage for more patient stories and updates on our teams' return to Guatemala.