What is good news to the poor?


There was article on the BBC website this week chronicling 5 centuries of plunder and woe for the Congo. In the face of persistent oppression and opportunism of the worst kind there is a less told story of courageous people with a different task.
Recognizing the stewardship of their own heritage and training they went away from power and privilege to sacrifice and service. In the Equateur Province is a small group of hospitals serving hundred of thousands of people in the midst of challenging (read virtually non existent) infrastructure. In the 1980s a small hydroelectric plant was built by missionary engineers. In the face of civil strife the plant was shuttered, the turbine broken. The turbine was repaired a couple of years ago only to discover that the transmission line carrying the power to the hospital was repeatedly failing. A fifty year lifetime showing regular failure in 1/3 of the useable time.
Powerless to help, literally, the Congolese medical professionals are severely hamstrung. Good news though, there are a few people from elsewhere (Canada, Germany and the US) who are paying attention. Some really smart and creative engineers are coming alongside some really smart and creative Congolese engineers and technicians to assess the state of the transmission line and make recommendations about repair or replacement of the line.
Jon is the technical team leader, a good friend who loves using his musical, PhD EE mind to solve complex problems. Drew is a EE, who is also creative and captured by the need and challenge of the problem. They represent a cadre of others who have been thinking collaboratively about the problem. I am accompanying the two of them with the hope that the church who operates the hospital will be strengthened, the hospital itself will see a path forward towards literal empowerment and the poor of the region will receive good news.

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