It’s finally here! Michael leaves on Tuesday for an 11 day trip to Vietnam. We’re all really excited for him, and I’m trying not to think about the potential meltdown at home while he’s gone. It will be fine. I’m fine. Everything is fine. We won’t have any communication with him at all during the trip, but he’s compiled a prayer calendar to let us know what he’s doing each day. The team leader will also post a blog each day reporting on their progress. It’s so exciting to think about all God is going to do!
And now, heeeeere’s Michael!
I want to thank all of you who have helped make this trip possible through donations of glasses, reading the prescriptions of glasses, donating equipment, time, suitcases, and prayers to help me in preparation for the trip. I am so excited about what God can do as we humbly serve the people of Vietnam. I want to give you a brief overview of who is going on the trip and what their tasks and ministry will be. Then I will have a day by day prayer calendar to allow you to pray for some specific things daily while we’re on the trip.
Andy Wallace is leading the trip (his 17th time to Vietnam). I am thankful for his direction and his taking care of all the logistical details so I can just show up.
David Lowe is a master plumber who has helped install many of the water filtration systems that are being used in the rural Lao Cai province. He will be checking, updating, and changing some of the filters
Kathy Hindman is another Vietnam veteran who will be taking about 700 toothbrushes and toothpaste and doing health and hygiene seminars at school in one of the villages in the province.,
Tim and Cyndi Bird will have meetings to discuss setting up a microfinance intitiative where existing small businesses receive small, low interest loans to enable their business to grow. The hope is that this program could eventually grow into setting up a bank in Vietnam for these types of loans
Michael Hunt (that’s me) will be meeting with officials at hospitals in Hanoi and Lao Cai as well as doctors at the Vietnam National Institute of Ophthalmology to discuss plans for helping with eyecare in Vietnam. In addition we will screen the children at the Birla orphanage (where Northwood church has worked for several years) and at a school in the village ofTavan for glasses.
** One note is that Vietnam is 12 hours ahead, so you may want to pray a day ahead of the calendar. Also the Birds are leaving their 5 children (ages 1-9) with family and friends and Jennifer will be corralling our 3 on her own so please pray for our families to be safe and blessed in our absence.
September 4- We leave DFW at 12:05 and fly 13hours before a layover in Tokyo. Then we catch another 4 -5 hour flight on to Hanoi- Please pray that we will all get safely to the plane and that the flight is as uneventful as possible. Pray for the ability to sleep on the flight to begin resetting our clocks as Vietnam is 12 time zones away (literally the other side of the world)
September 5- We will arrive in the late evening and go straight to the hotel to sleep. Please pray for no difficulties with passports, visas, customs, or luggage. I am carrying most of my equipment in my carry on bag, but all of the glasses will be in our suitcases
September 6- I will have meetings at one hospital and the institute of ophthalmology-I will be giving lectures on some general topics that are adult related (which means that I haven’t really dealt with them in 4 years)- please pray that I will be able to communicate clearly coherently-the reality is that the knowledge and techniques from several years ago in America are likely advanced beyond what most of the Vietnamese have experienced- but this may be my most stressful day- pray that I will be rested and that we can begin building relationships with the doctors and the officials we meet. Pray that the Birds will have the right people at the meetings for the microfinance initiative.
September 7- We will be doing the vision screening and hygiene training at the Birla Orphanage- pray that we can practically and physically help the children and staff but even more that they can see Christ’s love for them because of how we love them-pray for divine encounters in the short time we have there
September 8- We will board an overnight train on the evening of the 7th and arrive on the morning of the 8th in Lao Cai- We will check the water filtration systems in Tavan and advertise the hygiene training and vision training that will take place on Monday the 10t. Pray for energy and a good response to our adveritising. Please also pray for Sherman and Tan, the two full time workers in the Glocal Ventures office who are setting up the meetings and itinerary for us.
September 9- More water filtration work. Pray that we will remain humble, with servant hearts and that Satan will not wear us down or discourage us. Pray also for good health and no illness or injuries
September 10- A busy day with hygiene training and vision screening for around 300 as well as microfinance meetings and water filtration work. Please pray for unity of purpose and energy to do all that we need to do in this day
September 11- A day to relax. Pray for restoration and the ability to maintain our focus as the busiest parts of the trip are behind us
September 12- I will be meeting with doctors in Lao Cai and giving more lectures while Tim and Cyndi have more meetings. Pray that we will gain a clear vision of how God wants us to go forward with our projects and what the next steps will be.
September 13– We will arrive in Hanoi and have other meetings as necessary. Either on this day or back on the 6th, I hope to tour the childrens hospital and meet with some doctors in preparation for a neurosurgery team from Richardson,TX to come for a trip in February. Pray that I will be able to find out what they need to know to plan their trip well.
September 14- We head to the airport in the evening for the long trek home. Pray that the relationships that we began and continued will be nurtured by others to the Lord’s glory.
September 15- Arrive home to reunite with our families.
Sorry for the book, but your prayers are so important to what God will do on this trip!