The Catholic Medical Guild of Singapore


Mission Srolanth ’12: To heal the heart, with a heart to heal Posted on 2nd Feb 2013, 6:24pm by admin

Mission Srolanh is a medical mission to Battambang Prefecture, Cambodia, organised by the Catholic Medical Guild in conjunction with the Catholic Medical Society of medical students in NUS. First born out of a request by Bishop Enrique Figaredo to provide medical assistance to his congregation in the Battambang diocese, this was only the second iteration of the mission. This mission trip happened over a week in December, in which we managed to address its objectives: mission work, journeying as a community, and personal retreat.

Before getting into that, it might do to explain the name of the mission. “Srolanh”, the name of the mission, means “Love” in Cambodia’s native Khmer tongue. Indeed, that very much sums up the spirit of the mission, which was very much more concerned with sharing in the love of Christ with the communities and people we met there, be it in the process of medical work, our conversations, or our mere presence and solidarity with them. Indeed, we in most part felt that we were the ones more blessed by the encounters, in receiving the pure love of each of the persons we met. Our tagline (and also the title of this article), has turned out to be quite appropriate!

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The mission work during that one week consisted of two main foci – primary medical care to rural communities in the prefecture, and health and values education in schools/boarding houses. With a great team of doctors, students and translators, the medical clinics ran very smoothly. A great help were the staff from the church-run health centre in Battambang, who not only translated literally every word in the clinic, but also ran the systems of referral and sponsorship that allowed those in need of further investigations or treatment to travel to the city and do so. Despite the usual reservations about long-term benefits, these clinics did definitively contribute in one way – by providing an additional avenue for the Church to share Christ with each community. In one case, the group’s visit was the first outreach that the Church had made with the village, and as we left, the village elders commented that they would be more than willing for other groups to return!

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Peering at the dispensary drugs…

Perhaps the most meaningful part of the trip, though, was the education lessons conducted. We visited Don Bosco (a vocational school for girls run by the Salesian Order), Arrupe (a centre for the handicapped run by the diocese), as well as some other boarding houses.

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Remember to brush your teeth! =)

These lessons focused on sexuality, values and self-esteem, as well as general health and hygiene information and practices. To that end, the female members of the mission conducted a wonderful day-long programme for the girls at Don Bosco focused on self-esteem and love, which was a tremendously touching experience for all those involved. Similarly, conversations in separate groups of boys and girls at other centres helped to really delve deep into the nature of sex and sexuality, and were a platform for the really personal sharing of experiences between members of our group and the students there. And of course, teaching simple hygiene like brushing teeth to younger children provided many episodes of laughter. Finally, we were fortunate to be able to carol for them and share the joy of Christmas before we left.

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Beyond the mission work, this trip was an excellent opportunity for us to journey closer to God as a community of Catholic doctors and doctors-to-be, but also to look within ourselves and to prepare for Christ’s coming at Christmas. Led by Fr John Wong, OFM, our daily masses and nightly prayer reflections allowed us to refresh ourselves spiritually and to, in many cases, find our inner peace and joy.

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As mentioned, this was only the 2nd mission trip to Battambang. Our eyes are slowly being opened to the very many avenues for the Catholic medical community to assist in Battambang, in collaboration with ACTS and other groups that already do so much good work, and it would be a true joy to continue to grow God’s mission there with the help of the community here!

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~ by Gerald Sng (M2)

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Dr's Blog

Dr’s Blog is a feature of the CMG web site that aims to encourage interaction between Guild members. We hope to foster a spirit of community through the sharing of thoughts and personal experirences. The opinions expressed in these blogs are entirely those of the contributors and not of the Catholic Medical Guild of Singapore.

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Past Blog Articles

2014 Dec: A Prayer for Deliverance 2
2014 Oct: Who are you, Where am I?
2014 Sep: A Prayer for Deliverance
2014 May: Behind Those Clothes
2014 Feb: The Red Packet(s)
2014 Jan: God Loves You

2013 Dec: Caroling Reflections of an Expired M
2013 Nov: Scripture Reflection for Physicians
2013 Oct: Hang on. We haven’t beat this thing yet.
2013 Sep: Me and My Ride
2013 Aug: A Gift of Life
2013 Jul: Finding Happiness in a Land of Plenty
2013 Jun: A Beeline
2013 May: Living My Love Of..
2013 Apr: The Healthcare Debate
2013 Mar: A Doctor’s Prayer
2013 Feb: Project Battambang ’12
2013 Feb: Mission Srolanth ’12: To Heal the Heart, with a Heart to Heal
2013 Jan: The Hardest Thing To Say…

2012 Dec: The Lost Art Of…
2012 Nov: Rome Sweet Home – Short Reflections
2012 Sep: He Keeps Falling
2012 Aug: God Decides
2012 July: Am I To Blame?
2012 June: Saving Fragile Lives
2012 May: Ruminations On Love
2012 Mar: The iPhone

2011 Dec: The Red Cross
2011 Nov: Give Thanks!
2011 Aug: Ashes – The Epilogue
2011 July: Charity
2011 July: Ashes
2011 May: Of Angry Birds & Cowardly Mice
2011 May: Notes From Salzburg On Good Friday
2011 Apr: What It Means
2011 Mar: A Job.
2011 Mar: Dear Father…
2011 Feb: Clothes, A Person Doth Maketh
2011 Jan: Wonderfully Made

2010 Dec: A White Christmas
2010 Dec: A Medical Christmas Carol
2010 Nov: Saying Goodbye
2010 Oct: I Am Always With You
2010 Sept: Be Joyful Always
2010 July: Managing Expectations
2010 June: But They Are Our Masters…
2010 June: Driving: A Means of Personal Formation?
2010 May: HO Welcome Tea
2010 May: The Rain
2010 May: A Missed Lunch
2010 May: Man In The Mirror
2010 May: Reflections At The End Of The Day
2010 Apr: Finding God In All Things
2010 Mar: Surely You Put Your Trust In The Lord?
2010 Mar: The Significance of a Name

2009 Nov: Batam: Beyond A Mission
2009 Oct: The Broken Rosary
2009 Sept: Love Note To God, Father
2009 Aug: Let God Take The Wheel
2009 Aug: The Prequel: The One About Graduation
2009 July: The Sequel: The Later Months
2009 June: First Month of HO-Ship
2009 May: “The House of God” by Samuel Shem
2009 May: In The Discipleship for Christ


Topics

  1. Book review
  2. Discipleship
  3. Missions
  4. monthly mass
  5. Personal Sharing


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