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Dr Vicky Lavy

Developing Health Course 2010 – part I

Dr Vicky Lavy worked for ten years in Malawi, setting up a palliative care programme for children. She now works for CMF as Head of International Ministries.


The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of CMF.

It’s been a wonderful couple of days at the Developing Health Course with the combination of excellent medical teaching and spiritual inspiration which makes this course unique. My brain is hurting a little after whistling through the whole of paediatrics in a day yesterday, and the whole of general medicine in an afternoon today! There were fun and games in the paediatric practical skills workshop where Resusci-baby got incubated, cannulated and ventilated – but sadly didn’t look any better at the end of the session.

One of the best things about the course is meeting people who’ve worked in all sorts of places and hearing their stories. Tonight I ran a ‘chat show’ and interviewed a few of the participants. We heard from one doctor who wondered why everyone suddenly fell to the floor during her ward round in Sudan and then realised that bullets were flying outside the hospital! Another participant has to watch for altitude sickness whenever she returns from work in the city to her home in the mountains of Tibet. We heard about struggles with spiritual oppression and corruption and about the joy of training people and seeing them learn and grow both medically and spiritually.

David Yorston gave us a wonderful lecture on eyes. He reminded us that ophthalmology must be important as Jesus did more healing of blindness than any other specialty! However he also reflected on Jesus’ remarkable promise in John 14:12 that we will do even greater things than he has done. During his earthly ministry, Jesus healed a handful of blind people in Palestine. But now, God’s ophthalmologists around the world are doing literally millions of sight-restoring cataract operations every year.

What a privilege to be a part of God’s healing ministry – not because we are extraordinary people, but we are ordinary people with an extraordinary God. I was moved by a phrase written by a missionary doctor, quaking in his boots as he started an operation – ‘It’s a tiny needle, but in the mighty hand of God.’

Posted by Vicky Lavy

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