Actually only one person asked who these people are. This was a group of about 50 women and men and children (many in mother's arms) who arrived at our Christ Smiles Dental Mission clinic in San Miguel del Puerto at about 11:30 AM on the Tuesday of our clinic. Their day had begun well before dawn, eating and taking care of necessities before getting to the arranged pick up point from their remote village and areas surrounding areas where. We knew they were coming in to the clinic but no one could anticipate what they might need in the way of dental treatment. It was their arrival and presence that prompted the quote from Dorothy Day about "dealing with the innumerable visitors who come all through the day... keeping patience and acting intelligently".
Our prayer that day intention was to serve all of God's Children who came to be served and on this day, like others, we worked with that purpose in mind. There is no doubt that by the end of the day with this group and others who arrived as well, we were all tired but tired with the sense that on this day God's will was done. We had the privilege to be instruments of God's will.
And all these seemingly little things we each do every day--dealing with paperwork in some way, cleaning house, welcoming visitors and being patient, acting intelligently and with intention to act rightly and justly--these are the things we do that brings God's peace into being in our world.
Sometimes getting there is a great part of the adventure of Mission and the road from Huatulco to San Miguel del Puerto where our clinic was set up and the road from San Miguel to our home-away-from-home at La Palapa de Cascadas Magicas certainly did not disappoint on the adventure aspect. Trust in God is always necessary and trust in the skill of our drivers was also essential especially when our van met oncoming traffic on these winding roads that were too narrow for two vehicles to pass. One or the other always had to back up to a place wide enough to allow the other to pass. On these roads courtesy and cooperation are not options but essentials of the road.
The truck at the top of this post and its passengers is a part of the story of our Mission Clinic. The town of San Miguel del Puerto is the Governmental center of this part of the District of Pochutla in the State of Oaxaca. There are 61 pueblitos, ranchos, villages or communities within the governance area of San Miguel, some are very remote. Residents of one pueblito who visited our clinic began their journey to San Miguel by way of a cable stretched across a river because road and bridge were washed away by the recent tropical storm. Women carried their children across in their arms to bring them in for dental work. A government truck from San Miguel provided transportation to the clinic and back making for an all day journey. Thanks to God and the gifts brought together on this team all who needed dental service received what they needed.
This community is just a small part of the stories of the 494 men women and children from a dozen villages and towns who made their way to receive service at Christ Smiles Dental Mission.
Christ Smiles Dental Mission is classified as a non-profit organization by the IRS, under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Your contribution is tax deductible to the extent allowed by law. Our EIN is 47-5604023.