Today was our last day of surgery! With this, we wrap up four days of operations at Las Obras Sociales in Antigua. All of the operating rooms together saw close to one hundred and forty surgeries!
We began the day with a reflection on the devotionals from the past few days, and then we headed over to the hospital as usual. A number of different surgeries were performed today, including hernia repairs, facial reconstruction, and gall bladder removal. One patient, Wilson, returned for his fourth surgery after cancer severely damaged much of his nose and upper lip. Wilson was introduced to Faith In Practice by Armando, who himself received a similar series of surgeries through Faith In Practice and is now a dedicated Guatemalan volunteer for the organization. For another patient, both a prostate resection and a hernia repair were performed in a surgery that drew from the skills of several team members.
After we finished in the OR, the team headed to Casa Santo Domingo, a hotel built into the impressive ruins of a grand monastery. There, the team reflected on the meaning of the trip over a delicious dinner. The many different surgeries performed on the patients at Las Obras gave help to those who needed it most. Hernia repair surgeries allowed patients to return to work on their farms, while prostate resections allowed patients to live better lives, and reconstructive surgeries returned facial features to those who lost them at birth or due to illness. It was moving to see how everyone on the team worked tirelessly with the dedicated staff at Las Obras and the selfless workers from Faith In Practice to improve the lives of those so desperately in need. The success of this mission trip could not have been possible without the hard work and dedication of everyone involved!