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The surgical team spent our final day at Hilario Galindo performing their last surgeries as our wheelchair team fitted the remaining patients with new wheelchairs. At the end of the day, everyone was tired—a good tired. Everyone had performed their parts perfectly all week.

It was touching to be part of something so big—something that potentially saved the lives and livelihoods of people none of us knew until this week.

I’m grateful to the medical team for their abilities and steady hands. I’m grateful to the wheelchair team for their skills and charisma. I’m grateful to the Faith In Practice staff for their organization and leadership. I’m grateful to Faith In Practice and their sponsors for making the entire trip possible.

I’m grateful for the kindnesses shown to us by the Guatemalan people. I’m grateful for their patience. I’m grateful for their gratitude. I’m grateful for their hugs and exclamations of “Que Dios le bendiga!”

Joaquin Phoenix ended his acceptance speech for Best Actor last night during the Academy Awards with a quote from his late brother, River: “Run to the rescue with love and peace will follow.” Our week at Hilario Galindo was a week of rescue with love. I thought about those words and realized that our Guatemalan patients weren’t the only people being rescued—our patients came to us with love and rescued us.

Charity never faileth.

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