Hospital of Hope – Mango, Togo

Learning from God's Power to Heal


Texas A & M Medical School
JANUARY 8, 2024 – FEBRUARY 16, 2024

Having dreamed of medical missions since childhood, I was excited to spend six weeks at Hospital of Hope in Togo as a medical student. In this relatively unreached northern part of the country, many people come from Islamic or animist backgrounds. I was amazed to encounter patients from so many people groups, some of whom came from Ghana, Benin, or Burkina Faso just to the hospital. In addition to this diversity, I was struck by the magnitude of suffering that was so commonplace. Too many children were severely malnourished or anemic and could all too easily end up coding. My heart grieved over the loss of each one. Yet as I dug into scripture, I realized that God was present in these moments, mourning with patients and their families, and loving them amidst their pain. Here I could be his hands and feet; “the aroma of Christ” (2 Corinthians 2:15) to a lost and dying world. This pushed me to pray more frequently for patients because while our treatments were limited, God’s power to heal was not restrained. 

While I wrestled with this, I was blessed to be surrounded by a team of doctors and nurses who welcomed me, related to my struggle, and shared their insights. They set an example of how to thrive on the mission field through intentionally cultivating both their relationship with Christ and community with other believers. At the same time, they allayed my fears of being a burden as a student, by eagerly teaching and equipping me as I learned to perform lumbar punctures, manage seizures, and treat malaria and typhoid fever. By the end of my stay, I worked several shifts as the assigned emergency department provider and on clinic days saw twenty patients, while still checking out to another provider. It brought me joy to function as part of the team and bless both patients and colleagues.  

On my days off, I glimpsed many ways that God was at work outside of the hospital and clinic. I visited an elementary school, where over 200 children were learning from a Christian curriculum. Later I shadowed in a dental hygiene clinic and watched a missionary share the gospel with military personnel while she cleaned their teeth. One afternoon I witnessed Bible translation in action as a team from Ghana worked to finalize a translation of Jeremiah into a local language. On Sundays I went to two different village churches and listened as they worshipped and proclaimed God’s word in their mother tongue. Before leaving, I also visited children in the cuisine, an area of the hospital compound where people stay for months on end when they no longer need hospital level care, but cannot return home because they still require frequent dressing changes. Playing with the children and seeing their joy reminded me of how God’s love transcends language barriers. 

My time in Togo taught me to love both its people and the local mission team. I also grew to appreciate the beauty of this remote place. It was the perfect backdrop for God to teach me to rely more fully on his strength, not my own. The challenges of adapting to a different culture, adjusting to the heat and dust, and the sheer volume of medical needs, stretched me and increased my awareness of my own perceived inadequacies. At the end of my own strength, I found that God’s strength and wisdom were truly sufficient and that my competence to serve comes from him alone. This revelation freed me from fear and empowered me to walk in a deeper peace. I left the country with a full heart, knowing that wherever God leads me next, his presence will always be enough to carry me through.