New Maranatha Medical Ministries Outpost
“The light given me was that a sanitarium should be established, and that in it drug medication should be discarded, and simple, rational methods of treatment employed for the healing of disease. In this institution people were to be taught how to dress, breathe, and eat properly—how to prevent sickness by proper habits of living.” Counsels on Diet and Foods, 303.
“It is the expressed will of God that our sanitariums shall be established as far from the cities as is consistent. So far as possible, these institutions should be located in quiet, secluded places, where opportunity will be afforded for giving the patients instruction concerning the love of God and the Eden home of our first parents, which, through the sacrifice of Christ, is to be restored to man.” Counsels on Health, 167.
It was not until we began our work of ministry in Honduras that we realized fully the need for modest medical missionary outposts to be established throughout the world. Maranatha Medical Ministries (MMM), with its limited source of income, has again answered God’s call to establish a sanitarium in the country of Venezuela, South America. Over the years, we have prayed that God would give us clear direction in how to accomplish this seemingly impossible task; but God is ever faithful in providing for His workers.
We are happy to inform you that MMM has assisted in establishing a modest sanitarium, in a remote area in Venezuela. The directors of this sanitarium are Ariel and Jhojana Mantilla. This young couple worked and trained with us years ago in Honduras. Ariel first began our agriculture program and taught many of our volunteers the skills needed to have a productive garden. Jhojana worked in our clinic area, helping to treat the sick using God’s natural remedies. We have followed the progress of this couple and have seen their dedication to medical missionary work.
About a year ago, Ariel and Jhojana contacted us, telling us that they had located a beautiful piece of property in a quiet, remote area of Venezuela. They really wanted to establish a sanitarium, but they lacked the finances to secure the property. We, too, had been visiting different countries in hopes that God would show us exactly where He would have His next MMM outpost. It was as if God brought us in contact with each other in order for His perfect will to be done.
Although Elsa and I had no reservations about joining with Ariel and Jhojana, we prayed earnestly to make certain that this was the direction in which God was leading us.
With full assurance of this being God’s will, we moved forward, and MMM made the initial deposit for the purchase of the property. On this property there are several well-structured buildings which are used for housing, health lectures and medical treatments.
Immediately, this young couple began doing the work; Ariel, with the help of some of his family members, began tilling the soil and establishing their agriculture program. He also began making granola, packaging it and taking it into the town, which is about two hours’ walk away. For months, he and his brother were packaging up the granola and walking the long distance into town, carrying the granola in large bundles on their backs. Because of their steadfast faithfulness, God provided them with the opportunity to make a down payment on a used vehicle. Now they are able to sell ten times the amount of granola they had been selling.
Ariel and Jhojana are hard workers. They do not sit back asking or waiting for donations before they do the Lord’s work. No sooner was the property secured, than they began doing medical missionary work and providing industry in order to care for themselves, the workers and the sanitarium. The Lord tells us, “They [we] would not be left to fight alone. He assured them that He would be with them; and that if they would go forth in faith, they should move under the shield of Omnipotence. He bade them be brave and strong; for One mightier than angels would be in their ranks—the General of the armies of heaven. He made full provision for the prosecution of their work and took upon Himself the responsibility of its success. So long as they obeyed His word, and worked in connection with Him, they could not fail.” Acts of the Apostles, 29. What a precious promise!
I have had the privilege of working with Jhojana and have seen the sincere love and compassion shown to all of her patients—the gift of caring that only comes from God. Recently, she sent us an email telling us about several cancer patients they have there at the MMM-V outpost. Using only God’s natural remedies, there was great success. Many were cured completely of their disease, while others found renewed health and are continuing to heal.
I am excited about the work being done in Venezuela, because it is being done according to God’s counsel. Patients are not only being given the best possible care and treatment, but, while undergoing treatments for their maladies, they are being educated in how to properly care for themselves and to help others to do the same. As part of their treatment program, patients take part in meal preparations, learning how to prepare delicious, healthy foods. It is important for the patients to learn every aspect of maintaining optimum health and to continue living a healthy lifestyle even after they leave the sanitarium.
Most of the patients are women; but men in the nearby communities are seeing the miraculous results and rewards of healthy living, and they, too, now want to take part in our lifestyle programs. Many men would be too ashamed to allow some stranger to smear black mud (charcoal) all over their bodies, but once they understand the significance and benefit of using this mud pack, they are anxious for the treatment, knowing that it will aid in drawing impurities out of the body. True, it is a humbling experience, but these brave souls left the sanitarium in much better health. Now they will return to their homes and share these health benefits with family and friends.
From morning until night, this couple works tirelessly for the Lord. While Ariel is busy with agriculture and selling the granola, Jhojana is in the sanitarium caring for patients, and God is blessing their efforts. They have reported to us that they have a waiting list of many people who want to come to the sanitarium for treatments, and many businesses in the nearby towns want to buy their delicious granola.
This is just another example of what two people who are dedicated to the service of God can do. Ariel and Jhojana are not highly educated in the schools of the world. They are ordinary young people who sincerely want to do God’s work and lead others to know of His complete healing methods. Maybe we cannot all go to a foreign land and establish a sanitarium, but we can all do something within our own sphere to work for the Lord. God has called each and every one of His people to be medical missionaries. You do not need to fear that you are not qualified; God will qualify you. You do not need to fear that you will not be successful; God will bring success. You do not need to fear that your needs will not be taken care of; God will provide for all of your needs. We only need to be trusting, faithful and obedient to His will.
Ariel and Jhojana do not receive a salary, and their only compensation is from donations given them by those patients who can afford to pay something. Trying to maintain supplies for the sanitarium, as well as provide simply for the patients and workers, is not easy; so I ask that you keep MMM-V in your prayers. It is still in the growing stage, and there are many needs. The sanitarium property needs to be paid off completely, as does the car that was recently purchased. They need and deserve our support, so please consider adding MMM-V to your missionary sponsor list.
“The sick are to be reached, not by massive buildings, but by the establishment of many small sanitariums, which are to be as lights shining in a dark place. Those who are engaged in this work are to reflect the sunlight of Christ’s face. They are to be as salt that has not lost its savor. By sanitarium work, properly conducted, the influence of true, pure religion will be extended to many souls.” Counsels on Health, 211.
By Joe Willis. Website: www.maranathamedical.org. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. MMM’s new work in Venezuela is this quarter’s Thirteenth Sabbath project. See the back page for details on how to help.