Including and loving our own.

Belonging.  It's what we all want deep down, inclusion.  It's not an adolescent obsession for popularity or a mandate to conform to expectations.  Belonging is being loved for exactly who you are, being seen and valued, being cared for.  Family is meant to do that, albeit, imperfectly.  And our mission, Mission Lazarus.  We love our people, but we love them imperfectly.  

A few years back, we realized that we had focused so intently on providing health care to the community, we had unintentionally excluded a very special population, a rather large one - our own employees and their families, as well as beneficiaries of our programs  - people whom we consider our family. That was a sad day, but like all things, forgivable and redeemable.  

This unintentional neglect came into focus when we casually became aware that Haydee, one of our bookkeepers, had an infant with a quadruple heart defect.  We worked this case for about six months and after a single surgery in Houston, Texas, Haydee and Mateo returned home in good health.  Praise God!! 

But that was not enough.  We wanted to offer all members of the Mission Lazarus family an equal opportunity to access quality health care services, so we raised funds and created the Family Clinic.  We offer pediatric, dental, women’s health and certain other specialized services, relying heavily on visiting clinicians as well as our own staff. 

How many times have nurses, dental hygienists, physicians, dentists and pharmacists asked for opportunities to use their specific skills at Mission Lazarus -- like, hundreds of times!  We have finally created a space for you as a clinician that is unique.  You have the opportunity to serve and nurture individuals who are on the front lines, working daily to impact God's kingdom as employees of Mission Lazarus.    

The beautiful advantage in serving our employees and their families is that we have guaranteed repeated contact over time with these patients and can therefore make a great impact. 

We are grateful to Haydee, and Mateo, that their personal journey provided us an opportunity to serve not only their family, but also brought awareness of our capacity, and responsibility, to love well those closest to our hearts and daily lives, and we thank them for sharing their story with us and letting us walk beside them.