The 2020 review – January to June

We thank God and all of our friends

The above picture was taken on 3rd January 2020.  Dr Olga Koop (2nd from the right) did a great job and professionally cared for three patients all of whom had the same diagnosis and needed immediate surgical treatment.  On the evening of the 30th December our surgeon operated on a young a lady who was suffering from acute appendicitis.  During the course of the 31st she performed an emergency operation on an 11-year-old whose ruptured appendix had caused a peritonitis.  And finally a 14-year-old patient hobbled over the hospital’s threshold with a covered peritonitis.  He was also suffering from an advanced appendicitis.

27th February. after listening to a presentation Ansgar Bilow made a surprising statement: “We will donate three brand new machines for Diospi Suyana!”

February.  Corona still looked to be merely an Asian phenomenon.  On 27th February Dr John explained Diospi Suyana’s vision to the leadership team of the company Löwenstein, after which the authorised officer Ansgar Bilow said that he would provide three new ventilators for our intensive care unit.  He kept his promise.  A few months later as the Pandemic arrived in the Peruvian mountains this high-tech was put to good use.

18th March.  Where one normally would have seen a waiting room full of patients one was now confronted by an empty void.

On 15th March the Peruvian Government imposed a state of emergency.  The total lockdown caused the traffic to stop flowing.  The number of patients visiting our hospital plummeted by 90%.  No one knew how long this situation would last.  Our income dropped, our expenses rose.  Many of the hospital’s departments had to make purchases in order to prepare for the pandemic.  Thanks to the faithful support of our friends from across the world we could secure all our employee’s jobs.

21st March.  Graphic designer Bernd Schermuly behind his desk

After more than 100 working hours Bernd Schmermuly presented his result.  It was the second time he had designed Diospi Suyana’s website.  Despite having several similarities to the former version, the new version is completely redesigned and brought up to date.  In an interview he explains why he has been supporting our mission on a voluntary basis for more than 16 years.  At this juncture it is worth mentioning that the graphic designer defends our internet presence against hackers at any time of the day or night.

22nd March. Dr Thomas Tielmann (left) and Dr Martina John (right) guide the State’s Governor and a delegation from the Health Authority through the missionary hospital.

With one hour’s notice Apurímac’s Governor Baltazar Lantarán Núñez and officials of the Health Authority arrived at the hospital on 22nd March asking for a cooperation agreement with the Hospital Diospi Suyana.  Should our hospital look after State Corona-patients the State government would foot the bill, reliably and unbureaucratically.

3rd April. It was high time to pray.

The current Corona-crisis led to the media centre to announce a 24-hour prayer-day.  The programme was broadcast on the radio via our six aerial towers and on the internet.  The team of staff formed four groups that moderated the programme live round the clock.

Here the analysis: ten external radio stations tuned in, seven Christian, three secular channels.  103 audio messages reached us via WhatsApp and Email; furthermore, 104 participants of the event sent us 104 text messages and 270 further greetings via WhatsApp and telephone.  Diospi Suyana was contacted by listeners with contribution or greetings from the following countries:  Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, Canada, Chile, Columbia, Cuba, Ecuador, France, Germany, Italy, Kenya, Mexico, Peru, Russia, Spain, Switzerland and USA.

The programme’s slogan was a version from the Old Testament. If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land (NIV).

Oebele de Haan and his team worked hard in order to make the oxygen supply-system in the hospital perfect.

Diospi Suyana was the first hospital in the State that has oxygen generators.  Meanwhile the hospital owns four such devices.  Our technicians from the workshops worked night and day.  When Pedro Quispe* was driving his lorry through Curahuasi, he stopped breathing at outskirts of the town.

The oxygen saturation in his blood was a mere 75% as he arrived in our A+E department gasping for air.  He was the first Corona-patient whose life our nurses and doctors saved. (* Name changed)

4th May.  The Diospi-Suyana-School’s teachers distribute teaching materials to waiting parents.

All schools in Peru were closed down and millions of children were forbidden to leave their homes for several months.  2,000 private schools in Peru went into liquidation, a further 3,000 find themselves in a very critical financial situation.

The Head of School Christian Bigalke and the teachers reacted quickly in the changed situation.  In long shifts they prepared a high-quality distance-learning programme.  Every week the various worksheets are distributed at ten different locations.

29th May.  A day we will never forget.

After long negotiations and two contracts with the State’s Government we drew a chastening resumé:  firstly, the politicians would not keep even one of their given promises; secondly, should the missionary hospital look after the State’s patients and would subsequently not receive the due payments, our financial collapse would come sooner or later; and thirdly, corrupt agents were trying to gain control over the Hospital Diospi Suyana.

On the evening of the 29th May the missionary doctors John appealed via Diospi Suyana’s own radio channel to the Peruvian populus.  Their message: “Diospi Suyana is in great danger!” was broadcast verbatim via the internet.  The echo took us totally by surprise.  That night the Head of State read our call for help and within a couple of days more than 1.5mio Peruvians visited our social websites thus giving us direct and indirect backing.

2nd June.  Press-photo after a long meeting with Sr. Merino de Lama, the President of Congress (2nd from the left) and congressman Lenin Checco (left).  Dr John and Steven de Jager stand on the right.

The missionary doctors’ speech opened several doors in Peru’s capital.  Within a week Dr John and head of administration Steven de Jager spoke to the President of Congress Merino de Lama, Prime Minister Vicente Zevallos, Health Minister Victor Zamorra, Finance Minister Antonieat Alva and six further congressmen.  The missionary hospital’s popularity among the Peruvian Nation was obviously so large that the danger of state intervention was pushed into the background.

Middle of June.  On a hill overlooking Abancay some people who are not scared of heights are working on Diospi Suyana’s new radio tower.

During the course of the year Diospi Suyana’s Media Centre made good progress on two important projects.  In Abancay and Sicuani two further aerial towers were planned and erected.  The logistical challenges at both locations were immense.  Questions of license, searching for adequate land, building the infrastructure and the electricity connection added to the challenge.  We hope that by the end of January 2021 we will have increased the number of our potential listeners to over one million.  In the trying negotiations with the authorities Doris Manco showed time and time again her exceptional patience and tenacity.

23rd June.  Visiting the Peruvian Ambassador Elmer Schialer (on the left wearing the pink-coloured shirt) and his wife (on the right wearing a white blouse).

For most of the year there were hardly any normal flights between Peru and Europe.  The Peruvian embassies allocated the seats on the humanitarian flights.

“It would be so nice to meet the Peruvian Ambassador in Berlin,” sighed Dr John in Doris Manco’s office.  “His mother is a friend of mine!” said the head of our media centre with a beaming smile.  The next day the Ambassador sent a lovely email to Dr John and within ten days the missionary doctors John accepted the diplomat’s invitation to Berlin.  Thanks to this meeting the Peruvian highest dignitary in Germany helped 23 people who were in some way connected to Diospi Suyana to reach Curahuasi.  In one of our Information Letters we were to call him one of “God’s instruments.”  Doris Manco who personally knows his family is one of the many miracles in Diospi Suyana’s story.

24th June.  In the first row from left to right: member of the Bundestag Alois Gerig, donor Mazlum Oktay and Olaf Böttger.

God also pulled the strings in the next episode.  It happened on a rainy day in the Summer of 2019.  Dr Benjamin Zeier had to look after his children so he decided that a children’s playground is an ideal place to spend the afternoon.  Mazlum Oktay, head of the outpatient nursing service “Hand in Hand”, was also there with his children.  It was not long until the two fathers got talking.

Since January 2020 the urologist and his family live in Peru, but his contacts to his friends back home remained constant.  The result was an official press-appointment on the 24th June in Buchen, Baden Wurttemberg. Olaf Böttger, head of Diospi Suyana e.V. conveyed our thanks, member of the Bundestag Alois Gerig graced the enjoyable meeting as did a reporter from the Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung.

Mazlum Oktay donated 100 boxes containing 60,000 top-quality face-masks to the Hospital Diospi Suyana.  The value of this donation in kind is well above €0.1mio.  – Private individuals, companies and friends hailing from several countries have committed themselves beyond measure for Diospi Suyana.  Around the globe Christians from different denominations have folded their hands and have entrusted our work into God’s care.

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