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OCMC News - Dr. William White - Team Uganda Sponsor

by Kenneth Kidd (Posted 7/17/2009)

OCMC News - Dr. William White - Team Uganda Sponsor
Moved by a desire to help the people of Uganda, Dr. William White helped sponsor a 2009 OCMC Orthodox Mission Team that provided healthcare and distributed medicines to scores of people in Gulu.

On June 23, 2009, With the blessing of His Eminence Archbishop Jonah of Uganda, a medical team of 10 individuals left for a two week medical ministry to the Archdiocese of Uganda. Armed with medicines, medical equipment, and icons, this Team also traveled with the prayers of one very special individual who, with a very generous gift that supplemented the funds raised by Team members, helped offset the costs needed to field this medical team.  The OCMC and all of the members of this Tanzania team are pleased to thank and recognize Dr. Bill White as the sponsor of the 2009 Medical Team to Uganda. 

Dr. White is a retired physician who started and oversaw the operations of Emergency Medicine Physicians until his retirement just a few years ago.  Raised Roman Catholic, he began his active spiritual journey in college.  Guided by the Holy Spirit, and with help and support of his cousin Fr. Luke Palumbos in Stockton, California, Dr. White began exploring Orthodox Christianity about three years ago.  Dr. White was Chrismated in June 2007 by Fr. Lou Christopulos at St. Catherine’s Greek Orthodox parish in Greenwood Village, Colorado.  Upon coming into the Orthodox Church, he shares, “I knew that I was finally home.”

Over these past three years, Dr. White has been inspired by reading many of the desert Fathers.  He shares that he has come to appreciate that “everything I have is not really mine, but God’s,”  which instilled in him a deep desire to “give it all back to God.”  As a result, Orthodox ministries and the people they serve have found a place deep in his heart.

In the autumn of 2008, Dr. White met Fr. Martin Ritsi, and he began to learn about some of the medical needs that exist in Africa - especially in the Archdiocese of Uganda.  “It is amazing how far just a little bit of money can go there,” he commented following the meeting.  The severity of the need for medical assistance in Uganda specifically weighed on his heart, and he immediately felt called to go as part of the 2009 Medical Team. Dr. White, however, was getting married in February when the Team was slated to depart; instead he found another way to be a part of this vital effort - by underwriting the costs associated with sending a Team to offer a medical witness to the Ugandan people. This was just a beginning for Dr. White, as he hopes that one day very soon, accompanied by his new wife, he will be to be able to serve on an OCMC Medical Mission Team.

Becoming a Mission Team Sponsor
There are many costs associated with each Mission Team, including housing, food, transportation, insurance, visas, materials, and training. These costs vary depending on the type of Team, its duration, and where it will be serving.  The OCMC seeks to raise $10,000 for each Team. This money, in addition to those funds raised by Team members, will help offset these Team costs. Gifts from Team sponsors help lower the participation cost for each team member and, in turn, make participation on Teams possible for many more people.

Yearly opportunities exist for individuals to become Team sponsors with a gift of $10,000 toward underwriting the costs of a specific Mission Team.  Sponsors are able to share in the Team’s journey and will be provided with photographs and updates from the Team.  Though not all of us are able to go on a Team, being a sponsor provides an opportunity to be a part of a Team by making the work possible.  To find out more about becoming a Mission Team sponsor, please contact Kenneth Kidd, Annual Gifts Officer, or Andrew Lekos, Mission Teams Director, at 877-GO-FORTH .

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Prayer for Missions

God of truth and love: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, Hear our prayer for those who do not know You. That they may come to a saving knowledge of the truth, and that Your Name may be praised among all peoples of the world. Sustain, inspire, and enlighten Your servants who bring them the Gospel. Bring fresh vigor to wavering faith; sustain our faith when it is still fragile. Continually renew missionary zeal in ourselves and in the Church, and raise up new missionaries who will follow You to the ends of the world. Make us witnesses to Your goodness full of love, full of strength, and full of faith for Your glory and the salvation of the entire world. Through the prayers of all the missionary saints, Have mercy on us and save us. Amen.
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