We traveled an hour and a half outside Chennai through massive traffic congestion to visit the Leper’s Medical Clinic. After the long journey, we arrived in the village of Chengel Putt. It’s a village with a cluster of small homes, isolated off the major highway. There are about 700 people who live in this colony. Most of them don’t have leprosy, but are the children or grandchildren of lepers who must live in this place because of society’s prejudice against anyone who is a family member of a leper. For those with leprosy, medical care is very difficult. Their greatest need is for wound care, and to have their infected feet and hands treated and re-bandaged. The hospital is too far away, and few care for their needs.
We met the team that works full time, providing medical care in 6 of these leper colonies. They are the heart of God ‘lived out’ for these rejected and hated ones. The team travels to each colony every week, and treats the wounds of the lepers. They also leave medical supplies and bandages for them for their own wound care the rest of the week. The team shows God’s care and love as they clean wounds, pour in antiseptic medicine and re-bandage the wounds. Few would EVER touch a leper, and only those filled with God’s love would give this kind of medical care. We were shocked to hear that there are 16 leper colonies around the city of Chennai. Only the ‘brave’ would ever come to this place. They are isolated and outcast. Sadly, their isolation kept them from knowing the love of the Father until this team started coming.
The lepers head toward the clinic. It’s a simple block building with a porch and a single room that is the treatment room. We’re deeply impacted by the staggering needs. Lepers with missing fingers and toes come hobbling through the streets toward the place that will meet their medical needs. Some of the lepers use homemade crutches. A few come with ‘real’ crutches, one of their greatest needs in this colony. The dirty bandages on their hands and feet will soon be replaced by fresh, clean bandages that the team have made after days of hard work at their main office in Chennai. The medical team give the professional care that they need, but also offer prayer and assistance in many different ways.
As the clinic closed for the day, our hearts overflowed with awe for these caring workers who truly show God’s love. This medical clinic is made possible because a home fellowship in Nashville supports them every month. Your home fellowship, prayer group, or church can do the same thing! You can join together to support an orphanage or medical clinic that changes the lives of those who are deeply loved by God.