Woman in Mapoko, Zambia
Receives Wheelchair and Crutches
January 17, 2007
From Kambani Banda:
We traveled to Mapoko to deliver the wheel chair and crutches that LifeNets donated to Mary Chisevente.
Mary was born as a normal child in 1956. When she was three, she developed a small blister on her left leg and everybody thought that it was nothing and ignored it. However, it would not go away. The small blister stayed that way till age 15. It was mid year in 1971 that she started to experience numbness on her right side of the body.
The numbness developed into severe dizziness which was later diagnosed as epilepsy. During that year, she fell a number of times sustaining severe bodily injuries. She explained, “like all teenagers, I was full of hopes and dreams, a job in the city, a husband and children.” This hope seemed to fade away when her right leg started to shrivel making it shorter and weaker and later unusable. At this point the family had made several visits to the doctors (medical) without success.
It slowly dawned on her that she may not be able to realize her dreams. “The thought being of being crippled for life was discouraging that she thought life was not worth living.” she added tearfully. In desperation her parents even consulted the local medicine men and off course that was very expensive and to no avail.
In 2002 she met Mr. Katapya and his wife, our local leaders in Mapoko who explained to her their understanding as to why God allows suffering. It is this explanation that began to bring hope, meaning and purpose into her life and was baptized late in 2003. From then on, she has never missed a Fall Festival or a Sabbath service save when she is ill. She lives about eight kilometers and ‘walks’ on crutches to and from every Sabbath. Big shame on us who for a miner irritation we miss church.
She could not hide her joy when Shirley and I presented the gift of the wheelchair and new, padded and adjustable crutches to her. Asked if she was going to throw away her old crutches, she replied “no, the new crutches are for the going to Sabbath service and the old crutches are for every day work”.
This was a very moving ceremony for both me and Shirley and one that we will treasure for the rest of our lives. Thank you for donating these vital limbs to our sister and making us part of the joy of giving.
Mary being presented crutches and wheelchair
Mary with Kambani Banda