MMM Communications, Rosemount, Booterstown, Co. Dublin, IRELAND.
Mission Development 4425 W 63rd St., Ste 100 Chicago, IL 60629-5530
Medical Missionaries of Mary first went to Honduras following the devastating Hurricane Mitch, which struck the country back in 1998.
Today, six MMM Sisters work in Honduras. They are Sisters Renée Duignan, Rita Higgins and Bernadette Heneghan from Ireland, Sister Rosalinda Gonzales from the Philippines, Sister Cleide da Silva from Brazil, and Sister Maria Gonzaga Namuyomba from Uganda.
Our first mission was established in the parish of Marcala in the west of the country. The parish has an excellent development plan, and the MMMs are involved in the healthcare component. This means providing workshops, training, and health monitoring over an extensive rural area.
An important aspect of the work is the production of low-cost remedies from local plants. We undertook this work at the request of the local people who had a rich tradition in local remedies, but feared it was being lost because the younger generation were not picking up the skills of the elders.
"Please help us reclaim the knowledge our ancestors knew about plants that cure." That was the first request the people made to us. Our picture above shows a small community pharmacy cupboard, housed in a family home selected by the group.
It has been an exciting adventure since then, as we worked with them to develop parish health teams and explore with the young people and little children issues around low self-esteem.
Our second mission is at Choloma, in the Diocese of San Pedro Sula where we have built Casa Visitación as a centre where various clinics and therapies are available. Health Committees have been established in seventeen villages, involving a lot of travel to these rural mountainous districts. Activities include training of health formators, supervision of home pharmacies, counselling and building self-esteem, complementary therapies, work with prisoners and addressing domestic violence.