The battle rages on in West Africa against the Ebola virus. It isn't a new virus for Africa. In fact, in the span of 32 years (1976-2008), the Ebola virus has infected 2,232 people in remote village areas and killed 1,503. However, just this past year Ebola has come back with a vengeance. The mortality rate has already claimed nearly a third of those fatalities as it has infiltrated three capital cities with populations in the millions. Horribly spreading throughout Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea and infecting hundreds of people at an unprecedented rate. The deadly disease, which causes massive internal bleeding and has a mortality rate of 60 to 90 percent in most situations, has claimed more than 725 lives.
This tragedy hits home for Equip2serve in many ways. Our mission? It's to train pastors & church leaders in West Africa. We are just in the beginning stages....and now Liberia's borders are closed. Many missions have evacuated. It hits home for our Liberian co-workers, George & Lucy Lott who live in a small community. George is a nurse. He treats people with various illnesses. Please pray for George that he will have wisdom in knowing what he should do in each situation.
The battle rages on for Samaritan's Purse personnel, Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Whitebol. They fight for their lives as they were infected with Ebola in Liberia when they were working in a treatment center to save the lives of Liberians who had contracted the virus. It's been a week of isolation for Kent and Nancy, both in critical condition. Medical evacuations for them are underway with the help of the U.S. State Department. There is no known cure for Ebola. There is an experimental vaccine -- but testing for that vaccine isn't expected until at least September.
Samaritan's Purse has been a tremendous blessing to Equip2serve this past year. They have been very helpful in getting our teams from location to location. Having Ebola hit Liberia and their members is very sad for us.
The Center for Disease Control has issued a level three travel warning for Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone. We don't know how long this warning will be in effect. Due to this unexpected turn of events, Equip2serve has decided to NOT travel to Liberia in October-November as planned.
Continue to PRAY for the millions of people who may be exposed to the Ebola Virus. Pray for the healing of Kent and Nancy as they fight the Ebola virus. Pray for George, as he makes hard decisions in his clinic. Pray for Equip2serve as we have had to adjust to a new plan and for wisdom in the future.