Bustinza Family Mexico Launch!

Our family has good news! On May 30th- we will set foot on Mexican soil to begin a new, 3-year term as missionary doctors through Christian Health Service Corps. Mexico is becoming an epicenter for COVID-19 and we feel called to help the Tarahumara people and support our Mexican colleagues. Willy plans to drive our Jeep across the border and Jessee will fly with Lucy and baby Caroline.

Q&A: Where do you live in Mexico?
Hospital Misión Tarahumara is located in the beautiful, remote Copper Canyon in the state of Chihuahua. It’s a 10 hour drive south of El Paso, Texas over winding mountain roads.

South of the border, there are things that are easier to predict. We will unpack our suitcases containing precious Kraft Mac & Cheese boxes in our little duplex on the hospital compound. Our newest addition, 5-month old Caroline, will probably don a traditional Tarahumara dress made by one of our neighbors.  Heavy rains in July and August will turn the canyon back-roads into rivers of mud. 

But there are also unknowns. We’re unsure how the COVID-19 pandemic will impact Mexico’s fragile economy and healthcare system. Many of our Tarahumara neighbors depend on government assistance and are already struggling to survive. This month, the mission hospital is seeing fewer admissions as people are afraid to travel. This is extremely concerning as we know that critically ill children, pregnant women, and other vulnerable groups in remote villages are not receiving the medical care they need. 

Q&A: Will you be caring for COVID-19 patients when you arrive?
Yes. We will be working alongside our Mexican colleagues and will provide ICU care training for the hospital staff. The Tarahumara are particularly at risk for complications of COVID-19 as there is a high prevalence of tuberculosis and underlying lung disease.

In the midst of uncertainty, we see new opportunities to share hope and God’s love in practical ways. The baby boy pictured above was born with a cleft lip and palate to a young Tarahumara mother. Sadly, without specialty medical care, the baby’s risk of dying from malnutrition due to feeding difficulties is high. Babies with birth deformities are typically hidden at home as their parents believe they’ve been cursed. The Tarahumara believe that if a pregnant woman sees the child, then her unborn baby will be cursed with a cleft deformity as well.  

Thankfully, the baby is gaining weight at Hospital Misión Tarahumara and is scheduled to receive a cleft surgery. The joy that Tarahumara parents express after receiving the gift of a free surgery for their child is indescribable! This little boy will grow up knowing that instead of being marked with a curse, he is a valuable person. Those of you who partner with our mission in Mexico are providing real hope to Tarahumara children who otherwise have extremely limited access to medical care. Thank you!

In the month of June, we are excited to be welcoming two new American nurses, a nurse practitioner, a physician assistant and their families to the mission hospital. An important aspect of our work in Mexico is investing in the growth and development of the hospital staff. This fall, we look forward to expanding educational programs for the national physicians and nurses. Another upcoming project is a mobile medical clinic we are launching in conjunction with Jessee’s aunt Carrie Brothers (a physician assistant.) Our goal is to develop a triage system for remote areas to stabilize and transport critically ill Tarahumara patients.

Eighteen months of living in one of the most isolated canyons on earth has cemented the fact that we are a part of a larger team. We lean on our Mexican, Tarahumara, and American co-workers, as well as our financial and prayer partners in the U.S. and worldwide.  Above all, we’ve learned to depend more on God through every challenge and can truly attest to His faithfulness in our lives.

A year ago, Jessee captured the brilliant smile of this baby boy who had overcome pneumonia at the mission hospital. He had arrived struggling to breathe and had oxygen levels of 40%.  By all accounts he shouldn’t have survived, but God in His great faithfulness allowed the baby to recover.

Great is His faithfulness.
In the upheaval of today’s world,
it’s true more than ever before.

 Though flying internationally with two small children wearing an N-95 mask seems daunting…
His faithful love never ends.
Though our Jeep gets stuck in the mud…
His mercies never cease.
Though we may feel isolated or afraid…
His mercies begin afresh each morni

We know that wherever you may find yourself- God’s great faithfulness is new every morning. He is the solid rock you can depend on if you feel alone, weak, or in need of peace.  

Thank you for your prayers and sacrificial giving that allows our family to serve in Mexico! We appreciate prayers for safe travel on May 30th as we cross the border.  Let us know how we can pray for you and your family!

    The Bustinzas
Willy, Jessee, Lucy, and Baby Caroline

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