When I was growing up, my mother, Dorothy Luebbert, was extremely nearsighted. After cataract surgery a few years ago, that all changed with new lenses in her eyes. Now she could see at a distance but needed reading glasses. She got a nice prescription pair as well as a number of the dollar store variety. They were often found around the house at the places where she would sit down to read.
Mother died just before the WMU team went to Malawi and her funeral was a week before the trip. I wrote an earlier blog about her missions legacy. But the story continues.
Prior to our trip, Marjorie Yandell, a member of the team and also a member of the Lion’s Club in Fredonia, made contact with the a Lion’s Club chapter in Lilongwe and arranged for us to take glasses to them. Providing glasses for people who need them is an international Lion’s Club project. Marjorie let me know about the arrangements and I added mother’s glasses to my suitcase.
The WMU team went to teach a week of classes for seminary wives at the Malawi Baptist Seminary. There is no married student housing there, so pastors come for 10-week terms and leave their families behind. The wives are invited for a week of classes just for them three times per year. We went to be the faculty for the July 2012 week. We provided Bible studies, classes on the role of the pastor’s wife, spiritual life development, health education, and crafts.
As I was teaching from the Sermon on the Mount, participants were called on to read verses aloud. When Mary was asked to read, she said, “I can’t see to read my Bible anymore.” Knowing that mother’s readers were still among the glasses, I determined to find them and bring them to Mary.
What a thrill when the glasses were presented to Mary and she read her Bible aloud in class. The Cooperative Program put our missionaries in place in Malawi, provided for the seminary, and provided a partnership director for the KBC who made the initial arrangements for the Kentucky focus on the Zambezi Cluster. All of these converged in Malawi when a Baptist pastor’s wife in Malawi received a needed pair of glasses, a luxury for most in Malawi, and the missions legacy of Dorothy Luebbert lived on!