Ray is serving in South Sudan with Samaritan’s Purse. Here, we tell some of his stories:
1 November, 2014 – A Good Samaritan for a Good Samaritan
We are now receiving air dropped food and distributing the food at a fast rate for such a small team. Our own food rations are very low and we cannot get an aircraft in for our supplies and we can’t deprive the needy and poor of theirs.
There is no choice, somebody must make the journey on foot through the swamp to the nearest town and try and buy some stock, at least the basics. It is a six hour trek of a return journey. On the way back hopefully carrying flour, sugar, rice and milk.
The journey is hard, hot and wet and as I arrive I see a vehicle. I wonder, can I hire it to take me some of the way home. I try but the owner of the only motor vehicle in this town wants over one hundred pounds. I cannot bring myself to spend hard earned donor money that way so decline.
An hours journey left. I reckon I have about one and a half hours before dark. Then the rains start. So heavy I can hardly see where I am going. I must stop and shelter. For forty five minutes the rain comes down. With a slight easing I set off again, keen to get through the swamp. I am there, it is deep, above my waist in places. You can image the thoughts going through me now. Crocs, snakes and drowning.
As it is still raining the water is still rising when I hear a call. “Old Man, Old man.” I do wish they would find another name for me! “Let me carry your bag and show you the way.”
The South Sudanese might be very thin but many are very tall and this man took my bag and set off. We arrived near the base as it came dark. The other man had moved a short distance in front of me and I lost sight of him.
Shortly afterwards I found my sack in the middle of the trail. Nobody about, he had just disappeared. I walked into camp to applause. But who was the man who had helped me? Who had turned up from nowhere in my time of need and who had left without requiring a word of thanks?