Last week I got an advisory from the Florida Department of Health indicating that the Zika virus is still prevalent in Puerto Rico. This virus is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito and also through sexual contact with a person infected. Zika infection during pregnancy can result in severe birth defects to the developing fetus. Pregnant women are advised to not travel to areas with documented Zika virus transmission.
For more information about Zika virus, where it is active, and testing for the virus, please contact your local county Health Department or the Florida Department of Health at www.floridahealth.gov.
It is my hope and prayer that all babies can have a healthy start in life.
May God bless you and give you wisdom to discern safe travels.
KINDNESS is what the blind can see and the deaf can hear.
One Sunday morning last winter during worship service, I was sitting in the designated "First Aid Volunteer" seat, looking over the congregation for anyone with a health or mobility difficulty. I saw no slumping onto the bench, gasping coughs or tripping in the isle on this morning. What I did notice was that there were four service dogs with their masters. Our bulletin headliner is: Befriending all with the love of Christ through community, worship and service.
Maybe befriending all meant reaching out to these persons, not because they were having difficulty at the moment; rather, because they have some disabling need for a service dog. In meeting each of these persons and hearing their stories, I learned that they would welcome the opportunity to serve on a "team" for the church. After sharing information from ADNet (Anabaptist Disabilities Network), we met as a team and included two persons who have experience working with school children or a spouse with disability. We are looking to be supportive to each other by listening.
They are teaching me. Praying God's blessings to each person and those we have yet to meet.
Carolyn Stoll, RN
Faith Community Nurse
Before I considered studying Nursing in college, I was quite sure I wanted to major in Biology and do research. Although I chose to study Nursing, I have always been interested in the science of medicine and research. For that reason I am very pleased to help get information out about a study by the National Institutes of Health to my own church and greater community.
The focus of this study is on persons of Mennonite or Amish ethnicity who have Bipolar Disorder. It is not a fact that there is a high incidence of this disorder among Mennonites. Researchers selected a small ethnic group so that the study is based on a “tighter gene pool” to show how such disorders can be carried in families. It is my hope the DNA studies done from these willing persons will help medical researchers understand better the causes and then the treatment for this disorder.
If you are interested in participating in this important study, please contact:
I had an unusual, almost unbelievable experience at The Holy Land Experience in Orlando, FL.
We were a group of 100+ seniors from this church. A rainy day, we stayed inside all afternoon for the live dramas representing the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. These dramas were quite exciting with vivid colors and lights, stirring loud music, and dancing for the enacted Bible stories of healing and miracles during the time of Jesus. After the Hallelujah, the large audience proceeded through foyers to the waiting buses. About an hour down the highway I noticed that the diamond gemstone in my 56-year-old wedding ring set was missing. I searched my seating area in the motor coach as well as my purse, pockets, and jacket to no avail. I decided I probably lost the gemstone in the theater foyer as I struggled to put on my damp rain jacket and where hundreds had also walked through to exit.
Early the next morning, I reached the group sales specialist who had booked this event for us. He listened to my sad story, asking where I had been seated and how I exited the building. He said he would go quickly to look in those areas before the crowd of people would enter for the day. This sales specialist called me within an hour, telling me he had found “something”, he thought it might be it. He emailed me a picture of the little gemstone. Oh! The thrill I had seeing my missing stone in the photo! He said he found it under a picture of Jesus in the exit foyer where I had put on my rain jacket. He said he had laid on his belly and scanned the sparkling marble floor with a flashlight. Arrangements are being made to return my little gemstone, so precious to me.
Jesus taught love and care for each other; this salesman showed as much to me when he took time to listen and look. Amazing? Yes. A miracle? Well, yes; it surely brought new meaning to The Holy Land Experience for me!
How Your Body Reacts To It...
Our Pastor Roger Shenk, in his Christmas series message of Dec. 13, God So Loved: When Peace Fights Back, spoke directly on how to work to navigate peace when outer troubles beseech you. He gave us tools to help in navigation toward peace. Tune it in on-line if you have not heard it!
He will keep in perfect peace those whose minds will trust in thee Isaiah 26: 3-4
Pastor Roger reminded us that finding Jesus is the HOPE and PEACE of Christmas.
May the blessings of HOPE and PEACE be with you this season.
Carolyn Stoll, RN
Faith Community Nurse
Bahia Vista Mennonite Church
We are in a community with a high incidence of Type 2 Diabetes. I have learned from persons doing Diabetes Screening at a Health Fair, that they find as many as 60% of those who are screened have higher than normal blood sugar levels AND THEY DID NOT KNOW IT.
Important new developments are occurring in the prevention and management of adult onset, Type 2 Diabetes. Early detection is important in treatment and prevention of Diabetes.
Why has Diabetes increased by 75% in the last few years? It has become an epidemic in persons over age 60 years especially if overweight.
What is the relationship between Diabetes and sugar consumption?
What is the role of Diabetes in blindness, kidney failure, nerve pain and loss of feeling in the feet?
Can early Diabetes be reversed?
What should a person with Diabetes or one who wants to prevent Diabetes eat?
What is the role of EXERCISE in the prevention and management of Diabetes?
I will be posting on the Health and Caring Ministries web site some information and resources from The American Diabetes Association and from The Daniel Plan, 40 days to a healthier life, by Rick Warren.
WE DECIDE TO STOP DIABETES!
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
– 1 Corinthians 10:31
The children are back in school and whatever grade they find themselves in there is probably a list of needed items, lunch arrangements, after school activities and more...all aimed to help them learn and grow in a healthy manor. My grandchildren, ages 10 and 13, were asked to get the school a report of Body Mass Index and baseline Blood Pressure, Cholesterol and Blood Sugar testing! Wow! Their school system is part of an ongoing research to prevent Childhood Obesity for the present time and prevent Type 2 Diabetes, High Blood Pressure and Heart Disease in their future.
Why the focus on Childhood Obesity? In the past 20 years, the rate of obesity in children has increased from 7% to over 20%...and still climbing. Fingers have been pointed toward schools to improve lunch and snack quality, increase exercise time and quality (without adding to the school day). Schools now are attempting to educate the parents to reduce TV and internet "screen" time and encourage outdoor play, sport training and walking, biking etc for general fitness. I have been pleased to see an increase in the "active" time of church activities for children and teens. We can all help by planning healthy snacks that are low in sugars and unhealthy fats.
I am using this beginning information about prevention and reversal of childhood obesity to introduce information about Diabetes. Did you know this about Diabetes?
Together we can have new ReCreation. Learning how play, sport, and worship can restore us to health in body and spirit.
Resources for this topic include:
Church Health Reader chreader.org
Childhood Obesity, Teen Inc magazine
Faith Community Nurse newsletter BayCare Aug/2015
Most people who experience cardiac arrest at home, work or in a public location (like church) die because they did not receive immediate CPR from someone on the scene. As a bystander, don't be afraid. Your actions can only help....so says The American Heart Association as part of a June drive to teach persons this simple skill. If you see a teen or an adult suddenly collapse and not respond to you:
Skill #1 Call 9-1-1.
When calling 9-1-1, you will be asked for your location. Be specific, especially if you are calling from a mobile phone as that is not associated with a fixed address. Answering the dispatcher's questions will not delay the arrival of help.
Skill # 2 Give CPR with your hands.
With hands placed over the center of person's chest, push, using your weight over your straight arms, compressing the chest at least 2 inches. Push hard and fast at least 100 times per minute, allowing the chest to rise between compression. You can follow the beat in the classic "Staying Alive" disco song. Just keep pushing hard and fast until help arrives, someone comes with an AED (Automated Electronic Defibrillator) or the person starts breathing, talking or moving.
Starting CPR promptly when a person collapses and their heart stops can more than double a person's chance for survival. This happens to youth in school gyms, workers in every setting and can happen at home to your loved ones.
Remember: Just TWO STEPS: Call 9-1-1 and give CPR!
Look for more information here. Hands Only CPR Campaign. Take a full CPR training from American Heart Association or from American Red Cross.
These opportunities are in your neighborhood.
I believe we are called to act as Jesus did to provide help for our neighbor, a stranger, our own family.
May you be blessed as you learn and do!
Carolyn Stoll, RN
Faith Community Nurse
This poem articulates better than I ever could the selfless and healing act of caring for the ill or injured by donating blood at the bloodmobile. The author, Barbara Eash Shisler, was a classmate of my husband at Eastern Mennonite High School. The poem is one in a collection: Michigan Farmhouse, Naming the Rooms.
Enjoy, and go donate! Carolyn
At The Bloodmobile
In my wavering I will do this deed,
climb on the table and be tapped,
a maiden oil field,
though this oil is dearer than Iran
and the color of love.
I study the ceiling, pine cathedral arch,
knots like clots, while the nurse cheers,
Blood scenes spurt before me:
Calvary's fountain with plunging sinners;
Sticky white underwear and a thirteen's
The drenched fur of a wayside kitten;
Sacred streams of birth and death,
while here mine darkly
fattens a plastic bag.
In company my heart pumps on.
Laid out in rows, we bleed for mankind.
we sacrifice our true-blood,
rubies offered for the mining
to save the world its deadly dying.
My oblation ended, I rise to tea
and doughnuts, party Red Cross,
abashed for my blushing pint.
Save valor for the fight,
laugh at a bleeding heart.
Go refreshed into summer dark,
into rich dark life lean and pulsing.
Just another lesson from the Hide and Go Seek Game from last month's blog entitled "COMING! Ready or Not".
I had opportunity to hear Dr Glen Miller and his blogging mate, Jep Hostetler, speak at the Mennonite Health Assembly. The topic was "Creating Your Legacy". Some points to ponder and that I choose to share with my church family include:
At this Easter season and always, I thank our Lord for the gift of Christ. All-Y All-Y In; Come Free, indeed.
Carolyn Stoll, RN
Faith Community Nurse