Friday, November 8, 2013

A New Place to Follow Mossy Foot Project

We are excited to announce that our web site ( has recently been updated and now includes an integrated blog. All of the history from this blog has been moved over to our new site. We will be updating our new blog regularly at and this blog will be retired.

We hope that you will check out our new site and let us know what you think.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Sight is Coming to Blind Eyes

Chapter 11 of the book of Isaiah has a powerful description of the coming reign of the Messiah, that includes this well-known verse:
"The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the young goat, the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them." Is 11:6
Ethiopian child leading two blind adults
In Isaiah, this is a beautiful prophetic image. In Ethiopia, however, the concept of being led by a little child has a dark and tragic meaning rather than a glorious one. Because of poverty and lack of medical care, blindness is common in the rural villages. You will often see an adult being led from place to place by a young child.

The consequence of blindness for the adult is of course devastating for there is little work available for someone without eyesight. But the consequences for the child can also be drastic, eliminating any opportunity to attend school or enjoy free time with other children. Blindness for Zenebech, one Ethiopian widow with mossy foot disease, forced her to giving her youngest child away since she could not care for him.

This need recently drew the attention of a friend of the Mossy Foot Project, who has generously offered a financial gift that will allow for 100 mossy foot patients to receive cataract repair surgery. Medical Missions International has an eye clinic affiliated with Soddo Christian Hospital where the surgery will be performed. They have offered to train 3 staff members of Mossy Foot Project to identify patients that qualify for this surgery. The three Mossy Foot staff will in turn train the health care workers at the 16 Mossy Foot Project clinics. The gift covers the expense of surgery for 100 eyes as well as overnight lodging in Soddo and food for each patient identified as in need.

We are very grateful for the way God has moved to make this possible. Our approach has always been to treat our patients holistically, and this gift enables us do so in an even more complete way. And how wonderful to think that restoring sight to the blind will also restore childhood and the possibility of school to a boy or girl.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Sharon in Ethiopia: Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Here is the latest update from Sharon reporting on development progress at the Mossy Foot Project property in Soddo, Ethiopia:

Mark Launder and Workmen
“I am really excited that we are starting to build on the Mossy Foot property! It will be a blessing not to have to rent property in town.  Also, we will be able to install the right electrical wiring so that we can use all of our shoe making equipment. That will enable us to produce more shoes for the mossy foot patients at the clinics.

This past week we got estimates on all the things we will need to build the rock wall, the guard house, and "shint bate" (out house).  On Friday, materials were being delivered and by Monday a lot of work had already been done.

It is such a blessing to have Mark Launder here overseeing the building, expediting the progress, and ensuring good quality.  Since he is well acquainted with the culture and how things operate, he is able to navigate challenges that might stop someone else.
Sharon literally between a rock and a hard place

The work is labor intensive--with capstones being hand-hewn out of rock, cement mixed by hand, and large rocks being chipped by hand to go in the base for the wall.  I tried breaking the rock with a mallet for about 20 seconds and that was enough for me."

Please pray for Sharon's time in Ethiopia to be fruitful and for the good progress with the work on the Load. Pray also for the power of the Gospel to be that strong hammer that breaks the walls of resistance keeping those in darkness from seeing the Light of the Glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

"Is not My word like a fire?” says the LORD,  “And like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?" Jeremiah 23:29

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Sharon Daly and the Sterling College Team

Sharon Daly (on left) and Sterling College Team
Sharon Daly, Mossy Foot President, is currently in Soddo, Ethiopia on an extended 6 week visit at the Mossy Foot Project headquarters. This visit gives Sharon an opportunity to work with and encourage staff, visit the remote clinics, and see first hand the progress on developing property for future headquarters.

The visit will culminate with an important meeting in Addis Ababa with the Federal Ministry of Health Symposium from June 12-14 regarding treatment options for podoconiosis.

This past week Sharon hosted a team from Sterling College, Kansas led by Christian Dashiell, the school chaplain. The team included students as well as Christian’s mother Lisa, a nurse in Portland, Oregon, who once attended Sharon’s Alma Mater Rift Valley Academy in Kenya.

In addition to spending time at Mossy Foot headquarters, the team was able to visit several clinics and participate in a showing of the Jesus film where several hundred people came and heard the gospel message. Many of the viewers responded that night to the invitation to accept Jesus or rededicate their lives. On Sunday, the team celebrated the Lord’s day with a thriving congregation of several thousand believers near the university in Soddo.  The three-hour service included a lot of singing and dancing!

On their last day, the team traveled to Shanto to help with the building of a home for Birhane, a widow with four children. Two of Birhane’s children abandoned her because of her mossy foot disease. She was living in a little hut that had big open gaps in it that did not protect her family from the rain.

The team arrived to an exuberant welcome from the neighbors and church workers. Team members worked on the house, nailing on poles, making mud balls, and throwing them up to the mudder.  At first the Ethiopians did not want the ferenges (white people) to get their hands dirty but soon accepted the help and enjoyed their involvement. Birhane was profoundly touched that a new house was being built for her.

Sharon reports, “I am very grateful for this team’s time here with Mossy Foot, for their hearts to serve, and the way they related to the people.”

Please continue to pray for the Lord to pour out His wisdom and grace over Sharon as she seeks to encourage staff and support the work in Ethiopia.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

This is Ato (Mr.) Anjulo’s story about how the Mossy Foot Project has helped transform his life.

"I was a pastor in a church when I developed mossy foot disease. As my feet swelled and large, bumpy growths appeared on my toes, I began to experience discrimination from the church elders. They no longer wanted to eat with me or wash their feet in the bucket in which I washed my feet. I was insulted and humiliated by my friends and family. People who knew me did not want to walk on the road where I walked. When I realized that I was being cast out, I began to consider a decision that I never thought I would make. I wanted to stop serving God.

Before I developed mossy foot disease, I was a well-known farmer. All the time I farmed I never wore shoes. None of my parents, brothers, or sisters before me had mossy foot disease. It all started with me. I didn’t know what caused it. My feet were so big that they wouldn’t fit into the largest shoes sold in town.

For eight long years I went to many places people suggested seeking treatment from clinics and cultural doctors. None of the places were able to help me.

One of my daughters got married. Her husband asked if anyone in her family was a mossy foot patient. Fearing that he would send her away, she told him that no one in her family had mossy foot. After her husband’s question, my daughter came to my home and took me to a new mossy foot clinic that had just opened in Bale town.

At the clinic things happened that made me smile. They gave me soap, bleach, and Whitefield ointment. As I faithfully followed instructions, came regularly to the clinic, and wore shoes, the size of my feet slowly improved. Soon I was able to wear size 46 shoes. Month after month the bad smell and growths on my feet got less and less. Two years after I started attending the Mossy Foot Project Clinic, I was able to fit into a size 41 shoe, then size 40 and, finally, I was able to wear normal shoes sold in the market.

I was highly motivated to start a business but did not have the funds to do so, so I asked a neighbor to loan me the money. He leant me money, but at a high rate of interest. When I did not earn enough to pay him, he took my only milk cow, which I had raised for hard times.

When I heard that the Mossy Foot Project gave interest free self-help loans to their patients, I decided to ask a clinic worker. After hearing my story, and because I volunteered for Mossy Foot, they decided to lend me 1000 birr (about $58.00) without interest. They told me to return 10% of the loan every month. This made it possible for me to buy food and clothes for myself and my children. Now in place of the milk cow taken by the other man, I have a milk cow and many sheep and goats.

Other people are surprised by how my life has changed and ask me what my secret is. I tell them that it was God and the Mossy Foot Project. When I encounter people with mossy foot disease, I take them to the Mossy Foot Clinic. I am a changed man both physically and spiritually. My neighbors respect me and I am again serving at my church as a respected pastor.”

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Trip Reports Bring God Glory

Individuals and teams recently visiting Soddo have now returned home with precious memories and lasting fruit from love poured out in service to the people of Ethiopia.

Krissy Ricco, Sharon Daly's friend and former student, returned on Oct. 22. She shared one of her most powerful impressions came from seeing the transformative power of the micro-loan program in the lives of the women who had been helped.  She got to hear stories from twelve women who formed a co-op  using the loans for a variety of businesses from selling butter to making bread to harvesting poultry. On their own, these women decided to give a portion of their earnings each month to help the most needy in their village.  This was truly discipleship in action!

The Yates family (left) and Simpsons (right) visiting Mossy
Foot Clinic with Sharon Daly
During the time Sharon was in Ethiopia, she was able to welcome two young families from her home church, Reality Ventura, that came on an exploratory visit focused on possible future ministry partnerships. This team includes Kavi Simpson and Michelle Yates, two moms who are Family Medicine Doctors; Kavi's husband Taylor, an architect who has designed hospitals; and Michelle's husband Adam, an electrical engineer, along with a growing set of children. You can read more about their trip experience and their vision for ministry on their blog.

Sharon also hosted a team of six from New Life Anglican church in Petosky, Michigan led by their pastor Michael Bridge. This small but mighty team brought important supplies and found many ways to use their skills to bless others, from distributing clothing and shoes to the children of Mossy Foot patients, to helping to treat the sick (the team included a doctor and nurse), to helping to build two new homes for needy widows. Pastor Bridge even served as the guest preacher on Sunday at a local congregation. This brief video demonstrates the great joy released by the simple act of kindness initiated through providing a new home for a widow.

The Lord is doing great things in Ethiopia, and the Mossy Foot project is thankful for the way the Lord is placing a His love for Ethiopia in the hearts of many. We have been blessed to partner with these teams over the past month and look forward to the fruit of their efforts.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

News from Sharon and Krissy in Ethiopia

Sharon Daly, President of the Mossy Foot Project, and her friend Krissy Rico are currently in Ethiopia encouraging staff, visiting clinics, and checking on the welfare of widows and patients.
Sharon and Krissy visited this widow, raising her grandson,
 in her new home built by Mossy Foot and her church

They are traveling to remote locations, and on a recent trip they experience two tire blow outs, one going out and one coming back to Soddo.

During their first week, they were able to participate in the showing of the Jesus film on top of a mountain where human sacrifice had been practiced in the past. What a triumph for the Lord! They report that the film was well received since it was in the local language and that pastors in the community will be following up with those who expressed interest in learning more.

Sharon and Krissy standing on property donated by
the Ethiopian government for Mossy Foot Project 
God has brought about a sweet partnership between these two friends who already had a special relationship: Krissy was a student in the first elementary school class that Sharon taught at the beginning of her teaching career. When Krissy heard about Sharon’s planned trip, she felt moved to volunteer to join her for three of the five weeks Sharon will be in Ethiopia.

After a long day of ministry, Krissy shared the thoughts below based on her experience, thoughts that should speak to all of us about the contrast between first world and third-world problem. After you read this, please take a moment and pray for:
  • Krissy and Sharon to be filled with wisdom and grace as they visit and encourage patients and staff 
  • The staff of Mossy Foot Project to be strong and persevere, to be filled with God’s love, and to be able to communicate the gospel along with the practices for physical healing 
  • Patients to find hope and healing, for them to be reintegrated into their families and communities, and for them to find ways to work to supply their own needs 

Thoughts from Krissy on Perspective 

I was going to complain about the bed; I thought they forgot the mattress and gave me only the box springs…until I saw the bed used by a widow that looked like a wooden box with dead corn husks inside. When I asked about what looked like a piece of cloth, they told me it was outside to get the fleas off and that it was the widow’s blanket.

I was going to complain about the red clay all over my shoes…until I asked a man with Mossy Foot at the clinic where his shoes were. He told me he lost them two months ago and that he was too sick to come to the clinic until today when he came to purchase new ones.

I was going to complain about my hands…until I saw a lady who had leprosy and had no more fingers. She was also a Mossy Foot patient and desperately needed some medicine.

I was going to complain about how badly I need a pedicure…until I realized that many people have no nails on their hands and feet because of lack of protein in their diet.

I was going to complain about seeing the same food on the menu every day…until the shop owner told me not to buy cookies for the street kids because eating them would make them sick. He suggested bread and water instead.

God is teaching me about perspective here…how I should give thanks everyday and be grateful for all things big or small.
“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.” James 1:17