Bits From Bangladesh

A couple of months ago, I slipped and fell in the shower. I was horrified to see my arm deeply cut and split open. I grabbed my arm with my other hand and screamed. Providentially, my husband, Jim, was still in the house. He would have been on his way to worship about five minutes later.  

About knee level in the shower there was a sharp piece of plumbing that stuck out about eight inches from the wall. That is what sliced through my arm. I asked Jim to get something for a tourniquet, but I ended up wrapping my arm in a small towel and holding it tightly until we got to the hospital. At the hospital, they put gauze on it. When we took a quick peek, it looked like a string of gauze had stuck to my arm. That little white string turned out to be a nerve.  

It took a plastic surgeon an hour to put me back together. The sharp object dug through the inside of my arm more than a half inch deep, three inches long, and about one inch wide. Miraculously, it did not cut a tendon, major blood vessel, or major muscle! Right after the accident, I saw that all my fingers still worked and that I had feeling. 

People tell me that they are sorry about what happened. All I can think of is how blessed I am that I will have full function very soon. So far, I am amazed at how well the scar is healing.

The week after my accident Madhya Roy, the Women’s Ministries, Health Ministries, and Shepardess director, and I were scheduled to put on a two-day training seminar for directors and leaders in our departmental areas.The traditional orna (scarf) came in handy. I learned to make a nice, comfortable sling out of it. 

The photo on the lower left shows some of the attendees at the training seminar. The women are always so pretty in their saris or salwar kamise.

This seems to be revival meeting time. We have been to revival meetings in the South, North, and East Missions. My husband is the president of the Bangladesh Adventist Union Mission and I am the Children’s Ministries and Family Ministries director, so we often travel to the missions and meet with the people. The picture to the right is of the first revival meeting we went to in the south. I love the tent! The seating arrangement is interesting in this part of the world. The men sit cross-legged on the left and the women sit cross-legged on the right. Fortunately, they put a couple of benches in the back for foreigners.   

These people sat cross-legged for worship before breakfast. Then they came back and sat cross-legged until lunch. Then they sat cross-legged for the rest of the day. It was about nine in the evening when they stopped for supper. They sat cross-legged for 13 sermons that day!

The music was great. I really hope that the Bangladeshis can hang onto their traditional music. 

The floor of the tent is covered with tarps that the people sit on. Shoes are left at the edge of the tarp. We hope we can find our shoes when we come back out!

Our second trip to revival meetings was up north. We stayed in the guest rooms at the Jalchatra Adventist Seminary and School. In the photo above you can see the door to our room. You can also see our shower, which consists of a large red bucket full of water, a red dipper, and some soap, located on our front porch.  I never quite figured out how a bath was supposed to happen on the front porch! I ended up having Jim pull it inside. 

One of the most significant things I am learning is that we can get along without many things that I used to consider essential. I have to tell myself that if the people here can do without it, so can I. 

At the revival meeting location, there were ropes tied between trees planted in long rows. Tarps were thrown over the ropes and that was the lodging for most of the attendees (pictured above with “doors” open and closed).

The photo above shows the line of people waiting to see a visiting doctor for free medical service. 

It was great to hear the people sing and to see their devotion and hunger to learn more about God.  

Please pray for us in Bangladesh.  We are struggling with some very difficult problems.  

Janell Brauer


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