Debbie worked with the deaf in Ethiopia for 11 years, teaching this largely forgotten people group how to communicate with each other and the outside world. She has a heart for the marginalized deaf who have never known they had a name, much less that there is a God who loves them.
In 2015, Debbie returned to the US to take care of her father, who sadly passed away the following year. She knew God wanted her to return to the mission field, so she began praying for the right opportunity. God answered her prayer by introducing her to Hope’s Cry through a mutual friend and she is now a full-time resident missionary working with the deaf community in Soroti.
She has developed a training and mentorship program for the deaf to teach sign-language and to show them how to teach others.
A Letter From Debbie
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I have been living among the deaf of Soroti for a while now. And, there are several things I have discovered.
- Some of the deaf are Catholic, others Jehovah Witness, and a few are Muslim. They live and work together without denominational differences; partly due to lack of understanding of the religion they follow. Church services here are interpreted in a hearing church by well meaning friends, who do their best, to inform their deaf friends what the pastor is saying.
- The main belief the deaf have in common is that Jesus Christ was born of a virgin, lived, died on the cross for our sins and was resurrected three days later.
As we make our small sacrifices to serve God, we are always encouraged and rewarded by God far in excess than anything we can imagine. I get to experience that child like faith, uncomplicated by religion, on the faces of the deaf. I also get to experience their spiritual growth as we sit and discuss question after question they ask about Jesus. They are hungry and thirsty for more understanding of Jesus who died for them.
I have been to the one deaf school that Soroti has to offer and have fellowshipped with the deaf there and taught a few songs. One of their favorites is a simple song. (God is so good, God is so good, God is so good… then you sign WHY! ) and point to a deaf and he gives and answer, once again a simple child like faith and song.
To me, enlightenment is to see God working to bring the scripture to life before our very eyes. Uncomplicated child-like faith! It’s that simple.
Please continue to pray for the Silent Ones Deaf Training Center. Pray God will reach those deaf who don’t know the simple truth and good news of Jesus Christ
God bless… serving the deaf in Soroti, Uganda