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Using Your Talents

Submitted by: JulieCarlsbad CA

In Akron, Ohio there is a medical doctor, Charles Casto, who embodies his faith. Dr. Casto began manifesting his faith in life through pro bono work in Bolivia. Taking two of his children with him, he participated in medical missionary work with other medical personnel among the indigenous Bolivians.

What is particularly remarkable is the fact that Dr. Casto himself is severely handicapped through two major physical problems: first, when a young boy, he played in a pick-up sandlot softball game and during the game injured his hip. He received medical attention for the injury, but the cure was worse than the affliction. His hip never properly healed, and by the time proper medical attention was given to it, the damage was irreparable.

Secondly, when on a hunting expedition in Canada with a group of other physicians, Dr. Casto was caught unawares in his hunting blind by a cow moose who trampled him and damaged his good leg. He had the good fortune of being among doctors - the only thing that saved his life - but he then was crippled in his other leg.

Recently, with his hips and knees replaced by plastic and steel, Dr. Casto undertook medical mission work in Central America. The site was a two hour walk up a mountain trail, a trip he couldn't undertake on foot, and even mule-back travel was impossible because he couldn't sit on the animal. The villagers fashioned a sedan chair from an old wooden dining room chair and two two-by-fours wrapped with padding and carried him to the work site. Even with that accommodation, Dr. Casto was drenched with sweat and in pain. Still, he spent the next week from dawn to dusk dealing with medical situations brought on by neglect and lack of available health care.

Why does he expose himself to this pain and labor? In his words, I'm a Christian and I can't imagine not using my skills in the service of others.

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