In this testimony, which the church heard on 5 and 6 March this year, Michelle Chiang, a volunteer with City Harvest Church’s Cancer Care Group, and her daughter Ariel tell of how a simple outreach to an elderly woman with cancer led to the involvement of their whole family.
“I am one of the volunteers of the Cancer Care Group,” Michelle Chiang began. “I wanted to be involved in this ministry because my own dad passed away from cancer. My husband is also a cancer survivor. He was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma Cancer in 2015 but thank God he is in remission and is healthy today.
“Last year, my family signed up for this Church Without Walls ministry, and I was so happy that we could all serve God together.
“In November 2021 last year, I was introduced to Madam Low. She is a very poor cancer patient, who stays alone in a three-room flat and has no living dependants. Besides being hunchbacked and wheelchair-bound, every round of cancer treatment required 28 consecutive days of radiotherapy. This meant that for 28 consecutive days, we needed a two-person team—a driver and another helper—to bring Madam Low from her home to the hospital for treatment and back.
“When I was first given this assignment, I was quite apprehensive. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, there was already a shortage of medical escorts. December was also the holiday season, and everyone was very busy with their own family commitments. To escort and help her for twenty-eight consecutive days was not easy.
“But as we prayed, God moved many people to help us. Even my own cell group leader and members, who were not part of this ministry, volunteered to help. I was most excited that my husband and kids also pitched in. My daughter, Ariel, who is 16 years old, came with me for my first visit with Madam Low.”
SERVING THE NEEDY AS A FAMILY
Ariel added, “When I went with Mum to visit Madam Low, it was a real eye-opener for me. She lived in a very old housing estate. I have never been to such an old neighbourhood before. When Mum wheeled Madam Low out of the flat, I was asked to lock the door. It was a big challenge! I have never used an old padlock before. At home, we use a modern keyless entry system!
“But Madam Low was a very friendly lady—it was easy to chat with her as we accompanied her at the hospital.”
Michelle continued, “I was really happy to see my daughter rising up to the occasion, assisting with the wheelchair and befriending her. Besides getting to know the elderly, it was a good time for the two of us—mother and daughter—to bond with each other. We really enjoyed doing this project as a family.
“In fact, Ariel had such a wonderful experience that the rest of the family also came in to help. My husband Vincent took time off from work to drive on three occasions. Then, on New Year’s Eve, when manpower was short, my 15-year-old son also chipped in.
“During Christmas, I asked Madam Low if she liked loh bak (Chinese braised pork). She said she had not eaten it for a long time as she was given a non-protein diet by other charities. She wished she could eat loh bak again.
“When I told my mother about Madam Low’s desire, she came early to my house on Christmas Day to prepare loh bak, using our family’s special recipe. When my mother, my three kids and I brought lunch to Madam Loh, she was so surprised. It was not a radiotherapy day, and yet, we were there to care for her. It was a joy to see the big smile on her face and how much she enjoyed her food.
“Even after the 28 days of treatment, I continued to visit Madam Loh. She is now very open to the gospel. She is very grateful that in the most difficult time of her life, Christians came and surrounded her with love.
“I am so thankful to all my fellow volunteers. Besides assisting with the treatment in the hospital, many also became handymen and repairmen to fix things in her home.”