Total Living Network and Bill Kurtis, a nationally acclaimed journalist and television producer, in cooperation with Mercy Ships, will be filming Acts Of Mercy onboard the Mercy Ship Anastasis in Monrovia, Liberia for the next two weeks. The program will focus on the candidates for surgery and the skilled volunteer surgeons and physicians who feel called to help the poor of West Africa.
The Anastasis was welcomed into port with an official ceremony. United Nations Mission in Liberia Special Representative Alan Doss described the arrival of Mercy Ships as the presence of hope and a message of peace for the Liberian people. National Transitional Government of Liberia Vice Chairman Wesley Momo Johnson expressed gratitude to the crew for their service as living for others to live. Dr. Peter Coleman, the Minister of Health and Social Welfare spoke of the ships welcome return to Liberias shores.
The Mercy Ship, Anastasis, (translated as resurrection, giving back life) gives true meaning to her name. Victims of gross deformities come to the dock in droves in hopes of being healed. Who will be chosen? How many can be helped? In a country where there is only one physician per 50,000 people* and many cannot afford even to buy an aspirin, Mercy Ships has heard the call to bring healthcare and humanitarian services to the poor and afflicted.
While onboard, Bill Kurtis will meet the patients and their families, learning about their tumors and struggles with illness. He will capture on film how they look and feel after the surgical transformation, and hear their thoughts after receiving the gift of an extreme makeover that really matters. In addition, Bill Kurtis will be interviewing staff, and surgeons onboard, and meeting crew families. They will share their stories of how one becomes a giver of life as Bill takes a closer look at the sacrifices and victories of volunteers who open their own lives and careers to fully serve God and his people through their Acts of Mercy.
Mercy Ships founded in 1978, has treated more than 300,000 people in village medical clinics, performing 18,000 surgeries, 110,000 dental treatments and completing close to 350 construction and agriculture projects including schools, clinics, orphanages and water wells. Each year more than 1,600 short-term volunteers serve with Mercy Ships.
The program will air on national television and be available on DVD in the spring of 2006 through Total Living Network.
* World Health Statistics 2005 released by the World Health Organization, p.48