Angelo’s Graduation Ceremony

Dear Friends and Supporters of SMARD,

I am pleased to share a short note of celebration. On Saturday, October 14th, Angelo Deng became an official graduate of Kenya Methodist University. While his residency is still in the process of being completed, he was officially recognized as a graduate because his course work had been fulfilled. He was recognized before his professors and his peers as “Dr Angelo.”

I learned from Angelo that of the 78 students who began medical school with him in 2016 (including 12 students from either Sudan or South Sudan), only 44 of them successfully completed the rigorous 6-year program, and Angelo is the only one from Sudan or South Sudan in his class to make it to the finish line. I felt what could only be described as a father’s sense of pride in seeing what he has accomplished.

James Baak (SMARD Founder), Dr. Angelo Deng, and Mike Vogt (SMARD USA Board Chair)

In sitting with Angelo, the morning of his graduation ceremony, I asked him what he was feeling. He said that he feels an immense amount of gratitude to those who have supported him and prayed for him along the way and, “Without the intervention and sacrificial support of those who decided to help me, I would not be in a position to now help my community.” He then looked at me with a smile on his face and began to quote 1 Samuel 2:8:

“He raises the poor from the dust,
He lifts the needy from the ash heap,
to make them sit with nobles,
and inherit a seat of honor…”

Thank you to all of you for the part you have played in this incredible God-story. Angelo will return to Lietnhom in 2024 as the lead medical doctor at the Achiek Women’s Clinic.  Please pray for him to have wisdom and discernment as he steps into this role that he has prepared for over the last 7 years.

In Christ,

Mike Vogt

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