As believers, we often dream of doing great things for God’s kingdom here on earth. We want to be part of something much bigger than ourselves. And many times, this dream causes us to look to some future time or large ministry as the solution. However, Jesus often spoke of looking to the needs of our neighbors and those most vulnerable as some of the highest callings for his disciples.

Last summer a medical and a nursing student walked into a small bodega in the Hispanic neighborhood of Hunting Park in North Philadelphia. They wore scrubs, stethoscopes around their necks, and carried a medical backpack filled with health assessment forms, educational handouts, and supplies needed to carry out basic health screens for reading a person’s blood sugar, blood pressure, and body mass index. The temperature was in the 90s and…

Jan just moved to Philadelphia this summer. As an emergency room intern she has a new job in an unfamiliar hospital, a new apartment, and a new roommate. All of this “uprooted-ness” happened in a mere three weeks, and Jan is feeling a bit unmoored. What she thought was going to be her exciting adventure in the city has become a confusing whirlwind.

During medical school, Jan was…

Aug 22, 2018

The Fullness of Christ

A Report of the 2018 Philadelphia Summer Medical Institute

After participating seven years in the Philadelphia Summer Medical Institute (SMI), an evangelistic community health project, one consistent observation I’ve made is that God uses this ministry to not only bring health education and the gospel message to residents of North Philadelphia, but also to provide the Christian health care student participants with unique spiritual lessons relevant to each individual.

SMI took place June 23–July 14 and is…

In the Bible Jesus said that after loving God wholeheartedly, the second greatest commandment was to “love your neighbor as yourself.” Upon consideration, this requires much on our part. To love our neighbors implies that we must know them—who they are and where they live. We must talk with them, interact with them, and understand details of their lives.

From June 23-July 14, 18 Christian health care students


The Philadelphia Summer Medical Institute (SMI) took place June 24–July 15 and is a joint project of Medical Campus Outreach and Esperanza Health Center, a local Christian health center. This summer 23 Christian healthcare students and over 60 rotating volunteer “faculty” (Christian medical professionals) provided free door-to-door health screens and medical referrals in Kensington, North Philadelphia. The teams worked with local interpreters for Spanish-speaking households and referred…

Jul 14, 2017

Summer Medical Institute 2017

Fresh Insights from a Medical Student in the Field


Summer Medical Institute is in the home stretch!


Twenty-three students, about half from Philadelpha and half from all over the country, have been going door-to-door in West Kensington since June 25 (through July 15).

In addition to providing medical care and health screenings to our under-served neighbors, they have been building relationships and sowing the seeds of the gospel.


By Laura Layer, Medical Campus Outreach Director


And Jesus went away from there and withdrew to the district of Tyre and Sidon. And behold, a Canaanite woman from that region came out and was crying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David; my daughter is severely oppressed by a demon.” But he did not answer her a word. And his


by Holly Favino, SMI Director


Is it worthwhile participating in a short-term health care ministry project? Will it have impact or provide any meaningful long-term good? As the director of the Philadelphia Summer Medical Institute (SMI), I’ve had the privilege of reviewing our research, following up with local church partners, reading the students’ blog and evaluations, witnessing the program firsthand for…

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