Marja Bergen

author, mental health activist, follower of Christ

Category: Day by Day (page 1 of 27)

Reverence for life – A life worth living – Part 38

When Dr. Schweitzer was around eight years old, he experienced something one Sunday morning that helped shape his life. At the urging of a young friend, he reluctantly aimed his slingshot at several birds which, he later wrote, “sang sweetly into the morning sunshine.” Moved, he “made a silent vow to miss. At that moment, […]


Caring for the sick – A life worth living – Part 37

Schweitzer created a hospital village as well as a leper village. By the mid-1960’s more than 100,000 patients had been treated since its founding in 1913. In the 1960’s it was housing 500 patients and their relatives at a time. Before this, people had to depend on fetishes and superstitions. When new patients arrived, they […]


Why don’t you believe me?

  “ If I am telling the truth, why don’t you believe me? ” John 8:46   Can you “hear” the frustration in Jesus’ voice? He is speaking to the Jews who had for too long been tricked by believing the lies that appealed to their pride and ego. They were no longer capable of […]


The hospital-a village – A life worth living – Part 36

The Albert Schweitzer hospital of the 1960’s was far from the traditional hospital we’re familiar with. It was not a single building filled with beds where patients recovered from illness in a formal setting. Gabonese patients came a long way and stayed in huts, along with those who had brought them. This was a hospital […]


Founding the hospital – A life worth living – Part 35

In 1913, the Schweitzers prepared to travel to Lambarènè, on the Ogowe River in what was then French Equatorial Africa. Here they founded their hospital at a station set up by the Paris Missionary Society. This area is now part of the independent West African republic of Gabon. But first, they needed to do a […]


…and you shall find

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” – Matthew 7:7


Resolve to be a jungle doctor – A life worth living – Part 34

From Schweitzer’s autobiography: “One brilliant summer morning in Günsbach, during the Whitsuntide holidays—it was in 1896—as I awoke, the thought came to me that I must not accept this good fortune as a matter of course, but must give something in return.” “While outside the birds sang, I reflected on this thought and before I […]


Albert Schweitzer – A life worth living – Part 33

ALBERT SCHWEITZER (1875-1965) Now for something completely different. A man who served to overcome needs in a remote area of the world.  Albert Schweitzer was an Alsatian-German religious philosopher, musicologist and medical missionary in Africa. He was especially known for founding the Albert Schweitzer Hospital which provided much needed care for the natives of Gabon […]


Gandhi and Indian independence – A life worth living – Part 32

Gandhi brought Satyagraha to India in 1915 and was soon elected to the Indian National Congress political party. He began to push for independence from British rule, organizing resistance to a 1919 law that gave British authorities the power to imprison suspected revolutionaries without trial. Britain responded by mowing down 400 unarmed protesters and killing […]


Satyagraha – A life worth living – Part 31

Satyagraha literally means “truth force,” “truth” meaning a right granted by nature and the universe that should not be impeded on by man. Satyagraha was a focused nonviolent resistance to a particular injustice. A person using Satyagraha would resist injustice by refusing to follow an unjust law. “In doing so, he would not be angry, […]

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