“Whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” (John 4:14, NIV)

I was a young MCC service worker when I first heard the allegory of a community with an ambulance service. The ambulance would rush to the hospital the many injured people from a very steep and treacherous mountain road on which there were constant accidents. Eventually, as the story goes, the community was able to pool resources and repair the road. Injury rates plummeted, along with the need for the ambulance.

The allegory has stuck with me as a simple reminder of how, at our best, MCC is not about emergency services. We are about working with communities to find deeper, lasting and more elegant solutions to complex and vexing community challenges.

In this issue, as we examine the fundamental importance of water, we see a number of beautiful examples of “upstream” solutions. The cholera story in Haiti is becoming a modern MCC example of community-grounded solutions that refuse to settle for treating symptoms.

Inspired by Jesus who offered living water to those who sought a drink only for the day, MCC desires to share God’s enduring love and compassion for all. In this issue, we see glimpses of God’s love as communities gain access to clean, life-sustaining water.

We rejoice with our Haitian partners — and with you, our ministry partners — when cholera rates drop to zero following the introduction of simple, healthy latrines. Thank you for investing in the gift of water, a gift of love.

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