A personal story from Dan Johnson, associate pastor at Hilmar Covenant Church
I worked part time at the Paul Carlson Medical Program (PCMP) while a student at North Park, from 1973-1976. The PCMP office was located on Foster Ave. in what is now one of the rooms of the Sweden Shop. It was a very special job for me; I remembered quite vividly when Paul Carlson was killed in 1964 and so to be able to share in his legacy by working for PCMP was quite a privilege.
My primary job at PCMP was packing barrels for Africa. We received a wide variety of donations of medical supplies and other materials at the office for the hospital and personnel in Congo, which needed to be safely and securely packed for the long, slow trip to Imeloko. Delicate things like microscopes, machinery, and medicines had to be carefully cushioned so they would not break in transit. I knew my efforts were very important to the work in Congo, and I was grateful – and proud – to be part of this incredible ministry.
My work at PCMP was meaningful, interesting, purposeful, and fun. Throughout my life, I have continued to follow and support the work of Paul Carlson’s legacy in Congo. I am excited about future partnerships that I can help create to further the mission and ministry of what is now the Paul Carlson Partnership. For me, this commitment began when I saw Paul Carlson’s face on Time and Life magazines following his death in 1964. I was eleven years old, old enough to read the articles, be shocked by the photos, and realize the notable place and impact the Covenant Church had on the world stage. And I wanted to be an active part of it! I believe this was the beginning of my call to ministry, which grew, developed, and slowly took shape over the next thirteen years. I’m grateful that the legacy of Paul Carlson has been a significant part of my journey, all along the way.