Jesus our Healer is a core tenet of Alliance founder A. B. Simpson’s Fourfold Gospel. God uses many different means to heal, but the “purpose of divine healing is always to glorify Jesus,” he emphasized. This is Léonard Maboungou’s story.
On September 8, 2016, Alliance international workers in the Republic of the Congo Jay and Beverly Bellamy issued an urgent prayer request on behalf of Léonard, site manager for their Christian Learning Center in Pointe-Noire. He had been found unresponsive—lying outside of the church where he’d attended an evening meeting.
“Our dear friend is 52 and has three young children,” the couple said. Léonard’s wife, Chancelvie, is on the Bellamys’ Bible story recording team.
Léonard was taken unconscious to the hospital, where he has served as staff administrator, diagnosed with a hemorrhagic stroke.
Later that week, the Bellamys reported that Mama Honorine, “a church planter who serves as the mother or grandmother of just about everyone,” was at the hospital. When the nurses asked why she was there so much, she replied, “I’m here for my son.”
“We can’t understand how this could happen to such a kind, gentle man,” they responded. “We call him ‘Papa Gentil’ (Mr. Kind) because he is always compassionate. When we aren’t working, we wait here to get word of his condition.”
“Please pray for his complete recovery and that many at this hospital will come to know the Savior, whom they see lives in him,” the Bellamys urged.
Four days after his hospital admission, Léonard regained consciousness and was able to identify his wife and daughters. “He was anxious about securing a key for the day guard at the learning center, so he even remembers his work there,” the Bellamys reported.
One month after his hospital admittance, Léonard’s feeding tube was removed, and he was able to speak.
A hospital colleague also said medical staff had told her, “People here don’t recover from this kind of hemorrhagic stroke; that Léonard is still alive and improving is completely your God. Praise Him!”
“It’s amazing what God has done so far,” the Bellamys reported in late October. “We were informed after our previous update that doctors didn’t think Léonard would improve any further because too much blood had pooled in his head—they were amazed he was still alive.”
Remarkably, the hospital agreed to a solution that had never been attempted in Congo before: they ordered expensive surgical equipment from another country to operate. “The only other solution would have been to evacuate Léonard, which would have been a huge risk and also quite expensive,” the Bellamys said.
Before Léonard went into surgery, his wife and brother assured the doctor of their prayers and that many others around the world also were praying.
Léonard’s surgery was a success. “He’s recognizing and talking to people,” the Bellamys reported. They also noted three unexpected outcomes from his illness:
- First, the doctor and the hospital loved Léonard so much that they were willing to cover the cost for the medical equipment and his surgery.
- Léonard’s surgeon acknowledged that he didn’t perform the procedure alone. “He was trembling before the operation, but he felt that God was helping him,” the Bellamys said.
- Third, the life-saving surgical equipment purchased is now available in Congo, meaning this type of surgery is now possible for others who may need it in the future.
After Léonard’s November release from the hospital, he and Chancelvie moved into the Bellamys’ home. (He required special equipment for his rehabilitation, which the Bellamys could provide—thanks to their Work Fund to which donors have contributed.) “We are encouraged by his tremendous progress,” the Bellamys said.
Léonard continues his disciplined rehab schedule and “God continues to heal—he is now able to walk!” the Bellamys reported in mid-March. Last month, the Maboungous moved to their new home for the coming year—an apartment in the Bellamys’ guesthouse. During the Bellamys’ upcoming U.S. home assignment, Chancelvie will host the guesthouse, allowing more time for Léonard’s complete rehabilitation.
“Leonard’s continued recovery has astonished his medical friends and extended family!” the Bellamys exclaimed. “Please pray for his full restoration and the ability to resume his work and ministry.”