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Ebola Survivor Dr. Rick Sacra Receives Prestigious Award to Expand Medical Mission in Liberia

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Dr. Rick Sacra appeared on Tuesday's CBN Newswatch to talk about his award and
the work he's doing in Liberia. Click the player to watch the interview. 

An American missionary doctor who risked his life to serve patients at the height of 2014 Ebola crisis has been honored for his service, presented with a prestigious award for his work in Africa.

Dr. Rick Sacra contracted the Ebola virus in 2014 while caring for pregnant women at a Christian hospital in Liberia. He narrowly survived.

CBN News interviewed Sacra shortly after his recovery, and right before he returned to Liberia to continue his work. "I was just focusing on the Lord. I tell you I hung on to the Lord's Prayer like a drowning man," he told CBN's Heather Sells. "I prayed through that prayer many times a day and just wept through it most of the time."

Thursday in New York, Dr. Sacra received the L'Chaim Prize for Outstanding Christian Medical Missionary Service from African Mission Healthcare.

The prize includes a half-million dollar award that will help train other medical experts in the west African nation.

Sacra talked about what he's learned from other missionaries about the intangible rewards of their service.

"As I got to know older missionary doctors and people who have devoted their lives to this kind of service, they don't regret it, they don't say 'I've given up so much and what do I have.' They say 'Look at the treasured relationships I have. Look at the little thing I have been able to do and God has used it and multiplied it.' There's nothing as rewarding as that."

The L'Chaim Prize was started by American Jewish philanthropists Mark and Erica Gerson to help improve the continent's healthcare infrastructure.

"These Christian missionaries go into environments that are completely forbidding {and} give up everything that we in the West consider necessities, in order to fulfill their religious obligation to serve the poor," Gerson said.

Dr. Sacra has served with the missions organization known as SIM which has a staff of more than 4,000 workers from 65 nationalities serving in more than 70 countries. 
His $500,000 award will be used to help train others and improve the ELWA (Eternal Love Winning Africa) Hospital where he works in Liberia. 

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Benjamin Gill oversees all web content as the Multimedia Manager for He has been on staff with CBN News as an internet and broadcast producer since 2000. You can follow him on Twitter @BenGillCBN. Here are some of his commentaries and articles: Pursuing Truth in a World of Fake News: Reflections of a Christian Journalist After 20 Years with CBN News The Breaking Point: Pandemic Pain, Persistent Prayer, and God's Bigger Picture Plagues, the End Times, and Trusting in God's Protection: 'You Will Hear Us and Rescue Us' 12 Powerful Bible Verses to Build Your Faith and Fight Fear