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678-280-6630 (West) | 770-806-0162 (East)

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678-280-6630 West Gwinnett clinic
770-806-0162 East Gwinnett clinic

African Medical Nurse Comforting Senior Patient

Letter from the Executive Director: Why we do What we Do

Dear Friends: 

I hope you have read about our 2021 achievements detailed in our last newsletter. We are clearly recovering from the negative impact of COVID-19 and are so grateful for the support you extended to us during that tumultuous season. We are optimistic our impact by the end of 2022 will demonstrate a full recovery, which would suggest the poor and uninsured of our community have recovered as well, including resuming the health and dental preventative care routines that are so vital to their personal and household stability. 

By mid-summer, I will complete my 11th year working as the Executive Director of Good Samaritan Health Centers of Gwinnett, my beloved “Good Sam.” During 2021, the untimely passing of my younger brother and my oldest daughter and I having life-saving surgery for cancer within four months of each other gave me reason to reflect on much, including my time spent leading this organization. Only God knows how much longer I will enjoy that privilege and responsibility. But as for the why I do it, that answer is oh so clear to me. Let me share a memory with you that has stuck with me for more than a dozen years. It reminds me of the importance of what we do at Good Sam Gwinnett. 

Through my church, I became acquainted with Good Sam Gwinnett as a volunteer more than a dozen years ago. Unable to speak Spanish, I was of little use to the clinic except for filling unglamorous behind-the-scenes roles, including serving as the parking lot safety man. I would stand at the entrance of the clinic’s parking lot and allow or block incoming traffic, depending on if an open parking space was available. On the first Monday of each month, I also kept tabs on how many people had successfully become enrolled as new patients. The limit back then was 50 people. After lucky number 50 was enrolled, I was to stop all incoming traffic so that those in line who were being turned away could return to their cars and exit safely.  

At mid-day on one such Monday, after lucky number 50 had been enrolled, a car attempted to turn into the parking lot, and I stopped it. A young Hispanic woman was driving, accompanied by an elderly woman in the passenger seat. The driver spoke very little English and struggled to understand my explanation about why she could not go into the clinic. I found myself repeating a firm “No” several times, only to watch her begin to cry. She eventually backed up and drove off in great distress. 

Patients waiting in line at Good Sam Gwinnett.

Patients waiting in line at the old Good Samaritan Health Center of Gwinnett.

That encounter haunted me. In fact, it was on my mind a year later when I found myself listening to a request that I become involved in a leadership role with a struggling charitable health clinic. That encounter became the reason behind my plans to turn around and expand the Good Samaritan Health Center, was the reason we fought to stay open during the worst of the pandemic and is still the reason today that we plan for additional expansion. A faith-filled Christian organization should never think it has reached enough people or that it has accomplished enough good for the Kingdom. We simply cannot hand out too many cups of cold water. A faith-filled Christian organization should almost never say, “No.” This is why whenever I’m asked if we will get any bigger, my answer is always, “Yes!” 

We do not know where our third clinic will be located or when it will open, but we know that someday there will be a third clinic. And after that one, as long as the Lord provides a way, there will be yet another. It is not our goal to be the largest charitable healthcare organization in Gwinnett County, but we also don’t object if that be the truth. There is an ever-increasing number of people living in Gwinnett who need the services we provide, and of course, there are even more who do not know the Lord. That is why we will continue to grow. No, it is not our goal to be the largest, but it is our goal to be obedient and able to say, “We went as far as You lead us, and we never said no.” 

Whether you have just recently learned about us or have supported us for years, we are grateful for your generosity and share with you the credit for impact in the lives we touch. I pray we may continue to count on you to help us grow in answer to Jesus’ directive, “Heal the sick who are there, and tell them ‘The Kingdom of God has drawn near to you.’” (Luke 10:9) 

May you be blessed in abundance so you may bless with abandon! 

With brotherly love, 

Gregory E.. Lang, Ph.D.

Greg Lang






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