Dr. Mark Zimmerman is a United Methodist missionary assigned to work in Kathmandu, Nepal, a predominantly Hindu country in the Himalayan region of Asia.
A medical doctor specializing in internal medicine, Mark has been working in Nepal since 1986 – initially as a hospital-based clinical doctor, later as medical director of Patan Hospital (1998-2005), and now as director of the Nick Simons Institute (NSI), an organization working in Nepal with a mission to train and support skilled, compassionate rural health care workers.
"NSI emerged out of several confluent streams. First, those of us working in Nepal's hospitals have long been aware of (and frustrated by) the huge urban-rural gap in health care. For many people in the hills, quality health care is the privilege of the prosperous few. Second, in the last few years our mission hospitals have conducted innovative types of training that improved rural health care. Finally, Jim and Marilyn Simons of New York came to Nepal to create a memorial for their son, Nick, who had worked here and died. Through training and staff support, NSI is working to improve health care for rural Nepali people. We believe that God's hand brought these situations together, and we value your prayers for this exciting work."
During the summer of 1980, Mark worked as a medical student in a hospital in The Gambia, West Africa, and that experience stimulated his interest in overseas medicine. After completing his internal medicine training in 1986, he worked for two years as a doctor in Nepal, supported by funds from the United Methodist Women. This experience led Mark in 1990 to become a long-term GBGM missionary.
A native of Warminster, PA, Dr. Zimmerman holds a B.A. from Johns Hopkins University and an M.D. from Dartmouth Medical School. He did his residency in Internal Medicine at Upstate Medical Center in Syracuse, N.Y.
Mark is a member of the Lehman Memorial UMC in Hatboro, PA, although his most recent church affiliation in the U.S. was with the State Street UMC in Fulton, N.Y.
Mark is married to Deirdre Zimmerman, also a GBGM missionary. They are the parents of two sons, Zachary and Benjamin.
Mark Zimmerman is available for Covenant Relationship support in Susquehanna Annual Conference, Eastern Pennsylvania Annual Conference, New England Annual Conference, Peninsula/Delaware Annual Conference.
Deirdre Zimmerman is a missionary with the General Board of Global Ministries of the United Methodist Church – in partnership with the Church Missionary Society of Ireland – serving with her husband, Dr. Mark Zimmerman, in Kathmandu, Nepal.
A nutritionist and dietitian by training, Deirdre was first assigned to work for United Mission to Nepal’s Nutrition Programme, which addresses the problem of malnutrition in women and children through training and education.
After a two-year break to care for their young sons, Zachary and Benjamin, Deirdre returned to part-time work as advisor to Nutrition Promotion and Consultancy Services, an organization which is an offshoot of the previous Nutrition Programme.
Of her work Deirdre shares, “I see this as involvement in God’s work to restore full life and to provide for all the needs of all people: nutrition and health (in all its facets) being essential for people to achieve their God-given potential.” She continues to be busy with the care of their sons and also sees the support of Mark in his work as an important role.
In addition to her formal role, Deirdre understands her assignment as a ‘ministry of presence.’ “I hope my presence in Nepal as a United Methodist missionary can encourage the local Nepali church that the universal church stands in solidarity with them (a minority faith in a Hindu country), and that I may be a channel for bringing some of the gifts of the Nepal church into American churches. I also hope there will be opportunity in personal relationships with Hindu colleagues, friends and neighbours to share something of our Christian faith.”
A native of Ireland, Deirdre earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Nutrition and Dietetics in 1993 from Trinity College/Dublin Institute of Technology. She earned certification in tropical community medicine and health in 1996 from the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, and in 1999 was certified in the management of food and nutrition programs by the International Agricultural Centre in the Netherlands. From 1993-1995 Dierdre was a clinical dietitian at Birmingham England Heartlands Hospital where she later worked as a senior pediatric dietitian.
Maternity and Child Nutrition Project is the specific project title in Nutrition Promotion and Consultancy Services. When contributing, please reference with GBGM project number 3020440.
Deirdre Zimmerman is available for Covenant Relationship support in Susquehanna Annual Conference, Eastern Pennsylvania Annual Conference, New England Annual Conference, Peninsula/Delaware Annual Conference.