Richard Greene

Looking for miracles? Here’s one for the ages

Poster of Mully
Poster of Mully MMXV Bardis Productions

After a preview of a movie coming to local theaters next week, I recommend putting it on your list of things not to be missed.

The real-life story of Dr. Charles Mully is beyond inspirational and if you are looking for evidence of miracles in the modern age, you will find it as this remarkable story unfolds on the big screen.

It all happens in the East African country of Kenya and takes you on a journey from the stark poverty of the unimaginable living conditions in villages consisting of earthen shacks to the capital city of Nairobi and back again.

Mully was 6 when he was abandoned by his family and left to fend for himself, like three million other orphans there, wandering from place to place looking for food and water.

After somehow surviving into young adulthood, he finds his way to Nairobi and a job there.

In spite of the odds against him ever advancing beyond the meager existence that would characterize anyone coming from such a hopeless beginning, he finds remarkable success.

His rise to wealth and power occurs with unlikely stratospheric progress as he provides an amazing lifestyle for himself, his wife and their eight children.

Enjoying prosperity beyond anything he could have imagined, Mully is set for a life of abundance able to acquire just about anything he wanted.

But he became somehow troubled that such was not his life’s purpose. The movie’s description of what happened next tells of the unexpected: “Jeopardizing his own life and the security of his family, Charles Mully risks everything and sets in motion a series of events that is nothing short of astonishing.”

After leaving his successful company behind, he moves his family back to the place from whence he came. There they set up a home and begin rescuing a few of the orphans who, like his own beginnings, spent their days drifting the dirt streets and trying to survive.

Soon those few grew to more and more as Mully enlarged their home to take in an ever-growing number of children. But that would be just the beginning.

When the confines of the villages limited the ongoing expansion of his mission, he moved into the wide-open spaces of the dry and barren East African tundra.

There they built their own village but its future was limited by the lack of a water supply to support the very large population now located there.

Mully brought in a commercial operator to drill a water well. After trying three different locations and finding nothing but dry holes, the future looked bleak.

Now comes the miracle.

While unable to sleep, Mully gets out of bed in the middle of the night and tells his wife that God is going to show him where water can be found. They proceed down a pathway then veer off for about 50 feet and put a stake in the ground.

Workers in the family start digging with shovels and picks and soon there is water so abundant a bridge is needed to cross the stream that results from the flow.

Today they are growing crops in the desert and supplying food enough for the 10,000 members of the world’s largest family and beyond.

The poverty that results in continued growth in the Kenyan orphaned population seems unimaginable and hopeless.

Charles Mully remains undeterred by those conditions and his story stirs the world. Learning of it all is well worth the two hours it will take to experience it.

Check it out, including theaters and show times, at

Richard Greene is a former Arlington mayor and served as an appointee of President George W. Bush as regional administrator for the Environmental Protection Agency.