Mission Bush Pilot and Nurse

After spending three years in Guyana, South America, we have now moved to Bewani, 50 Km south of Vanimo, Papua New Guinea. We have started a new humanitarian aviation ministry here. In visiting with health officials and church people here, the need for an aviation program to reach into remote villages became very apparent. We are taking health workers and medicines/vaccines, into remote village airstrips and bringing out critically ill patients to the hospital. We also fly in educational materials for schools, as well as take in Bible workers. Toni is helping with the medical end of things, while Gary takes care of the flying part. We have several local lay missionaries we sponsor and we do ground transport for patients as well. We are volunteers here to serve our God and the unreached people of Papua New Guinea. We have a great need for more people to join in this effort.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Pressing Onward

What a week it has been and it isn't even over yet!  Today is the first day this week I haven't flown. I had a flight scheduled but most of the passengers decided at the last minute they weren't ready to go back to the bush, so it was canceled. That was fine with me as I am getting tired.  I have flown over 24 hrs in the last week alone, with many, many landings in the bush.  Toni and I spent half a day yesterday running around town making purchases to fly out to the bush (did more of the same today). Then we went out to eat (that is a rare treat here) with some missionaries from another church. We had just finished eating when the phone call came.  There is a medivac for a young girl up in the Northwest. Could I go? We had to leave our friends right away so I could take Toni home and get my flight bag and change clothes, then rush to the airport, fuel up the plane and take off.  Here you have to be on the ground by official sunset (5:35 p.m.) when flying a single engine.

 The girl was up along the northern Venezuela border so I was going to have to make every minute count in order to have her back in Georgetown before sundown.  On the way up, there was a large storm moving into my path, but it held until I was past. I was on the ground at the village only 8 minutes--loading up the patient and her father. They had been warned that time was an issue for this flight. As we raced back to Georgetown, I noticed the storm had crossed over my flight path and my way was now clear. God is so good!! We made it back to town to the waiting ambulance with 20 minutes to spare.  You might think, so what was the rush, weather and winds here are very unpredictable since there are no weather reports and a 3.5 hour flight can take longer real fast. 
When I was out at one of our schools this week, I was told that several of the girls only had one pair of underwear and were having to wash it out every night. There was also no money to buy sanitary pads either.  So Toni went shopping yesterday to buy a couple dozen sets of underwear and packages of pads for me to fly out tomorrow. We don't just buy gas for the plane and food for the kids with the money that comes in. Jesus said to also clothe the naked and feed the kids. The day students that come in, eat lunch at the school and many say it is the only meal they get most of the time. We are so grateful for the financial help that has been sent and watching how God makes it go so far. We feel so blessed to be the channels for God to bless His children in the bush.
Tomorrow I will be returning patients to the bush and more supplies plus the things Toni is sending in for the girls, then setting up schedules for next week's flight of some govt. educational officials to remote villages.
And so we press on.

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