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, July 30, 2015

expect the unexpected

July 29, 2015
Mission life in the "land of the unexpected" is just that-- you never know what to expect next. Last week we were asked to transport a body to town to the morgue. They said it was a male-- not from this area. It was late in the evening and stormy, so I asked that we deal with it in the morning if they couldn't find a vehicle to take it, (since the body wasn't going anywhere, it didn't seem to me).
The next morning, I went to the health clinic to see what was happening and there was a body lying on the bench of the porch, where every one sits to wait to be attended. It was wrapped in a mosquito net. It had been lying there all night. The health workers weren't there yet, only patients sitting on the same bench waiting. I went to find the policeman to find out more details, as I couldn't just show up in town with a dead body. He went to check things out, as he had only just heard about it. Turns out, it was not male, but a young woman who had been killed the evening before by lighting. Her husband and 3 young kids were there waiting for a ride to a logging base camp, the opposite direction from town, so they could have a box made for her and then have her taken to her village. I ended up taking her and her family to the base camp.
On Sabbath we went to a small church about ½ hr away to witness a baptism. Our lay missionary there had told us there were 6 ready and the pastor had gone down there a few days before to meet with them. They had fixed a nice area along the river with decorations etc. on Friday. Friday night it rained heavy and washed most of them away, and the water level was up so much that they had to find another spot for the pastor to stand and hope no one was washed down stream. The water was very muddy looking too. 9 people were baptized and we are praising the Lord for them. This was the first baptism conducted in that village in years!
We have nearly completed hanging the nearly 600 ft. of chain link fence around the airplane hanger. We are working on building gates and putting up the barbed wire on top and securing it all to the posts. Hopefully this will help to keep the plane safe.
We were informed last week that the company who has been letting us use their hanger in Vanimo for over a year for free, is negotiating to lease it out to another organization, and also the house we have been using while we are in Vanimo. Hopefully we will be able to fly the plane here to our base before that happens! God's timing is always good.
Our mechanic for the airplane inspection is due to arrive here on Friday so we will be in town working on that, and maybe we will have some internet for a few days!
We are so grateful that Wings of Hope out of St Louis was willing to pay the mechanic's airplane ticket to come here and inspect our plane. What a gift and blessing it is for us. It is always amazing to see God at work in so many ways here.
Toni got to help out with some mobile clinics a couple of days here in the area and learned a bit more about how medicine is practiced here.
Nearly everyday has new surprises. Hopefully our next bulk email will be reporting on the airplanes first flights! Your prayers and support are yielding fruits for the kingdom already.
Friday afternoon, our mechanic for the plane just arrived alone with all his luggage!

River baptism

Kids enjoying bible stories with felts

New fence around hanger

Baptism

It is Sabbath evening here. Today we drove to the village of Kilapau about 1/2 hr away for church. The lay worker there had gotten 6 people ready for baptism. We took the pastor there on Tue to hold some meetings with the church members and the candidates.  The weather today was perfect with very blue skies and a few clouds. No rain until late this afternoon. It has not been very good weather the last few days. Sprinkles on and off and kinda dreary. Kilapau is located next to a good size river which is where they planned to have the baptism. This river can rise several feet with a good rain upstream. It is always muddy looking, like the river Jordon Naaman was told to wash in. Missionary told me they were going to start at 8 am with SS and would I please show the DVD "The final events" by Batchelor since they have had much interest in Daniel and Revelation. We took it and showed it. Then we had church and then the baptism. There were 9 instead to the 6 promised. 50% increase! PTL. It rained there last night and the river was up and moving fast. The site and decorations they had prepared on Friday, were washed away.the water is very muddy and you can't see into it. They tested where it would be safe to conduct the baptism. The missionary stood very close to the pastor in case things went bad. The last candidate was an adult cripple who has shriveled legs and is wheel chair bound. 4 men picked him up and carried him out into the fast moving water to where the pastor stood. Then they lowered him into the water to be baptized! It was really neat to see it happen! 9 more for the kingdom if they remain faithful! We have been giving each person baptized a new bible. This is the first baptism conducted in this village for years. There has been a small SDA church there for nearly 40 years, but not much growth. Today membership climbed from 33 to 42. They have to have about 50 to become an organized church. I challenged them to strive for that number by the end of this year! We will see. The harvest has begun. This is the third baptism now in this district in the last 7 months! There had been none since 2007. We are trying very hard to get people here excited to have baptisms and to become missionaries. 29 baptized so far! Your prayers and support are making a difference for the Kingdom!