PNG Economic Situation

The day after tomorrow, our time, the nation of Papua New Guinea will most likely be declared bankrupt.  This reality might affect us hardly at all or a great deal.Since it’s something we are thinking about and talking through as a team, we thought we would write a brief blog post about it so you all can be praying.  God brought us here and we hope to stay here to accomplish our aim of preaching the gospel–so we’re praying that this won’t be a big deal and that our work here will continue uninterrupted.Here’s an e-mail sent three days ago from our logistic coordinator, Jeremy Lehman, stationed in Madang, who is keeping an eye on the situation from there. We think it sums up the information better than we could: All, As you well know there is a looming economic issue in PNG.  This has caused all mission organizations that I have interacted with to start keeping a watchful eye on the situation as it develops.  June 13th is the day PNG must pay back it’s debit to UBS and on and after the 13th we will have even more insight on what the road ahead will look like.  The shortage of Kina as well as forex (foreign currency) is creating quite the stir from the PNG people.  It only makes matters worse that the Prime Minister (Peter Oneill) will not submit himself to investigation for corruption charges. The economic issues as well as Peter Oneill evading investigation has brought about protestors.  The majority of the protest movements have been lead by students from the University of Papua New Guinea in POM (Port Moresby).  The students...
Learning to Walk…on a Mountain

Learning to Walk…on a Mountain

Much of what we do here is analogous to what a child does in terms of learning new skills. We are learning a language, learning a culture, learning a new place.  And one of those skills is learning to walk…on a mountain. I remember our second hike that we took here in Papua New Guinea — a nine day hike through the jungle that brought us through the very village we now live in (described here and here).  At some points on that hike, the path was near vertical, at other points we crossed bamboo bridges, or walked in rivers, or across slippery stones.  I remember seeing several kids early on in that hike running down the trail at one of the steep parts. They all passed us–and they were all holding machetes.  Basically, these kids know how to get around on a mountain! Our kids…as well as ourselves…have to learn how to do that.  My goal is to take them out once or twice a week (usually on our day off) and just walk up and down the mountains nearest to our house. Here are a couple of the trips we’ve taken so far. The big waterfall nearest to our house is probably the closest walk.  When we first moved in, it was difficult for everyone (even me) to get there, but now…we’ve learned to walk to the waterfall!  Sometimes, the kids even run…but not with machetes. Another of our first hikes was hiking to a friend’s house.  My favorite part of this trip was the part where one of the village kids held Mary and she was practically the same size as her. Okay, so...

House Building–Final Stage!

This was our fourth effort at finishing the houses and I’m happy to say that, with the help of four guys from the US, we were able to get them into move-in shape!  In all of our house building, the point has remained the same: to be able to move into the tribe, start learning the language, and be able to, Lord willing, present the gospel message in the heart language of the people!   On Thursday, January 14th, four guys, one lady, and a baby arrived in PNG to help us with the building. The team consisted of John Parker (a carpenter), Bob White (a cherry farmer), George Siegele (a car mechanic), Josh (a pastor from our church) and Julie Kellso with their youngest son Caleb. The remarkable part of this team is that two of these guys came out for the last house building trip in November and were willing to come back just two months later for this one! Julie Kellso stayed in Madang to help our wives while we were building. Our goal for this trip into the village: to get the houses “move in ready”, meaning for both houses to have at least some electricity, running water, propane (for cooking) and plumbing. Flying In We left Friday morning with the building team, building supplies, and our personal luggage.  First, we took a Kodiak from Madang to Saidor. Saidor is a small airstrip close to the coast and about a 20 minute helicopter flight away from Mawarero.  Here is where we loaded everyone onto the helicopters and flew in.And here’s us actually flying into Mawarero. Solar Electric System On each...

One Year in PNG Video

 We made a video summary of the last year in Papua New Guinea, and it’s linked below!We want to say thanks to everyone who has prayed for us, given towards us being here, come out to help us build houses, encouraged us with letters, phone calls, e-mails, packages and more prayers!Hope this video gives you a glimpse of the last year here in Papua New...

A Year of Answered Prayer

As of yesterday, we have been in Papua New Guinea for one year!  We arrived in Papua New Guinea December 7, 2014. As we sit here and look back at this past year, so much has happened.  And so much has changed.  Some things — okay, a lot of things — didn’t go quite as we expected, but other things went miraculously well!  We hoped to be in the tribe by this time, but God has ordained that it would take a little longer. And so as we look back at this last year and the many things we have prayed for, we are able to see clearly many of the answers to those many prayers. Here are just a few of the prayers we prayed that God has answered. God provided a place for us to stay in Madang Before we even came to Papua New Guinea, it was really quite amazing how God provided houses for all of us.  And now that we have been here a year and have gotten to know the layout and organization of Madang, we know that the housing arrangements couldn’t have been better.  Our teammates, the Canns, live right below us, and our other teammates the Lehmans live a short walk (by the ocean) away! We learned Tok Pisin The first several months being here we put all of our efforts to learning Tok Pisin, the trade language of Papua New Guinea. This could be one of the easiest second languages to learn if you speak English, but still it was a challenge for us in the midst of adjusting to...
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