We have now been in PNG for a year and 3 months. The time has literally flown by. It is such a great privilege to be a part of the team that is planting churches amongst remote people groups. As a pilot I get to see the missionaries who are working in the remote tribes on a daily basis. The sacrifice and dedication of these missionaries amazes me! They have given up everything to live isolated in a extremely remote location, learning the language and culture of the people so they can share the gospel with them. I get to bring them their supply needs and chat with them before I fly off.
I have been flying the Kodiak since arriving in PNG. In December I took on the roll of Chief Pilot for NTM Aviation in PNG. This means I am in charge of all the pilots (currently we have 5 including me in country and 2 in North America on furlough, with one more on the way to start this summer!). I am also in charge of all aspects of the flight operations. We operate three airplanes and 1 helicopter and keep a full flight schedule every week. So between flying and managing I stay pretty busy.
In a few months I will start flying the helicopter as well as the Kodiak. We are down to one helicopter pilot right now, and I will get trained in as the second helicopter pilot. I really miss flying helicopters so I am very excited to be able to fly them again. We have a couple of new missionary teams that will be building their home in the jungle towards the end of this year. Their locations are so remote there isn’t even an airstrip so everything will be flown in with helicopter. It looks like I will start flying the helicopter in time to be able to fly in their things. It is always very exciting for us to get involved in a new church planting work. There is a lot of work that goes into setting these new teams up in the jungle.
Both Adie and I completed our language training in Melanesian Pidgin (the common language in PNG). It was great to have that behind us and get back to full time at aviation. I also took on the Chief Pilot roll as soon as we completed our language training so it was very good timing that I could focus all my efforts on my new job.
Adie is still helping out as a receptionist at the medical clinic. She has also just started going to the local hospital in town and helping to deliver babies! She loves it, although the conditions are much different then what you would be used to…
My parents visited us for a few weeks in March! It was wonderful to see them again and show them all around PNG. We were able to fly them to a remote tribal church planting work and spend the night there in the missionaries house. It was a very eye opening experience for them to see first hand what goes into bringing the gospel to these people. The boys had so much fun with them and were so sad to see them go. The time when by too quickly.
The boys are still loving it here. A karate instructor is now in the area offering classes, so Jaeden and Levi are taking the classes. The boys flew in with us and my parents to spend the night with the missionaries in the jungle. This was there first time to see this as well. I don’t think they fully understand how incredible an opportunity it was for them, but they had a blast hiking the jungle and seeing the sights.
Thank you so much for all your prayers and financial support! You are vital part of the team that is bringing the Gospel to people in PNG who have never heard before.
“O Lord, you are my God; I will exalt you; I will praise your name, for you have done wonderful things, plans formed of old, faithful and sure.” Isaiah 25:1 ESV