Wednesday, September 14, 2011

MAF 60 years in PNG

Christ died for us, so that we could live with him, whether we are alive or dead when he comes. That's why you must encourage and help each other, just as you are already doing. 1Th 5:10-11 

Dear friends

Thank you so much for your continued prayers and support for us. From our last update, the lady from Mougulu did arrive. She was extremely unwell when she arrived. We resuscitated her and proceeded to an operation to remove her ruptured uterus. Sadly, she had arrived here too late and she died a few hours after the operation due to sepsis. Caring for women while pregnant and during the delivery as well as caring for children from birth to 5 years of age are health areas right at the top of our priority list. There are many, many completely unsupervised deliveries in remote areas resulting in unnecessary death or severe illness. We are thankful for the opportunities that exist to help. We pray that the overall development of health services for remote communities will improve.

Our MAF pilot Matt with Linsey and Ned have travelled to Australia to await the arrival of their second child.  They have faithfully served here at Rumginae since 2007 and we have loved sharing that time together.

While they are away, we have enjoyed catching up with pilots Mike, Jason and Nick and now have pilot Harold here until the end of October.  It has been wet and misty with low cloud making flying difficult. Continue to pray for MAF for safety and ability to provide a service to isolated places while short of pilots and engineers. Yesterday 3 patients arrived from all over Western Province.

This year marks 60 years of MAF operations in PNG. As part of the celebrations, Rumginae was privileged to be visited by musician Steve Grace travelling with MAF to help them celebrate. The MAF plane was welcomed with a wonderful display of appreciation and support with traditional dress and dances. Our children were involved in a public drama showing what happens when someone is bitten by a snake in the bush – how all those involved work together – the CHW in the aid post, CRMF radio network, MAF and the hospital doctors and staff. In the evening the local church was overflowing as people enjoyed some MAF stories, testimonies and to Steve singing.


We were blessed to have Steve, his wife Kerrie and the team at our house the next morning for breakfast. It was such fun and really special, as Steve who had lived in PNG as  missionary kid, returning to Australia at the age of 11, took time to make sure our kids understood what a special life experience they have had. He tells of a childhood memory of himself standing on a chair in church singing at the top of his voice. Tom could really identify with his ministry – flying around, telling people about Jesus, singing while playing the guitar and harmonica. The team stayed less than 24 hours, yet it was a very special time for us.

From here they moved on to Wawoi Falls, then Mt Hagen. It is a busy time for them. We have been listening to his CD over and over ever since! His Heritage CD has wonderful well known songs.

Dr Addy was able to travel right across the country recently to Kimbe to attend the PNG Medical Symposium. While Addy was away, I was the only doctor at Rumginae. Sam confidently prayed  that if I needed help God would send another doctor. It has been busy including 3 caesarean sections, twin deliveries, vacuum deliveries and many more sick patients. Four times in the 16 days that Addy was away I really wanted a surgeon’s help, and four times Dr Charlie (surgeon) came by to help – 2 mostly amputated fingers, one very sick lady with abdo pain and a 31/2 year old who had fallen onto sharp bamboo 24 hours previously with a lot of intestines coming out of the hole. I was very glad of God’s answer to Sam’s prayer. 

In the lead up to Father’s Day weekend, the children from church held an outreach in the hospital. Tom, using the language which local children speak – an accented blend of Tok Pisin and English, talked about Jesus who being fully God and fully man was able to and did die for our sins. As an MK, he has an intuitive understanding of the culture. It was wonderful to see him combining this with his love for the Lord to share God’s message of reconciliation with mankind. To summarise, he demonstrated how we can be reminded of the gospel by looking at the PNG flag.

The black can remind us of sin (Rom 3:23, 6:23a).  The Southern Cross and red can remind us that God made peace through his Son’s blood shed on the cross (Col 1:20b,1Jn:7b). The golden bird of paradise can remind us of the promise of God to those who believe that his Son, Jesus, died on the cross and gave his blood to forgive our sins, then we will have eternal life in paradise with him.(Luke 23:43). 

For prayer:

  • Dr David, with Emma and Joshua arrive on Monday. They are staying until early February. Pray for them as they settle in.
  • During October, we have some friends visiting from Australia to help with some of the maintenance on the station. Please pray for their health and safety and for their time of work and ministry.
  • For time with Gene, the hospital volunteer project coordinator who is visiting. Pray for fruitful discussions and progress.

Finally, we have spent much of the last 10 years at Rumginae. Our ability to be here providing health care in Christ’s name has been made possible through the prayers, friendship and financial giving from supporters in Australia who are our partners in this work. In late November 2011, we will leave Rumginae and return to Australia. We have prayed about the right decision for our family and have decided to return to Australia, predominantly because of the children’s schooling needs.

We will be moving to the Nelson Bay area where Daniel will work as a GP. We still hope to have contact with Rumginae through short term visits.

God Bless

Daniel, Tammy, Tom, Rosie and Sam

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