Saturday, October 15, 2011

Airplane Crash

Our country is in shock over an airplane crash that left 28 dead and only four survivors. It was an "Airlines PNG flight"one of the two major airlines in PNG, and the plane was flying from Lae to Madang. Those who saw it go down say there was smoke coming from the engines. The plane crash-landed and then exploded. It seems many survived the crash, only to be burned alive. Such a horrific tragedy, and people all over the country are in mourning. The big question on everyone's minds is, WHY? Why did this happen? Engine failure? Faulty fuel? Bad weather?

We have flown with this airline many times, and we were actually on the first leg of this exact flight just a couple weeks ago, as it's a Port Moresby--Lae--Madang route. It forces us to pause and consider that it could've happened to us.

It's a good reminder that this life is short, so short. Our days are numbered and only the Lord knows when it will be our last.

Please join us in prayer for those who have lost loved ones.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Mark and Liz in Lae

Our family enjoyed the company of Mark and Liz Mulder last week. Here they are on a visit to the Rainforest Habitat in Lae. Mark is the new chairman of our Mission Board and so we're glad they got to experience some of PNG's sights, sounds and smells--and get a real taste for what it's like to live and work here.

Our kids had a lot of fun with them too!
Karlyn and Mark: keeping cool in the pool.

Caleb is usually shy with strangers,
but thanks to Liz' gentle nature, he took to her right away.

For those of you who may not know Mark and Liz,
they have an amazing story of God's care and protection over Mark
when 95% of his body was burned in an accident 19 years ago.
Medically speaking, he shouldn't have lived, but God had other plans!
Their lives are such a powerful example of God's grace
and we're thankful that they were willing to share their story at our church,
and also with some of our other friends here in Lae.
Thanks again for coming, Mark and Liz!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Living at the RCBC

Last month, we spent 3 weeks living at the Reformed Churches Bible College (RCBC) outside of Port Moresby--home to about a dozen students and their families and also 3 missionary families (the Versteegs, VanderHeides and Doumas--from New Zealand). The highlight of the trip for our family was spending time with Wayne and Cheronne VanderHeide and family. Even though our kids were supposed to be on their school holidays, they still joined in on the homeschooling with the VanderHeides! It was crazy at times with all 7 kids in one classroom--there were occasional shouting matches, some tears and maybe even a few punches thrown here and there! But still a lot of learning took place (also because of their great teacher!) and they also had a ton (heaps:)) of fun.

A rare moment: the 5 year olds and 2 year olds
all sitting down at the table together!!

Cameron and Karlyn: BIG smiles as they do their work.

Jonathan and Bryce: Working out math equations together!

Will these homemade boats float?!

Two cheeky 2 year olds!

Even the chickens are friendly at the Bible College--
friendly enough to supply us with fresh eggs everyday too!

These are some of the men studying at the Bible College.
It was such a joy for Ian to teach them,
and he would be happy to do it again sometime.

There was also a women's conference that took place at a village about 4 hours from Moresby. Cheronne and Wayne were the main speakers. They taught on Proverbs 31--the wife of noble character.

Ten women flew over from Lae to attend the conference. They all worked hard to save the money to get to Moresby, also with the additional help from the Women's Bible Studies in Australia, for which they were extremely thankful. The conference was such a blessing to them. They are still talking about what they learned and how they were impacted by the weekend. In the photo, they're wearing traditional 'meriblouses' in the colours of their province. Although I was not able to go to the conference, they did still buy me a meriblouse just like theirs since I am now a "meri Morobe' too, they say (that is, a woman from the Morobe province)!

Back to the Bible College where our 3 are hanging out,
being silly and enjoying the go-cart.

Ian also had the opportunity to preach in 3 of the churches.
Here he is preaching in a settlement called East Boroko, for the first time.
It was a good opportunity to meet the people there and worship with them.

There is never a dull moment at the Bible College.
This was part of a Games Carnival that was organized one afternoon.

And here we are at the end of our time in Port Moresby,
so thankful for the times we had at the Bible College,
but also ready to return home to Lae.
The work at the Bible College is pivotal to the future of our churches in PNG, and it was an amazing privilege to be part of it, even just for 3 weeks. We continue to pray for the Lord's richest blessings on all of the students and staff. May He build up strong and faithful leaders in our churches. May faith grow and mature and may more people also come to faith in the Lord Jesus!