Wednesday, November 11, 2015


Here in Papua New Guinea we are experiencing a major drought.  The last one this bad was back in 1997.  It has been said it is due to El NiƱo.  At our house we have a 9000 liter tank and a small header tank on the top of our roof.  Normally we collect rain water off our roof and it fills the big tank. We run a pump once a day to fill the small one on the roof and we have gravity fed water the rest of the day. We also have water coming to our house that is pumped from a river/creek (RAM) that is not drinkable.   A few months ago we ran out of water in our tank and had to filter RAM water which plugged our filter frequently.  We were thanking God that this last week we have had 2 major rains that have filled our tank half full.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

You know you're a missionary when...

Steps to get a document notarized:

Rent a vehicle to drive to the airport in Goroka
Drive 2 hours to Goroka
Wait several hours due to a delayed flight
Board flight then disembark due to warning lights
Wait several hours to find out your afternoon flight has been cancelled
Ask another mission if you can sleep at their guest house
Get a ride to the airport at 5 AM to get in line
Wait several hours due to a delayed flight
Fly to Port Moresby, go to the Embassy and get your document notarized
Fly back to Goroka the same day
Rent a vehicle to be picked up in Goroka
Submit the document
Discover the document was rejected due to an error but you've already sent the original with someone flying to the US
Receive an extension
Thank the good Lord that the guy from the Embassy is coming to Ukarumpa!
Get another notarized copy.
Attempt to upload the document but read that it is not possible.
Send the 2nd copy with someone flying to the US
Get a call from the US letting you know that the document has not been received and you have 2 1/2 hours to get it turned in
Get a fax number, ask your US church secretary if she'll fax it, email the scanned copy
Call to ask if it has been received and realize that you won't know if it was received for 24-36 hours
Success! Receive an email that the document was indeed received in time.


Sunday, October 11, 2015

PNG Independence Day

Papua New Guinea recently celebrated the 40th anniversary of their independence.  A group of 5 of us rode bikes for 4 hours ended up at lake Yonki where they were having a celebration. Groups from different villages were dressed up in traditional outfits and singing and dancing. 

The level of lake Yonki is very low due to the drought

Cooked fish for sale

Note the tall head dress on the woman on the left.  It is made of grass
All I had to do is pull out my camera and people would pose

The shore of lake Yonki

These woman ask me if I would take a picture of them

Wednesday, August 19, 2015


Today I took the day off and we drove our car into Kainantu, a town about 20 minutes away.  I needed some chain saw bar oil so Laura and I went into a hardware store.  I cracked my windows about 3" because it was so hot and locked the door only I forgot to bring the key with me.  Quite a crowd gathered around us as I tried to reach my hand through the window to get it unlocked.  A man handed me his 5 year old boy and I held the boy up so he could reach in and unlock it. He got his arm all the way in but unfortunately he could only reach the lock with his finger tips and couldn't unlock it.  The boy's elbow wouldn't come out so I had someone pull on the windows and I got the boy unstuck.  We were still locked out.  Several people offered to put their hands in the window and give it a try.  I had to turn several kind-hearted people away.  I asked around if someone had some wire and someone had the wire  from a broken umbrella.  After many tries we finally got the door unlocked and were on our way.  The lesson I learned today.  Always check if you have the key before you lock the door.

Laura took these pictures from the shade.

We saw a man selling an owl he had caught
There are 2 K-Marts in town.  Not anything like the K-Mart back in the US though.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Village Church

This past Sunday our family crossed the Ba'e River and went on a short, beautiful hike to the Lutheran Renewal Center, a village church here in the valley.  Pastor Ham (rhymes with Mom) met us to lead the way. Pastor Ham and his wife, Weti, are involved in translation.

This is the church Paul and Daniel spent a day helping build. It has a concrete floor, metal roof and metal siding which isn't typical of a PNG village church.  The songs, scripture, prayers and preaching were all in Tok Pisin but we were able to follow along for the most part.  It was special to worship with our Papua New Guinean brothers and sisters in Christ.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The Importance of Accuracy

Our friend Tommy, his Kasua Language co-workers, Jill and Rebekah

This group is checking five New Testament books (I and II Thessalonians, I and II Timothy, and James).

Why is the consultant checking so important? Here's an example of something that comes to light in a checking session. Look at the middle part of 1 Timothy 2:2, "...that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life..." When Tommy read this verse out loud in the Kasua language, it came across like this, "...that we may do things quietly and steal..." The Kasua words for being peaceful and stealing are very similar, o:sulu tepela: (be peaceful) and o:sulu tipela: (steal). There is only one letter different between the two phrases. When Tommy read this verse out loud, one of the translation consultants asked the question, "According to this verse, how are we to live our lives?" Amos, one of the Kasua co-workers very quickly answered, "We are to do things quietly and steal."

Tommy took a second look at each word and saw the problem. They all had a good laugh over it, corrected it, and went on to the next verse with a keen awareness that God's Spirit was guiding them.

Saturday, January 31, 2015


A translator friend of mine here on the mission centre had 2 men from his language working on a translation.  My friend had some big tree branches he needed cut up and I volunteered to help because I have a chainsaw. (Thanks Jim!) I could tell the men were really impressed with what the chainsaw could do.  I asked if they wanted to learn how to use it and their eyes lit up as they said yes!  Later as we were talking, one of them said that his father only had a stone axe when he was younger.  Amazing!
Peter looked as excited as a kid on Christmas morning

He caught on real quick.