Jon Cadd is a pilot currently serving in the East DRC. I read some post from his blog and it’s quite amazing the different things he has experienced flying with MAF. I wanted to share one story that touched me.
The DRC has had a history of war and violence. In the late 90’s the Country was engulfed in war known as the “African World War” involving 9 nations, 20 waring groups killing an estimated 5.4 million people. As you can imagine almost every person has been personally affected by such fighting and hate crimes. A legacy of revenge and retaliation permeates the DRC so that violence continues to this day.
National pastors got together and started an group called Organization, Evangelism, Intercession and Liberation (OEIL). Jon (the MAF pilot) got to fly these pastors to villages around the DRC and put on redemption clinics with amazing results. People were touched after hearing the Gospel and symbolically nailed their sins written on pieces of paper to a cross. One testimony was written in an MAF magazine called flight watch “At one reconciliation march in Bunia, some militia members shared their testimonies and expressed sorrow and regret over what they had done. They asked the people for forgiveness, sharing about how Jesus was transforming their lives and eliminating the violence.”
men asking forgivness
nailing sins on cross
Not only did the transformation occur personally, but the men involved in the violence met with people tragically effected and prayed for forgiveness and expressed their sorrow. Jon said, “ It is remarkable that they can even get the two sides together in the same building. But they do and both the people who have been hurt and the men who have done these very acts of terror are as excited to have forgiveness from the torture of living with their sins.“
A Place So Remote That Few Talk Of It’s Existence…
Those Who Travel Here Experience Unimaginable Horror…
Where No One Can Define Quite What It IS….
Carolyn, Caleb and I will be in the USA for our deputation (fund raising) but upon reaching our financial goal we will be living in Sherbrook Canada to learn French. Not much known at this point about what life will be like there, but we do know we will live there for about a year. Sherbrook has a Christian college that teaches French language classes for missionaries traveling overseas. We fall into this category as the East DRC has many French influences and predominant French speakers.
MAF exist in the DRC to meet physical and spiritual needs displaying Christ’s love through our actions and words. We are a two fold mission based on the great commandment/commission to love our neighbor and to see the Gospel spread to all nations. I see the airplane as a tool that brings hope and shares compassion on a people that have been shown very little.
photo by Stan Lincoln
We are ambassadors for Christ where we live and where we fly (work). The two cannot be separate. Extra attention is placed on us because we are from the West, we have white skin and therefore to the locals we represent Christianity. It is not enough to praise God in name, but our actions must follow. It will be my desire and challenge to serve God not only in my skills as a pilot, but my heart to serve the people that surround me in everyday life.
photo by James Geenelsh
Despite challenging circumstances MAF has done some amazing things with the aircraft in the past several years. The airplane has allowed MAF in one year alone to…
Execute 1,549 flight, transport 5,138 passengers, and deliver 684,638 pounds of cargo.
Supported Doctors Without Borders and Medair to conduct mobile health clinics.
Continued transportation of SIL International, supporting 10 Bible translation projects.
Transported Bibles and food for the Bible Society.
Continued training Congolese staff to support the MAF flying mission.
Continued flight services supporting Christians and humanitarian organizations North of the country in close contact with the LRA.
Would you believe that 90 percent of the people in DRC confess to follow Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior?
Although true most do not have a clear grasp of repentance and faith in Christ or of salvation by grace. Most believe your works determine your standing before God. A mix of Christian theology, witchcraft, tribalism, poor education and prosperity theology has led to a blended appearance of Christian thought without any solid food of the faith of Christ.
Perhaps it would be nice if those practicing witchcraft all looked like this so we could have a clear line which people need to hear the truth of light and which ones truly confessed Christ as their only Lord and Savior. As it is the lines have been very muddied and you cannot know who has good Biblical teaching even by those who attend Christian church.
The need to love the Congolese becomes even more clear when you look into the history of terrific suffering. The Lord Resistance Army has been demolishing any sense of stable life for those living in the East DRC. The DRC is statistically the number one place in the world for sexual violence against women. I cannot even imagine what emotions I will go through when I respond to the medical needs of a village freshly attacked by the LRA. How do you tell people that have experienced such hate that God loves them? I believe one way is being by their side and shedding tears with them. The opportunity to share Jesus in these situations certainly out way the cost of our comfortable lives in America. Without MAF’s presence in these places very little assistance would be given to those isolated from the rest of the world.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written,“For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Well my initial plan was to feature each area that MAF serves in Africa over the next several days as we awaited our field assignment. Change of plans as we were contacted this morning around 7:30 AM and told we will be serving in the East DRC and living in a town called Bunia. In the map here it is in the upper right hand corner by the border of Uganda.
During the presentations at MAF I came away thinking that the East DRC is the region with the most needs. God has prepared Carolyn and I to serve in this harsh environment in the past week by impressing upon us the impact a Christ follow can have on the people who have been left with nothing. The love we can share with them through Christ can be an amazing testimony and give us an opportunity to shine light into a place that is so full of darkness. I will take some more time tonight to share about East DRC, where we will live, and the people we will serve.
So there it is….Africa. Today we discovered we are going to move to Africa. We are not sure when…in fact we are not sure exactly where either. For those who didn’t know Africa is fairly large. I will now include a map and make it large so you get the idea…..
We have a total of four places we could end up and I will cover those in more detail in the next posts…just wanted to leave you where we are….we are going here….here is somewhere….somewhere is large.
By 2006 I had finished flight school and began flight instructing in Bellingham, WA. I met Carolyn and through her encouragement I began a relationship with my savior Jesus. God has opened many doors so I can serve with MAF including getting an airplane mechanics license while getting paid and receiving a heart moving donation that payed off most of my piloting school loans. God has been so gracious in my life I am excited to share that grace with people that have not experienced it.
I am so excited to get this opportunity to serve with MAF overseas. Matt and I cannot believe God is blessing us to share the Gospel with an isolated people group and learn and love people different from us. I graduated from Western Washington University with a bachelor degree in Art Studio/Mixed Media. After school I worked as an assistant teacher in a head start program until Caleb was born. Now I am a stay at home mom and love my new role raising the sweetest boy I know. I desire to us my skills in art and teaching overseas to reach out to the community and share Christ’s love to children and women.