First Baptism in Karusuan!

Posted on Friday, July 8th, 2016

Karusuan and LIGHT students baptism

HOME!
After many months, the twin engine airplane is finally up and running again and we are back “home” again in north Luzon for a few short weeks! It’s really great to be home after 8 months! We really don’t mind traveling all the time and God has provided many “homes” for us, but it’s always nice to be alone in our home again once in awhile!

RAIN!
Much has happened since we last wrote a couple months ago. We thank you for the prayers for the rain! The drought is over and we are now in full blown rainy season! (however some pilots and workers are wondering if they would prefer to have the drought back!) The gardens are doing great and it’s so nice not to have to haul water anymore! We had to say a sad goodbye to our volunteer gardener, Violaine who returned to France recently, but we are so thankful for all her time and effort in helping us get these gardens off to a good start!

IMG_3988                                                    Violaine gardening with LIGHT students

MEDICAL MISSIONARY TRAINING!
Last we wrote we were in the middle of planning a one-month medical missionary LIGHT training specifically to help nurture the newly baptized youth of our area. There were several seemingly impossible challenges that we foresaw and we came very close to canceling it. But we all felt it surely had to be God’s will to have such a life-changing activity while the teachers were available, so we prayed for another 3 days. And through His guidance we decided to move forward in faith. And we are so glad we did! We had 6 dedicated, volunteer teachers and more than 25 students of all ages and backgrounds. One by one God took care of each challenge (students, finances, water, meeting place, approval from the Conference etc.)! He also worked in each student’s life, helping them to grow spiritually and to learn many practical skills, which made us feel that every risk and sacrifice was worth it all! Three of the students who were not already Adventists were even baptized by the end of the month! Thank you so much for your prayers and support that made this and other activities possible!

IMG_5687                          Students gave all the lectures at a Health Expo as part of their training

POWER OF PRAYER!
Our two mountain mission schools were facing some challenges with the local villagers these last couple months. But as the pressures were mounting on both missionary families in both schools about the same time, and they felt it might be best to just leave, we could only encourage them and pray for them, and for each situation that God would intervene. We praise God that through united prayer, amazing things have happened! One family had already packed their things and taken them to the lowlands and we wondered how we would ever find another more dedicated family to replace them, especially in time for the next school year to start, which was just weeks away. God worked on their hearts and as they went back to spend a few more weeks with the people, they were impressed to fast and pray about their decision. God used the local villagers to explain more to them the true feelings of their people and begged them to stay. We’re happy to say that the family has returned to stay for another school year with new strength and love for the people, and the school is back in session right on time with more students than ever!

BAPTISM!
The other family in the other school (in the newly opened village of Karusuan) decided to join the one-month LIGHT training at our base in the lowlands, since their lives were even being threatened in the mountains by one of the disgruntled villagers. During that time they were spiritually renewed and challenged to return and stay for another school year as well! Their adult students from the mountains continued to grow spiritually (one of them even attended the one-month training with them), and recently 6 of them were baptized! These are the first baptized members of the Karusuan mountain village! The new school year as already started with 30 plus children and many adults as well! What a testimony to what God can do when we unite with others and with Him in prayer! Please continue to pray for the missionaries in these remote areas and around the world that God would give them courage and strength to face the challenges and to continue pressing on to reach more souls for God’s Kingdom! Also pray for more brave souls to join the mission field!

FLIGHTS!
With 4 aircraft flying now, the work is growing! We’ve even started flying in a new area in the very southernmost island of Palawan-- the island of Mangsee that we wrote about in the last newsletter. We’ve made a couple medical evacuation flights for them so far. We continue to pray that we can be a blessing and a light to those people in spiritual darkness. We are taking the necessary precautions, but we do ask for your prayers for safety for our flights to these somewhat dangerous areas. We also ask for your prayers as our monthly expenses are increasing with the added aircraft and flights. Thank you so much for your support that keeps these important projects going!

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This remote village has been re-opened to the work of missionaries, thanks to the helicopter

Topics: Helicopter, Medical, Evangelism, Life in Palawan, Missionary Life, Aviation | Comments Off on First Baptism in Karusuan!

Planting In Drought

Posted on Thursday, April 21st, 2016

Dwayne:
It’s been a few months since we came to Palawan to work on some maintenance of the aircraft. It seems the pace here is always somewhat more intense with so much going on. My main purpose down here has been to get the twin back up and flying, but the progress has been slow for a few reasons. Our helicopter pilot, Daniel left for the USA because his Grandma passed away and after he got back a few weeks later he promptly broke his arm so I am still doing all the helicopter flying. He still manages to help out alot despite having only one arm. Sean and I have been working on getting our licenses in the new Cessna 206 and we finished that up a few weeks ago. I was needing to change a mount that was corroded on the horizontal stabilizer a few weeks ago on the 206, but after pulling the tail apart and looking more closely at it I decided to reskin the left side because it was badly beat up and had been covered up by a rubber rock guard. So this took me a week to finish fixing the tail and get it back together. It will probably take me another couple months to finish the twin with all the distractions, but we're enjoying seeing God at work here in Palawan.

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       Flying into the Palawan airbase (with no rain for a couple months)

Wendy:
We were so blessed with a visit from some of our videographer friends who came to help us capture this work that God is doing here in Palawan. They came all the way from central Philippines and Indonesia to volunteer their time and skills for God's glory. That was an answer to prayer, and also a busy time as they interviewed all the Bible workers and missionaries and videoed all the projects over a couple weeks. You may have seen some of their initial short videos already on facebook. We are so thankful for this video team and their hard work so that friends like you can see how God is blessing through your prayers and support.

The Hope Channel from Mindanao also come recently to shoot some episodes for their "In This Generation" TV series featuring PAMAS missionaries. We had a fun time with them as well and we pray the programs will be a blessing for many youth.

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        HOPE Channel, Mindanao pose for a goodbye shot with PAMAS team

Another big blessing came recently with our visitors from France: An experienced farmer and teacher, Daniel Garcia, and his capable student, Violaine Herisson (who has stayed behind in Palawan to help us keep things going). The agriculture seminars and practical demonstrations were held in both our Luzon and Palawan projects and many missionaries, neighbors and nearby church members also benefited from them. Many of us have become more serious about growing our own food now as we have learned new methods that give us hope that we can have more success in the future! With Violaine's help and lots of prayers (through the middle of a drought), we're already beginning to see progress in the gardens!

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Violaine and Ruzzel having fun planting banana trees

 

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The garden after 6 weeks, with nitrogen restoring plants.
Gardening has so many blessings and can teach us so much. Of course there is the physical exercise, which brings good health (like we always say around here, "another day at the PAMAS Gym!" The membership is free and it's lots of fun!). But there are so many spiritual lessons we can also gain from the garden. My recent favorite is from Jeremiah 17: 7,8 - especially as we so often face challenges and we get tempted to become anxious. Listen to this great lesson!

"Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord and whose trust is the Lord. For he will be like a tree planted by the water that extends it's roots by a stream and will not fear when the heat comes; But it's leaves will be green, and it will not be anxious in a year of drought nor cease to yield fruit."

We pray for that kind of trust that keeps us from being anxious even during times of "drought" (which is a literal problem we have here right now with very real possibilities that our water will run out). With God's help we try to bear His fruits (of love, joy, patience, peace, self-control etc) and trust in Him even when things may seem impossible. The key is having a daily relationship with God which helps us grow deep roots that keep us connected with Him, the Water of Life.

Dwayne:
Speaking of drought and planting seeds, there are two small islands called Mangsee off the southern end of Palawan that are the last pieces of Philippine property before Malaysia. They have been requesting for awhile for us to visit and consider extending emergency medivac services to them in the helicopter. The main island is no more than a kilometer in diameter if it was a complete circle, yet around 9,000 people live on it- a very concentrated population for such a small island. Most of these people are fisherman or businessmen that trade stuff through Malaysia including drugs and who knows what other illegal products. They have no cell phone service and no medical facilities to speak of. The flight is almost an hour from our hangar. We see this as a possible open door to reach the people of this island who are in spiritual drought.

We finally decided to pay them a visit a few weeks ago. There is a missionary family on another island off the south end of Palawan that have been our contact people to verify and contact us for medical emergencies around many of the surrounding islands there. We often make a couple flights a week to those islands. We planned a trip to pick up the missionary there and continue on down to Mangsee to meet with the people there. It happened to be the missionary's wife's birthday the day before, on Sunday so Wendy and Daniel and Violaine and I left early and spent the afternoon and night with them. We visited a beautiful little, white sandy beach island nearby where we ate lunch and swam and snorkeled. It hadn’t rained for 2 months but we laughed that God finally answered our prayers and sent us some that day. We were all set up with our tents to spend the night on the island but finally decided it might be a bit too soggy so we went back to the main island to sleep. It was still a nice but brief getaway.

The next morning we flew to Mangsee and sat down with the leaders of the island and laid out what their responsibilities would be if we start doing medivac flights down there. They seemed very open. They need a lot of health education and this, along with the helicopter support could be a good opportunity to plant seeds of hope and show them a better Way. Please pray for a missionary family that will be willing to go and help them. The population is primarily Muslim and has five mosques on it and there is a small group of professed Christians as well.

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Dwayne speaking to the people of Mangsee

Wendy:
You can see why we enjoy being here in Palawan even though we do miss "home" (in Luzon) after being away for so many months at a time. There's so much going on, and though it has it's challenges, it's great to see and be a part of the progress here. We are blessed with such a great team of praying missionaries with varying skills, cultures, and backgrounds and this helps us to accomplish a lot all at once. With multiple church building projects, a new school, Bible and medical work, and flights going on, we can only praise God for what He is doing. And yet, there is so much more to do. As we've been planting (by faith) in the midst of another drought, we're often reminded to pray for rain-- not only physical, but spiritual. There are many areas still left to be reached and more Holy Spirit power is needed for the work to be truly effective. We ask for your prayers for more missionaries and for the outpouring of God's Spirit on His work. Thank you so much for your faithful support for this ministry. You might also like to see the "Urgent Needs" below and help us pray for God's provisions for the growing needs!

 

"Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord and whose trust is the Lord. For he will be like a tree planted by the water, that extends it's roots by a stream and will not fear when the heat comes; But it's leaves will be green, and it will not be anxious in a year of drought nor cease to yield fruit." Jeremiah 17:7,8

Current Needs:
Urgent:
--Funds for one-month LIGHT (medical missionary) training  this May in Palawan (sponsorships for students, teachers fares and food, etc)-- ($2,000)
--Fuel for deployment of SULADS missionaries this May with the Helicopter (in Mindanao) ($1,000)
--Funds for restoration of helicopter for East Timor ($35,000)
--Fuel for operating aircraft ($3,000/ month)Continued:
--Wellness Center for Palawan
--Helicopters for Luzon and Mindanao
--Sharing tracts and Hymnals (Ilocano and Tagalog)
--Church/School buildings for Karusuan ($1,000)--Completed, Thank you!

Volunteers Needed: 
--Pilots
--Mechanics
--Accountant
--Medical Missionaries
--Teachers

Prayer Requests/Praises:
--One-Month LIGHT training this May (Students, Funds, Rain/Water, Logistics etc.)
--Guidance and Holy Spirit's work in Karusuan and Kabulnukan (unity among village leaders, strength and wisdom for missionaries)
--Wellness Center for Palawan
--God's work to continue forward without delay for lack of funds or any reason
--Provisions for helicopters for Mindanao and North Luzon
--Missionaries needed

Topics: Helicopter, Medical, Evangelism, Life in Palawan, Missionary Life, Aviation | Comments Off on Planting In Drought

Walk By Faith

Posted on Monday, February 1st, 2016

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The amazing thing about a faith ministry is that you're stepping into the Red Sea every month. We have been learning to walk by faith and not by sight. Each month is a new adventure and faith building experience. Though the expenses continue to grow, with fuel and maintenance costs, more missionaries and church plants, somehow His work keeps moving forward. Despite the apparent challenges, we continue to pray for more, as we see the needs of His work, and God has not failed.

The last email we sent was right before Christmas from Montana. We had a nice relaxing couple weeks with my family before returning to the Philippines on the 5th of January. I had mentioned in the email that we had made an offer on a Philippine registered 1973 Cessna 206F for $85,000 and they had accepted that offer. When I got word that they accepted the offer we had only $14,000 in an airplane fund. Within a couple days of our last newsletter that amount had come up to $66,000. This was a big answer to prayer. I told the owner that I wanted to do a more detailed inspection when I returned and then we could work out the payment options.

I spent a day doing a much more thorough inspection and everything seemed to be fine so I asked them to write up a deed of sale and give me their bank account information so I could work on getting the funds transferred. We were still $20,000 short but I thought I would just work on an agreement to pay the rest later as God provided. Right before going to the office the next week to work out the final details, I checked my email and the GMI accountant had sent me an email saying $20,000 had come in the last 2 days of December and that gave us just what was needed. We didn't know how God would provide for the other expenses we had for the month, but we trusted God and proceeded to complete the payment and deed of sale. As an added bonus, the exchange rate went up after we initiated the funds transfer, and as a result we overpaid them by about $700 which they refunded to us. We serve an amazing God.

Another answered prayer came the day I was inspecting the Cessna 206 and I began thinking about how we needed another pilot. I had been in communication with Jason, a young pilot from Papua New Guinea that was in the Philippines learning to fly.  He had expressed to me his desire to be a mission pilot about 6 month ago, but I had not heard from him since. I was thinking I should email him and see what he was doing. When I got back home that evening I found an email from Jason saying he had finished his flight training and wanted to work with us. God's timing is perfect, Jason went to Palawan a couple weeks ago and has been flying and working with Sean, and it is a big blessing to have his help.

I have been completing all the licensing requirements for this new airplane and renewing paperwork on the R44 helicopter which has taken a lot longer than we had expected. But we are finally ready to fly the new plane to Palawan this week and start using it for God's work. We praise Him for all these answered prayers.

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." Hebrews 11:1

"In the up-building of His work, the Lord does not always make everything plain before His servants. He sometimes tries the confidence of His people by having them move forward in faith. Often He brings them into strait and trying places, bidding them go forward when their feet seem to be touching the waters of the Red Sea. It is at such times, when the prayers of His servants ascend to Him in earnest faith, that He opens the way before them, and brings them out into a large place."   Christian Service p. 277

Thank you so much for your prayers and support!
Topics: Life in Palawan, Missionary Life, Aviation | Comments Off on Walk By Faith

New Mission Planes

Posted on Tuesday, December 22nd, 2015

Dwayne Harris

We arrived in Loma Linda 2 weeks ago and I attended the Robinson Helicopter maintenance course in Torrance while Wendy stayed with her brother and family in Loma Linda. We flew up to Montana a couple days ago and will be here for Christmas with my family. Its' nice to be home.

I just received an email this morning regarding a Cessna 206 that has recently come up for sale in the Philippines. We have been praying for a bigger airplane to use in Palawan for over a year and it seems this may be God's answer. We have been operating the Cessna 172M in Palawan for almost 4 years and it has worked well but needs are increasing and upgrading to a Cessna 206 gives us two more seats, 700 lbs more carrying capacity and room enough for a stretcher. I inspected the airplane briefly before returning to the U.S. a couple weeks ago. We prayed about it and made an offer for 4 million pesos which is about $85,000. It was a low offer for a Cessna U206F even in the U.S. but in the email this morning they accepted it. This is very encouraging to us and as God continues to open doors we feel we should pursue it. Having this new airplane would also allow us to take the Cessna 172 to our airbase in Luzon and as God provides another pilot, we would be free to focus more on the Mindanao airbase and eventually base the Twin Commanche there. We have an airplane fund with about $13,000 in it already. Please join us in prayer for God to provide the rest of the funds to be able to purchase this airplane.

Proposed Cessna 206 for Palawan

Proposed Cessna 206 for Palawan

This last month has been another eventful one. We were supposed to go to Palawan, but when we were coming through Manila during the SSD Division year end meetings I saw Gary Roberts, a fellow missionary pilot and my plans changed. Gary has taken over the Adventist Aviation mission program in Papua Indonesia after the accident that took his dad's life. Gary was heading soon to Austria to pick up an airplane that they had just purchased and was going to fly it back to Indonesia for their mission work. He was planning on flying alone because no other pilots he knew had time to go with him. The Pilatus PC6 that they purchased is an amazing bush plane but it is slow and unstable and takes full attention of the pilot when in turbulence and bad weather which does not leave much time to navigate if rerouting is necessary. Flying half way around the world makes it likely bad weather would be encountered at some point.

I prayed earnestly that God would show me if I should volunteer to go with him. I had three people tell me that next day that I should go help him so I took that as God's answer. I arranged to meet Gary at the airport in Austria on the 18th where the plane was. I found and purchased some cheap tickets from Manila to Dubai then on to Austria. Wendy went as planned to Palawan and helped with a one month evangelism effort our missionaries were holding.

The week my flight left there was an APEC summit in Manila and flights were being canceled right and left because of security reasons the government said. I kept looking at the flight schedules and my flight was one of the few that was not cancelled. On the day of my flight I borrowed my in-laws car and headed into the airport 5 hours before the flight with my friend Andrew who was going to drive the car back. We got half way to Manila and the government had shut half the expressway down and closed the end of it so all traffic slowed to a crawl. 3 ½ hours later we reached the exit that all cars had to take and I decided there was no way I would make my flight at this rate. I told Andrew I would walk the rest of the way. I got out of the car, grabbed my backpack, and crossed over 4 lanes of oncoming traffic and climbed over the fence. I was able to get a taxi on the frontage road that took me the rest of the way to the airport. We departed Manila on time but half way to Dubai a lady had a bad stroke and we had to divert to Mumbia, India. Because of the requirements for refueling an aircraft in India it was 5 hours later before we took off again. By the time we arrived in Dubai my connecting flight to Vienna had just left. The airline would not re-book the flight so I contacted Gary and he suggested I meet him in Greece near Athens as he had an appointment the next day in Slovenia and Greece would be his next stop. I searched and found that the cheapest tickets to Athens was through Doha to Istanbul, Turkey so I purchased the tickets and flew to Doha that evening. I spent the night in the airport and left the next morning for Turkey. I spent that afternoon and night in Istanbul and then flew to Athens on Friday morning. I spent the weekend in Athens at a cheap hotel near the Acropolis and was able to attend an English speaking international SDA church. Half were Filipinos so I felt right at home.

There was another series of obstacles that came up but God worked things out and Gary arrived in Athens Sunday afternoon. The wind was blowing so hard he decided it was best to stay the night in Athens and take off early the next morning. We finally took off at sunrise Monday morning and had a beautiful day of flying over the Mediterranean and across Egypt. 8 ½ hours later we landed in a small resort town along the red sea where we fueled up and spent the night at a beach side hotel where we took a swim before going to bed. We took off before sunrise Tuesday morning for the flight across Saudi Arabia- the longest leg of the trip. We started running into bad weather by mid morning and were picking up ice at 15,000 ft. We finally had to descend to 9,000 to stay out of the icing conditions and we requested to be routed to the south where the weather was better. After several hours of getting tossed around by turbulence we got into some better weather. We landed in Abu Dhabi an hour after dark after 11 hours of flying.

I spent the rest of the week staying with the Adventist pastor in Abu Dhabi trying to get a visa for India (which was our next stop) while Gary flew over to Manado for some meetings. I had time to visit the Grand Mosque on Friday. It has some incredible detail in its architecture and is a most impressive building. Unfortunately I was not able to get the visa in that short amount of time and I had to leave Gary in Abu Dhabi. Gary continued the rest of the way by himself and God blessed him with good weather most of the rest of the way. He has arrived safely now with the airplane in Papua.

Gary making flight plans for the next leg of the journey

Gary making flight plans for the next leg of the journey

One thing struck me after briefly visiting the countries around the Mediterranean and middle east. There are billions of people out there without the hope we have in Christ. Many are chasing after worldly pleasures. Others are seeking salvation through their own works and merits, through rounds of meaningless rituals. God has called us to take the Gospel to the world to every nation, tribe, tongue and people so they can have the sure hope we have in Christ. This is our purpose on this Earth and all of us our called to play a part.

During this Christmas season let us remember the sacrifice that Jesus made in coming to earth that we might have a sure hope of salvation in him. The sacrifice He made on our behalf reminds me that any sacrifices that we may make are very small and insignificant in terms of eternity.

Topics: Missionary Life, Aviation | Comments Off on New Mission Planes

The Power of Prayer and Fasting

Posted on Thursday, October 22nd, 2015

Adventist Hospital Medical Team with Dwayne and Wendy

Adventist Hospital Medical Team with Dwayne and Wendy

Dwayne Harris
In our last newsletter we mentioned that we were going to take time for fasting and prayer.  We enjoyed the fresh fruit fast for 3 days along with the united prayer sessions 3 times a day with our team here in Luzon.  Those three days of prayer were such a blessing that we decided to do it every month along with our team in Palawan. The answers to prayer were amazing. One of our main requests was finances for fuel needs and for the airplane repair.  In direct answer to prayer this month we received 4 times the donations than we normally do.  Another of our prayer focuses was a wing and some other parts for the Twin Commanche that I was looking for.  God led us to find a wing in Florida that already had the same modifications as our plane here and had some of the landing gear mounts that we also needed.  I shared our website with the owner in an email and when he saw what we do he donated about $500 worth of parts that we needed.  We praise God for answered prayers. Both of the engines are already past the recommended overhaul time so we have decided to overhaul both engines and propellers as well.  Please pray for God's continued provision for the engine overhauls and the shipping of the wing and needed parts.

I flew back to Palawan and spent two more weeks finishing the annual inspection and renewal of the certificate of airworthiness for the Cessna.  While I was there I was talking with Sean and Pris about the need for a wellness or lifestyle center. This is a need we have seen and talked about for awhile because of all health problems people suffer with in that area, many of which are preventable. We started praying that God would direct and provide for that.  We finished our 2nd month of 3 days of fasting and prayer last week and on day 2 Sean called me and said someone had just donated $10,000 towards the building of a lifestyle center!  These seasons of prayer are leaving us with an ever growing trust and faith in His promises and desire to grant our requests.

There were a few challenges with finding a propeller for the Twin, and in the past I would have tended to get anxious about it. But God has given me perfect peace and provided in ways I would never have expected.

3 Aircraft at the Palawan hangar

3 Aircraft at the Palawan hangar

Dwayne Harris

We've been busy and blessed with several Health Expos and medical mission opportunities recently. We just came back from an exciting and blessed trip to Tinoc, Ifugao. This is an area where PFM has been working for a number of years among an unreached people group. At their request we put on a health screening / medical mission in conjunction with our friends at the Adventist Hospital in Santiago. It was a 7 hour drive from our place on very dangerous, rough roads (also potentially dangerous because of rebel groups in the area). The Army even came to protect us. Some said it was the worst roads they had ever seen. We saw multiple, landslides and steep cliffs all along the way. We prayed it would not rain too hard or we would never get out! On the way back it did rain and it was getting dark before we were out of the dangerous area. We missed a rock wall collapse across the road by a few minutes. We were very thankful when we got home safe and sound.

This was the first time we did not offer typical “consultations” with medicines and wondered how it would go. We did not hear or sense any complaint and the people seemed to appreciate the 10-15 minutes of personal screening and counseling after filling out a health habits questionnaire. We gave them each an immune booster: a fresh mixture of garlic, lemon, and other ingredients that are easily accessible here. The Adventist hospital provided dental, minor surgeries, and a nice children's program.

Massage and natural remedies given after health assessment and consultations

Massage and natural remedies given after health assessment and consultations

During one of the home visits, Briane and his companions  found a lady who could not walk for sometime due to arthritis. After sharing some lifestyle and diet changes they gave her hope of walking again soon with God's help, prayers, and if she would follow the suggestions. The next day they found her smiling, walking and working in her kitchen! She was so happy and she showed them her gallon jug of water she was faithfully drinking. (Due to the cold environment and lack of education the people drink on average less than 3 cups of water a day!) Praise God for simple remedies and miracles even today!

Briane with patient in Tinoc that was healed

Briane with patient in Tinoc that was healed

We left 3 of our missionaries behind for the rest of the week to help with the health lectures and on-going evangelistic meetings in two of the remote areas. We enjoyed working with the AIIAS team (the graduate school where my dad is president) and with PFM (Philippine Frontier Missions) in these joint efforts to reach these isolated people with the Good News of salvation.

P.S. At the time of this writing, a large typhoon came almost directly across our path. We are so thankful that besides lack of sleep from mopping up water all night and heavy winds for a couple nights, there was no major damage to our property. Praise God for a sturdy container-van house/hangar! Our 3 missionaries that stayed behind, on the other hand, experienced amazing answers to prayer as God brought them through landslides, roads closing one by one behind them and 3 days of traveling to get home! More stories to follow! Large provinces south of us are in a state of calamity due to heavy flooding. Please pray for those that are suffering from the effects of this storm.

"Is this not the fast that I have chosen: To loose the bonds of wickedness, To undo the heavy burdens, To let the oppressed go free . . . ? Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, And that you bring to your house the poor who are cast out; When you see the naked that you cover him . . . ? Then your light shall break forth like the morning, Your healing shall spring forth speedily . . . Then you shall call and the Lord will answer. . ."      Isaiah 58: 6 - 9

"Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven."

Thank you for your faithful prayers for this ministry!

Topics: Medical, Evangelism, Missionary Life, Typhoon | Comments Off on The Power of Prayer and Fasting

Challenges Inspire More Prayer

Posted on Sunday, September 6th, 2015

Kabulnukan Church and school

Kabulnukan Church and school

Dwayne Harris
The last four months have been action packed and extremely busy with flying and other projects in Palawan. Sean and Pris got back the end of July and that helped alleviate some of the flying load. We spent a couple more weeks in August at our base in Palawan with Sean and Pris before heading back to Luzon. A week before our planned departure I had an unfortunate incident when landing the twin on our grass strip. Our airstrip there is about 1800ft long and while it works great for a Cessna it leaves little room for error for a light twin when the grass is wet. Because of this I was trying to land very near the beginning of the strip because it was early morning and I knew the grass was wet. I touched down about 5 feet short of where I should have and the right main gear hit a small berm and caused it to break folding backwards where it wedged in place in the wheel well and turned the tire sideways. By God's grace I managed to keep the airplane traveling straight down the runway until it stopped. The wing sustained some damage from the collapsed gear but praise God it was not worse. So now I am looking for parts to make repairs and since we cannot fly it for a few months we decided to go ahead and overhaul both engines which are past their recommended overhaul times anyway. Please pray for God to provide the needed parts and resources for the repairs and engine overhauls on our twin Comanche.Helicopter Donation
Despite the challenges, God is still working in many unexpected ways. About a year ago a Bell 47 helicopter (needing overhaul and restoration) was donated for mission work. A few months ago God moved on a young man who is a helicopter mechanic to take on this overhaul project full time. He has left a secure and good paying job to answer God's call to missions and intends to follow this helicopter to the mission field when it is flying. This Bell 47 overhaul project will be costing between $50,000 to $60,000 for new engine parts and rotor blades. It would be a big blessing to have this helicopter in the field. If you would like to support this project financially please designate your donation to “PAMAS Bell 47 project.”

Exponential Growth
As this medical/aviation ministry expands, we are amazed at how God continues to provide for the growing needs. You may not be aware that your donations are supporting 11 missionary families and 11 single Bible worker/medical missionaries as well as the operation of two airplanes and one helicopter. (We also have one family and one single who have their own support.) Three strong church plants and a school are a direct result of your prayers and support, and more are close to being established. Dozens of young people have been (and several still are being) sponsored through medical missionary and evangelism trainings, and Adventist academies and colleges and have given their lives to full-time volunteer service. Thank you for making these things possible! God is truly blessing and we can hardly keep up!

The opportunities and requests from isolated areas continue to grow almost by the day. The helicopter flies on average 3-5 times a week and the Cessna flies about the same. Most of the flights are medical evacuations and the rest are for supplies and/or missionary support. Three new remote villages are opened now and are already hearing the Gospel as a direct result of the helicopter. A new missionary family has recently arrived to Palawan to serve in the mountain village of Karusuan. (See last newsletter).

As this exciting work continues to grow exponentially, we feel this quote becoming a reality:

The wants of the cause will continually increase as we near the close of time.” Testimonies Vol 5:156

Though we have hardly had to slow down on any major work for any reason, there are times where our faith is stretched and we do alot more praying! We really do covet your continued prayers and financial support for this ministry.

God is Calling
There is a lot of talk, predictions and speculation on what this month of September holds. Some in the financial world are talking about another big stock market crash and others are warning of terrorist attacks or other world altering events. From our knowledge of the Bible we know that Christ's coming is even at the door, maybe much sooner than most think or believe. The world is about to receive a wake up call in whatever form God sees fit to allow but we should not be waiting earth shattering events to listen. God is calling now.

With so much going on in the world and in this ministry, we've been feeling the need for more prayer lately, so our Luzon team will be setting aside 3 days this week for prayer and fasting. We'd love to have you join us this Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday! (See prayer needs below).

 

Praying pilots (Sean, Daniel, and Dwayne)

Praying pilots (Sean, Daniel, and Dwayne)

The Lord now calls upon Seventh Day Adventists in every locality to consecrate themselves to Him and do their very best, according to their circumstances, to assist in His work. By their liberality in making gifts and offerings, He desires them to reveal their appreciation of His blessings and their gratitude for his mercy.” Testimonies Vol 9:132

We praise God for your liberality and sharing in this ministry and for His blessings and mercy each day!

Topics: Helicopter, Medical, Evangelism, Life in Palawan, Missionary Life, Aviation | Comments Off on Challenges Inspire More Prayer

Karusuan and the Prayed for Helicopter

Posted on Wednesday, August 26th, 2015

Villagers of Karusuan with Wendy (and the all purpose building they built in background)

Karusuan with the all purpose building in background built by the villagers

Wendy Harris
We don’t often get around to writing follow up stories from previous newsletters but here is one we had to write. You may remember a story I wrote 2 years ago while we were in Palawan of a village man that showed up to church one day requesting our help saying, “We don’t want any other religion in our village except the religion of Kamantian." (Many people associate our work with AFM's because we work together to reach the Palawano people.) Though we have many requests like this, somehow this one seemed different and it was hard to say no to his urgent plea to start a church in his village. We felt we had to at least go and make a visit. So two of our local Bible workers and I made arrangements and the next week we arrived at the designated meeting place. We were surprised to learn that the village was actually a couple hours hike up the mountain, with 5 crossings of a raging river! Durialan, the village leader who met us told us that many people were waiting for us because they wanted to learn about the Bible. We looked at each other wondering what to do as we were unprepared for a hike, but we decided without hesitation that we must go! We set off on an adventure with homemade walking sticks and with Durialan to help us cross the rivers. We arrived to the beautiful mountainside village with luscious greenery and a spectacular view of the ocean. We had the most wonderful visit with the friendliest, most eager villagers of Karusuan. We shared with them about a loving God who gave His Word to us in a book so we could learn about Him and know how to live. They were amazingly attentive to our stories and health lectures. We asked them if they had ever heard the story of creation or Noah or Jesus but they all said “no”, they had never heard any stories from the Bible! When it was time to go, the inevitable question came, “When will you come back?” We had to honestly tell them we had no idea how long it would be. We told them to pray for more missionaries and/or a helicopter that could help make the best use of the missionaries' time and also help with their medical emergencies.

The Rest of the Story
As we suspected, with limited missionaries and with our return back to our other airbase in northern Luzon, another visit had still not been made after 2 years. We had very occasional contact with the villagers throughout the years when we would see them at the lowland market. We told them that we hadn't forgotten them and to keep praying for more missionaries and a helicopter!

The Long Prayed for Helicopter
This last May we were privileged to finally bring the long prayed for helicopter to Palawan! It didn't take long for regular calls to start coming in with requests from remote missionaries with AFM, PFM, and our project in Kabulnukan for medical evacuations. But we did not forget about Karusuan. As soon as we found them at the lowland market we told them the good news about the helicopter and instructed them how to clear a landing pad. We promised to visit them soon, but 'soon' wasn’t good enough for them and they persistently called asking when we would come to start a church in their village! They said, “Ma’am, how can we go to church when the nearest church is so far from us and the river is so high!”

First Helicopter Visit
The day finally came for us to visit Karusuan for the first time in the helicopter. The flight is only 5 minutes from our airbase (versus a 40 minute drive plus a 1.5 hour hike if the river is not too high). Many villagers were happily waiting for us! They crowded into a tiny hut near the landing pad and pressed in to hear the continuation of the Bible stories we started 2 years before. Many could not fit in the hut and had to peek through the bamboo walls, and when the rain came it was difficult for all to find shelter. We found many people with Malaria and other complaints so we treated as many as we could before we had to leave.

First Shelter Built
With 50 plus people coming and growing each visit, they asked when we could build a church so everyone could listen. We encouraged them to do what they could for a temporary meeting place and they immediately set to work and when we came back the next week, the moderate sized shelter was already half done! We only provided nails. We continue to use that shelter every visit for seeing the many patients that need treatment and for Bible studies.Waiting for a School and Church
After the first visit in the helicopter Durialan told us “Ma’am, my people have seen your work and your characters and they are really sure now they want your church in our village!” The next visit he pointed to a young boy playing in the dirt and said, “He is waiting to go to your school! He cannot cross the high river to go to school in the lowlands.”

Second Answered Prayer
By the third and following visits God had answered the other prayer for more missionaries and we brought our 3 new Filipino LIGHT medical missionaries to help give Bible studies and see patients. Their last visit they taught the people how to use hydrotherapy and massage to treat their illnesses. They visit every week now.

First Sabbath Services
The people continued to request for Sabbath services but until the new missionaries arrived we had no one that was free to go on the weekends. So, this last Sabbath finally two Bible workers were able to spend the long weekend and hold the very first Sabbath services ever to be held in Karusuan! More than 50 Adults, youth and children attended all morning and afternoon services and came back with great interest for more evening Bible studies late into the night!

Pray for a Church
With so many other church plants going on we feel pulled in many directions but we feel this is a special place and due to it’s remoteness that maybe it should take priority. But we need prayers for wisdom and provisions for a church and missionary housing etc.

Pray for Missionaries
Please pray with us as we’re looking into some long term, experienced Filipino missionaries that can stay full time in Karusuan to continue the pioneering work that has begun.

The Work Goes On
Though we have recently returned back to Luzon again, the work will go on with our capable missionaries including Sean and Pris, the directors of the Palawan project who have returned from their trip to the states and have already made a visit to Karusuan. They were also impressed with the  eager friendliness of the people. We will continue to pray and support from afar.

The Helicopter a Big Blessing
Our new helicopter pilot, Daniel, is familiar with all the areas now and he will continue to fly the helicopter in Palawan while we continue to develop our other 2 projects and pray for more helicopters. Karusuan is now one of the regular villages he flies to for medical evacuations and missionary visits. It is such a blessing to have the helicopter not only to help open up new areas like Karusuan and Kebgen (a recently re-opened, very remote AFM village) but also because severe Malaria epidemics are prevalent in the mountains right now. Thank you so much for your prayers and donations that help make this aviation ministry possible as a great tool in speeding the spread of the Gospel to the world!

Mobile clinics are so much easier now in the helicopter!

Mobile clinics are so much easier now in the helicopter!

"Publish his glorious deeds among the nations. Tell everyone about the amazing things he does. Great is the LORD! He is most worthy of praise! He is to be feared above all gods. The gods of other nations are mere idols, but the LORD made the heavens!"
Psalm 96:3-7
Topics: Helicopter, Medical, Evangelism, Life in Palawan, construction, Missionary Life, Aviation | Comments Off on Karusuan and the Prayed for Helicopter

Helicopter Speeds Missionary Deployment

Posted on Wednesday, July 8th, 2015

SULADS missionaries ready for flight to their mission post

SULADS missionaries ready for flight to their mission post

Dwayne Harris

Over the last two years we have been working toward restoring an old airstrip at Mountain View College (MVC) in Mindanao for the purpose of supporting the work of the SULADS. The SULADS had their beginning years ago as a student missions program of MVC. It is now officially a separate entity but is still mostly composed of college students and graduates of MVC. They have multiple mission schools and projects scattered all throughout the very remote mountains and islands of Mindanao as well as other areas of the Philippines. When God provided the R44 helicopter last March I wanted to visit Mindanao with it one time to help raise awareness of the need for a helicopter for that area. The SULADS missionaries annual training (of new and returning missionaries) ended the last week of May, so we decided to time our trip at that time so we could help deploy the missionaries. We headed to MVC the 1st of June with the helicopter and arrived at the newly restored airstrip just in time for a dedication ceremony for the airstrip. The mayor of Valencia attended with many SULADS missionaries and staff from MVC.

Four months ago during the dry season God moved the mayor to supply the graders and equipment for the reconstruction of the airstrip at no charge. All we provided was diesel to keep them running. So we felt it only right to give her a ride in the helicopter back to Valencia after the dedication ceremony. It was a four minute flight vs. 30 to 45 minute drive.

We immediately started making plans and arrangements for the deployment of the missionaries. Over the next week we dropped off 35 missionaries at their mission schools. The nearest school is about a 3+ hour hike and the farthest is more than a 2 days walk. We also helped them make courtesy visits to the nearby government officials of each area. The results were a huge boost in the morale of the missionaries, and a renewed interest in the work of the SULADS at the highest levels in the church and government. Part of this was simply because they had a helicopter supporting them. Our time there with the helicopter also made us see even more the huge need of aircraft in Mindanao for supporting the work in the remote areas.

When we returned to Palawan I turned around and went back to Mindanao in the twin Commanche airplane a couple days later to pick up a new missionary family to be deployed to our remote mission school in Kabulnukan. A few days later we dropped them off at the trail head to hike into the mountains with their four children. Then a few hours later, about the time they arrived, we flew in all their personal supplies, food and school supplies. They are experienced, former SULADS missionaries so they are used to hiking, but they were very delighted to have their supplies carried in for them this time.

The flight is only 5-6 minutes long to Kabulnukan. Every couple days or so we end up making flights for this village as well as the AFM project and several other similar villages where many are suffering from Malaria and other outbreaks. There are especially a lot of sicknesses right now with the monsoon rains starting again. We always coordinate the flights so that needed supplies and medicines are going in while more severe patients or missionaries are coming out. What a difference a helicopter makes to the missionary work! We continue to praise God daily for this great tool he has provided to speed the spread of the gospel to the people of Palawan. Thank you for your continued prayers and support!

Flying AFM patients out (with Nurse Carrie and Pilots Dwayne and Daniel)

Flying AFM patients out (with Nurse Carrie and Pilots Dwayne and Daniel)

 

Topics: Helicopter, Medical, Evangelism, Life in Palawan, Missionary Life, Aviation | Comments Off on Helicopter Speeds Missionary Deployment

Charms, Strings, and Witchcraft

Posted on Wednesday, June 10th, 2015

Wendy Harris

We ducked our heads into the small, bamboo hut and saw a young girl curled up in a dark corner on a raised, bamboo bench seat. *Amy is only 18 years old, newly married and 2 months pregnant. She recently moved to a depressed village near our airbase in Palawan. We got a full history of her illness which included panic-attack type symptoms which supposedly started as a young girl when a classmate chased her with a snake. She complained of various things including a “UTI”--urine infection, and trouble seeing. The family explained that she had been “blind” for 3 days the week before, after the last attack.

Since we were ruling out demon possession (verses mental illness) we asked the family about any charms, strings, or witch-doctor medicine that they might be using. They openly showed us the string they had taken off her waist already. They also showed us the witch-doctor medicine which consisted of some green leafy, floating things in dirty water in a big, old coke bottle. We encouraged them to get rid of all these things and they consented. I asked them what they thought her sickness was- a physical problem or a “bad spirit.” They answered honestly even using the word “Satan” to describe what they believed might be the problem.

I told our visiting doctor companions that I highly suspected demon possession but that we would probably know for sure when we saw her during an attack. We encouraged Amy and the family to pray fervently and to study the Bible. They readily agreed. They had no Bible and had never read it, so we offered to start Bible studies with them.

As we closed our visit with a special prayer, we heard a loud clunk and saw that Amy had been suddenly thrown to the floor. Her husband was there in an instant and we jumped to help him lift her back up on the bench. Her arms and legs were shaking and her hands and feet were stiff and cramping into painful contortions. She was having trouble breathing and seemed to be hyperventilating. She was moaning in distress and fear and was talking about snakes. The same thing had happened the week before as our other missionaries were having closing prayer after a visit. The doctor checked Amy's eyes with a pen light and found them fixed and dilated.

We immediately started praying for Satan to be cast away as we attempted to help make her comfortable in different ways. One of the doctors asked if there were any other charms in the house or similar things that might be associated with witchcraft. Then we noticed more strings around her wrists and ankles. We asked the family what they were for and they said “for her UTI.” We suggested they take them off (which they immediately did) and then we strongly recommended to the husband that they choose now whom they wanted to serve--Satan or God. If they chose God, then he should burn all the strings immediately and throw out the “medicine.” He hesitated and I told him he should be the one to decide, not us.

Amy began to calm down when we started singing hymns and she soon fell asleep. We praised God when the husband went out right away and burned the strings and threw out the witch-doctor medicine! We knew that God had saved this girl’s life and freed her from Satan’s attacks as they made a decision for Him.

A few days later we visited Amy with our other missionaries and *Jane (our other 18 year old friend that was freed from 3 demons and has since become a baptized, growing Christian.) We found Amy sitting outside, hardly recognizable! She was bright-eyed and smiling and so happy to see us! We continue to visit her regularly and though she struggles at times she looks forward to the visits and Bible studies. She and her husband are even attending church with us whenever they can.

Amy close to Wendy and Jane on the other side in black

Amy close to Wendy and Jane on the other side in black

P.S. Amy recently lost her baby in a miscarriage. They were so grateful for our help with getting them to the hospital during the crisis and helping them with the bill. We always direct their praises to God who is the source of all good things. We do thank you also for being a channel of God’s blessings to this ministry through your gifts and prayers which allows us to help people like them.

*Names have been changed

Topics: Medical, Evangelism, Life in Palawan | Comments Off on Charms, Strings, and Witchcraft

Onward Forward

Posted on Sunday, April 19th, 2015

Luzon Team

Luzon Team

Dwayne Harris

The last month has been busy. I flew off the time required for a check ride and soon after was able to take the check-ride to reinstate my helicopter license here. We left the day after and flew up to our airbase in northern Luzon where I was able to do some more maintenance. I repainted the rotor blades and applied some approved rotor blade tape that will reduce further need for maintenance and painting. After reinstalling the blades we tracked and balanced the helicopter and fixed an oil leak. Everything seems to be working and flying very smoothly now.

We hosted a Family Bible Camp over the Easter week at the Adventist church next to our airbase and it seemed to be a huge blessing to all that attended. We were reminded that "Healthy families make healthy churches." We were thankful for the additions to our missionary team that God had orchestrated in advance to make this and other ongoing programs a success. We saw how even though we were unable to have many meetings to plan together, with a big prayer focus before and during the event it made it even more powerful.

Family Bible Camp

Family Bible Camp

The following Monday I flew the speakers down to Iloilo to put on another Family Bible Camp down there. I continued on to Palawan and left the Twin Commache at our airbase there and flew commercially back to north Luzon. I then turned around and flew the helicopter back down to Manila the same day with Wendy. That night we picked up Daniel Lui, the new helicopter pilot that has come to join us. We have been processing our visa renewals and Daniel's license conversion this last week.

Welcome Daniel Lui!

Welcome Daniel Lui!

IMG_3674

Daniel Lui, helicopter/airplane pilot and mechanic from N. California will operate the new helicopter in Palawan

We will fly the helicopter to Palawan tomorrow where we can start using it where we left off three years ago (when our other helicopter was grounded.) We already have scheduled flights waiting for us for medical mission teams going into the mountains and to the remote islands of southern Palawan. We expect the med-evac flights to also pick up right away, as we continue to get texts and stories of patients in desperate need of transport. We praise God for this great and unique opportunity we have to serve "the least of these" and to speed the work of the missionaries in these areas.

We can't tell you enough how we value and appreciate your prayers and support so much! Thank you for being a part of this ministry.

Topics: Helicopter, Missionary Life, Aviation | Comments Off on Onward Forward