Local pastors and church leaders posing for a picture after a successful session with the MAF Ministry team.
Photo by Kowara Bell

Pastors shared the need of their remote locations during visits by a team of MAF Technologies.

A  Story by MAF Technologies, Kowara Bell

A MAF ministry team spent a week touring the Sandaun, East Sepik, and Madang provinces to learn more about the challenges that church leaders face in their communities and to offer help.

For many pastors it was a chance to renew old connections with MAF and to learn more about the work of MAF Technologies, formerly known as Christian Radio Missionary Fellowship (CRMF).

So, when the MAF Tech staff arrived in the provincial towns of Vanimo, Wewak, and Madang, the pastors were able to share the difficulties of working in remote locations of PNG.

Vanimo Assembly of God Pastor Zedidiah Kamblijambi said that this initiative brought him back to a time when he used MAF flights to travel to communities in his region.

“There were connections, MAF did a lot of work during that time with different denominations and AOG was one of them, but unfortunately the connections got broke down for some reasons,” he said.

(From Left) MAF Ministry coordinator, Betty Francis, Pastor Zedidiah Kamblija
Photo by Kowara Bell
From left is Betty Francis MAF Ministry coordinator, Ps. Zedidiah Kamblijambli from AOG church and Caine Ruruk Ministry partnership officer for MAF Technologies

But with this new opportunity is kind of a reconnection with us churches and MAF, so we can move forward together achieving our missions and visions reaching many rural communities sharing God’s gospel and enabling them to have basic services in their area.”

Kario Veneo, Senior Pastor of Madang Foursquare Church and Chairman of the Men's Ministers Fraternal, shared his memories of flying with MAF and said aviation was important to help the connection of urban pastors with rural pastors and congregations.

After learning more about the work of MAF Technologies, he was excited that the services could help connect rural communities.

“It is not only the provision of air services, but you’ve also expanded into technologies, which is so significant for us. Services such as radio communication, solar systems, and computing training through MAF Technologies offers an opportunity for us to fully equip ourselves with such skills, particularly to assist our church and partners in the remote areas,” he said.

Envoy x1 HF High Frequency Codan Radio
Photo by Kowara Bell
A High Frequency radio codan model system that MAF Technologies provide.

Caine Ruruk, MAF Technologies Ministry Partnership Officer and organiser of the trip, said it was valuable to renew MAF's relationship with church leaders as well as to explain that MAF Technologies was the updated name of the former CRMF.

’And we are also reminding the churches of the services and privileges available for them specifically to do their ministry work in remote locations within PNG,’’ Caine said.

MAF PNG General Manager for aviation and Senior Pilot Brad Venter said providing subsidised airfares to churches is a priority, and that MAF is happy to provide flying for church groups, pastors, and other church workers.

‘’However, we have noticed a general decline in bookings from these churches and we would encourage them to make the necessary inquiries at the MAF offices in Vanimo and Wewak,” he said.

“We have tried to ensure that we are always able to provide this service and have never stopped flying in the Sandaun province and to Vanimo and Wewak.’’

An aerial view of a remote village somewhere in Eastern Highlands Province of Papua New Guinea
Photo by Kowara Bell
Aerial view of a remote airstrip somewhere in the jungles of Papua New Guinea

The poor state of the airstrips in the East Sepik and Sandaun provinces has been a reason of concern for MAF. The airstrips' condition has deteriorated over time due to a lack of funding and maintenance.

Brad said if an airstrip becomes unsafe, MAF has to cease flying there.

‘’We would encourage churches to collaborate with local communities and the government to ensure that airstrips where they need to travel are kept in good condition,’’ he added.

Click here to learn more about MAF Technologies' Outreach programs.  Outreach Solutions — MAF Technologies Papua New Guinea