Congo (MNN) — Tribal conflict and civil war caused Mission
Aviation Fellowship to move out of the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo in
2002 when the violence hit their base. But now, MAF may be heading back to
MAF's program manager for eastern DRC is David Jacobson.
"We did have a large base, actually the largest base in Africa, in
northeastern Congo there. That was the base that was attacked, and that is where
we had a large program a few years ago."
Jacobson says there's enough stability in the region, prompting MAF to
consider moving back. "At this time we actually have our first
family that has moved in, but they have moved in to one of the larger cities on
the northeastern part, very close to the Uganda border. We're hoping to base a
second family there within a few months. And through that we hope to be able
to start rebuilding our base which was destroyed."
MAF has been flying into eastern Congo from Uganda since the
base was destroyed, so the work has continued though from afar.
According to Jacobson, missionary aviation is desperately
needed in Congo as the roads are almost impassable. "As an example, I
talked to a missionary that drove a route that takes us 1 hour and 5 minutes to
fly, and he said it took him 10 days to drive with a big truck."
With so many weapons in the hands of mobs and gangs,
traveling on the roads can be dangerous, so air transportation is safer.
The base rebuilding effort will be an incredible task, says
Jacobson. "We had at one point nine houses and two hangars. Every single
house has been completely stripped to bare walls. The only thing left is the
floor and the bare walls. Strictly from a financial standpoint ,it's pretty
Jacobson believes MAF will help local believers reach out
with the Gospel. "It's really quite exciting to see how the Lord is
raising up Christians that have a burden to reach their own people and other
tribes." Air transportation can help those efforts.