MAF still helping tsunami rebuilding, relationships are being made

By October 7, 2005

Indonesia (MNN) — Rebuilding is the focus of ministry in tsunami hit Indonesia. Mission Aviation Fellowship is working with Samaritan’s Purse to help deliver needed supplies and manpower to hard hit areas of Banda Aceh. They are having an impact.

MAF’s Chief Operating Officer Dave Bochman is visiting their Indonesian operations this week. They’re working in this mostly-Muslim region for one very important reason; to build personal relationships. Bochman says, “You can have a government official that is interested in hindering our operations and so, personal relationships help out there. But, at a much deeper level, looking at people’s eternal condition, personal relationships are what it’s all about.”

Bochman says they’re supplying like-minded Indonesians with the ability to rebuild their lives, “In an area that their whole concept of what Christians were like was very negative.” That’s changing as quality homes and other needs are being provided in Christian love.

That doesn’t mean there haven’t been problems, says Area Director Peter Spahr. “I moved here with my family in July and at that time I was told that we would most like have air strips operating now and at this point there has been no dirt moved.”

Spahr says bureaucracy is to blame. “With the government involved and the U-N involved and other organizations, the air strips that we’ve proposed, they are desiring to make ones that are longer, wider, asphalt, just making a large project out of something that otherwise we could probably open up pretty quickly and be able to use our aircraft.”

Bochman says that’s delaying the people’s ability to rebuild their lives.

Pray for safety and that key relationships will be developed to help ministry grow in the region.

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