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The Happiest Man on the Island!

Tags: Helicopter, Philippines, Tala Andig People,
POSTED ON Jun 05, 2017 by Wonita Werley

NTM Aviation’s new R66 helicopter is on its way to the Philippines.   But until then, pilot Brian Pruett is rationing the R44 helicopter’s few remaining hours before its lengthy mandatory tear-down and overhaul.

He’s having to make tough decisions as to which missionaries get a flight.  One of his priorities is making flights for tribal people who are now the missionaries!

Juan, a Tala-Andig man, is on outreach to a village in his own people group.  After a recent grueling day-long hike to accomplish an important errand to Jason and Shirley Birkin’s ministry village, Juan faced the same arduous hike back.  But the Birkins decided to give him a break.  They asked Brian to fly him to a location where he could catch some easier land transportation back to his outreach village.

Brian remembered a wide spot near a river not far from Juan’s village.  Maybe he could land there, and Juan would have only a     20-minute hike. 

Then came a surprise! The Birkins said that Juan’s eager village had already begun clearing a helipad in anticipation of Bible teachers and consultants coming.   “This meant we could land right in the village!” said Brian.  

Just to be sure, he did a fly over. 

The helipad looked fine!

Brian first landed in Birkin’s village to pick up Juan. “That’s when we told him that we’d just drop him off almost literally on his doorstep. And that’s when his face almost cracked due to his huge smile!”

“And when Juan realized that he was going to be home for breakfast with his family,” recalls Brian, “he was definitely the happiest man on the island!”

That village is the first of four where the Tala-Andig church hopes to harness the power of the helicopter to reach their own people! And Brian has already checked out the helipad in the second village.

Quick, efficient helicopter flights will revolutionize these outreaches – especially as the self-supported Tala-Andig church leaders visit frequently to coach the teams. “They can only stay away from their farms and families for so long before they have to return and care for them,” says Brian.

You are part of helping the helicopter open new and strategic doors to ministry – to the native people groups, by the native peoples. Thank you! And pray the R66 gets to the Philippines fast – before the hours on the R44 completely run out.