Today let’s visit Kora, a village that sits on a mountainside in the highlands of Papua New Guinea. [Locate Papua New Guinea on a map.]
When your grandparents were young, it took missionaries many days to hike from a mission station into a village such as Kora. They climbed up muddy paths up mountain ridges and into steep valleys, and they crossed raging rivers on bridges made from a log or vines. It was hot and dangerous work.
Today, thanks to our mission plane, we can fly to Kora in just 20 minutes. The plane lands on a grass strip on the mountain ridge. From there we hike up a steep trail to the village. When it rains the trail is slippery. The children run past us, for they are used to hiking up and down the mountain. We’re tired when we reach a little clearing with several houses built of wood with thatched roofs. The houses are built on stilts to help keep out wild animals and allow air to flow through.
Farther up the mountainside stands the little Adventist clinic. The clinic’s nurse is the only “doctor” for miles around. He sets broken bones, dresses wounds, and treats people for malaria or one of a dozen other sicknesses that people get. If someone is too sick or too seriously injured for the nurse to treat, the mission plane can fly the person to the nearest hospital.
The children in Kora who go to school learn to read and write in their local language or in pidgin, the common language of the South Pacific islands. Many of their parents can’t read, so children read to their parents.
Farther up the mountainside is the Adventist church. Children’s voices echo over the mountain as they sing about Jesus. They love hearing Bible stories. Their teacher listens to the story on a solar-powered MP3 player and then translates the story into local language. Some adults, especially those who can’t read, enjoy hearing the Bible stories with the children.
People in villages such as Kora thank Sabbath School members around the world for helping them learn that God loves them. Our mission offerings helped to buy the mission plane that brings in supplies and links the village to the rest of the world.
This quarter part of our Thirteenth Sabbath Offering will help people in villages such as Kora throughout the South Pacific. The offering will help buy more solar-powered MP3 players and will help build medical clinics in some of the most isolated villages. The children’s offering will buy Bibles for children to read and share with their families.
Our Thirteenth Sabbath Offering will be very busy this quarter. Let’s plan now to give as much as we can so that others who’ve never heard the story of Jesus can know that He loves them.