Dear Family and Friends,
The last month has been very busy in Palawan with some medivac flights and making repairs and finishing some projects.
I (Dwayne) got a call from Jomar, a friend of mine that had been our foreman when we built the hangar and houses here in Palawan 4 years ago. He was in the Adventist hospital in Puerto and had just had some tests done that revealed a large mass in his bladder. He did not know what he should do so I rode the motorcycle up to Puerto and consulted his doctors to get the full story. Jomar had a tumor in his bladder that was obstructing his urinary tract and backing things up into his kidneys. I helped him get some blood donors because he had already lost a large amount of blood. He needed surgery soon to remove the tumor before it did damage to his other organs. He hardly had enough money to start paying for a surgery but at my urging that God would provide he went ahead and had surgery. After the surgery and getting all of the financial help from government sources and discounts from the hospital and doctors, they were still financially short and the hospital would not discharge until most of the bill was paid. I was flying a couple people from Puerto to Mapun to visit an Adventist school down there. I arrived in Puerto early and stopped at the hospital before picking the people up and ended up giving Jomar some money to finish paying his bill so he could get discharged from the hospital. This was a financial sacrifice because funds are tight this month. Two hours later, on our way flying down to Mapun, my passengers handed me a donation– the exact amount of money I had just given to Jomar two hours earlier. This was just a reminder to us that God knows all of our needs and as we sacrifice to help others He is standing by ready to bless with more than we gave.
Side note: They have since confirmed malignant cancer in Jomar. He needs more surgery, but has chosen not to pursue that. He found an Adventist health book (though he is not an Adventist) and is already putting some things into practice. We have been giving him more resources which he is eagerly accepting. Please pray for him and for us as we witness to him. We know God has a plan for him.
As we arrived in Mapun the people there had a patient waiting for me to medivac to Puerto on the return flight. As we boarded the plane they handed me another donation. We have made it very clear to the people there that we do not charge for medivac flights but they wanted to contribute anyway. God is good.
The island of Mapun is far south of Palawan, closer to Malaysia. It is isolated with no other way to get to advanced medical help except with our plane or by a very long boat ride that is extremely expensive, unpredictable, and often not available due to weather. They have an airstrip, but no commercial flights are ever made there.
One of the patients I evacuated was a Muslim Sheik. After his recovery in Puerto they traveled back to Brooke’s Point where he has relatives, and he requested to catch a ride back to Mapun the next time I flew. I was making a flight in a few days, so I told them to come early the morning of my flight. Wendy ended up hosting the whole family all that morning while we waited for heavy rains to clear up. It was a good opportunity to get to know them and also for them to see who we are. Their granddaughter is our close neighbor and she has shown interest in the Bible and attending church with us. They told us that before we came, most people on their island just died if they had an accident or serious illness. Some of their own relatives have died throughout the years due to lack of transportation. The Sheik was always very serious looking, but when we arrived in Mapun and I was getting ready to leave, I gave him a smile goodbye and it was great to see his smile in return. They requested me to come to their home next time I go there so they can thank me in proper Muslim tradition.
We’ll have to continue this newsletter at another time since there are too many stories to tell in one email.
Some of you have been hearing about floods and typhoons in the Philippines lately. Our luzon hangar was directly hit for the first time since it was built, and our missionaries there said it was quite the experience! Some of the roof was torn off and they had to try to secure the hangar doors in the middle of the storm, but hopefully not too much damage was done. Some friends of ours were on the coast and their windows shattered and blew out, and their beds were sucked out the windows! Dwayne made preparations to fly back to Luzon if needed for relief work, but it seems so far there is not much that can be done.
Then, days of heavy downpour this week caused Manila and surrounding areas to be flooded again. It’s the 3rd major flooding in Manila in the last couple years. It’s just the beginning of typhoon season so there will be more to come.
As the world continues to groan it’s way towards the end, we praise God for His protection and for opportunities to help others in need and to share with them the hope that we have.
Thank you so much for all you do to make this ministry possible. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” Romans 15:13
To be continued . . .
Love, Dwayne and Wendy
Enjoy the pictures.
If you’d like to help,
Make checks payable to: Gospel Ministries International
Send checks to:GMI (Gospel Ministries International) P O Box 506, Collegedale, TN 37315
(Be sure to specify donation is for “PAMAS”)
Or call the GMI office: 423-473-1841
Or donate online at our website: pamasmission.org
(be sure to specify donation is for “PAMAS”)
–Helicopters: $120,000 still needed (for one)
–Tractor/mower for Palawan airstrip — received! Thank you!
–Bibles and sharing materials — some received. Thank you!
–God’s provisions for helicopters for Palawan and Luzon
–Partners for single missionaries serving in remote areas
–God’s timing for missionaries, Sean and Pris to come back to Palawan (waiting on immigration stuff)
PAMAS is a faith-based, volunteer organization which aids the Adventist church in it’s mission to carry the Gospel to the world through the use of aviation and medical ministry.