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Greetings Everyone,

We have been away from the boat for ten days staying at Pem, an isolated island village located on a lofty plateau surrounded by mountains. To get there we poled the dinghy for half an hour along the coast then paddled and poled it for nearly three hours up a windy river then a climb up a very slippery slope to the village. It rained all the time. There had been a death in the village and we had to wait a week, first for the funeral and then for the funeral (memorial) feast. I did a three day marriage and parenting seminar which was well attended. Phil painted their blackboards and showed “Fireproof” with increasing difficulty as our film equipment limped along and finally gave up the ghost.

Phil and Pastor Sigi and another man paddled a canoe for five hours to the yacht to try to fix it with no success and then paddled back again — a long day!! We intended to finish off with prayer on Sunday, however, the five year old granddaughter of one of our friends died of TB and the funeral was on Sunday. A sad end to our time there. From there we returned to the Rosma Bible college for a night then another three hour dinghy trip to Abeleti to replace the radio that had failed.

We are now back on the boat again for a rest before our next job which will probably be at Wale village about three hours in the dinghy from here.

To give you some idea of how isolated this place is, we haven’t found anyone who has even HEARD of the name Donald Trump, let alone that he is the US president!!

God bless,

Pam and Phil

Greetings Everyone,

We have had an AMAZING time at Abelete, an isolated outpost about 3 to 4 hours rough dinghy trip from where the boat is. Last year, after we left, their leader, Linus, was beaten up (the third member of his congregation to have been hospitalised) resulting in complete paralysis down the left side. It was so hard to see this vibrant young man so reduced that he had to be carried everywhere.

We showed War Room on Saturday evening and then on Sunday I preached on prayer and Phil on James 5. He anointed Linus with oil and Sigi and the elders laid hands on Linus and prayed for healing. After the service Phil took his camera and asked Linus to try to move his leg. When we come home you will see on the video how he raised his leg almost vertical and waved it from side to side.

Please pray for the following things for us:

– That Linus will continue to be healed and be able to walk again. Due to lack of use the past nine months his right leg is very weak as well.
– That his brother, Vincent, will grow in confidence as he takes over some of the leadership.
– For the surrounding catholic area, still trying to close down the CRC church. Phil had a long talk with a leading Catholic catechist who wants to rein in his people and to see peace and who is impressed with Linus’s faith and ability to forgive. Usually there is BIG payback.
– For the film equipment to keep going. It blew up and Phil has done a temporary fix-it that he hopes will see the distance.

Thanks for your support.

God bless,

Pam and Phil

Greetings Everyone,

Sorry not to have been in touch. We have been off the boat up until today. I have done a weeks teaching at the Bible College and a course on using flannelgraph with the Sunday School teachers while Phil has fixed and fine tuned their HF radio, installed a bigger solar panel, repaired the controller and shown films. War Room was really well received. They are committed to prayer. We have daily prayer meetings, 5 am to 6 am every morning and a good roll-up, too. I told them it wouldn’t work at home!!

When we first arrived, while we were waiting for the dinghy to arrive (it was a couple of days), we decided to walk along the beach to church — about a two hour walk. That went well and when we got there they told us we were preaching — that’s the way it goes here!! Coming home the tide was up and we had to go up over a small cliff. The track was very slippery (Phil reckons Rossel Island mud makes Teflon look like glue) with a sheer drop on the seaward side. I found it quite nerve-racking and have put it on my “Not – to – do – again” list.

We are back on the boat loading up with supplies for three more churches on the south coast of Rossel, I’m doing a three day Marriage and Parenting Seminar at two of them and Phil is installing a new HF radio, solar, etc at the third and most isolated one. It’s hard to imagine the difference being able to communicate between islands with the radios makes. We should be away from the boat for a week or more.

Never a dull moment!

God bless,

Pam and Phil

Greetings Everyone,

The last minute adrenalin rush!! We’d had a fairly good trip, mainly 20-25 knot winds. Wednesday came in with 25-30 knots gusting to 36 knots, big seas on the beam and water flying everywhere as Phil struggled to get the main down and we flew along under a scrap of foresail. The pace was fast and we looked like getting in a bit after midday Thursday. As we were about to enter the reef passage (only a hundred yards wide) under motor with the sails down the engine DIED. Oh No!! I headed the boat back out to sea using a bit of the staysail for steerage and Phil put his head in the engine. I could hear all the tools rolling around the floor as the two metre swells rolled us from side to side.

This vessel has a complicated fuel system with back-up fuel filters and a fuel polishing system. Being the clever fix-it man that he is he soon found what was wrong. It turned out that when he replaced the engine room bilge pump a few days ago he must have bumped a stop-cock on the fuel line effectively cutting off the fuel to the engine; not surprising in the rolling conditions. It took him half an hour in the rolling seas to bleed the fuel system and get it going again.

We then entered the reef passage and anchored safely before dark. Phew!! Thank God this didn’t happen a couple of minutes later when we would have been in the middle of the reef passage –thank you all you pray-ers for the protective covering you keep over us.

Today we are having a REST!!

God bless,

Pam and Phil

Greetings Everyone,

We are leaving on the outgoing tide Thursday morning! We have had a very full social life catching up on our many friends in Bundy and are loaded up with oranges, mandarins, sweet potatoes and good wishes. One lovely friend loaned us a car for a week and another spent all day yesterday with Phil shifting nine batteries, four solar panels and other goods in his ute — lots of muscle power involved.

We also were able to get to the memorial service of a very dear Christian lady in Gympie who, together with her husband, used to pray for us every day while we are in the Louisiades. We also got to see the movie “The Case For Christ”, the story of Lee Strobel’s journey from a devout atheist to becoming a well known Christian apologist. He was an investigative journalist with the Chicago Tribune and when his wife became a Christian he set out to prove the whole Christian thing was false and a delusion. He came to the conclusion that when people are confronted with the facts of the crucifixion and resurrection the only reason they will not believe is because they “just don’t want to”.

We came in with a tidal flow and a nippy breeze to the fuel wharf and had some tricky maneuvers trying to tie up. In the middle of it one of our fenders broke free and took off down stream at a furious rate of knots. As our dinghy was on the davits and the outboard tied up securely, there was no way we were going to catch it. I said to Phil, “We need a friendly tinnie to come along”. And one did!

Our ocean crossing should take about eight days — just over 800 nautical miles. The weather looks good for the foreseeable future. Please pray that it stays that way.

Next update from the Louisiades.

God bless,

Pam and Phil

Greetings Everyone,

We are anchored in the Burnett River at Bundaberg awaiting some supplies — HF radios, solar panels and regulators, etc and the weather. We had ideal conditions sailing up the coast from Iluka with 10-15 knot south west winds. We left Iluka Wednesday afternoon and managed to keep ahead of the bad weather and arrived at Wide Bay Bar at mid tide enabling us to cross the bar and take the tide all the way up the Great Sandy Straits, under a full moon, to Kingfisher where we anchored for a night’s rest then on to Bundaberg the next morning, arriving there at 9 pm Saturday night.

It has been great to catch up with old friends here. One couple have loaned us a car which makes provisioning so much easier.

We hope to leave Bundaberg sometime next week. Please pray for the right timing and an eight day weather window to get us safely to the Louisiades.

God bless,

Pam and Phil

Greetings Everyone,

Things are falling into place. We had a false start on the antifouling as the slipways had a backlog due to the previous rain. They put us off for a week and we just scraped onto the cradle with the lower tides. Coming back down we had to sit on the cradle and wait for the higher tide at midnight to float off. Still, the antifouling is done and that’s the beast part of antifouling.

We have some YWAM fellows taking over our house while we are away — a blessing to us and to them. The YWAM base is affiliated with our church at Byron Bay. Young people come from all over the world to train for short term missions. It’s refreshing to partner with them.

The only hold up we have is waiting for a new masthead wind transducer. A bird has bitten off a part of it — a $700 snack!!

We are moving down to Iluka after the weekend and leaving as soon as the weather permits. Please pray for fair winds as we make our way up to Bundaberg where we have to pick up more equipment to take over with us.

God bless,

Pam and Phil