An open door….

One of our staff invited us to join her church, and a neighbouring congregation of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, in celebrating the 131st anniversary of the establishment of the denomination  in PNG.


Across Lae city, and throughout the country, various districts gathered to commemorate the arrival of the first Lutheran missionaries on July 12, 1886. It is hard to imagine their day to day circumstances in such a difficult environment, confronting language and cultural barriers. The first two indigenous baptisms would come after 13 years of labouring for the Kingdom. Over the few years to follow there were others, including 36 from Tami island – a people group only now receiving the word of God in their heart language.

Can you fathom a church enduring for 120 years without God’s word in their heart language? It defies all logic; to us it seems implausible given our experiences.

To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write:  These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open.  I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name.     Revelation 3:7-8

In fact, it’s not so surprising. The door opened in PNG generations ago has been kept open by the power of Jesus Christ. It is His intent and purpose to sustain His church, perfecting her in Himself. It is all His doing….. it is simply our privilege to be here and see Him at work.

Please pray …

  • that the churches of PNG would be strong in Christ, faithfully proclaiming His word.

What might happen….?

“Oh, Annie – thank you so much for coming! If you had not been teaching the women God’s Word, and if I had not come inside and listened to what you said, oh…what might have happened to me?!”


This is how Angam expressed his joy at hearing and receiving the Gospel through one of our translation friends. We spoke often of Kim and Annie Colich during our recent furlough in Australia, and shared how life has changed for Angam and his wife Aikiba.

How do we answer Angam’s question, “…what might have happened”? God had His hand on Angam long before Kim and Annie ever set foot on Tami ground in PNG. Scripture assures us that we are in His thoughts before ever we draw a breath.

My frame was not hidden from you. when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there were none of them. How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them!    Psalm 139:15-17

God would work in Angam’s life, drawing him to Himself in one way or another. In this case, His way was through Kim and Annie and the translation of Scripture into Tami. And we know from Romans 10:14-15 that this is God’s default method….. sending, preaching, hearing, believing, and calling out to the Lord.

There is more room for some extra feet on the mission field. We are in need of translation and literacy workers, together with teachers, medical staff, administrators, tradespeople…. anyone with a heart for people needing God’s word.

This work does not just impact the ones receiving the word. Annie comments that, ““If this was the ONLY fruit I ever saw, the ONLY life in which God ever used me to draw someone near to Him, then my 26 plus years in PNG among the Tami would have been worth it all!”. It is such a joy to be one of those with “blessed feet”.

Perhaps you should ask yourself…… “What might happen?”.

Please pray …

  • that God would provide workers for the task ahead of us – reaching the many people groups in PNG yet to have His word in their heart language.

Meanwhile, in Morobe Province …

These summaries give some insights into what has been happening in the Morobe Province while we were in Australia for 8 months on furlough.


One Tami leader said, “When I read the Bible in another language I need someone to explain it to me. Now reading this book of John in Tami it is clear, ‘out in the open’. It explains itself!”

As people hear the Word of God in their own heart language, pray for a new understanding of the gospel message.


Before 2016 there was no Scripture translation work, but in God’s providence a young Norwegian fellow, Eyvind, decided to work amongst this group. Eyvind walked with Elisa, a National translator, to all the villages to talk about the translation work that was about to begin.


Pray as Eyvind is building relationships with all the villages before starting work.

Pray as he undertakes the building of his village house which will allow him space to live as well as translate.


The New Testament is currently being printed with the expected Bible Dedication to happen on Friday 23rd February 2018. The audio recording of the New Testament will hopefully be finished this year.

Praise that people are interested in learning to read the Scriptures which will be published in 2018.



This year, Katri Linnasalo along with her National co-translator Pastor Kaik Yunamu, has consultant checked Acts and John’s letters, and revised Ephesians, Colossians, Titus, and Esther.

Praise that the National co-translators are eager to learn more techniques to translate effectively and accurately.


In February 2017, the consultantMato checking of the New Testament was finished. Later this year it is planned to begin an audio recording of the New Testament and the Jesus film. In 2018, God willing, the typesetting for the Mato NT will be undertaken and completed.

Praise for the people’s growing enthusiasm as they see the results of 20 years translation work.

Central Buang

In April 2015, we blogged about a group from Central Buang who came to our Centre to record the Jesus film (an outreach tool among many language groups worldwide). Well, the film dedication occurred in January 2017, over three consecutive nights in different villages with about 1550 people coming along to hear in their own heart language the story of Jesus.

As well, about 850 people came to three afternoon literacy classes (the Buang alphabet contains 39 letters). 140 DVDs, 10 SD cards of the film plus more downloaded onto other smart phones, 215 New Testaments, and 200 Buang Life of Jesus comics were sold at these events.

Buang film
The welcome path into the Central Buang Village for the Jesus film dedication

Two mothers and their children who watched in one of the villages said, “In the past, when we heard the Bible, it was a story. But when Jesus spoke in our language, we felt it inside. We felt that we must receive this man as a friend.”

Pray with thanks that during the three film screenings there was no rain on the iron roof to dull the film sound as many people came to hear their language on film for the first time. Please pray for the 3 YWAM workers who have been trained to continue showing the film amongst other villages within the language group.