“We were given a mandate by Jesus to go into all the world … not just the safe places.”
These words touch my heart. They were spoken by an MAF staff member who serves in a very dangerous and challenging part of the world. In the past two years, the MAF team there has twice evacuated from the country due to safety concerns, and then returned. They have seen believers from other organizations killed—co-laborers whom they have worshipped alongside. And yet these pilots, mechanics, technology specialists and their families remain steadfastly committed to demonstrating the love of Jesus to the lost and hurting.
Likewise, MAF is steadfastly committed. The Lord seems to be opening more doors, providing more opportunities to reach out to what we call restricted access nations—the most difficult parts of Africa and Asia. Due to safety concerns I can’t reveal the exact locations or provide specific details of this work. In some of these places, the airplane is the tool. In others, we creatively use technology to support pastors and lay leaders who are finding interesting and effective ways to speak God’s Word to their countrymen. It’s an exciting time for missions work!
Yet, as missions work evolves, there are challenges. In the past year, four of MAF’s flight programs were grounded while we worked through differing requirements imposed by officials in these countries. As I write this, two teams are still unable to fly. Will you please pray that they will be back in the air soon? When airplanes must sit on the ground, evangelists can’t reach remote villages. Medical teams can’t help the sick. Women die in childbirth. In one area, several deaths were reported because MAF was unable to perform medical evacuation flights. This caused local people to rally on our behalf, gathering at the airport until permission was granted for MAF to fly. Praise God!
I wish I could share with you all the exciting ways I’ve seen God work in the past year. He has spoken to the hearts of many faithful supporters of MAF, and now several new airplanes are in our hangar, being prepared for service overseas. When Nepal was shaken by earthquakes, the Lord provided resources that have allowed MAF to enable the work of some 90 relief organizations helping hurting people and communities. This 2016 Annual Report tells that and other stories of God’s faithfulness.
Thank you for praying and walking alongside MAF as we respond to the Great Commission, even in those places that aren’t easy.
John C. Boyd
President and CEO