MAF Advent Adventure

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Day 1

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Day 1


In the attic, Mike found a diary and old map
With the story of how MAF began.
Mike decided, for his Christmas mission,
He had an exciting plan!

Each page was filled with pictures and tales,
One for each country in which MAF flies.
From the first of these nations until the last
He’d provide much-needed supplies.

Now, jump inside Mike’s MAF plane,
There’s so much to learn and see;
Though Christmas is fast approaching,
There’s still space for you and me!

Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

Mike’s little plane touched safely down
In the jungles of Ecuador.
He stepped out of the cabin and looked around
It’s a great place to explore!

Up to the aircraft came a smiling man,
Jaime Saint was his name.
Many years before, his grandfather Nate,
Had visited this place in his plane.

Some violent men from the jungle
Had killed Nate and all his friends.
But their story’s inspired many folk since,
Because the warriors made amends.

‘There are snakes in this jungle,’ said Jaime,
‘They’ll harm you if they bite.
Is there anti-venom in your plane,
So our nurse can make things right?’

Mike had just the thing in his plane,
So Jaime smiled at the sight;
Happy the villagers would be okay
Whenever they got a snakebite.

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 2

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Day 2


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

Mike touched down at the next place on his map:
South Sudan – a dry, dusty place.
A family of six was waiting for him,
Each had a big smile on their face.

‘We’re here to help the Laarim people,
But we can’t buy fresh food, you see.
We must get our fruit and veg flown in,
If we want to have them for tea!’

‘No problem!’ said Mike, as he opened the hold,
‘You can have the fruit, cabbage and beans.’
‘Thank you, Mike!’ the mother said,
‘We’ll stay healthy by eating our greens!’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 3

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Day 3


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

Landing in a place called Wanakipa,
Mike found himself surrounded
By friendly Papua New Guineans,
Looking astonished and astounded!

A lady called Harriëtte called up to him,
‘We were praying you had Bibles in your hold.
My friends want the Scriptures for themselves,
But my very last copy’s been sold.’

‘Let’s take a look,’ said Mike, looking around,
Before emerging with a crate.
It was full of Bibles in the Tok Pisin tongue.
‘Thanks,’ said Harriëtte, ‘Now that’s really great!’

‘Thanks!’ said the villagers crowding around.
‘Now we all can read of God’s love.
We hoped you’d be able to help us,
When we saw your plane flying above.’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

MAF began serving in Arnhem Land in

1973

Did you know?

The first ever MAF flight across Northern Australia was in an aeroplane called a Tiger Moth. But the plane was so tiny MAF soon bought a bigger plane called an Auster Autocar.

Look around

Believe it or not, remote Arnhem Land can be found in northern Australia – and is a place where traditional Aboriginal communities live.

Many of the people, known as the Yolŋu, don’t have access to the Internet or mobile phones. The Yolŋu are poor and many believe old myths about dark spirits which make them suspicious and scared. MAF helps by flying children to school so they can have an education. We also carry pastors so they can build churches and tell people about God. It’s a busy programme, with MAF’s ten light aircraft flying back and forth so new MAF pilots can learn about landing on dusty bush airstrips, and Aboriginal Yolŋu can have access to modern technology.

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A little more about Arnhem Land...

Location

Arnhem Land is located in the north-eastern corner of Australia’s Northern Territory. It looks small because Australia is so big, but it’s actually the size of Scotland and Wales combined!

View map

Time

12:09am, 4th March 2021

UTC +9.5

Fascinating Fact

Arnhem Land, which became an Aboriginal Reserve in 1931, is one of the largest in Australia. It’s known for its remoteness, the powerfully enduring traditions of its people, its art, and Australia’s most famous musical instrument – the didgeridoo! The north-eastern part of Arnhem Land is home to the Yolŋu people, one of the largest indigenous groups in Australia.

Weather

Current Weather: 28°C, Clouds

From November to April, it’s the ‘Tropical Summer’ in Arnhem land, with temperatures between 30-33°C. There are ocean breezes and spectacular lightning shows! The end of December, January and February are the months when the country gets the most rain.

Santa swings by

Last Christmas, ‘Santa’ had a great time flying out to deliver presents to the children across the Laynhapuy Homelands in Arnhem Land, Australia. He also got to see some spectacular views along the way!

MAF has been flying in Arnhem Land for 47 years. This amazing place is slightly larger than Scotland and can be found in the Northern Territory of Australia. It is home to the Aboriginal Yolŋu people, many of whom live in small, isolated towns on their clan’s traditional ‘homelands’.

The ten aircraft flown by MAF in Arnhem Land provide these communities with healthcare, education, development and church support.

In May and June last year, MAF flew a planeload of Yolŋu schoolchildren to visit non-Aboriginal students, so they could learn from each other – a bit like an exchange trip you can do with your school in the UK! Students also get flown to compete in school sports competitions each year – using the plane like a flying school bus. Imagine getting on a plane for your school sports day!

At Christmas, MAF Arnhem Land pilots flew ‘Santa’ and staff from the Laynhapuy Homelands Aboriginal Corporation around the Yolŋu homelands, making several stops along the way.

This trip helped them deliver gifts and food hampers to remote communities. This meant that a good Christmas was had by all, and that nobody went without! Many happy children received gifts including footballs and bubble blowers.

Homelands

Remote areas of Arnhem Land, Australia

Aboriginal

Aboriginal people are the original people who settled in Australia – another name for them is indigenous people

Yolŋu

The Yolŋu people are native to Arnhem Land in the north of Australia. Yolŋu actually means people, so they are technically called 'People People'

Read

Luke 2:10

But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.’

Pray

Dear God, we pray today for the indigenous Yolŋu people of Arnhem Land. We thank You that they could feel loved this Christmas by receiving small gifts and food. May they learn to accept Jesus in their lives through the work of MAF and its partner organisations. Amen.

Today's Challenge

Hold a door open for someone today

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