We LOVE talking about what God has called us to do in Papua New Guinea! We get a lot of questions and don’t mind answering the same ones over and over again! I just thought that maybe some of YOU may have the same questions as the majority of people we talk to. Here are some of those questions and answers:
What will we live in once we’re in the tribe/jungle/bush? Like we mentioned in an earlier blog post, the first 6-12 months will be spent in a town in PNG learning the national language and culture, forming a team, and planning which tribe to move into. Once we actually move in, we will be living in a house that we will build. There will likely be other people who also work with New Tribes who will be helping us with building. There is software to help design houses, we learned some about it in our training program, and there are support staff on the field who have experience in this. Our house will be much different than a typical American home and also somewhat different than a tribal person’s home. We will be bringing some of the things we need for our home on our sea crate that will be shipped over. We need to purchase most of the items ahead of time or raise the money needed for them to purchase shortly after we arrive.
Will you have electricity? Yes, electricity is obviously essential for powering computers and computers are essential for learning a language (in a decent amount of time) and culture, translating the Bible, writing Bible lessons, etc. We will have electricity by purchasing a photo voltaic electrical system (solar panels, batteries, wiring, receptacles, etc.) and installing it in and on our bush house mentioned above. Much of the PV system is designed and manufactured at the Missionary Training Center we trained at in Missouri. We did take a course on how to do this at the training center. This is also the single greatest expense we have at approximately $15,000. This must be purchased before we leave and shipped by boat to Papua New Guinea. We will also ship other items we may need for our home in the same container. You do not have unlimited electricity with this system and we will have to be careful to budget our electricity, which means absolutely no air conditioning or heating elements of any kind.
Will you have running water? Kind of… we will have a rain water collection tank that collects water, passes through a water filter, and is run through the pipes into our kitchen sink and bathroom! So yes, we will have running water but not unlimited water that is connected to a utility company.
What about food? Will you eat what the tribal people eat? Well, we won’t have time to hunt, gather, garden, etc because that is a full-time job and we are going to work a full-time job learning language, then teaching and developing lessons, translating the Bible, etc. So while we may eat a few things that they eat, we will primarily have our food and supplies ordered by an NTM supply buyer who lives in the town. Then our stuff will be flown in by one of the pilots. This will probably happen only once every month or two because it is very expensive and pilots have other flights to make as well. Remember, everything we do is to help sustain us and keep us there longer so that we can finish a task. It will already be hard enough living away from friends and family, without air conditioning, without any possibility to order pizza, or even get a babysitter for a break; we don’t want to make it any harder!
Please let us know any more of your questions and we’d love to answer them on our blog!
Less than 7 months until we leave!!