Lending a hand Saving lives

May-11Committed to the training and development of expert local staff, CRMF is enabling the work of many other missions and agencies throughout PNG.

Story Shelia Stewart  Photos Lori Bill Smith

The Association of Baptists for World Evangelism (ABWE) has a ministry of medical evangelism through a clinic in the small village of Seigu, approximately 8 kilometres from Goroka, PNG, which has been running for the past two decades. Over the years they have seen their outreach grow and expand as they give loving and compassionate medical care while proclaiming the gospel message in all they do.

Recently they faced a real dilemma when their ultrasound machine, a donated gift, stopped functioning. All of a sudden this effective tool was useless. Desperate for help, they turned to CRMF for aid. Could we find the cause and CURE this machine? As always, CRMF aim to help where we can and one of our technicians, Koniel Idei took on the case.

Although normally working on radios and computers, God enabled Koniel to find the problem and fix it! Now it is operational again! Not only was the cost of repair drastically reduced from thousands to hundreds of dollars but CRMF was also able to provide this help quickly.
What a blessing to see God’s timing in this fast repair. In a land where technical skills are in very short supply, CRMF provides a level of service that helps many missions and organisations. The very day ABWE received the ultrasound back from CRMF’s workshop they had numerous opportunities to use it.

Lori Smith (ABWE) shared, “Three women came seeking an abortion that day, not an uncommon occurrence. Sharing with them the amazing creation of God’s intricate work of life now growing within them and being able to be to show this on the monitor before them, was very effective. No, we could not assist in the destruction of their tiny unborn babies, but we could offer them hope and assistance, and as we saw that day, a love for the little ones begin to be nurtured. We have seen many babies saved from death through abortions…only to be lovingly delivered at our clinic. Then nurtured and cared for by their own families or adoptions arranged within our PNG Christian community! We have seen several gynaecological emergencies diagnosed and quickly and effectively treated, saving lives of the women as well as the unborn. What an amazing tool GOD has given us to use for HIS Glory.”

Lori went on “Our last patient that day was the hardest. A young woman came to our clinic for a routine antenatal visit. She was five months pregnant but I could not find a heartbeat and there was no movement. NOT GOOD. What a blessing to be able to immediately see what was happening and for this young woman to have closure rather than leave with the shadow of the unknown haunting her. Sadly her little one had died. The cause of death was unknown, but the Creator of life is also fully in control even of the time of passing. We hugged, cried, and I shared the HOPE of God’s Word with this very understandably upset girl. I could not fix her problem…but I could help comfort her. That is the power of tools used with the greatest tool of GOD’s WORD.”

Lori expressed their gratefulness for God’s provision of technical services through Christ’s servants at CRMF, which enable the gospel to continue to be proclaimed in a myriad of ways.

There are a great many needs around Papua New Guinea. CRMF work with many other agencies to reach the unreached, working together for HIS glory is their combined goal. We pray that God will be glorified through this ministry.

 

 

What is CRMF?
Christian Radio Missionary Fellowship (CRMF) works under the umbrella of MAF in Papua New Guinea.

Reaching out with Christ’s love to help people in remote communities, CRMF provides a reliable means of HF radio communication as well as IT  and technical expertise.

Approximately 85% of the PNG population live in small villages, high up in the mountains, in areas of mangrove swamps, or on remote islands.

The provision of email and internet facilities via the HF radio has been of tremendous benefit to mission and church workers, hospitals and schools.

For more info check out www.maf.org.au/crmf

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Article source: http://www.mafnz.org.nz/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2127:2013-05-31-01-38-56&catid=111&Itemid=170


CRMF’s Michael Wakefield, based in PNG, discusses the role of CRMF in a post-missionary era.

In the early 1950’s as missionaries cut trails into remote jungles in PNG and MAF were beginning flying operations across the vast remote countryside, it became obvious that a form of communication was desperately needed.  CRMF entered PNG to answer this need, putting the first radio on our network in 1957.  Since then HF radio has been the sole communications lifeline for many remotely located Missionaries, Churches, schools and health centres.

Later CRMF became involved in electrical work, short recordings for Christian radio broadcasting, and various other ‘technically related’ support activities that would help spread the gospel in PNG.  The 1990’s and beyond saw a global rise in technology, and with that CRMF also introduced a computer department, started selling satellite phones, and developed internet email via HF radio.  In more recent years our services to the Church and community have grown to include Satellite internet support and computer networking.

So these have been our services to the Christian community in PNG so far.  But what is happening now?  Well over the last seven years that I have lived in PNG I have observed the following:

  • • Technology worldwide continues to change at an increasing rate.  But this change is not just restricted to the western world, it is bounding into PNG too.  Therefore there is definitely a continuing need for CRMF to interact with technology and help the Church of PNG come to terms with this rapid change.
  • • Missionary numbers in country and particularly in the remote areas continue to decline.  This is not just restricted to other missions but also CRMF’s own ability to keep providing the services we always have.  It also means that now the Churches of PNG are mainly run by local people.  For us this means two things: often they require help in the area of technology, and also the sources of funding that the churches can access is reduced.
  • • The introduction of a new mobile phone company in 2006 has had a massive effect on communications, even reaching many remote locations that once relied only on HF radio.  Although many still rely on HF radio, I cannot say it is as crucial for all remote people as it previously was.
  • • Missionary needs have also changed.  Whereas before the HF radio was their only contact with the outside world, now most require internet and access it through mobile phone signals or satellite technologies.  Whereas before CRMF was their only source of technical supplies and advice, now many source their technical items from overseas.
  • • With rising western trends and a young population, the old ways of doing mission aren’t as effective as previously.  This is especially true in the cities, where new forms of social media (such as facebook) and communication (SMS) influence them heavily.

So what does this mean for CRMF and its future?  Firstly without a doubt there is still a need for our traditional ministry of HF radio communications and technical advice, however this service is now more valued by the national Church rather than missionaries.  These changes also mean we have to adapt as we continue to evaluate new technologies that may be of benefit to the Church.

With these thoughts in mind, hopefully you can see why we started the Learning Technologies ministry at the end of 2010.  This ministry is very much involved in researching current and new technologies and finding what is useful to the church, such as small cheap solar charged audio devices, mobile phone ministry applications, and possible new ways of delivering bible training digitally.

Most of these technologies are not developed by CRMF, they just require someone to re-discover them, understand them, and then tell the Churches how they can use them.  We believe this is staying true to CRMF’s calling of “serving the Church and community through radio communication and technical services”, by staying relevant to the needs of the Church today.

Please pray with us as we do our best to help the Church of PNG grow in a time of rapid technological and social change, and pray that the Lord will bring those people we need to continue to give the Church the best tools available.

Click here to discover more about CRMF

CRMF (Christian Radio Ministry Fellowship) is a ministry of MAF International.

Article source: http://www.maf.org.au/news/n/the-times-they-are-a-changing-120703