Learning to fish the Biem way

POSTED ON 2009-04-27
  by David Bell

Missionaries Brandon and Rachel Buser are learning to fish and garden the tribal way as they learn the culture and language of the Biem people in Papua New Guinea.

"We have enjoyed getting into a routine this last month and that has made our language learning time very profitable," Brandon wrote.

The Busers are encouraged with the way life and learning has been going in their new environment, but won't know exactly how they are progressing until their first culture and language evaluation in June.

Their current language repertoire includes the phrases "I don't know,""My legs are in pain," and the universally important "I have to go to the bathroom."

Rachel has been learning what every good Biem woman should know -- gardening and cooking -- while Brandon recently enjoyed one of the main cultural events -- fishing.

"Fishing is a huge part of the Biem culture and while I'm not a true-blue fisherman I can appreciate how it is done here," Brandon wrote. "Last week the tuna were hitting and I went out with some of the Biem guys. No rods or reels, just a spool of fishing line in your hand as you pull in a 70-pound tuna. It's quite a trip."

The Buser children have also been settling into their new island home. Fearless Briana wants to climb the volcano, but the parents have made that off limits. Brady has turned into a coconut addict, and timid Gracie seems much like the island toddlers who tend to cry whenever the white-skinned missionary gets too close.

Please pray for the Buser family as they learn the culture and language of the Biem people and build relationships so they can some day give a clear Gospel presentation.

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