For Donovan and Charla Epp and family the last couple of days before flying out of the tribe went like this:
Thursday morning: Koi stabbed his foot with a fishing spear.
Thursday afternoon: A neighbours kid spilt boiling water on his leg, and his eyes were swollen shut from steam and ash trapped behind his eye lids.
Thursday night: The12 volt fan is wired up to a car battery to relieve a naked burned boy, lying on a bamboo bed next door.
Friday morning: Koi had a fever and his foot was swollen from the spear wound. They emailed the mission pilot during the window of time that the Internet usually works to see if they can bump up their scheduled flights out of the tribe by one day. At 9:00 am the weather check is clear for a flight. Charla along with Thea and Koi are flown out of village to get help at the hospital in Tuguegarao.
Sat morning: Don and Zane are flown out of the tribe, after a clear weather check.
Don and Char were already planning on coming out of the tribe because the helicopter was to have its routine 100hour inspection, but they decided to get Koi out earlier. This inspection was complete within a couple of weeks, but on one of the first flights another problem occurred, grounding the chopper once again. The pilots are nothing short of AMAZING, to keep the missionaries flying safely! Pray for Brian as he waits for parts and repairs their lifeline.
During this time, Don and Char have been working on lessons. A fast Rate Of Information (ROI) has been pointed out by NTM church planting consultants as a possible problem when they looked over some Back to English (BTE’s) translations of their first lessons. Don and Char are thankful for helpful comments from the consultants as they finalise lessons. Continue to pray for wisdom and patience for the team as they continue their work out of the village.
Also while being 'out’, they have bought a new printer, since ants ate the wires on the last one! Ants have taken over their house. They are in absolutely EVERYTHING! It is out of control. Ants are in food, towels, beds, couch, eating clothes... even the printer! While they are out, they have left their keys with their neighbours so they can spray poison inside and out. Pray that the ant problem will be taken care of, and that they haven't created another problem by leaving their keys behind.
The Epp families time in Manila has been busy medically with Char dealing with two boils which she contracted in the village (one needed lancing and draining, a very painful experience!), and all of them getting tested at the Research Institute of Tropical Medicine lab in Manila for certain problematic parasites.
They are THRILLED to have another brave home school teacher join the team in the next couple of weeks! Her name is Ali from their home city of Winkler, MB, Canada. As thrilling and exciting as this is, transitions are not always easy. Please remember to pray for Ali, as she becomes a part of the ministry in the tribe. Much paper work and preparation has already been done. Thea, Koi and Zane are also anxious and excited to have another teacher. Char will once again have more time for ministry with the Agta ladies.
It is sometimes hard to deal with a schedule that is continually being changed, so please pray that as a family they would remain flexible and patient as they wait to return home to the village.