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Thursday, April 16, 2015

Off to the arctic.........

Arctic Barnabas is a missions organization that lives up to it's name, Arctic Encouragement. They are a ministry that is based out of Kenai, Alaska. The mission of Arctic Barnabas ministries is to strengthen and encourage pastor and missionary families to effectively advance the gospel of Jesus Christ through out remote Alaska and Northern Canada.

Recently Arctic Barnabas had an airplane donated to their ministry, a Piper Aztec. MMS was asked to take this airplane and do annual maintenance and prepare it for service in Alaska. This airplane arrived in late January and was completed this week. One of the modifications that was done to it was Tanis heaters which help heat the engines much like an engine block heater would go into a car. An important feature for use in the arctic.

 Paul came here to MMS to do the test runs after the work was completed and then he was off to Alaska with their airplane. We try and always send each plane off to its designated field of service bathed in prayer. The Aztec was no exception, Paul loaded his gear into the plane and we gathered for prayer and our final goodbyes and off he went. If you would like to know more about Arctic Barnabas and their mission you can follow this link

Tim is inspecting the engine on the annual

Jack(a student from LeTourneau) is connecting the fuel bladders

Jason is making sure that everything lines up on the rudder before riveting the hinge in place

After all was packed we gathered together for prayer to send Paul off

Taxiing down to the run way after prayer

And off Paul goes as he leaves the runway

One final fly by to say goodbye as he heads for the arctic

Monday, April 6, 2015

A behind the scene profile

This article is written by Laurie McClary:
This particular story features Mary Newman. 

 I have known Mary for 5 years. During those 5 years I have witnessed her use her gift of hospitality in many ways. I am blown away that at the drop of a hat she is able to whip up table decorations and food that brings every event together in a divine way. Her creativity in this area never seems to stop. But in addition to this she has the ability to laugh at herself displaying an inner strength she always gives the Lord credit for.

She and her husband Jim have been married for 28 years and have 3 children, Jordan, Catherine and Danielle. Jordan left home several years ago to serve in the military and last summer married Tiffany. Catherine is in her final year of college and Danielle is a sophomore in high school.

Mary and her family are on loan from World Gospel Missions (WGM) and have served on staff at MMS for the past 5 years.   

When did you first feel called to missions?

During my teenage years I felt the Lord calling me to missionary nursing. Following this call on my life upon graduating from high school I went off to college to obtain my RN. During my sophomore year I met Jim. We had not been dating very long before I told him of my call. He said then that he did not necessarily feel called to missions but he did feel that we should be married and he would follow where God called me as a nurse. In other words, he would be my support. We got married at the end of my junior year and I finished my degree in our first year of marriage.

Where did life take you then?

After a couple years of marriage Jim received his personal call and pursued a degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology at LeTourneau University in Texas. I worked in a nearby hospital while Jim went to school. When he graduated he went to work for an avionics company in Houston.

So, was missions forgotten then?

It was not forgotten, just put on the back burner. We were very comfortable with our life. We had a good income, our kids were growing well, and life was good. Then, we became uncomfortable with life. Clearly, God wanted us in missions. So, we did some research, applied with World Gospel Missions (WGM) and were subsequently accepted. Our assignment was Bolivia. God was faithful through the support raising, our house sold in weeks and before long we were living in a parsonage in Indiana getting ready for language school.

How was Bolivia? What was your role?

I loved Bolivia, the whole family did. We served there for a total of 6 years. And, interestingly, I never functioned in the professional role of missionary nurse and Jim was not the support person, I was. However, I did have a thriving ministry with the children and women in our local community. Towards the end of our time there the Lord brought 160 children to my gate each week to learn bible verses.  

How did you then end up at MMS?

Towards the end of 6 years, Wings of Peace, aviation ministry with WGM, closed due to government issues. They sold their plane to another mission organization and we came back to the states. It was hard on all of us and I particularly did not want to leave. I had fallen in love with Bolivia. But, once we arrived in the states we started looking into other mission organizations. One weekend while we were living in Indiana Jim came to MMS by himself to check it out. When he returned from that trip he told me that he could see himself at MMS but he would not pursue it unless there was a ministry for me. He went on to explain that there was a need for a ministry with the women. We packed our bags and here we are.

How do you see yourself at MMS?

I am the support person - that is where God has me now. And, co-leading Apprentice Women, which is where Jim saw me serving, and is a good fit.

In closing:

Mary faces each day with honesty, integrity and a desire to serve God and His people in spite of the health issues she has struggled with most of her time at MMS.  I marvel at her.

Mary, thank you for the time you took to sit down and chitchat.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Spring break 2015

The LeTourneau Crew

For the past couple of years a small group of college students have traveled 18 hours from LeTourneau University in Longview, TX. to spend their spring break volunteering at MMS. The purpose of their trip is to provide an opportunity to explore mission aviation on a personal level, a professional level and a spiritual level.  This Face-to-Face profile highlights this group of students and their advisor.

This is a photo of the four students and their staff advisor that came to MMS this year.

Sitting on the left side of the couch is Pablo Silverio, staff advisor. LeTourneau requires a staff member accompany students on trips such as this and as of two weeks ago no staff had committed.  When Pablo stepped forward the students were grateful because without him the trip would not have happened.

On the personal side, Pablo is a programmer and he and his wife moved from Ecuador last July. He works in the IT department at LeTourneau and has been able to assist MMS with some of their computer issues.

On the right of the couch is Rebekah Martel. She is in her freshman year at LeTourneau. However, Rebekah is not your typical first year college student. She graduated from high School in 2011 and worked in a hardware store the past couple of years putting away money for school.  During that time she felt the Lord working on her heart and calling her to missions. When she was 12 she took her first airplane ride while attending a Young Eagles Day coordinated by the EAA. It was then she fell in love with planes. She says that the Lord is combining all her passions by calling her to mission aviation; flying, fixing things and mission work.

Standing directly behind Rebekah is Caleb Gibson. When asked the question concerning his call into missions he is quick to tell you he has felt called since the age of 6. It was then he developed a love for planes. During his freshmen year in high school he heard a missionary speak and he knew then mission aviation was for him. This is Caleb’s senior year at LeTourneau and he will be graduating in May. He is very open about his school loans and hopes to get a job to pay them off quickly. This will allow him to get to the mission field that he feels such a passion for and calling to.

To the left of Caleb is Jack Harper. Unlike Caleb, Jack is not able to be so specific about the date and time he felt called into mission aviation. Growing up his family went on short term mission trips which created a desire for mission work. However, it wasn’t until recently an interest in mission aviation developed. His father is a pilot and when flying with him during his high school years (just last year, Jack is a freshman) he came to realize how much he enjoyed it.

Standing next to Jack is Trey Kleppe. Trey wants to work with helicopters more then anything. His first ride in one occurred in high school when his church was conducting a community outreach dropping Easter eggs out of a helicopter. Ever since that flight helicopters have excited him. His dream is to fly helicopters for a mission organization when he graduates from LeTourneau.  

Collectively they readily admitted how beneficial they have found their time at MMS. The opportunity to work with licensed mechanics on planes that are going to serve all over the world is enriching their lives. They feel encouraged, more knowledgeable, and better able to picture what mission aviation maintenance looks like on a day to day basis. Learning from people who have served in different parts of the world has also broadened their scope of what it means to work in mission aviation. In addition, to be able to network among people who have the same passion as theirs seems to feed into their souls. 

It was a pleasure to meet Pablo and each of these students.  I pray for their future and hope that the rest of the MMS family joins me.  I am grateful God continues to call people to serve Him in mission aviation. “Then He said to His disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.’” Mathew 9:37

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Off to Africa

The SIM  SMA diesel 182Q is completed and is on it's way back to service in Niger, Africa. This is a 4 cylinder SMA designed diesel engine. The diesels cost $250/Hr. less than the av-gas engines and based on an 800 Hr. year of flight time it saves this program $200,000/yr. When traveling at normal high speed power this aircraft has a flight distance of 9 hours on a tank of fuel and when throttled back for optimum distance can reach 14 hours with the right conditions. This is a very valuable capability as they do many long flights over desert terrain. They can safely fly this plane to it's destination in Africa from the US. This is leading edge technology and will be the future of mission aviation. The cost of fuel for Jet-A is between $6-$8/ gallon as compared to Av Gas which runs around $22/ gallon.

We at MMS are always excited to see such technology and get to be a part of working on such an airplane. Although we had no part in working on the engine there was plenty of things that we had our hands on in working on this aircraft. We added wing extensions, doorpost/ wing strut modifications, HF radio installation, storm scope installation, ELT replacement, an inter cooler addition to the engine, new shoulder harnesses, a max gross weight increase, new floor matting, an upgraded starter system, and a new magnetic compass system. The betterment of this aircraft will give it years of service on the mission field.

The efficiency of this airplane allows SIM to have the ability to make individual runs if needed for anything  from ambulance to supplies when needed. To learn more about what SIM does you can visit their site at

All washed up and ready to go

We gathered the crew and gave it a proper send off bathed in prayer and it is now on it's way

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

A special treat

Mercy Air has completed it's helicopter, and to say thank you to MMS for the use of it's facility they were giving families a ride. It was exciting sitting in the front seat with anticipation as you heard the slow whine start to pick up momentum and the long blades started to swirl around. Inside the cockpit you could feel the wump, wump, wump of the rotor blades swirling. Looking through the windshield you could see the swirls of snow curling across the ground. After all checks of the helicopter we were cleared for take off. The slow upward lift as it pulled us skyward felt like we were floating on a cloud and the nose pointed forward and tilted down slightly and we were off.

Getting a view of Coshocton from 1,000 ft. above was breath taking. We worked our way south looking at our houses and worked our way back north to around Newbedford along the Amish coun- try and then back to the hangar. As we made our approach there were families eagerly anticipating their ride with smiles on their faces and children dancing about wondering when it was their turn.

As we hovered over the taxi-way and gently touched down in front of hangar A it was time for us to give up our seats and let the next family have their turn. AS we touched down we were greeted by Mike the mechanic as he had his warm Swiss smile and opened the door to help us out. These are rare but wonderful opportunities when we get to actually fly in one of the projects from our hangar.
A view from above the hangar

Coshocton from 1,000ft. above

A couple of happy passengers enjoying the flight

A view of the approaching hangar

Mike as he is helping the passengers into the helocopter


The Mercy Air crew Mike, David, and Matthias

Here is the Helicopter today getting ready for shipping to South Africa