MAF Advent Adventure

Today's competition

Read or watch today’s Christmas Story to find out what special item(s) we had onboard our plane today!

Choose from the options below and record your answer on your printable Advent Log available here. Then, from December 25 – 30, visit maf.ca/advent to upload your answers for a chance to win a VR headset!

Don’t have a printer? Don’t worry. Simply use a piece of paper to record each day’s special item.

Q.

What did we put in our plane today?

Plumpy'Nut

or

Tok Pisin Bibles

Download your advent Log to record your answers.

Advent Log Download

Day 1

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Day 1


In the attic, Mike found a diary and old map
With the story of how MAF began.
Mike decided, for his Christmas mission,
He had an exciting plan!

Each page was filled with pictures and tales,
One for each country in which MAF flies.
From the first of these nations until the last
He’d provide much-needed supplies.

Now, jump inside Mike’s MAF plane,
There’s so much to learn and see;
Though Christmas is fast approaching,
There’s still space for you and me!

Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

Mike’s little plane touched safely down
In the jungles of Ecuador.
He stepped out of the cabin and looked around
It’s a great place to explore!

Up to the aircraft came a smiling man,
Jaime Saint was his name.
Many years before, his grandfather Nate,
Had visited this place in his plane.

Some violent men from the jungle
Had killed Nate and all his friends.
But their story’s inspired many folk since,
Because the warriors made amends.

‘There are snakes in this jungle,’ said Jaime,
‘They’ll harm you if they bite.
Is there anti-venom in your plane,
So our nurse can make things right?’

Mike had just the thing in his plane,
So Jaime smiled at the sight;
Happy the villagers would be okay
Whenever they got a snakebite.

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 2

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Day 2


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

Mike touched down at the next place on his map:
South Sudan – a dry, dusty place.
A family of six was waiting for him,
Each had a big smile on their face.

‘We’re here to help the Laarim people,
But we can’t buy fresh food, you see.
We must get our fruit and veg flown in,
If we want to have them for tea!’

‘No problem!’ said Mike, as he opened the hold,
‘You can have the fruit, cabbage and beans.’
‘Thank you, Mike!’ the mother said,
‘We’ll stay healthy by eating our greens!’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 3

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Day 3


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

Landing in a place called Wanakipa,
Mike found himself surrounded
By friendly Papua New Guineans,
Looking astonished and astounded!

A lady called Harriëtte called up to him,
‘We were praying you had Bibles in your hold.
My friends want the Scriptures for themselves,
But my very last copy’s been sold.’

‘Let’s take a look,’ said Mike, looking around,
Before emerging with a crate.
It was full of Bibles in the Tok Pisin tongue.
‘Thanks,’ said Harriëtte, ‘Now that’s really great!’

‘Thanks!’ said the villagers crowding around.
‘Now we all can read of God’s love.
We hoped you’d be able to help us,
When we saw your plane flying above.’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 4

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Day 4


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

Mike’s next stop was the island of Papua,
Where he planned to pick up some fuel.
He’d also spend time with some children
Who attended a missionary school.

As Mike touched down on the airstrip,
A girl ran towards him, called Grace.
‘We’re going to help in a far-away village,
Could you fly my class to that place?

‘We’re going to clear stones from their airstrip,
‘Do you have anything to use in your plane?’
‘I always carry some shovels,’ said Mike,
‘For use when there’s bumpy terrain!’

So the children jumped into Mike’s aircraft,
And they flew to a place far away.
The villagers were so pleased to see them,
‘Thanks for coming to help us today!

‘We rely on your planes in our village.
With no stones, you can now land with ease;
Bringing doctors, teachers and pastors
To provide us with their expertise.’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 5

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Day 5


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

The next stop for Mike was Brazil,
And the city of Porto Velho.
As he carefully landed his plane,
He was met by a very nice fellow.

‘Hello, my name’s Dr Eddie,
Could you take me to the Purus River?
With my colleagues, Tanya, Viviane and Rose,
There are toothbrushes to deliver.

‘The four of us are all dentists,
So we offer everyone our assistance.
Without us their teeth may get bad,
As the nearest town’s such a long distance.

Mike was happy to lend a hand,
So he helped the four dentists to board.
How happy they were to work together
And demonstrate the love of the Lord.

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 6

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Day 6


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

The remote mountains of Papua New Guinea
Are Pastor Jinga’s home.
He needs a radio to speak to his friends
Because he can’t do it by phone.

‘Could you set up a radio?’ the pastor asked,
‘We have no power or electrical wires.’
‘Of course!’ said Mike, reaching into his bag,
And pulling out some pliers.

Mike carefully connected the cables
To the rooftop solar panel,
So Pastor Jinga could then talk to his friends
By tuning in to the appropriate channel.

‘I can hear my friends!’ the pastor cried,
‘And speak to my head office too.
Thank you, Mike, for all your help.
God bless MAF, and God bless you.’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 7

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Day 7


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

On Mike flew, for miles and miles,
Across the blue Indian Ocean.
He landed in Kenya in Africa,
Where he heard a great commotion.

Mike heard a call, ‘Hi, it’s Alpha here!’
Then he saw a great giraffe!
The pair had been friends for years and years,
And had shared many a happy laugh!

‘Come and see RedTribe’s beadwork;
They make jewellery to sell.
It gives these ladies the money they need
To buy medicine and food as well.’

Remembering Christmas was coming near,
Mike thought of an excellent plan.
‘This jewellery would be great for my mum,
May I buy some if I can?’

Mike thanked the ladies for the jewellery,
Which he soon stowed safely inside.
Then he turned with a grin to Alpha,
‘Will you join me for a ride?’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 8

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Day 8


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

After a couple of hours in the air,
The friends landed in the DRC.
Heading towards the hangar,
They were greeted by MAF staff with glee.

‘Hello Mike, and Alpha too,
Could you help us with your plane?
We need to get some measles vaccines,
We’re so happy that you came.’

‘We’d love to help you,’ Mike replied,
As he unloaded vaccines they could use for injections.
‘Where do you want them delivered?’ he asked.
‘You will need to give us directions.’

‘They’re to go to the village of Lisala,
But be careful they don’t get too hot.
Because they’d no longer be effective,
And we’d have to throw out the lot.’

The people gave a sigh of relief,
‘Now our children will be protected!
Measles is a nasty disease,
But thanks to you, they won’t be infected.’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 9

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Day 9


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

After crossing the Atlantic Ocean,
The pair arrived at MAF’s Suriname base.
In the middle of a tropical rainforest,
It was a hot and sweaty place!

‘Hello, Mike, can you help our friend?
She’s about to have a child.
We need to get her to hospital now!’
‘We’d be happy to help,’ Mike smiled.

Alpha helped the lady up the steps
Into the back of Mike’s plane.
He made space for a nurse and the baby’s dad,
And then they took to the skies again.
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No sooner had they left the ground,
When Mike heard a little cry.
A tiny baby girl had been born
In the air – 200 feet high!

With mother and child both doing well,
To the hospital Mike flew.
As he safely landed his little plane,
All would be well, he knew.

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 10

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Day 10


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

Following the map, Mike and Alpha flew
Across the world to Australia.
They were met on the runway by a smiling man,
Carrying a huge box of paraphernalia.

‘G’day,’ said the man, ‘My name is John,
I’m an MAF engineer.
I fix our aircraft and keep them aloft,
Would you like to help me here?’

Mike grabbed his trusty toolbox
From the back of his little plane.
He joined friend John in the hangar,
‘Let’s get these planes flying again!’

The pair worked all day with their spanners and pliers,
Paintbrushes, hammers and drills.
Soon one of the planes looked shiny and new,
Ready to fly far over jungle and hills.

Once the paint was dry, Mike thought about
The adventures the planes had had.
John gave him a spanner as a souvenir,
Which Mike thought he’d save for his dad.

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 11

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Day 11


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

Northwards Mike flew on a fine sunny day,
To a place all covered with sand.
‘We must be in a desert,’ he thought.
‘It’s Chad,’ Alpha said, ‘a dry land!’

Down below, Mike spotted a camp,
With little tents all in a row.
‘I’ll land and help these people,’ he said,
‘They may need me to fly some cargo.’

Mike landed the plane and was met by a man,
‘I hope you can help us,’ he said.
‘We’re catching some very rare dama gazelle,
So that poachers don’t trap them instead.

‘We have a gazelle that needs taking
To the safety of our game reserves.
Would you fly her in your little aircraft,
So she can live the life she deserves?’

With tubes on her horns to protect the plane,
Alpha helped Becki the gazelle inside.
They flew her to the safety of her new home;
She seemed to enjoy the ride.

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 12

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Day 12


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

Next stop on their Advent adventure,
The friends flew to Kalimantan.
On the Indonesian island of Borneo,
They were determined to lend a hand.

Standing below by the airstrip,
Three MAF ladies were waving a greeting.
‘Could you fly us in your plane, please Mike?
We have to go to an important meeting.

‘We’re helping to translate the Bible
From English into Punan,
So people can read the Good News
In the language of Kalimantan.’

The ladies thanked Mike, and Alpha too,
‘You’re playing an important part
In enabling people to read God’s Word
In the language of their heart.’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 13

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Day 13


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

The next stop, Australia’s remote homelands;
Arnhem Land, their destination.
As Mike landed the plane, folk seemed to be
In the midst of a great celebration!

Mike and Alpha joined the crowd.
There was cheering and applause.
Right at the front, giving out many gifts
Was what looked like Santa Claus!

‘Mike? Alpha?’ he said with a smile,
While walking towards the pair.
After removing his beard, they clearly saw
Their good friend Foxtrot standing there!

‘I’m giving gifts to all the children
Who live in the Laynhapuy homeland.
May I join you on your journey?
I could even give you a hand!’

The trio took off, to the next place,
Where the kids waited eagerly below.
When Foxtrot Santa give them a gift,
Their faces were all aglow!

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 14

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Day 14


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

The next place they landed was hot and remote,
MAF’s base in Arusha, Tanzania.
Waiting for them were five doctors who said,
‘We hope you can help us here.

‘We’re beginning a medical safari,
We must reach Gorimba in the west.
The people there have no doctor,
So we’re visiting at their request.’

Mike flew his passengers to the village
Where patients formed an orderly queue.
When they went to a doctor, he said to each one,
‘What seems to be troubling you?’

Once the villagers had been treated,
The doctors returned to the plane.
‘Thanks for the flight, Mike, we’ll be back
Next month to help them again!’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 15

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Day 15


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

A country inside a country
Was the next place that Mike flew them to
Surrounded by South Africa,
It’s the Kingdom of Lesotho.

At MAF’s base, smiling Carolyn
Took something from her pocket.
‘I buy fabric like this for the women here,
So they can sew, sell and make a good profit.

‘The fabric I need is called Seshoeshoe,
It’s patterned, with colours so bright.’
‘We’ll go to market and bring you some back,’
Said Mike, ‘Will you join our next flight?’

The money that these ladies make
Helps their children go to college,
So they can get good jobs for themselves,
Having gained a lot of knowledge!

‘Please take this scarf,’ said Carolyn,
‘It’s a thank you for being my guest.’
The trio smiled and waved farewell,
They felt they’d been truly blessed.

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 16

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Day 16


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

The next stop for our friends was in Haiti,
Where they were met by a female physician.
‘The children here are thin, hungry and sick,
Because they suffer from malnutrition.

‘I need to send all these boxes
Of Plumpy’Nut peanut paste,
To the children who live in the mountains.
There isn’t a moment to waste!’

Quickly the cargo was stowed in the plane
Which flew to the right location.
After unloading, their passenger said,
‘This paste will save many from starvation.

‘Until they’re fit and healthy again,
We’ll feed all those in great need.
Thank you, friends, for your help today,
The MAF flight was useful indeed!’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

Day 17

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Day 17


Diary checked and journey logged,
Mike folded the old map away.
As his plane took flight, soaring high,
He wondered who he’d meet today!

The next stop on the map was Uganda,
In Africa where they’d been before.
Below on the runway was a smiling man;
Mike wondered what he had in store.

The man’s name was Issa, he welcomed the friends,
‘Could you help me to lead my workshop?
It’s for children who’ve had a terrible time,
Can we visit them on your next stop?’

‘Of course,’ said Mike, ‘Welcome aboard!’
Issa bought out some peg people and clay.
‘The children will use this stuff for fun,
Through the stories and games we’ll play.’

The children that Issa was helping,
Had witnessed some terrible crimes.
For they’d had to flee from civil war,
And felt sad and scared at times.

One of the children was Anna, who said,
‘You’ve taught me to be hopeful and strong,
Brave and fearless like Superwoman,
Thanks so much for coming along!’

Mike climbed back into the pilot’s seat
And began his important checks.
He turned to the next page of the diary
To see where he’d be flying to next.

MAF began serving in PNG in

1951

Did you know?

Sadly, the first MAF PNG pilot, Harry Hartwig, died in a tragic crash because the weather and hills were so dangerous and hardly anyone had ever flown there before.

Look around

Papua New Guinea (PNG) is MAF’s busiest programme.

Last year, we flew over  920,000km – the equivalent of going around the whole world more than twenty times! Our little planes have been flying in PNG for 69 years. For the people living deep in the jungle, MAF is their only connection to the outside world. With no Internet, hospitals or books – it can feel like being in the middle of nowhere. MAF pilots face some of the trickiest landings in the world, on mountains, in rainforests or steep valleys. Flying to more than 213 different places in 2019, MAF makes a huge difference to the lives of PNG’s people.

View pictures Watch video

A little more about Papua New Guinea...

Location

The country neighbours the Indonesian province of Papua, and is the eastern half of the island of New Guinea.

View map

Time

10:04am, 18th January 2021

UTC +10

Fascinating Fact

Papua New Guinea (PNG) has three official main languages: English, Hiri Motu and Tok Pisin. However, with its 600 islands and many different ethnic groups, the country has more than 850 languages! Because of this, PNG is host to 12% of the world’s languages – some spoken by fewer than 1,000 people.

Weather

PNG has a tropical climate, so it’s hot and humid throughout the year. December tends to be the hottest month, with temperatures above 30°C.

The Bible Box

Harriëtte Knigge and her husband Wilfred, a pilot with MAF Papua New Guinea, are originally from the Netherlands. Harriëtte sells Bibles at airstrips once Wilfred has landed.

‘When we landed in Wanakipa, a bush village in the mountains,’ recalls Harriëtte, ‘the people asked if we had Bibles with us. We had a whole toolbox – what we call the “Bible Box” – full of them. We headed over to the shade and were immediately surrounded by people.

‘Every Bible we had was sold – every one! We ask a small price, but most people in the bush don’t have that much money, so they just offer what they can. It’s not the money that people are willing to give that touches me, it’s their hunger to read God’s Word.

‘At the MAF base in Wewak, many other missionaries live nearby, serving with Bible translation missions like Wycliffe. They devote their lives to translating the Bible into the 800 other languages spoken in PNG!

‘A lady once told me: “It’s so important to hear and read the Bible in your own language, the language of your heart. Because then it is not about the God of the Dutch (Dutch Bible), or the God of Australia (English Bible). It is about the God of your own life, the God to whom you belong and who speaks your language.”

‘Until the time that there’s a Bible in every language, we’ll continue with our toolbox full of Tok Pisin Bibles.’

MAF is also passionate about PNG’s young people knowing about Jesus. At Christmastime, pilots Mathias Glass and Satish Moka – wearing festive hats – gave out little Tok Pisin Bible story books. The children at the landing sites literally pulled the booklets from the pilots’ hands!

Missionaries

Missionaries are people who go and live in places with a need, to help them. They share their love of God whilst they help in practical ways

Bible translation

Bible translators are people who work on translating the Bible from English to a different language so that more people can read it

Tok Pisin

Tok Pisin is a widely spoken language in Papua New Guinea

Read

Luke 1:31

You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus.

Pray

Dear God, thank You for people like Harriëtte who distribute Bibles at airstrips. Thank You that those who buy them can read God’s Word in their own language, and fully understand its meaning. Help those working on other Bible translations so even more people can learn about Jesus. Amen.

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