The map above is from SIL and shows the coverage area for different cellular providers here in PNG. j/k. There is only one cellular provider and their coverage map looks like Verizon’s coverage of eastern Montana. The map above actually shows the area and location of all the different languages in PNG. The colors group the languages into “families,” but each shape is a distinct language.
So right now we are trying to figure out which of these language groups our team is going to move into. This is a challenging task.
Before coming to PNG we thought that, upon arrival, we would be presented with a list of tribes that have been contacted and assessed and are ready for missionaries. Unfortunately we were wrong. It turns out that NTM-PNG is right in the middle of a transition in which the process for strategically designating tribes for missionary allocation has been re-worked. This will likely be good for the future, but we are caught between two systems–one which has run out of options and the other which has not produced many.
Our team is doing as much as we can to gather information on potential locations while delicately trying to work within the “system.” At different times the experience has been exciting, frustrating, educational, and overwhelming. Please pray for us as we continue to pursue God’s will for our families.