Finding the needs

Missionary David Johanson evaluates where churches may be planted, and which established church may help.

David Johanson has spent a lot of time recently going to visit people groups to evaluate their access to the Gospel. These groups in northeast Mindanao along with the Surigao and Kamayo peoples are remote and many have very little access to the Gospel message in their mother tongue.

Part of David’s ministry is to evaluate the maturity and health of those established churches in the cities who may be involved with helping tribal churches. While visiting these churches, he discovered a number of pastors who have a clear understanding of the gospel message and are excited about reaching tribal people.

Another part of David’s ministry is helping missionaries with tribal ministry needs. Currently he is helping a tribal work that needs an airstrip reopened. The villagers and missionary smoothed, leveled, drained and resurfaced the airstrip. Then David took the pilot overland on some very rough roads so that the airstrip could be approved for the initial flight in. While waiting for the plane to arrive, David decided to visit the Manobo people in that area to see if they needed a church-planting team. Then after a weather check, the plane landed for the first time on the resurfaced strip.

David then put his bike on the plane and flew home. What would have been a rough two day trip on his bike was done in 25 minutes by plane.

Now that David is home, he is preparing a report for the mission leaders. Assessing people groups and their need for the Gospel message has been a daunting task as so many groups are incredibly needy and if there is religious activity, it does not have a seed of Gospel truth.

Pray that there will be many people groups reached by church planting efforts.