Rough waters are much easier to face with a good boat and safety gear.
The only way to a village might be canoeing across open ocean. Or catching a crowded, run-down boat out to an island. Most vessels don’t even have life jackets. With the right help—whether it’s a safety kit, a small boat, or a large vessel for a whole region—translation teams can stay safe on the water.
How JAARS Fits In
We visit our partners, assess their travel challenges, and help them choose the best boats for their situation. If they need a large boat, we’ll help them plan, launch, and run the program. We also teach people how to swim, use safety gear, and give first aid.
How You Can Help
Coweambah and crew are safely back in Cairns after motoring nearly three days through rough waters churned by Tropical Cyclone Nathan. They made the trip to address several matters, including the Osborns’ expiring temporary visas, an Australian registration issue for the boat, and the need to consider next steps in the Scripture engagement program.
After docking and while getting unpacked, Karen Osborn accidentally fell inside the boat. She broke both her ankles and dislocated a finger. Thankfully, they were in harbor with medical attention readily available. She is in the hospital where they’ve already set her finger. One ankle will require surgery, which can’t be done until the swelling goes down. Mike and Karen gave permission for us to share this as they are facing many decisions in the next few days and covet your prayers.
Would you pray with us?
Praise God that the Osborns and Captain Ben arrived in Cairns a couple of days ahead of the storm and that the boat is docked in a cyclone-rated marina.
Pray for Karen’s healing. Pray for wisdom and clarity for Mike and Karen as they decide whether they should stay in Cairns or return to the US for surgery.
Pray for JAARS leadership as they help Mike and Karen work through details and questions about insurance, visas, and other concerns.
Continue to ask God to give the people of the Torres Strait a hunger to know him better through the Scriptures in their own languages.
Thursday Island is the center for government, education, health care, shipping, power generation and commerce. Now that Coweambah has arrived, the crew is working to build on existing relationships and making new ones, which we’re praying will lead to invitations to visit the various islands.
Tomorrow, the team plans to motor to Badu island, about a four hour journey. Mike Osborn has contacted church and community leaders there. They also hope to visit key islanders on Moa island in the Kubin and St Paul communities.
Thank God for the relationships already established among people on Thursday Island and those forged during the “fly about” tour of communities last October.
Pray that God would raise up advocates who will help cultivate relationships leading to invitations for the Osborns to encourage and share the Scriptures.
Coweambah is loaded with Scripture and related media that Mike and Karen will be sharing with islanders: Yumplatok Bibles, Kala Kawaw Ya (another local language) Scripture portions, Luke and Colossians DVD’s, Christian music in their heart languages, children’s books, and more. They’ll use these to facilitate reading groups and Bible studies.
Pray that community and Church leaders will encourage the start of reading groups and Bible studies with the resources now available in the heart languages of Torres Strait islanders.
Ask God to spark interest in the hearts of the people to want to read and engage with his Word.