Young hikers take gospel to Solomon Islands’ jungles

Oct 20, 2018  |  Honiara, Solomon Islands  | 

Young hikers take gospel to Solomon Islands’ jungles

Young Solomon Islanders, ages 16 to 21, crossing a jungle river as they hike to a remote village for Jungle Ministry, an outreach program. (All Photos: South Pacific Adventist Record)

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It all began in 2014 when a group of young people from the capital of the Solomon Islands went on a hike in a mountainous jungle.

The young people — belonging to Ambassadors, the stage after Pathfinders Master Guide and for ages 16 to 21 — met a single mother living with her children in a hovel. Touched by her plight, they handed over their food and spare clothes.

After the encounter, the group decided to hike to remote places regularly to deliver food, medicine, second-hand clothes, and Bibles. Led by Spink Mahuta, youth leader at White River Seventh-day Adventist Church in Honiara, they began to engage in what they called “Jungle Ministry” every free weekend.

Early Friday morning, the young people board public transportation — the back of a three-ton truck — and travel to the end of the route. Then they hike with their gear until evening and spend the night sleeping in the open jungle. On Sabbath, they hike the rest of the way to a remote village and send a local scout to ask the chief or head elder for permission to enter. With his permission, they enter, split into teams, and distribute care packages.

The young people spend the Sabbath with the villagers, finding out what they need, praying with them, and studying the Bible. They sleep in the jungle on Saturday night.

Returning to the village on Sunday, they help widows, harvest crops, and assist in other ways. Afterward, they share whatever food remains in their backpacks and return home.


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