Stories from the Land of the Unexpected (Papua New Guinea)

Thank you for your incredible prayer, support, and encouragement as I (Adriel) ventured off to PNG on the YWAM Medical Ship without the boys earlier this month. It was an intense outreach but so good. I am very grateful that God would present the opportunity to combine so many of my passions all at once in a way that serves the big picture of our ministry with YWAM.

I have a huge photo album that was all ready to publish to facebook, but something has come up that is hindering me from posting them just yet. In the meantime, I wanted to share some stories I’ve written:

Stories of life and loss, joy and mourning in Papua New Guinea.


This one is very photo-heavy and describes my overall time there. If you only read one of these stories, this is the most personal one and has the most photos. Here’s an excerpt:

And when we strip all the press releases and polished responses away we know what is really needed – an actual revolution for our daughters, a world transformed into a place where Love prevails, a work that actually requires we not even worry about rolling up our sleeves. We just hold hands and hold hearts and worry about the laundry later.

We live in villages and skyscrapers and slums and suburbia but through our ordinary days and average acts of kindness we all hold the power to pull down the Kingdom and remind ourselves what matters most.

I could easily get overwhelmed by the need and the heartache and the work yet-to-do, but there’s a beauty and a hope that escalates as we link arms and lift our eyes to heaven and give of ourselves, imagining a brighter future for our children, for our neighbors, for our enemies, and for our now… continue>>>

Bringing Life and Hope to the Gama River


I wrote this one for the YWAM Ships website. It’s about carrying these messages to the people of PNG: You are valuable. You are not forgotten. There is hope for your future. (Story and photos by me.) Here is an excerpt:

It was an ordinary Tuesday morning when our zodiac arrived laden with medical supplies, mosquito nets, and friendly foreigners. The entire community assembled to eagerly watch us set up our clinic in the church hall.

During our clinics in Nemeiti, we were called to another near-by village to help a mother who had given birth the day before… We found the young mother in a dark hut, curled up by a fire. She was laying on boards and a few scattered bits of cloth, smeared with blood and dirt. Her placenta hung on the wall next to her, still connected to her by long, thin membranes. They had taken measures to ensure a successful delivery, but were unsure how to detach the placenta without causing hemorrhaging (postpartum haemorrhaging is one of the leading causes of maternal death in the developing world)… continue>>

 Giving Birth in the Bush


This is the story of Aipa, another strong and beautiful PNG mom and her story of giving birth in the jungle, on the YWAM Ships website. (Photos and story by me.) Here’s an excerpt:

It was a routine morning of clinics as staff and volunteers set up supplies, organized their stations, and settled into their roles. An hour in to the day and we had a radio call from the ship with some exciting news. A man had paddled in his dugout canoe to the ship in order to find help for his wife who was in labour in Upati, a near-by village.

We arrived in the zodiac and were greeted by the village people waving and cheering from the shore. They took our hands and helped us through a clearing of broken branches and small fire pits until we rounded a corner where we met Aipa.

She was a stunning woman; strong and bright-eyed, and a young mother of five. In no way did she look like she had just laboured and given birth. But she had.

There, on the board next to her, was a tiny baby boy who had come earlier in the morning. He looked perfect… continue>>>

Using Solar Power to Bring Light and Life into the Delivery Room


This is another one on the YWAM Ships website – about the gift of a solar suitcase to a rural health center that has no electricity. Story and photos by me. (And yes, I did write about myself in the third person at one point. Ha!) Here’s an excerpt:

Can you imagine being a midwife of 30 years and yet never having used a doppler to listen to and monitor an unborn baby’s heartbeat? Can you imagine delivering a baby in the black of the night with only a flashlight to break the darkness?

Meet Antonia – this is her normal… continue>>>

Team of Four Helps Save a Baby’s Life While on Outreach


Another one I wrote about on YWAM Ships – the story of Joycie and how her baby Naomi nearly died in childbirth, but was resuscitated back to life by our team. (Story and photos by me.) Here’s an excerpt:

Had we been in Australia she would have been rushed to the neonatal intensive care unit. But here, with very little equipment to work with, her prognosis was even worse. It was a situation that every mother and birth professional dreads… continue>>>

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s