Flying Back to War Torn villages

mende nazer with 5ymag

She carefully steps off the MAF caravan in Yida, South Sudan and onto the red soil. There are so many emotions wrapped up in these few small steps. She picks up a handful of dirt and takes in the moment. It is as if her whole being is focused on this handful of red soil. Pilot Chris Ball watches it all, knowing that this is a beautiful moment in Mende’s tragic life. She is home. She is breathing in the air, she is experiencing the intense heat, and she is holding a handful of dirt - things she hasn’t done since she was abducted at just 12 years of age.

It was the peak of the Sudan Civil War in the 1990s. Mende Nazer hadn’t even reached her teenage years yet when her village in the Nuba Mountains of Sudan was attacked and raided. She was abducted, raped and enslaved. She remained a slave under very harsh conditions in Khartoum for almost seven years. She was overworked, horribly mistreated, and violently beaten. She became physically ill as she grieved the loss of her innocent childhood, as she missed her parents and family and community.  Eventually she was smuggled into the UK as a slave to work for a family serving in the Sudan Embassy in London, England. With limited English and a traumatised adolescence, she didn’t dare imagine a life of freedom.

But after sometime, she was given the chance to do a few errands for the family. While out doing a bit of shopping, she met a man who spoke Arabic and he told her that if she could escape her captors while in England, she would be free. She gathered up the courage and was able to run away from her life of slavery.

Praise to the Most High King
Mende found freedom and is now a British citizen. She runs her own foundation, is an ambassador for the people of Nuba Mountains and an advocate for those still in slavery.

Today, Mende is relying on a MAF flight to return home to her remote village. She is travelling with Baroness Caroline Cox. Their purpose is to provide aid and advocacy to alleviate suffering in Sudan and South Sudan. In addition to supporting Mende’s coming home, the team is collecting further research to fuel their advocacy work in the UK. This was made possible through MAF safely transporting them back and forth across the country.

It was for this freedom that Christ set us free [completely liberating us]; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery [which you once removed].
 Galatians 5:1 Amplified Bible

We are free in Christ today. We may not have been physically enslaved like Mende was, but we were slaves to sin for eternity. And sin is a hateful master.

“Therefore, my friends, I want you to know that through Jesus the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you. Through him everyone who believes is set free from every sin, a justification you were not able to obtain under the law of Moses. Acts 13:38-39 NIV

Like Mende, be encouraged that you are now a citizen of the Kingdom of Heaven, an ambassador for Christ and an advocate for those still in slavery to sin.

Can you help MAF further the Kingdom of God, and set the captives free this Easter?

MAF has flown hundreds of passengers proclaiming their message of freedom that Jesus broke their chains of slavery on the Cross of Calvary.

Mende is just one of the many Sudanese and South Sudanese people who have suffered because of conflict and civil unrest.

She was also able to carry up a large amount of medicines and other necessities on the MAF flight to send onto her family in her childhood village. In a soft voice, she quietly shared her heart, “It was so good to be home, it was happy and sad and so very good.”

Please make a gift towards MAF’s worldwide mission this Easter.

Together, we can reach many more people who have yet to be loved and hear the Good News.

God bless,
Maxine Holman

Mission Aviation Fellowship
Standard Bank
Greenstone Branch
Branch code: 016342
Account number: 020044615
Reference: Your name & Easter
Swift code: SBZAZAJJ


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