What Bible Translation looks like today... CYCLONE LOLA UPDATE.

Over the last 15 years, we have seen two Category 5 cyclones, one Category 4, and several Category 3 and 2. They are a mysterious and destructive phenomenon. Lola has proven to be the most severe for our village by far. Below is a list of damages to our village and home infrastructure, short descriptions, and accompanying photos. There is also a link you may follow if you are interested in helping with the North Ambrym Cyclone Lola Recovery Project. If you have any questions, please reach out.

Water Supply and School Buildings – Our community was recently recognized by the Department of Education and allowed to begin a primary and secondary school. Over the last two years, the families have worked hard to build several buildings with local materials to accommodate nearly 250 students. Cyclone Lola blew over most of the buildings and ruined the roofs. We are currently prioritizing securing potable water for the school and village. The village has been using a spring roughly 14 km up in the mountains for a couple of decades. Cyclone Lola caused several landslides that buried the spring and wrecked the pipeline. We are considering options to tap into a freshwater spring that flows out of some rocks on our coastline a few km from the village. The challenge is the water is only available at low tide. Please pray for wisdom and resources.

Community Evacuation Center – This project has been on our minds since we experienced our first category 5 cyclone, Pam. She was contentious! During a sizable cyclone, the local families huddle in their homes until their roof begins to give way. At that time, they quickly scurry over to a neighbor’s home and wait until their roof begins to give. We would like to build a community hall that may serve the families of three villages near each other. It may be used as an evacuation center, lecture hall for the school, church, literacy clubs, dining hall, and the like.

Translation Office – Our translation office imploded! This building served as a place to translate each morning, hold consultant checks, triage patients for the clinic, early morning exercises, village meetings during heavy rains, and much more.

Tool Shed – As I type, our tools, lawnmower, an extra supply of hardware and off-cut timber for repairs, wheelbarrows, and everything you can think of is buried under the walls and roof of one of the more important buildings in the village. Much of what is in there serves the community and our family.

Water Tower – Our 6-meter tower tipped over onto the house. The footings were pulled right out of the ground! Unfortunately, the tank landed on the roof, damaging a few timber purlins and one or two sheets of tin roofing. We are very grateful that the trusses were not damaged. This will be an easy fix.

The Coop Flew the Chickens – the office imploded, and our chicken coop exploded. We recently sent out 40 layers. By God’s grace, only two were killed during the cyclone. The others hid in the roosting boxes till the storm was over. These layers provide protein for our family and translation team throughout the year. Thankfully, chickens are resilient and can sleep anywhere, though it is best to be protected from dogs, cats, and pigs at night. We’ll be rebuilding their coop and run shortly.

Tree House – We thought that we’d add this one for fun. Several years ago, we built a tree house with a slide built so that two could go down in tandem. I always knew that the slide was WAY overbuilt. Cyclone Lola proved it! The kids are looking forward to having their play area back up again.