Word on the move

Word on the move

Bringing the Gospel to the roaming, nomadic Maasai in Tanzania

The nomadic lifestyle of East Africa’s Maasai tribe is legendary, but makes it very difficult for Christians wanting to share Jesus with them.

Although it would be possible to build roads across the barren landscape, doing so would require the tribe to stay in the same place – which they simply don’t do!

Village of Ole Milei, Malambo Safari, Evangelist Joel preaches from the Bible next to an MAF plane.

Taking the Gospel to the Maasai is a priority to some passionate evangelists though. That’s why MAF’s team in Tanzania is perfectly placed. Our aircraft can provide mobile support, and the pilots can share their desire to see the Massai come to Christ.

Revival

As recently as 20 years ago, there were only a few dozen Massai believes in the remote region of Malambo. But over the past few years, MAF has flown evangelists to numerous airstrips across this region. Being Massai themselves, these missionaries have a great understanding of the cultural barriers to the Gospel. Now, there are thousands of Christians in Malambo, and close to 600 new believers were baptised in 2013 alone.

The Maasai wave as MAF take off.

A pioneer

Oloishiro is one of them. He came to faith roughly 20 years ago thanks to an MAF evangelistic safari flight to Emballbal. Despite his status as youth chief at the time, many in his community rejected him. But this didn’t stop Oloishiro from becoming an evangelist.

Over the years, many young people have been deeply impacted through Olishiro’s ministry, and lots of Massai have received salvation.

Loss

One day in 2013, MAF Pilot Andrew Parker received a sobering request. Olishiro was seriously ill with a heart condition and needed rushing to hospital. Andrew responded quickly, flying him to the Selian Lutheran Hospital in Arusha.

Sadly, Olishiro died soon after.

Maasai greiveing after the loss of Olishiro.

Even facing death, this passionate believer was witnessing to his doctors, shaking their hands and telling them he was going to be with his Father. 

He leaves behind a community that’s still passionate about winning the Massai people to Christ, and a Bible discipleship course has been launched since his death.

Evangelist Joel is seen preacing from the Bible to a group of Massai.

The need for MAF

Elisha Moita, who is now central to Massai evangelism in Tanzania, believes that the need for MAF is greater than ever.

‘Most of the Massai living in the north have no access to any kind of communication network. MAF is still needed for their deliverance and to change lives.’

The Massai people may live constantly on the move, but the need to reach them with the Good News via MAF’s planes will never travel from our hearts.

Evangelist Elisha Moita.