Tuesday, February 03, 2009

My first trip to a tribe

My first trip into a tribe was a good one. I took a plane to Manado and then took a a 2 day boat ride on a ferry to a small town. After that I took a 3 hour canoe ride (the canoe had an outboard motor) to the Island were the Tribal people a live. From there it was a 2 hour hike to where the village. By the time we got there it was about 7 o'clock so it was already dark. (it usually gets dark at 6 in Indonesia). The trail was really muddy and slippery. Eventually my sandals kept getting stuck in the mud so I took them off and went barefoot, which was ok until the trail started to get rocky. I kept my sandals off because they were really muddy. Wwhen we got there the people sang a welcome song which is there custom for when they have special visitors. Most of the people there to greet us were christian so they sang a christian welcome song that they had written. After that I went to the missionaries house and ate dinner and then went to bed.

(Tribal People singing their welcome song to us)

We rested for one day and then went to a tribal church service at a village about 55 minutes away. (by foot) There we got to hear worship songs that the tribal people wrote. The songs sounded beautiful. Ben and I (Ben is the guy in blue shorts in the picture above) gave our testimony in Indonesian and then the missionary there translated it into Taliabo.

(Picture of the church service we attended)

For the next 5 days we met some some of the believers in the other village where the missionary lived.

(guy who used to be a shaman)

One of the guys we met used to be a shaman. After he became a Christian people from other villages came and tried to buy his fetishes because he was considered a powerful shaman. He did not want sell them so he took them all out and burned them. He wanted show everyone that he believed that those items had no power and no worth. He is the only guy in the village that still wears a loin cloth. In the picture above he is also wearing a sarung which is usually worn like a skirt.

We spent a total of 7 days in the tribe. We took a different trail out of the tribe that was a little longer but not as muddy. On our way out we crossed a river and also walked on a log to cross a small creek. We made it back home safely. It was a great trip. I enjoyed seeing a tribal work where there was already church. There is only one missionary couple in there right now and need partners to help prepare lessons and discipleship.