MADAGASCAR 1999
 
NOTE: Two team-outreaches were undertaken by Philadelphia from South Africa to Madagascar in 1999. However, almost no usable photographs of the 1st outreach (to the north of Tamatave) survived.
 
ABOVE: The South African members of the team at the Auberge du Jardin in Antananarivo.
FLTR: Jacques Olivier, Gert Grobler, Leon Strydom, Werner Coetzee and Manie Bosman.
 
ABOVE: In Tamatave we joined Philadelphia's local Project Manager, Victor (right), his wife
Hanta (middle) and Mari-Esther, co-worker.
 
ABOVE: Ready to roll. In the back of a "bush taxi" on our way the drop-off point about 130km
southwest of Tamatave. The basket at our feet keeps the meat fresh – a couple of chickens
that would rescue the carnivores in us from the monotony of a 3 x day rice diet!
 
ABOVE: At the drop-off point everything – including generator, film projector and our
luggage – had to be loaded onto these not-so-stable tree trunk canoes ("lakans"). FLTR: Manie,
Leon, Mari-Esther, Hanta and Victor.
 
ABOVE: Gert looks completely local in his private cabin with sun-shading.
 
ABOVE: A 1st time ever (and never since repeated in Madagascar) treat – we slept in this
newly constructed classroom in stead of the usual bamboo hut. During this outreach, we kept
our base in the same village, just traveling to neighboring villages during the day to share the
Gospel.
 
ABOVE: Jacques takes the lead as the team sets out for our 1st expedition to a nearby village.
As could have been expected, what was said to be just a short walk of about 1 hour turned
into a somewhat longer walk of about 2,5 hours. Still, the going was relatively easy.
 
ABOVE: Manie explains the Gospel with Victor (in red shirt) translating into Malagasy.
 
ABOVE: The people of this small village were mesmerized by what they heard and saw. Leon
(left) handles the flipchart while Jacques (seated) works the cassette-player.
 
ABOVE: The mimes – portraying different spiritual truths such as the consequences of getting
ensnared by sin, etc – was as effective as ever. Here a very despondent Gert is stuck to the
"chair of sin" while Werner tries in vain to deliver him by his own efforts.
 
ABOVE: Werner realizes that only God can free Gert. He leads him in a prayer of repentance
and Gert is delivered. Note the expressions on the faces of the audience.
 
ABOVE: Having Hanta and Mari-Esther along was a great blessing. Not only did they do their
part when it came to the spiritual work, but they transformed a bowl of rice into a
unbelievable meal by adding chicken and gastronomical secrets known only to Malagasy
women used to cooking in the bush on open fires.
 
ABOVE: Victor joked that the river in the background was known as the "fanta" – due to its
orange color caused by yellow mud.
 
ABOVE: In every village a "totem pole" with cattle skulls impaired into it and a sacrificial altar
can be found in a central spot. Sacrifices are left for the spirits on the stone, and may include
anything from money, to rum or a chicken.
 
ABOVE: Manie and Victor explains to the people that God cares for them and that they no
longer have to try to please him with sacrifices and sorcery if they accept his final and ultimate
sacrifice: his only begotten Son, Jesus Christ.
 
ABOVE: The Jesus-film was shown 3 times during the outreach. Because most of these people
still practice traditional ancestor worship and has no Christian background, it is very important
to first explain the film in context – how Jesus fits into God's plan for man's salvation. Manie
does the talking while Victor (left) translates.
 
ABOVE: People who accepted Christ during the outreach were invited to attend follow-up
classes where the basic principles of Christianity and spiritual growth were explained to them.
Here Victor encourages one such group to persevere and continue on the way they have
now chosen.
 
ABOVE: The team and the friendly people of our host-village just before returning home.
 


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