After an initial survey, Jack Douglas came to Haia, Papua New Guinea in 1973 and together with a friend built a bush house in the three weeks before he was joined by his wife Isa and five-year-old David and two-year-old Sandra. Isa and the children were the first white woman and children that the women at Haia had seen. It took a further eighteen months, with the help of the Pawaians, to build an airstrip using spades, rakes and axes to cut down the thousands of trees on the site.
After returning from furlough in 1976, Jack continued the difficult task of language study. The language was unwritten requiring no less than eighteen vowels to go with eleven consonants. It took years to decide what the alphabet should be and even longer to figure out how the grammar worked.
Isa concentrated on medical work. Malaria was a frequent cause of death. TB, leprosy, meningitis, filariasis, tropical ulcers, etc, were all common problems. Jack’s spare hobby was extracting teeth.
There is now a vibrant church in Haia and the Pawaian tribe have many copies of the New Testament and substantial parts of the Old Testament in their own language. Praise God for his grace and love, and please pray for the continuing work in Papua New Guinea.