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Medical aid received via ‘Jesus plane’

ULAANBAATAR, Mongolia (BP)–There is a bird that flies in the land of blue skies, symbolizing hope for an area of 56,000 eastern Mongolians.

Locals call the nine-seater Cessna the “Jesus plane.” The Mission Aviation Fellowship flight is a blessing to Lisa Sharpe,* serving as her only option besides an 11-hour bus ride or rental car trip between Ulaanbaatar and Sükhbaatar. Yet in the summer of 2007, she couldn’t shake the realization that the round-trip chartered plane returned each time to the capital — empty.

“God put it on my heart to pray,” Sharpe said. “People who are sick have a difficult time getting to the city.”

Enlisting the help of a local believer, Sharpe assembled a list of Mongolians who were candidates for free medical transport. Whenever she flies, she tries to fill the flight. The now fully loaded return flight has provided transportation for emergency as well as serious medical cases — from a boy injured in a horse accident to a church leader’s father suffering from cancer. Now the funds that once paid for just one worker’s transport are allowing Southern Baptists to impact entire families for Christ.

“One lady came to see me and asked, ‘When is the Jesus plane coming in?'” Sharpe said. “Lots of different sick people take this plane. I’m grateful God is using it in this way.”
*Name changed. Dea Davidson is a writer for the International Mission Board.

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  • Dea Davidson