50 Years of MAF in Tanzania
Posted: on June 10, 2013
Story by Paul Beck
As MAF celebrates 50 years of flying in Tanzania, there is much to thank God for.
A base in neighbouring Kenya opened in 1959, and flights from there to Tanzania started a few years later. MAF Co-found Stuart King initially visited the country in response to a request from Yohanna Madinda, the Bishop of Central Tanganyika (as the region was known at the time) to establish a base inside Tanzania. Recent political developments had resulted in newly-centralised villages being established and the Bishop wanted to seize the opening that this presented to share the Gospel with those who had rarely heard it before.
As the door closed to MAF operations in nearby Ethiopia closed, God opened another door to set up a base in Tanzania’s new capital of Dodoma in late 1977. Sub-bases in six other locations around the country followed and at the peak of MAF’s operations, 11 aircraft were in use.
As the country’s infrastructure has improved, MAF flights in Tanzania today focus on bringing partners to the country’s south and to the Maasai communities in the north, through holistic medical safaris around Malambo. Much of that work remains rooted in the original vision of bringing the Gospel to the unreached. “From the beginning, we’ve served the Church in Tanzania and have been there during a time of tremendous growth in the number of believers,” said long-serving MAF staff member Max Gove.