Please login to continue
Having Trouble Logging In?
Reset your password
Don't have an account?
Sign Up Now!
Sign Up for Free
Choose Password
Confirm Password

Thank you for registering with us.

The Browns in Panama

Tony and Sarah Brown are in their second term as Multiply missionaries in Panama. They work in close partnership with MB churches in Panama that are established among an indigenous people group called the Wounaan.

Not long ago, Sarah and Tony were preparing to travel to a remote Wounaan village to visit one of their partner churches. Despite concerted effort during their first term, they were both still feeling inadequate in their grasp of the language and culture of this people group. However, they felt strongly motivated to push through the communication barrier for the sake of these people that they had come to love.

Before they left home, Tony worked on preparing a message to share with the church while Sarah baked chocolate muffins to give to one of her new friends in the village. Tony asked two of his Wounaan friends, Ezequiel and Aristarco, to help him develop his sermon in the Book of Ephesians. Together, they talked about the Scriptures, what they would mean to the Wounaan and how to apply them to specific real-life situations faced by this people group. Which analogies would be helpful? Which would simply confuse them?

The next day the Browns arrived at the village and found the people there eager and excited to receive them. Seeing their faces, Sarah recalled something that their teammate Einer Zuluaga had once said: “The Wounaan are hungry, like people ready to eat, forks in hand, eager to dig in, to the Word, and to you!” Tony and Sarah saw that hunger and felt the same.

While Tony got ready to speak, Sarah went to the hut where her friend Beatrice lived and gave her the chocolate muffins. As she handed her gift over, Sarah saw the eagerness that Einer had spoken of, there in the woman’s eyes: a desire to dig into the muffins, and into friendship. Later, as Tony was speaking, they saw that the listeners also had a keen appetite. The Wounaan wanted to understand, as much as Tony himself wanted to be understood. Church leaders were quick to contribute when he struggled to find the right words in Spanish. Volunteers stood to translate various parts of the teaching into their indigenous languages, and there was an extensive question and answer time afterward. The Brown’s hunger to know this people group was met with an equal hunger on the part of the Wounaan.

This kind of mutuality is essential for healthy mission partnerships.

more stories

related projects