The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Long way to Tippannauli

In the Indonesian jungle I found members of my global family

Although it had been 164 years since the Bataks of Sumatra killed and ate the first U.S. missionaries, Henry Lyman and Samuel Munson, I was still uneasy as we walked the three miles through rice fields and steamy jungle to Tippiannauli, where no American had visited.

It's a self-sufficient community of small wooden houses on low stilts scattered throughout the clan-owned bush. The powerful radja (chief or mayor) parcels out the land for farming rice, corn, coffee and spices. The only water supply is rainwater. In dry times villagers carry water from a stream a half mile away.

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December issue


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