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April, 1981 Newsletter
COLOMBIAN CHRISTIAN MISSION
Dale and Jeanie Meade
In the jungle and prairie of Southeastern Colombia
Volume 9, Issue 4 April, 1981
IN COLOMBIA, THE AIRPLANE PROJECT GOES FORWARD
Anyone who has followed our work in Colombia is aware of the problem we face with paperwork. Even what should be a simple task, such as paying a water bill can take the better part of a day because of inefficiency. With something major like the purchase of an airplane, it can become incredibly involved. Let me share with you some of the steps that have been taken by the missionaries in Colombian in order to get the title to the airplane in our name.
First of all we had to prove that we were a duly recognized nonprofit corporation. That required getting documents from several government agencies. After that we had to prove that we were in no trouble with the law. They required that we do the running to the different law enforcement agencies to get a certificate saying that we had no record with them. After that we began working on the tax papers. This involved going to their version of the IRS and getting a certificate that they call the Paz y Salvo. Literally translated that would say "at Peace and Saved." What it means in less flowery language is that we owe no taxes to the government. Once all of these papers were done, we could begin with the real difficult ones. The activity switched from Villavicencio, where things are somewhat less complicated, to Bogota.
At this time we had to get a document from the drug enforcement agency stating that the evangelizing association contained no members who had any record of drug trafficking. This was rather complicated because each member had to be checked out. We assumed that this would not take too long since we know that we were all opposed to the entire drug trade. Unfortunately it did not turn out that way. It appears that some notorious mafia leader has a name very similar to that of one of the young preachers who had worked for us on an occasion. Clearing up that required a great deal of time. From the time we left Colombia, until the early problem this year, the problem remained. The drug agents seemed to have little interest in solving the problem and as a result it was pretty much up to us to prove that they had made a mistake. This was finally cleared up and we finally got the go-ahead to make the transfer.
Still things were not over. Due to a recent change in the name of our evangelizing association, there was to be another delay. We had to wait for a new paper certifying that we were a duly non-profit corporation. Once this was taken care of, things began to come together. About the end of the month of February the leaders of the mission work in Colombia signed the final papers, handed over the last of the money, and the plane was officially ours. At this time we were to be in for a pleasant surprise. The owner of the Cessna plant decided to accept our final payment at the current exchange rate for the dollar, rather than the exchange rate that was in effect at the time that we signed the initial contract. This alone amounted to a refund of nearly $4,000 dollars. He was under no obligation to do so and so in reality he was making one final gift to our work in Colombia. This money will be used to cover the expenses of paperwork ad some of the first expenses involved in actually using the airplane.
We all let out a shout of joy: the airplane was finally, really ours. During this entire time the prices of planes continued to skyrocket. This made the very good deal that we got in the beginning into a fantastic blessing from the Lord. Please rejoice with us for this great victory from God. Now there remains only one problem of paying off the remainder of the airplane debt here in this country. We still owe only about $17,000 of the original $50,000 that we owed as of one year ago at this time. Let us all put our shoulder to the wagon and get things moving as quick as possible. Then we can soon share in a final victory celebration as the airplane project is completed.
AIRPLANE PROJECT GOES FORWARD