Eastern Archipelago

Mustard Seed's journey on the Eastern Archipelago began in 1976, when our founder Lillian Dickson set her beautiful feet there for the first time. With the help of Dr. Bob Pierce, the first school and teacher training program were established in the Papua highlands. The legacy of these initial footprints continues to impact generations to come.

Faithful Footprints





Latest News from Eastern Archipelago

Forgiveness and Redemption

Kashi and Kirk’s Journey in the Papuan Highlandsby Lucie Howell We really are disconnected from places like the Papuan Highlands, where age-long tribal customs reign in isolated villages up in the mountains far from our ‘civilization.’ A letter from Kashi,...

IN THE HEART OF PAPUA: Bringing the Spirit of Christmas to the Edge of the World

By Paul Richardson, MSI International Director I’ve never seen terrain so wild, beautiful, and treacherous as Papua’s mountains. The towering might of those peaks is beyond description, reminding me of the magical time when Christmas is in the air. In July 2021,...

EMBRACING THE NEW YEAR: Messenger of Love and Grace

As we draw near to the end of this eventful year, I find myself looking back on our school’s chosen theme, “Winners,” and how it has resonated with our journey as educators. Entrusted with not only teaching, but also assisting our dedicated school principal, I’m...

Female Interns Igniting Transformation in the Toughest Places

2023 has been a remarkable year for the TransformNation teacher-training program. A group of twelve female interns, who graduated in June, have embarked on a quest to bring hope to underserved places. The chart below shows where they are serving. They share their...

Children Celebrate Christmas in Indonesia

We are happy to share the following pictures of Mustard Seed's children and teachers celebrating Christmas in Indonesia. Thank you for your commitment to loving and serving these children.   If you haven’t made your 2022 donation yet, there are still a few days left...

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from us at Mustard Seed International! Thank you for your commitment to loving and serving children in Indonesia. Click below to see how Indonesian children celebrate Christmas in different islands. 

Strings of Hope

Can I tell you a story of hope? Here’s where it all started: It was a bad day. I was overwhelmed with Aldo, one of my students. He lied, refused to do homework, and hit his female friend. I felt like I was ready to give up on him. Then Rino, a sixth grade student,...

Youth Development Center Reaches Out to Street Children

Many schools in rural parts of Indonesia have not taken education seriously. One sign of this is that school finishes before lunch every day. This leaves children free to roam the streets, form gangs, and get into trouble as they are unsupervised all afternoon and...

Young Leaders Set Out to Reach Thousands of Children

This past June, the second generation of TransformNation (TfN) Interns, known as “Class B,” completed the 8 year program! Below they express their gratitude to MSI donors, share testimonies and future plans: *** JONATHAN “These past eight years I learned to be a...

We Are Pressed on Every Side, but We Are Not Crushed

Last year, TransformNation (TfN) graduate, Harta, and two TfN interns, Martin and Evan, pioneered a Christian school in one of the most remote locations of the Papuan Highlands. As the school development began, so did waves of challenges. Shortages, dark magic,...

Stories of Peace and Transformation

Can schools really change children's lives? Today we will dive into stories of children and their teachers who promote peace and transformation from the playgrounds of highland Papua.

Facts & Figures

Forgiveness and Redemption

Kashi and Kirk’s Journey in the Papuan Highlandsby Lucie Howell We really are disconnected from places like the Papuan Highlands, where age-long tribal customs reign in isolated villages up in the mountains far from our ‘civilization.’ A letter from Kashi,...

Mustard Seed Schools Empower Local Girls

“Just because you were born female and watched the women in your life being abused and exploited, doesn't mean you have to accept it. Imagine waking up every morning with a sense of hope knowing that your generation, in this village, could bring about change." *** You...

How Does Education Protect Girls in Papua?

“The education of girls goes beyond getting them into school." *** Let’s think about this cycle: When girls are illiterate, their opportunities for education, jobs, and healthcare are limited. With little or no basic literacy and numeracy, they won’t have the...

Parents Transformed

“Kashi’s parents just wanted her to move home, get a government job, find a husband, and be done with the international program she was involved in. They didn’t see why she would be living way out in a Papuan village surrounded by threats and challenges." *** When I...

My Life Has Changed through MSI's Soccer School

My Life Has Changed Through MSI's Soccer School Medi was only 11 years old when he was lured into a drug gang on the streets of Papua. He was a child growing up on his own with little guidance from his step-parents who lived in another city. Medi was lonely and lacked...

Building Character from A Guitar Lesson

Building Character from A Guitar Lesson Today, Indonesian people celebrate their Independence Day. As many of the Mustard Seed schools are spread between the Indonesian archipelagos, we take this special day to thank God for the work He is doing in Indonesia. Mustard...

A Father to the Fatherless

A Father to the Fatherless "A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families" Psalm 68:5-6a We are happy to share with you a story of a fatherless child who received seeds of generosity years ago through...

Making Papua A Better Place For Women

Making Papua A Better Place For Women "Elsha’s song, I Am Free with God, is an anthem fuelled by the injustice she felt growing up as a girl in a male-dominated culture. Women are silenced because they are not valued as equals. They are excluded from participation in...

Click on blog posts above to read more about how Mustard Seed's schools empower Papuan girls and children

Click above to see more pictures of the After School Program Activities

About the Eastern Archipelago Teachers

The Eastern Archipelago teachers consists of one Mustard Seed site leader and 12 TransformNation interns who serve children at three local schools: a Mustard Seed school and two partner schools.

Rasi, MSI's site leader, was one of Mustard Seed's children at Seeds of Hope Children's Home. He received a scholarship from Mustard Seed and after graduating from university he was first assigned to a teaching position. Through the years, his leadership ability was recognized, and thus he was promoted to principal position.

The TfN interns serving at two local schools are Kashi (assigned as school principal), Tirta, Paul, Harta, Constance, Raymond, Alicia, Leland, Tabitha, James, and John. Anthony, another TfN student, is assisting Rasi at Mustard Seed's school.

About the Island

The schools that Mustard Seed serves on the Eastern Archipelago are located in the Papuan highlands. Although the island is famous for its world-class mining sites, it has some of the most underdeveloped areas when compared to other parts of Indonesia. In addition, the island has had unstable political climates for decades.

Among the 3.5 millions people who live in Papua, close to 30% of them live in poverty, while in some areas that number is higher than 40%. Statistics also show that about 21% of the population cannot read and write.

A few other significant factors contributing to the underdevelopment in Papua includes: challenging topography, tribe wars, and gender inequality.

Things to Discuss

1. We watched the video of Lionel and read several stories of students in Papua. At some point in their lives, they met teachers who led them to life-changing opportunities, through various activities at school. What do you think were the essential parts that lead them to the transformation?

2.What do you think about a study that stated “nearly nine out of ten people of faith, felt God's love and heard about the good news before the age of 18.” What does that say about the influence that a teacher has over his/her students?

3. What kind of changes would you like to see in the lives of children in the Eastern Archipelago and how can you be a part of those changes?

4. Do you have any questions about the work that Mustard Seed does? What would you like to learn more about or understand better?

Prayer Requests

This is how you can pray for The Eastern Team and the children of Eastern Archipelago

Prayer Requests

1. Please pray for the teachers who are serving children at the Eastern Archipelago. May they continue to be excellent at their work, leading children to know their purpose in God. May Mustard Seed's teachers promote love, stability, and peace wherever they serve.

2. Please pray for Papuan children and their parents. May God help them prioritize their children's education, that they would value their daughters just as they do their sons.

3. Please pray for peace and unity in Papua. May all dark powers that try to steal peace and kill harmony between the tribes be gone in God's powerful name.

Put Love into Action

We are a letter from Christ… written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts
(2 Corinthians 3:3)

Children's Corner

Eager to involve your children in learning about Beautiful Feet?