We discovered a very unique stop in southern North Carolina, just south of Charlotte; the Jaars headquarters, which is a part of Wycliffe Bible Translators. Jaars is an acronym for Jungle Aviation and Radio Service, and is the transportation part of the ministry, transporting missionaries and supplies to remote areas of the world.
This was a fabulous visit for us, and built on our interactive stop at Wycliffe Bible Translators in Orlando earlier in the year; Jaars is the transportation arm of Wycliffe.
Next was a short walk to the airplane hangar, where we were given a tour and told about the difficulties of reaching some remote language groups. After our walk to the hangar, we went back to the visitor’s center for a closing talk and activities. The kids loved the program (well, us big people did too!)
The afternoon was spent visiting the 2 museums that are on the property. Our first stop was the Mexico Museum, which delved into the founder’s love for the Mexican people, and expanded on his life spent serving the Mexican people. We spent 20 to 30 minutes in the Mexican Museum, getting a personalized tour of the beautiful authentic costumes, photos from Cameron Townsend’s time there, and even the 1938 Chevrolet that the president gave Townsend.
Next, we spent a LOT of time in the Museum of the Alphabet, where we learned about languages from all over the world. The museum is fun and colorful, with numerous hands-on activities. In fact, we loved the Alphabet Museum so much that we drove down there a second time just to see it again (180 mi round trip) on our way out of the state heading west! I was intrigued with the museum, but I was afraid that it would be over the kids’ heads, or not hold their interest. The loved it! They were able to rubber stamp their names out with Egyptian hieroglyphs, match magnetic oriental writing with what it stood for on a picture, make a print-out of their name in foreign languages, and try out a Mayan Cogwheel Calendar. One of our (big people) favorites was a Bible printed in Gullah (a creole language). There was so much to learn in the Museum of the Alphabet! And it is so unique!!!