It has been 60 years …

Nate Saint, Jim Elliot, Peter Fleming, Roger Youderian, and Ed McCully

… since Nate Saint, Jim Elliot, Peter Fleming, Roger Youderian, and Ed McCully gave their lives so that the Waorani (then Auca) tribe could hear the Gospel. After initial efforts to make contact with this remote tribe in Ecuador were deemed positive, these brave men landed on a river beach deep in the jungle to build relationships with these people. Sadly, they died at the hands of those they were trying to reach.

Yet God wove this tragedy into a beautiful story of redemption, as many members of this tribe—including those in the killing party—eventually accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord.

The news of this event spread around the world, and organizations like MAF found themselves flooded with applicants who were ready to follow in the footsteps of these men and go to the ends of the earth for the sake of the Gospel.

Even today, many of our staff initially came to MAF because they read Jungle Pilot—the story of Nate Saint’s life.

Today we remember and celebrate the lives of these men and what their sacrifice has meant not only for the Waorani tribe but for isolated people around the world who are still coming to Christ in the wake of their legacy.

View a short video (above) and check out the “Generations” documentary (below) to catch a glimpse of the Waorani tribe today, and learn how they’re passing on their faith in Jesus Christ.


  • John & Eleanore Warner says:

    I remember when we got the news on the radio. It has always hurt to think of it. But the Lord was in control and what a beautiful people have been brought into the fold. “He is no full who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot loose.” It made quite an impact on my life.

  • Abigail Sjoblom says:

    God has used their story powerfully to move me towards missions. I have known about their sacrifice for as long as I can remember, and it has always challenged me. Recently I learned that my Grandpa became a pilot and flew supplies to missionaries in the villages of Alaska mainly due to the impact that these men’s deaths made on him. I am now writing a research paper on the impact that they made, and I never cease to be amazed at how God can take tragedy and turn it into victory. Praise God for his mighty power!

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