The world’s first Christian airline is set to take flight next year and is aimed to transport larges teams of missionaries and their cargos across the globe. Judah 1, an aviation ministry based in Shreveport, Los Angeles will be the group behind the plans.
“We give wings to missionaries. The Great Commission tells us we go to all the world and preach the gospel to every creature,” Judah 1 founder and president Everett Aaron said to CBN News.
At present, the ministry still facilitates transport for missionaries to mission fields. Roughly 10 to 12 member teams are supported. Once certification is completed for the large plane, larger teams and about 17,000 pounds of cargo can be transported anywhere when the airline is allowed to operate.
According to Aaron, it was God who first gave him the vision to undertake these plans in 1994. He saw hundreds of planes lined up, all filled with food, medical supplies and Bibles. The only problem was that people were not boarding them. He asked God and got a response.
“He said, 'None of these people can do what they're called to do until you get the airplanes. This is my call on your life,” Aaron recalled.
Aaron hopes that all these fall into place by 2021. Judah 1 has been serving mission-minded Christian people of all denominations traveling to the mission fields of the world since 2011.
Aside from getting the world’s first Christian airlines up and running, Aaron added that they have more plans tied to it. They plan to open their flight schools in the future as well.
“We want to be able to train missionary pilots...it opens doors for us to do so many things," he said.
It was in 2018 when Judah 1 revealed that they planned to switch from a private operator and become its airline. The Federal Aviation Administration accepted their application. Originally, the ministry served Christians traveling around the world and domestically for mission trips and religious tours.
“It is our passion to help you reach the estimated two and a half billion people who do not know Jesus and it only takes YOUR HANDS, GOD'S LOVE, OUR WINGS," a message read via the Judah 1 website.
According to a study from the Center for Global Christianity, there are about 440,000 Christian missionaries in the world. Though there was no indication of how many of these people were Americans, other groups who could benefit from Judah 1 include Baptist Medical, Kids Against Hunger, and Dental Mission International.
In a report from Newsweek, the airline currently has three aircrafts. a McDonnell Douglas MD83, a Falcon 900B, and a Cessna 414. They also have a Boeing 767. The planes can transport roughly 1 to 140 people plus cargo.
Judah 1 is committed to fulfilling “The Great Commission.” So far, they have delivered hundreds of missionaries and transported thousands of pounds of cargo around the globe. Once they complete the transition to a full airline, Judah 1 is expected to cover more ground and help people in need throughout the world.