The Call


It’s been nearly four months since I was accepted to the aircraft mechanics program at the School of Missionary Aviation Technology located in Ionia Michigan. For those that aren’t familiar with this program, it is an intensive 12 month course that gives graduating students the certification and skills to work on and maintain any aircraft. Next year, I plan to take their flight program, which will give me from Private Pilot through commercial certifications in one year.

Recently, I have felt that the Lord is calling me to missionary aviation and I have seen God working countless miracles and opening the way for that to happen. I applied, and was accepted to SMAT within four days of classes starting. It was a whirl of activity. This short letter can’t contain all that the Lord has done for me from that time till the present, but I can  say it’s been an amazing journey! The Lord has really been blessing.

After school started, we have finished fifteen classes and I have have passed my first FAA written exam for the General module. As of early November, we have moved into the second of three modules which is the airframe module. In this module, we are learning about various aircraft systems and how they work, as well as how to perform structural repairs and properly maintain an aircraft. 

One of the recent assignments I and three others worked on was designing and assembling an electrical project with a pre-determined list of components. We chose to make a system that resembled an airplane with a large motor and several switches and lights. With the motor all the way on, we got the propeller up to 5000 rpm! It was fun and our team learned a lot from it.

Several people have asked why I am attending SMAT over other schools, and for me there are a few reasons:

  1. The school is a Christian non-denominational school with a particular focus on training missionaries for mission aviation, rather than preparing students for the airlines or some other commercial setting.
  2. The school offers an intensified course which many equivalent programs offer the same material in two or three years. Finishing sooner would allow me to be ready for the plans that the Lord has in store for me.
  3. My favorite parts of the course are the hands-on classes. I feel that SMAT has a good balance between book work and hands on learning. The majority of assignments are on actual aircraft or aircraft parts, which helps my experience to be more realistic to what I will face in the field.


The need for mission aviation is vast! Some of the most remote areas are often the least reached places for the spread of the gospel. Often it takes weeks to travel just a few miles through dense jungle or over rough mountains to arrive at remote villages and towns. However, the same distance in an airplane or helicopter can be travelled in a matter of minutes. The use of an aircraft may be the only way some of these isolated people groups would have a chance to hear about God’s love for them.

Jesus is coming soon, and you can help by praying for missionaries and those in training, and for the people we will serve. By your support, Jesus coming is nearer! I can’t wait for that glorious day!

Andrew Hosford


About Me

I am a missionary pilot with the goal of serving in hard to reach or isolated areas to help spread the gospel, and show the love of Jesus with others.