For the 12 million Roma people living in Europe, discrimination has long been part of their history. Because of their mysterious and often nomadic lifestyle, the Roma can be misunderstood and treated like outsiders. In some cities, officials make settling difficult, which leads to dismal living situations, and makes work and education hard to come by.
In many ways, the Roma people are experiencing what the prophet Isaiah’s people experienced when they were in an oppressive, dark place in their life. In Isaiah 12:2, Isaiah called out to his people with hope in God’s purpose when he said, “See, God has come to save me. I will trust in him and not be afraid. The Lord God is my strength and my song; he has given me victory” (NLT).
Despite the challenging and troubling situations that are still a reality for many Roma people, they are expressing joy and confidence in their salvation, and are working toward sharing this salvation with others.
A group of Roma recently had Easter passages from the Gospel of John checked by a consultant. The Roma men and women meeting there were full of life and love, and it was evident that they had tasted the salvation to which Isaiah 12:2 points.
The group participated with joy in the reading and discussion of translated Scripture, working with the translators to make occasional changes to the draft. While discussing one passage, a Roma man said, “I am going to explain this passage to other people. It is important.” While checking another passage, the group agreed they would like to use it to encourage people they knew. Lives are being transformed as the Bible is translated into the language they understand best.
The New Testament has been translated into five of the more than 20 different languages spoken by Roma people in Europe. Your support is needed to help provide training and support for Bible translators working among the Roma people in Romania and Bulgaria. To partner with these translations, please visit wycliffe.org/roma