Posts Tagged ‘Translation’

“Bible translation is not for people who are perfect. It is not for people who have it all. [It is for] people who know [God] and want to work in faith with him. And then their lives will be unfolding into beauty –– into something very beautiful.”

Lydia Teera was only a teenager in Kampala, Uganda, when she lost her father to HIV. His death left her orphaned, but it also left her confused, frustrated and betrayed. Lydia had not known that her father was battling the disease. He had kept it a secret from her and the church community in which he served for his entire life.

In the wake of Mr. Teera’s passing, Pastor Tim Kibirige and his wife provided Lydia with a home. Though they did not have much to offer her in the way of financial support, what they did offer is something that changed her life forever –– the healing power of God’s Word. While living with the pastor and his wife, Lydia began to study the Bible. She came face-to-face with God, the giver of all hope. As a result, Lydia began to slowly heal from the scars of her past. But through reading Scripture, she was also able to look toward the future with purpose. In the comforting arms of her Heavenly Father, Lydia found the home she had lost.

As she studied the Bible, Lydia grew more and more passionate about serving God in any way she could. God led her to Wycliffe Bible Translators, where Lydia became the first Wycliffe missionary sent out from Uganda. Initially she grappled with the decision to become a missionary. But as Lydia prayed, she recognized an important truth. “I’m part of a church,” she reminded herself. “And we’ve been called to go and serve. Then why not go?”


Lydia, like many others, grasped the mission of Bible translation. She realized how much God had changed her own heart and life through Scripture. Today she is still committed to share that vision, purpose and hope with the people around her.

Each December 1 is recognized as World AIDS Day –– an opportunity for people around the world to unite in the fight against HIV/AIDS. And though it may only have been a piece of Lydia’s story, through encountering and grieving this disease, God drew Lydia into a relationship with himself and ultimately allowed her to share her story with many others. He took Lydia’s broken circumstances and unfolded them into beauty, as only he can.

On the surface, it might seem like Bible translation has little to do with World AIDS Day. After all, the Bible is not a medical manual, written to save the body. But for those suffering from the pain of HIV/AIDS, God’s Word offers something that no doctor can provide — hope and healing for eternity.

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You did it!

By 1 p.m. ET yesterday, you helped us achieve our goal of 500 printed books of Luke, and then you kept on giving. By 6:30 p.m., you more than doubled that number with over 1,000 books. Now you’ve funded printing for 1,440 books of Luke, for a total of $8,642 raised. Because of your gifts, people who have never heard the miracle of the Christmas story will now have the hope of God’s love for them in their own language!

Giving Tuesday is an amazing day to celebrate generosity and to give back because God has given us so much. But it doesn’t have to end there. In fact, you can make every day “Giving Tuesday” by praying about ways that God can use you to bless others. Perhaps it is through small acts of kindness, like letting someone go in front of you in line at the grocery store, or cooking a meal for your new neighbor. It can even be bigger things like partnering with a missionary, or serving as a volunteer in your community.

At Wycliffe, we are choosing to make every Tuesday throughout the month of December “Giving Tuesday.” If you’d like to continue helping us meet year-end needs in Bible translation, take a look at the projects available here.

Whatever God places on your heart, you can use each day to show his love to others! On behalf of the Bibleless people all over the world, thank you so much for your unwavering partnership in Bible translation.

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UPDATE: Your incredible generosity helped us achieve our first goal of 500 printed books of Luke by 1 p.m. ET! With plenty of time left to give, we’re doubling our Giving Tuesday goal. Together we can provide 1,000 copies of Luke!

Giving Tuesday is officially here!

Today is a day recognized around the world as a time set apart for giving back. And since it is now December, a month that we spend celebrating the blessing God gave to us in his son, Jesus, we think this is the perfect time to bless others.

But today is more than just a day. It is the first step toward a movement of generosity, and it can be the first step toward changing someone’s life. This Giving Tuesday, we want to give you the chance to provide the printed Gospel of Luke to people all over the world who’ve never had it in their own language.

For only $6 — the same price as that large Christmas-themed coffee you’re probably thinking of picking up soon — you could bring the hope of the Christmas story to someone who has never heard it before. Our goal is to provide 1,000 printed Books of Luke to people who don’t have them in their language, today!Large_120724_8420

You probably know the Christmas story by heart, hearing it every year at your church’s Christmas Eve service or reading it together at family gatherings. So why not give someone the very same joy you feel whenever you read about the angels proclaiming Christ’s birth? Encourage your family, friends, neighbors and even your church to join along with you in giving!

Visit wycliffe.org/givingtuesday to join us in this movement. Just $6 prints a copy of Luke for someone in need. A gift of $36 provides six books. And just $72 gives a dozen people access to God’s Word in their language.

Help reach others with the hope of Christmas! And please help us by spreading the word about this opportunity.

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What can you do with $6 during your Christmas shopping? You could probably buy a Christmas-themed coffee, or a few decorations for your tree or even a stack of Christmas cards to give to your family and friends. Can you think of a meaningful, inspiring gift you could buy someone for just $6?

We can! This year you can share the Christmas story with someone who’s never heard or read it before. Help provide language groups around the world with a printed copy of the Christmas story from the Gospel of Luke for just $6 — the same amount that you would spend on a coffee or a few decorations!

Giving Tuesday

What: Your chance to give the Christmas story to someone who needs it!
Just $6 prints the book of Luke.
When: Dec. 1, 2015
How: Watch for more details soon!

e Celebration

You’re invited to join us on December 1 for Giving Tuesday — the globally celebrated day dedicated to giving back. It’s a great opportunity to reflect on all God has blessed us with and to be a blessing to others!

Stay tuned for more details as we get closer to the big day. Together we can make Giving Tuesday an incredible chance to give the greatest gift of all.

“…but the angel reassured them. ‘Don’t be afraid!’ he said. ‘I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!’” (Luke 2:10-11, NLT).

You don’t want to miss it!

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Touba village chief

Bright eyes, a warm smile, and inviting laughter: this Senegalese man can’t contain his joy.  A powerful change recently came to his community in Senegal – fathers began allowing, and encouraging, their daughters to attend school for the first time.

It’s not uncommon for girls in many places around the world to be taught that they do not belong in the classroom. Since schooling is costly and money is always tight, many families believe it’s more worthwhile to invest in educating their brothers and male peers.

But thankfully, new opportunities like minority language literacy classes and Bible translation programs are causing more people to see the value of education for everyone. Watch this video to learn how literacy is bringing new hope to families.

Photo & Words: Katie Kuykendall

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“Be exalted, O God, above the highest heavens. May your glory shine over all the earth.” – Psalm 57:5 (NLT)

This verse wasn’t just the theme for this year’s Scripture Celebration –– it was also the prayer and longing of the hearts of everyone in attendance.

On September 30, a Scripture Celebration took place not only at Wycliffe USA Headquarters, but all around the world, thanks to live-stream! (If you missed the celebration, you can watch it here.). It was a morning filled with rejoicing through worship, video testimonials, photos and stories as we celebrated with sixteen different language communities around the world who have recently received Scripture. On a vibrant display at the front of the stage were copies of Scriptures from each language community — some now have access to the Psalms or the Book of Luke, while others have complete Old or New Testaments. And some now have the entire Bible in their own language!

Testimonies from a few of the language communities represented were shared throughout the morning as well. There were stories from the Culina in Peru –– a group who waited 60 years from the time translation began until the time the New Testament was delivered into their hands in July of 2015. One Wycliffe couple, Dick and Nadine Clark, have been praying for this particular translation project for 40 years!

“I hope I have the opportunity to pray for something for that long,” Hannah Weiand expressed as she talked about the Culina from the stage. “Be it just one translation project or be it this work in general, I want prayer to be part of my legacy. … We need to continue praying, because the work is not done. And at the same time we’re praying, we can rejoice because of all of the translations we have today.”

There were also stories from the Kandawo in Papua New Guinea, a relatively small language community who number around 5,000. In a video, the Kandawo expressed their joy at receiving the Scriptures in their own language through a skit. This skit depicted what it feels like to receive God’s Word in a language that is not your own and doesn’t speak to your heart. But then, the Kandawo exemplified, through the acting of the skit, what happened when they received the Bible in the language that spoke to their heart: joy, hope, thanksgiving and defeat over their spiritual enemy. It was a beautiful display of what God’s Word truly means to those who receive it in their language for the first time.

Amid worship songs, testimonials and beautiful photographs, the Scripture Celebration reminded everyone in attendance of the reason the lives and hearts of so many have been changed –– prayer. The event was rooted in prayer for language communities around the world –– both those who have already received the gospel in their own language, and especially those who haven’t.

Praise God for events like the Scripture Celebration that remind us to pause and take time to be thankful for how he continues to work in the lives of people around the world. May his glory shine over all the earth!

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“The Quechuas … did not only want half a Bible. They wanted the whole thing.”

When Rick and his wife Melanie moved to Peru in 1981 and started translating the Wanca Quechua New Testament, they couldn’t imagine that 25 years later, they would be celebrating its completion. After living in Peru for so long, Rick and Melanie then decided to move to California where he now teaches linguistics courses at Biola University. It would seem like the end of his translation story, right?

Not quite. In fact, Rick continues to work with the Quechua team via Skype on a translation of the Old Testament. And as time has passed, something amazing has begun to happen –– the team is growing! Today it includes students in Rick’s capstone course who are working with the Quechua team virtually to edit and translate text. The entire experience is powerful to watch unfold. “Students participating in this way, it’s the difference between reading a recipe and cooking and eating the banquet,” Rick said. Because of the project, some of Rick’s students have even taken time out of their schedules post-graduation and accompanied him to work with the translators in person — all the way in Peru!


For Rick and his team, the translation project is more than just a job. “There is a knowledge that comes to us as North American translators from afar that we might not have had, had we not had the interaction with the Quechuas,” he explained. One particular passage — the parable of the lost sheep — took Rick’s Quechua co-translator, Amador, by surprise.

“Nobody would just abandon all their sheep to search for the one that was lost,” Amador, said regarding the part where the shepherd had counted 99 sheep and noticed that one was missing. Amador explained that since sheep are the livelihood for his people, even his mother who is illiterate and cannot count would know if a sheep was missing from the flock.” Puzzled, Rick asked how this could be. Amador said that even though his mother cannot count, “she knows each and every sheep,” because she has an intimate knowledge of her flock.

The Quechua people taught Rick something new about God’s character through that famous parable. “Rather than being a numerical issue or a statistical issue with God [and the parable], it’s a relational issue,” Rick said. “[God] knows each and every one of us. … He knows us in ways that we can’t even imagine. But the Quechuas can.”

Rick was amazed by this newfound knowledge and view of God! “[We came] away with a perspective on the Scriptures and a perspective on [our] relationship with God that we did not expect.” And as he continues to work with the team, Rick is reminded that the work they do is important and life-changing, not just to those reading the finished translation, but to those translating too.

Story by Jennifer Stasak
Photo by Katie Kuykendall

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