Please pray for people living in countries where the Word of God is not appreciated. One pastor faced court charges and fines for distributing Bibles. Others have been held, questioned, and asked to sign papers recanting their faith. Pray that God will strengthen and encourage these brothers and sisters and that they will stand firm in their faith.
Zhanna, a Chukchi mother-tongue translator, drafted 25 Bible stories to be recorded and helped test them with members of the Chukchi language community. Pray for wisdom for the consultant who is reviewing the text. She will provide feedback, suggest changes and point out translation issues to investigate. Pray that the final recorded stories will be accurate and clear. Pray for good health and availability for Zhanna and the other Chukchi people involved in the project, so that they can see it through to the end. Pray the recorded stories will be well received and introduce the Chukchi to the God who loves them.
Local translators and their families at times experience persecution and harassment. A member of a team in Asia recently reported that his 11-year-old son came home with a bloodied face. He was playing with other children near a place of worship, when some men came and accused him, shouting insults, because of his family’s faith. “They beat him and he came running home, crying.” Pray that this family will be protected and will continue to trust the Lord. Pray they will forgive those who persecute them. Pray for the persecutors, that God’s Word will have an impact on them and they will come to know Christ.
Language survey* is taking place among several remote, mountainous language communities in a volatile region of Central Asia. No information about these groups has been obtained from their homelands for decades. Neither language development nor Bible translation has been done for any of them. Praise God one of the groups has expressed interest in translating Scripture stories into their language. Please ask the Lord to bring this to fulfillment and to use His Word to draw many of them into relationship with Him.
A mother-tongue translator is studying theology in Europe to prepare to become a fully-qualified translation consultant.* Pray for his spiritual encouragement and strength. Some people close to him oppose what he is doing. He is assisting three language communities where outside access is limited and believers face violent opposition. Pray for safety during his frequent travels, for his family left at home and the funding needed for his work. Please pray that additional capable mother-tongue translators will be trained as consultants.
*Consultant: An advisor with special skills and training who discusses the translation verse-by-verse with the translators, shares how problem passages have been handled by others, and advises on general aspects of the text.
As translation work progresses, life events happen that require extra adjustments and grace. Recently one large team that relates through the Internet experienced joy as one team member married, and sadness as a couple had a still-born baby. Please pray for people on this team to support and encourage each other in the midst of these life events. Pray for comfort and healing for the grieving couple and good adjustment to married life for the newlyweds.
Praise God for the faithful believers sharing Bible stories in their own language communities. One storyteller recounted how the story of Paul and Silas strengthened a village believer who was persecuted by his neighbors and told to leave his village. In another village, a story about persecution of the apostles encouraged women in a small house fellowship. They planned together ways to handle persecution in their village the next time it happens. Pray for these believers living in difficult places. Also, pray for the storytellers as they introduce new stories in their villages.