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Russian Federation [2015-04-21]
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.
Praise God for the wisdom of workers who have provided some Scriptures in diglot (two languages) on their website. This has proven to be a helpful resource for pastors who wish to learn the local vernacular. Pray that their language learning enable them to reach local people with the gospel. Pray that their efforts in evangelism bear a lot of fruit.
The Romblomanon translation team in the Philippines hopes to finish revising the New Testament this year. Pray that they can proceed without hindrance. One team member, Pauline, recruits prayer partners to fast weekly and intercede until the New Testament is completed and launched. Ask God to protect review committee members and grant them good health and unity in the Spirit. Pray that an audio recording of the New Testament will be produced in time for distribution alongside the printed edition. Some older Romblomanon speakers will benefit more from the audio edition than the printed one. Give praise that the new Romblomanon website has links to Scripture portions. (Adapted from the Wycliffe USA Finish Line)
Aramaic speakers have had the Bible for centuries. Unfortunately, languages do not stay the same through the passage of time. One woman phoned the translation team and said she had the old translation but could not read it. She found some of the newly translated Scriptures on the Internet and wanted to purchase Bibles for herself and her friends. Thank the Lord that Aramaic speakers have a hunger for his Word. Pray for personnel needed to upload the Bible into the Aramaic website. This year Proverbs 1–23 will be consultant checked, and 1–2 Kings will undergo back translation. Pray that the team will remain focused and able to overcome the challenges ahead. Seed Company - (Adapted from the Wycliffe USA Finish Line)
El Salvador [2015-03-25]
LESSA* is the language of the Deaf in El Salvador. In March, a special event celebrated the publication of the second DVD of Bible Stories from the Life of Jesus, with the Deaf community. Another celebration is planned in two or three months with leaders and members of the Salvadoran Church. Pray for more Deaf people to find out about the translation project and use the Word in video. Ten more Bible stories are in the translation process and are being consultant checked. Pray that more church leaders and members will commit to supporting this Bible translation initiative.
Pray for those recording the Bible story sets for two languages in South Asia. These will be made available using audio players for story fellowship groups in various villages. Pray for strong voices and no technical problems with the recording. Pray that all the staff stay healthy for the sessions. Ask for wisdom for those who distribute the stories on audio players and mobile phone apps. Pray that the listeners respond to the Scriptures with faith and obedience.
Praise God for a new radio program starting up in a remote province in Southeast Asia. Everything is in place except for the funding; pray that this will come through soon. Pray for those recording Scripture and preparing radio program material. Pray that they will have strong voices and wisdom about what to share. And pray for the listeners, that they will respond to the Scriptures and messages with faith and obedience.
Ask God to help those organizing the celebration to launch the Bandial New Testament planned for May 16. Pray for good communication between the translators in the community, the linguist and exegete in France, and the Scripture use promoters in Dakar, Senegal. Pray for God’s Word to bring many Bandial people, population 11,200, into his kingdom. The New Testament was typeset last summer and sent to South Korea for printing. Pray for God’s blessing on the many details of the plan to record an audio version of the New Testament in partnership with Faith Comes by Hearing.
Intercede for the Baki and Lewo translation teams in Vanuatu as they complete final revisions in these two New Testaments. Pray that they find any sections needing improvement before submitting the Scriptures for typesetting in April. Pray for the typesetters who make decisions about formatting, font size and type, placement of maps and pictures, and footnotes. Pray for clear, strong voices for those recording audio versions, and that computers and recording equipment will function well. Ask the Holy Spirit to work in hearts and lives. Pray for successful strategies to engage individuals, churches and whole communities in using the Scriptures.
Give praise that the complete edition of the Mayo-Spanish New Testament will be available mid-2015. Mayo speakers in the towns of Sonora and Sinaloa, Mexico received the initial print-on-demand copies of the New Testament in March 2014. Mayo pastors along with representatives from local Bible institutes and several church organizations attended the joyful celebrations. Some listening groups received Audio Proclaimers.* Pray that many Mayo people, population 40,000, will read, hear and be transformed by God’s Word.
More than half of the Central Mnong (Bunong) New Testament is in print and people have purchased over 1,000 Scripture portions. Some literacy classes have grown into Bible study groups. For the first time, Bunong speakers created songs of praise in their traditional music style. Pray that the translation team will persevere with joy and wisdom to finish drafting and checking the remainder of the New Testament. Working in two different scripts, their next step is typesetting. Last year, people were excited to obtain the Gospel of Luke in audio form on MP3 players. Pray that the Holy Spirit will transform the Bunong people, population 27,000, as they listen to and read the Scriptures.
The Eurasia Media & Distribution Consultation will be held in the Netherlands, April 13-16. Around 400 people from 135 organizations will participate. Pray for the Lord's blessing and favor for 40 participants needing visas to travel to the Netherlands. Pray for safe travel. Ask God to speak to and encourage the participants and that this event and those leading it will glorify God. Pray that all attending will put their new knowledge into action after they return home.
Papua New Guinea [2015-03-13]
Thank God for the Scripture recording teams working in Papua New Guinea. Pray for two groups that will be doing recording in late April. The dialogue track of the JESUS film will be recorded in the Mapos Buang language in Lae. And Scripture will be recorded in the Pouye language in Ukarumpa. Pray for good health, strong voices and no equipment problems for these recordings.
Papua New Guinea [2015-03-13]
The Mandara Old Testament translation team has lacked leadership since the previous chairman passed away in 2013. Pray for unity and strength to move the work forward. Pray for the plans to record the Mandara New Testament. Ask God for the right timing and good readers to come forward for this. Pray that the Mandara people will actively use the Mandara New Testament in their churches and homes.
Papua New Guinea [2015-03-12]
Praise God that when members of the Finongan translation team visited the Gusan language community, they had good conversations with Gusan people about how their language could be included in the West Erap Languages translation programme. The Gusan immediately started to develop a language-wide alphabet and began writing vernacular stories. Pray for this community to maintain their enthusiasm as they get further involved and choose a translation team.
A project team has released a video in the project language that has so far been well received. Some of the feedback they have received includes: a middle-aged woman from a related dialect area watching it and giving positive feedback, then recommending it to her son (a university student), and then getting a copy for two monks from the language area who were staying in her guesthouse. A group of university students were shown the video at Christmas time and this led to further discussion about faith matters. Most of these students are now connected to believers through an English Corner ministry.
Papua New Guinea [2015-02-16]
On 18 January the first of eight installments of the audio version of the Ura Gospel of Luke was broadcast on Radio East New Britain. This began with enthusiasm, not only by the Ura people that heard it, but with the staff at Radio East New Britain as well. Please pray that the broadcasting signal strength will be good through March and that people in the more remote areas will be able to hear it. Pray also that doors might be opened up for future broadcasts in vernaculars with Radio East New Britain.
"Soon the Deaf in Japan will get to hear for the first time how God reveals his name to Moses." That's what one pastor exclaimed, serving as a reminder of what is happening now. Thank you for praying.
The Japanese Sign Language (JSL) project team (ViBi) has now accomplished the following for the translation of Exodus 28-40:
- The translation was done and checked for accuracy after three drafts.The community comprehension check was completed and corrections were made after another three drafts.
- A cueing video created.
- The studio was made ready.
- Recording was done. (It took 226 takes* for these 451 verses--over three takes per Scripture portion)
- The accuracy check of the recordings was finished.
- Six necessary retakes are done and checked.
The team is now entering the post production phase. All of the good takes will be edited together, verse references will be added, and the DVD master copy will be made. At that point, Exodus will be added to the JSL Bible app (free on iphone and Android) and the DVD can be published. The JSL Bible translation of Exodus will be available on DVD, YouTube and the JSL Bible app. Please pray for accurate work, and strength for the two primary team members who carry most of the responsibility for this component. Give praise that the Japanese Deaf people will soon have the story of Exodus.**
*A "take" is a scene filmed at one time without stopping the camera.
**More information about the various services provided by the SIL Global Sign Languages Team can be found on the SIL International website.
Central African Republic [2015-01-17]
When war in the Central African Republic broke out at the end of 2012, local people suffered all kinds of violence and difficulties. Expatriate team members were forced to leave the country and so it became difficult to continue showing the JESUS film in Gbaya. Thank God for the 200 Secure Digital cards now available with the JESUS film and the New Testament in Gbaya pre-recorded on them, which people can access using their mobile phones. Pray that the SD cards may be distributed safely and that a growing number of Gbaya speakers will joyfully receive the message of God’s love for them.
In Belize, a series of 67 radio program segments using the entire Kriol audio New Testament has been launched. One station manager plays the Kriol Scriptures twice a day on his radio station. He said that when he first heard the Scriptures in his language, he felt emotional because of bad experiences with Kriol in his youth. As he continued to listen, he said, “Something happened inside me…it had a redeeming effect on the language for me.” Pray for those listening to the radio programs and for those who are hearing the Kriol Scriptures on 50 Proclaimers* that were distributed by Faith Comes by Hearing.
Please pray for continued safety for those living in a West Asian country that has seen a recent increase in fighting among factions. Things are more settled in the area, and the teams who left have returned. The continued underlying level of stress they live under is a concern. However the current situation is focusing the local people on spiritual things. A new Jesus Film in one of the local languages is getting a lot of interest. Pray that many will find hope in Jesus as a result of seeing the film.
“God, the Word, came to this earth. How much pain He suffered, loving us! Brothers, sisters, if you want freedom from sin, then place your trust in Him. You will inherit eternal life.” The singer broke down in tears and could not continue. For the first time she was hearing the truth about Jesus.
Over ten million speakers of this language group live in Bangladesh. They have no Bible in their language. Their only access is through Scripture songs and dramas developed by local believers working with non-Christian artists. These are broadcast by a local radio station and distributed in CDs, VCDs, and mobile phone format. Pray that God’s Word would be communicated with integrity and relevance. Ask God to empower area churches to be proactive in using these tools to disciple people.
Praise God that one man is willing to participate in the audio recording of the Epistles in his language in Africa. His voice will supplement the contributions of the skilled female recorder. Please pray that other capable men from this language community will have the courage to offer to be involved in recording the New Testament. Pray for a secure in-country studio to be found where the recordings can take place.
Central African Republic [2014-11-28]
When war in the Central African Republic forced expat team members to leave the country at the end of 2012, with local people suffering all kinds of violence and difficulties since then, it also became harder to continue showing the ‘Jesus’ film in Gbaya. Thank God for the 200 SD cards now available with the ‘Jesus’ film and the New Testament in Gbaya pre-recorded on them, which people can access using their mobile phones. Pray that these may be distributed safely in the Gbaya area and that many people will be touched by the message of God’s love through them.
Pray for Toto, Rose, and Nante as they work in Manila, Philippines to record a dramatized Filipino/Tagalog New Testament so that people throughout the Philippines and abroad can listen to the Bible in their own national language on their phones, or other devices.
The Paraguayan Sign Language (LSPy) team exceeded their goal to translate 10 Bible stories in 2014. They completed 18 stories, which are already being used in the Deaf churches each Sunday. A number of hearing churches are also eager to start ministries for the Deaf using the Bible stories. The team is taking advantage of the Internet to test the stories with individuals or groups that have had no previous exposure to them. The team uploaded all 18 stories to YouTube.* Pray that the Paraguayan Deaf will receive these stories with joy.
United Republic of Tanzania, Uganda [2014-11-06]
Praise God for opportunities to use digital and non-print media to promote Ugandan and Tanzanian languages and to bring the Good News to communities in their own language and in accessible media. Pray for ongoing work in producing the "JESUS film" in a number of languages in Uganda and Tanzania. Pray too that the 14 local language websites produced in the past year will attract a lot of interest from speakers of those languages and that good progress will be made for additional language websites under construction.
Papua New Guinea [2014-10-30]
Pray for Ipili-speaking Pastor Mandita as he continues revising Genesis and translating Exodus. Ipili is spoken by about 26,000 people. Pray that the Porgera Joint Venture will fund the Ipili Bible Committee's request to purchase laptop computers and a projector to show the JESUS Film and to do further translation.
Praise God for three dedicated men from the Chakma, Usoi Tripura and Bawm language communities who are gaining a vision for Scripture Engagement through an internship program this year. This internship provided exposure to the need for Scripture Engagement through teaching and practical experience in various domains including Bible translation, Oral Bible storying, Scripture Use, media and ethnoarts. Pray that the interns develop their skills through the implementation phase of the internship by teaching a short seminar in their language community. Pray that the trainers provide appropriate assistance. Ask God to develop a vision for Scripture Engagement in the seminar participants.
Russian Federation [2014-10-09]
The Vostok project is taking God’s Word to several small, remote language communities in far east Siberia through oral Bible storying. These efforts are taking place over three summers when the weather is best for traveling. Praise God for the encouraging results the four teams had in August when they made contact with the Udihe, Ulch, Nanai, Nivkh, and Koryak language communities. Pray that during the next two summers the teams will be able to return to work together with the people in the communities to translate and record about 30 Bible stories for each community.
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