Life in Translation - a memoir - Bruce Smith's journey through missions

Posted by religion world Monday, November 25, 2013 0 comments


Wycliffe Associates President Bruce Smith Publishes Memoir about Decades of Work in Global Ministry


(Orlando, Florida, USA)—Bruce Smith, president and CEO Wycliffe Associates, an international organization that involves people in the acceleration of Bible translation efforts, has published his memoir, Living Translation: My Life (Xulon Press, October 2013).

His first book, Living Translation spans Smith’s 30 years of service in international ministry, which began with a providential missions trip to Guatemala as a teen, led to years of service overseas as a missionary pilot, and ultimately brought him to lead the Orlando-based Wycliffe Associates.

Originally planning to major in engineering at LeTourneau College (now LeTourneau University) in Longview, Texas, Smith recalls how the missions trip to Guatemala changed his life—and his career plans. Arriving at LeTourneau with his experiences in Guatemala still fresh on his mind, Smith realized the proposed class schedule with an engineering focus wasn’t right for him. He subsequently changed his major to mission aviation (even though his only flight experience at the time was as that of an airline passenger to and from Guatemala).

The 152-page book traces Smith’s steps from his childhood in an Illinois suburb and his marriage to his high school sweetheart, Jan, to his present-day leadership of the 46-year-old Wycliffe Associates. With candor Smith revisits the obstacles, spiritual lessons, and unforgettable people along the way who helped shape his leadership skills and ministry and sharpened his focus on worldwide Bible translation.

Commenting on the book, Don Richardson, veteran missionary and author of the acclaimed Peace Child, said, “The skill Bruce Smith applies as a precedent-setting Christian leader is part of what helps Wycliffe Associates reach the hard-won goals described in this remarkable book. Seeing how a man of God keeps executive prowess tethered to a God-given vision inspires us even more.”

Bible translator and author Neil Anderson said, “[Living Translation] opens a window to a story of God’s leading and faithfulness to a humble and transparent man, deeply committed to Christ and his family. Bruce has been given the gift of challenging God’s people to reach beyond their comfort zones into greater possibilities and make their lives count for eternity.”

Living Translation: My Life is available from in hardcover, paperback, and Kindle editions. Smith’s blog, “Language of the Heart,” can be found at

Wycliffe Associates involves people in accelerating the work of Bible translation through their time, talents, and treasure. Because millions of people around the world are still waiting to read the Scriptures in the language of their heart, Wycliffe Associates is working as quickly as they can to translate every verse of the Bible into every tongue to change every heart. The organization partners with nationals, mother tongue translators, staff, volunteers, and supporters to direct and fund these efforts, as well as provide logistics, networking, and technical support. Through a growing global network, Wycliffe Associates is striving to overcome local limitations of time and resources to achieve the goal of beginning the translation of God’s Word in every remaining language that needs it by 2025.

Last year, the organization mobilized 3,103 volunteers and staff members to accelerate Bible translation in 73 countries. Additional information is available at or by calling 1-800-THE WORD (1-800-843-9673).

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Bible Translators Trade in Notepads for Laptops

Posted by religion world Friday, November 22, 2013 0 comments


Bible Translators Trade in Notepads for Laptops

Technology accelerates translation efforts in Madagascar, where translators labor in a field of souls.

On the surface it seems a bit overwhelming. The majority of the population of 22 million people on the island nation of Madagascar—a veritable field of souls—still need God’s Word in their heart language. But technology is about to turn things upside down. Because the Internet and technical support is seriously underdeveloped there, much of the Bible translation work to date has been done by hand.

Wycliffe Associates volunteers are installing “BTAK’s”, or Bible Translation Acceleration Kit that includes a satellite hook-up, laptop, solar power station and usually linguistic software for the Bible translators in the field. Bible translators can work in “real time” with linguistic scientists stationed in the U.S. as they live in remote and harsh environments that don’t include communication infrastructures we take for granted in the U.S.

Currently, 10 translation projects are underway, with several more still waiting to get started. Translators are working away on the books of Colossians, Matthew, Luke, John, and Acts. And the new technology, which you helped make possible, is greatly impacting their efforts for the benefit of the millions of people still waiting to receive the Scriptures.


Donn Hallman



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