One way we are protecting Bible Translators from the chaos of political and sectarian conflicts is by giving them communication tools not controlled by governments.
Wycliffe Associates to Support National Bible Translators in Volatile Regions of the World
(Orlando, Florida, USA)—Wycliffe Associates, an international organization that involves people in the acceleration of Bible translation, announces that it will begin assisting Bible translators in a region of the world that can’t be identified due to credible dangers for Christians there.
“God has led us to the most difficult, most dangerous place in the world for Bible translation,” said Wycliffe Associates president and CEO Bruce Smith. “For the safety of believers there, I cannot name the specific countries. It is a new frontier for the gospel, and the persecuted believers of this region need us.”
The organization will support local, mother-tongue translators with administrative, financial, and technical support, which includes providing translators with Bible Translation Acceleration Kits. Each kit consists of a small, portable netbook computer, satellite communication terminal, solar panel, battery, and power supply. This technology makes it possible for Bible translators in remote locations to communicate through satellite connections with translation consultants at distant locations in real time, enabling valuable collaboration with other translators and reducing or eliminating the need for dangerous travel.
Wycliffe Associates also plans to support training for Christians there in Bible translation, evangelism, discipleship, and church planting.
One local translator has been arrested numerous times, beaten, and imprisoned for his faith. A former militant who once targeted Christians for arrest, torture, and imprisonment, this translator converted to Christianity and became a target himself, along with his family. He began working closely, in secret, with Bible translators in the region to help translate the Scriptures into his language.
There are currently 52 language projects in this region that Wycliffe Associates intends to support with new technologies and resources. The organization is currently seeking to raise $165,000 this year to fund those efforts.
“God is opening hearts in such miraculous ways among people who have been previously closed to the gospel,” says Smith. “We simply can’t afford not to respond.
In 2009, Wycliffe Associates launched a new project called Scriptures for New Frontiers to support Bible translators and missionaries who are putting their lives at risk to work in extremely volatile regions of the world, where an estimated 1,000 languages, representing 280 million people, are without the Scriptures. Support provided through Scriptures for New Frontiers includes training for national translators, the expansion of housing for translators, their families, and translation team members, the provision of schoolteachers to work within local cultures, and emergency funds for missionaries who are being targeted by militant groups.
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 3,145 volunteers and staff members to accelerate Bible translation in 71 countries. Additional information is available at www.wycliffeassociates.org or by calling 1-800-THE WORD (1-800-843-9673).
# # #