This blog has photos and information about the Nyungwe Bible translation project in Tete, Mozambique.
Visiting Matambo with the team. Four churches gathered together to read through several chapters of newly translated Scripture. The readers each received a copy of Maliko to use themselves and to share in their communities.
Please pray that new printing projects will be possible. There is a hunger in remote communities to know more about God.
Thanks for praying for the safe and timely arrival of Mark. The dedication ceremony went well. Our local government, churches, and friends have expressed their encouragement in the translation work. These are good signs as our program progresses!
Sunday, the 1st of August, the translation team visited six local churches during their services. Each congregation received copies of Mark’s gospel in Nyungwe, copies of several previous printings from Luke, Titus and Jonah, to name a few.
Please be in prayer with the team as these visits to church services continue on Sunday mornings until they have managed to give out Scripture in the 27 churches who have faithfully followed translation progress over the years.
Other good news from Nyungwe churches in rural areas:
North of Tete City, 20 copies of Mark have been purchased by villagers near Moatize and the womens’ group is asking for more! These are being purchased by the same people who bought Luke. I think that means that they have seen that God’s Word is valuable!
South of Tete City, 50 copies have been requested by the Baptist Churches to use in Bible studies, church services, and preaching in several villages where they have planted churches.
Both of these areas are served by missionaries. We have seen that foreign missionaries are often more ready to value local language than the Mozambicans! Why? Maybe because the local people have such a low view of their own language and culture. They were told for many years that their own language was inferior to Portuguese.
When foreigners come, they need to use Nyungwe to help people really understand Christ’s message of love and salvation. This seems strange to people who feel they are worth less because they speak a minority language. BUT they are NOT worth LESS! Jesus died to save each of them, just as He died to save each of “us” foreigners. Praise God for showing us how to embrace diversity as much as equality!
The Nyungwe Translation Team thanks you for your prayers. God bless you for supporting this work among the Nyungwe people of Mozambique.
Coming soon to the Nyungwe churches in Tete, Mozambique! We have just heard that our printing of Mark’s Gospel in Nyungwe is complete. We will have 1000 copies soon delivered to us here in Tete. Please pray for the following short list:
transportation for the 1000 books to be smooth and reasonably priced
planning of an event to introduce the book of Mark to local leaders and churches
God’s preparation of the hearts of the people who will read this message for the first time
We will try to keep you updated on Maliko’s journey to the heart of Nyungwe people in Mozambique.
We appreciate your prayers and faithful support of this Bible translation project. Mark is coming, but also in the pipeline for printing are the Gospel of John, Ephesians, Genesis and Exodus. We are a bit behind on Genesis and Exodus, but still hope to have them ready for an end-of the year printing. To get them ready in time, we may not be able to draft Hebrews that was scheduled for this year.
One of the most difficult parts of translation programs is the balance between getting it done and getting it right. Looking over Genesis this month, the translators have found a lot that needed revising… the simple read-through proved that there was a lot of interference from a neighboring language (ciChewa). Genesis was done at the time of trying out a new adaptation method, but moving faster back then hasn’t paid-off in the end. Now… do we stop and rework Genesis or do we plug ahead with Exodus drafting having learned from the mistakes? In the meantime, what happens to Hebrews?
Please pray for the team as they grapple with these important decisions! Again, we count on the prayers of our faithful friends. Thanks for being one of them!
Just a note to explain our silence. Switching authors led to some technical difficulties, but I’m hoping this post will show that I’ve got it figured it out.
This week we are welcoming the Nyungwe translation coordinator and administrator back from Nampula. They have been away from Tete for a week at a training and information event especially for Mozambican language project leaders. I hope to be able to introduce you to the whole translation team later in the month.
Here in Tete, we are working on several projects to reach our goals for tranlslation, literacy, and getting the Word out to the local church. We are preparing the Gospel of Mark and Ephesians for printing this week! The team is working on Exodus the first half of this year. We are actively looking for a translation office that will give us visability here in the city. We are also pursuing active partnership with the Department of Education to support their Nyungwe Biblingual education initiative this year.
So, thank you for your faithful interest in Nyungwe Bible Translation! We ask for your continued prayers as we move ahead in this ministry to the people of Mozambique. It would be very encouraging to hear from you if you are praying for us. The team would love to know they are being remembered by brothers around the world!
I haven’t mentioned this recently but there is a lot to be thankful for about the Nyungwe Bible translation. Last month, Pastor Semo and the team traveled to Beira on the Mozambique coast to work with the Sena translation team and an International consultant. The goal was to approve the Gospel of John for publication. Unfortunately because of my emergency trip to the US I wasn’t able to meet with the translators to discuss John 13-21. The good news is that they still did get John 1-12 checked.
Here’s a quote from our Director’s wife Karen who was there in Beira during the session while her husband, Sebastian was checking (simultaneously!) Nyungwe and Sena:
“We are having a riot of a time … with the Nyungwe guys here in the AIM guest flat. They are so easy to have around, and are so passionate about the translation that they spend all evening round the computer doing the corrections of the day! Sebastian is very pleased with the translation, though.”
Isn’t that great news? Thanks to those of you who have prayed for and contributed financially to this translation. More than 250,000 people speak Nyungwe and the Bible not only for them but for all of Tete province where Nyungwe is a lingua franca.
While I won’t be doing translation full time when we get back to Mozambique in February I will still get to check the remaining chapters of John and also be overseeing publication and distribution plans not just for Nyungwe but for more than ten languages in Mozambique.
On the Sunday of our translation checking session for Mark and 1 Timothy we took a stroll down by the pine forest. Pictured from left to right are David, Hessel, Bata, Bernardino and Semo.