A Couple of Firsts for Bible Translation

Mission Network News has some great news to share. One of Wycliff’s translators just finished a translation of the New Testament in the language of the Kagayenen language.

This is notable because this marks the first time:

An African-American woman has completed a New Testament translation.

An African-American has completed a NT translation with Wycliffe Bible Translators.

An African-American has completed a NT translation since the early 1900s.

But most notably this is also the first time the Kagayenen people can read about Jesus in their own language. Just imagine how much this priviledge has meant to you. Imagine not having the bible, and the joy of not only getting to read about it, but read abut it in your native tongue.

Here’s more from the article:

Huggins said that translation required her to adapt in a few ways. “In the early days, there was no electricity on the island where I lived, so you want to use all the light from the sun that you can. So you get up really early and do your devotions, and your shower, and your eating. And everything is in the dark so that when that sun comes up, you’re ready to jump in and work.”

She also learned how to ask the right questions of Kagayanen speakers who feel that they are being tested or insulted when asked a question. The bulk of the work is asking Kagayanen speakers the meanings of certain words. Some words have no meaning, or zero meaning.

Huggins estimates that there are 35,000-40,000 Kagayanen speakers. Having the New Testament will bring the Bible to life for them. A recently-dubbed film on the Gospel according to Luke will also help. Huggins said, “That’s going to help people get into the Bible even more when they see the stories that they’re familiar with. Or maybe they didn’t know that much about it, but now they’re going to get the whole story and then be able to say, ‘Now this is found in this particular place in the Kagayanan New Testament which you now have.'”

“You want it to affect people’s lives as the Scripture has affected my life. I want to be able to say that other people will be affected the same way when they read God’s Word, the Truth, that it will transform their lives. That’s a really heavy responsibility.”

The Kagayanen language is spoken in the Western Visayas of the Philippines.

Comments are closed.