“The language you speak to your children and the language you speak to your parents should also be the language you speak to God—and it should be the language in which God can speak to you through His Word, the Bible.” Chris and Janine Pluger strongly believed this when they first began missionary service with Lutheran Bible Translators (LBT) in 2010. They still believe it today as they prepare to resume missionary service after a five-year hiatus.
The Plugers always had a love for languages. Chris taught high school Spanish and Latin for a number of years while Janine studied Sign Language Interpreting. They felt called to serve in translation ministry when they learned that millions of people do not have Scripture in a language they understand.
Ten years ago, Chris and Janine—along with young son Sean—began their first assignment with the Nsenga New Testament translation team in Zambia, a country located in south-central Africa. After the Nsenga New Testament was dedicated in 2016, Chris received a call to teach at a South Dakota high school and the family returned to the U.S.
“Now,” Chris says, “it’s time to get back into the Bible translation world, where my education and interests are leading me.”
The (EECMY), the largest church in Ethiopia, strongly promotes Bible translation into local languages. Their new LBT assignment will take Chris and Janine to Addis Ababa, the capitol of Ethiopia. Chris will serve in the translation division of the EECMY, which oversees 20 Bible translation projects throughout the country. He will also teach students at the Mekane Yesus Seminary.
The Plugers will begin their assignment to Ethiopia next year. Over the coming months they will share about their ministry, make preparations for a move overseas, and concentrate on learning Amharic, the national language of Ethiopia. They’ll also provide support for their son Sean, now a first-year college student.
There is no mission like Bible translation. Eliminating Bible poverty is the foundation for God’s mission into the world. Lutheran Bible Translators puts God’s Word in their hands, and you can help. Find out more here. If you have a love for languages, click here to learn more about missionary opportunities.