Press Release: May 14, 2024

Partnering with the Church

“A completed translation is something to celebrate, but it’s not the ending. And that’s what’s great about partnering with the church. It’s not the ending. The church can continue to use Scripture for the life of the church and for their discipleship ministry,” Regional Director Sarah Esala is passionate about connecting Bible translation projects with local churches. “The churches are not just thinking, “How do we get a language translated for this group of people?’ but, ‘How can we use this Scripture to help our people? How can we shepherd them with the Word?’” 

In many of the countries where Sarah oversees translation projects, the church is a beacon of hope in the community. Deep needs which often go unnoticed by government aid are being seen and met by the church. “It’s amazing,” Sarah shares about the well-organized systems for mercy ministries, women’s ministries, and beyond. “So really tying into that with our work and walking with them on how Scripture Engagement and Bible translation can connect to those already existing ministries just means God’s Word can go further faster.” Sarah named this intentional partnership the Translating Church. 

Keeping translation and church ministry tied together just makes sense. A translated Bible could just sit on a shelf collecting dust without the local church teaching members how to engage with Scripture, and without an accurate translation, the local church may struggle to protect their people against false teachers. 

Accurate Scripture is a big concern for the Zaka circuit of Papua New Guinea. “They want their people to be discipled well, and to grow in the word. There’s a lot of concern about ‘street preachers’ and people who come in with heresy.” The Translating Church in the Zaka circuit will be able to share God’s Word to bring life, hope, and transformation, through existing ministries and relationships during the translation process and beyond. 

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