The Themne New Testament has been available for a number of years. Because of low literacy rates, many people showed limited interest in Scripture.
Lutheran Bible Translators’ missionaries who have served as translation and Scripture engagement advisors among the Themne say, “We have seen firsthand the impact of literacy in language communities in Sierra Leone. We want to see the Bible in Themne, but it won’t have a powerful effect without people reading and preaching from it.”
The preliminary introduction of a literacy program in some Themne churches has made a definite impact. Seeing others successfully learn to read and write led to an increased interest in learning among the Themne community and a desire to read the Bible in their own language.
In conjunction with The Institute for Sierra Leonean Languages (TISLL), the Themne literacy committee will expand the number of classes and availability of Scripture materials. This will increase readership in the church, helping people to better interact with and understand the Bible. Lay preachers will be able to use the Themne New Testament. People will place higher value on Themne Scripture materials. People will come to faith.
Develop and print teaching and learning materials to expand literacy programs.
Train group leaders to properly handle the various literacy and Scripture Engagement groups.
Churches are incorporating literacy programs in their church activities.
An increasing number of Themne people are interacting with God’s Word.
Pray for those planning, implementing and supervising new and existing literacy classes.
Pray that more churches will use Themne Scripture during worship.
Pray that more Themne speakers will participate in and support the literacy program.
The Themne people are discovering the joy of having Scripture in their language. Increased literacy leads to greater understanding of God’s Word and more people coming to faith.
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