In these pictures, our Roma Bible translators are doing what we call “field testing” or “community checking”. This is when they meet with other speakers of their Roma languages and ask for feedback from them on the translation so we can make sure that what we have translated clearly communicates to them.
Sometimes this is done over video chat, but it is more often done in person while sitting at the kitchen table or in the office with them as they read or listen to the translation and the translators ask them comprehension questions.
This, along with checks which we do by Zoom with our consultants in the States, is a key aspect as we get closer to the goal of completing the Gospel of Luke. Please pray for all of us that we can soon finish Luke, not only testing and checking it, but also printing and making audio recordings of it. The goal is to finish Luke in four languages (Arli, Chergash, Gurbet and Bayash) in February, and the fifth language (Ludari) by August 2021.
Please pray for the the translators: unfortunately two of them have COVID and are very sick, a third has kidney failure, and a fourth is battling liver issues. Please pray for their full health and recovery.
Kirsten has almost completed all her driving practice hours so she can take her test soon. She’s taking classes at Calvary University and also working at Target.
Thank you for your prayers and kind financial support!
Unfortunately, two of our translators and their family have tested positive for COVID-19 and are in quarantine at home. Please pray for quick healing for them, and for the other people they were around recently when testing the translation of Luke to not contract COVID. Thank you for praying!
Please pray for two of our translators and their family. They are sick now and it appears that they have COVID symptoms. Pray also for the other Roma they were with recently when they were doing field testing in Serbia. Pray for health, healing, and safety for all of them.
We love working on the translation of the Scriptures into the various Roma languages. At the end of the day, however, if the average Roma does not understand what it says, then we have missed our goal. That is why it is so important to do what we call “field testing” or “community checking”. This means that the translators sit down with other speakers of their language who have not seen the translation before and don’t know what we think it says. We have them read or listen to the translation and ask them questions to make sure that they have understood it correctly. Thankfully, our field testing has gone really well and we are finding that other Roma understand it well when they hear it.
COVID has presented challenges in this area as it often requires the translators to travel to new locations to test the translation. This weekend, Djena (pictured above, far right, testing Luke chapters 1-3 and 8 in Chergash) was allowed to cross the border into Serbia to do testing, but his wife, Biljana, the main translator, was not allowed to. She had to stay back in Croatia, but she was able to be online on Messenger with Djena and the testers as they worked all day testing Luke chapters 1-3 and 8. (We had tested chapters 4-7 last year.)
Please pray for Biljana and Djena and the testers, that we will get clear and accurate feedback, and that we can make any changes needed to make sure that our translation of Luke is understandable. Specifically, please pray as they work on the rest of Luke (chapters 9-24) this weekend and next weekend, that we can finish it for our deadline.
Thank you for being there to pray for us and the Roma!
1 Incline your ear, O LORD, and answer me, for I am poor and needy. 2 Preserve my life, for I am godly; save your servant, who trusts in you– you are my God. 3 Be gracious to me, O Lord, for to you do I cry all the day. 4 Gladden the soul of your servant, for to you, O Lord, do I lift up my soul. (Ps. 86:1-4 ESV)
Daily Prayer Calendar for October 2020
To download this prayer list formatted as a calendar for printing, click below:
In August, we gathered in the Dallas, Texas, area for a family reunion with Pam’s mom, three sisters and many of their children. We were able to visit Pam’s dad, Mal, at the nursing home where he lives, and talk to and sing with him through the window over the telephone. Our kids got to hang out with their cousins and we made lots of memories at the hotel, swimming, getting coffee and tea, catching up with each other and laughing a lot.
We’ve also visited Todd’s family in Oklahoma City. It has been special to spend time with Todd’s parents, especially now that their health is declining. A highlight has been seeing their joy when we sing hymns together with them.
We have begun speaking at churches, and so far have spoken in Iowa, Kansas and Oklahoma. We would be glad to speak to your church or small group to share with them about Bible translation among the Roma. We would love to see you if you can make it to any of the upcoming meetings:
10/11 at Graham Union Church, Graham, Iowa;
10/18 at The Road Church, Blue Springs, Missouri;
10/25 at Newburg Chester Church, Grinnell, Iowa;
& 11/1 at Zion Church, Freeport, Illinois.
We have recently been editing the translations of Luke 16-17 in the Arli, Chergash and Gurbet languages, Luke 18-21 in the Bayash language, and Luke 4-6 in the Ludari language, via Zoom meetings. We’re thankful for software and the Internet that make all this Bible translation work possible. Thank you for your prayers and kind financial support!
My (Todd’s) mom (pictured above) and dad both have pretty severe dementia and are no longer able to completely take care of themselves. They are living in their own house in Oklahoma City, and my sister, Tracey, and I are helping them out at this time. It is clear to us that God’s timing has been perfect in that we came back to the States to help Matthew after his accident, but it is providential that we can be Stateside to help my parents at this crucial time in their lives.
My sister, Tracey, just finished nursing schooling (the timing, again, is perfect), so she and a fellow nurse are helping take care of our parents, and we are thankful for hired house helpers and other nursing care. This week, we are in Oklahoma City to help get work done on their house. We’re glad we can be just a day’s drive away in Kansas City so we can come down as needed, and also that I can handle finances for them online from our home.
Thank you for praying for Matthew. His nerve transfer surgery results will only be seen gradually over the next six months to two years. He is getting good help from a hand therapist in Kansas City, and he’s able to drive himself. He is developing his portfolio and looking for work in UX (user experience) for apps and web pages. Please pray for him to find a job soon. Please also pray for our insurance to approve the costs of getting a prosthetic arm for him very soon.
Kirsten started classes at Calvary University in Kansas City. These early college classes will count for her junior year of high school and college credit, so it is a great time and money saver. She has her driver’s permit, and I’m teaching her to drive. The state of Missouri requires 40 hours of driving practice before taking the test for her license.
Daniel and Ariela are in a new home school co-op this year in Kansas City. We are excited they can be in this with their cousins and also with new friends they have made.
In the Ludari language, I am currently editing the Roma translators’ rough drafts of Luke chapters 6 and 7. We now have a second Bible translation consultant who has joined our project, and he is looking over their second drafts of Luke chapters 17-24. This second consultant is an answer to your prayers for more workers for the translations. Also, I am checking the translators’ drafts of Matthew chapter 1 and 2 in all five of the languages: Arli, Bayash, Chergash, Gurbet, and Ludari. Please pray for the Roma translators working from their homes in Croatia and Serbia, me working from home in Kansas City, and the two consultants checking their work from Dallas and Boston.
This picture is of Goran, at his office in Serbia, working on the Bible translation into the Gurbet language.
This month we begin speaking at our supporting churches, where we will give an update on our mission work and progress on the Bible translations, and I will be preaching. We will speak at Sully Community Church (Sully, IA) 9/12-13, Master’s Community Church (KC, KS) 9/20, and Metropolitan Bible Church (OKC, OK) 9/27. If you live nearby, we’d love to have you join us!
Thank you for your faithful prayers for us as a family and our co-workers doing Bible translation into the Roma languages.