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We believe that the good news of God is meant to impact those closest to us and those furthest away. We are pleased to partner with the following missionaries regionally and globally to make disciples of all nations.

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Jesse and Sarah Dempsen, Adelaide, Amelia, Rosemary

Swan Vocational Enterprises

White Swan, WA on Yakima Reservation



Lee and Shanon Higdon

Wycliffe Bible Translators

Entebbe, Uganda   



Imus2022 (2)Mike and Suzanne Imus 

Village Missions   

French Gulch, CA



Tanner Jordan

Youth Hope

Moline, IL


Danny and Amber Mason, Megan, James, Samuel, Benjamin

Village Missions

Pacific City, OR


Rich and Joyce Mattocks

Tyndale Bible Translators

Papua New Guinea



Greg and Susan Petrie 

Village Missions     

Spokane, WA


John and Vicki Wright , Aiden, Noah, Keziah

YWAM

Arua, Uganda


Steve and Anna Stager, David, Josiah, Kiley, Eliana

Novo

Whitefish, Montana

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Mission Update from South Sudan

History was made early this month of May 2022 for the Lokoya tribe of South Sudan. None of them know it, yet, except for one young man named Ambrose Ladu.

Quiet and clever, Ambrose has been serving in Youth With A Mission (YWAM) for six years. The last two weeks of April, Ambrose and his colleague Lokuta Eluzai (also a South Sudanese but not from the Lokoya tribe) worked with Youngshin Kim from South Korea who is heading up the Oral Bible Translation (OBT) movement in YWAM. On the 4th of May 2022, for the first time ever, the team recorded a passage of Scripture in Lokoya language, Ambrose’s mother tongue.

Ambrose told the story from Mark 1:29-34 in which Jesus heals Simon’s mother-in-law, and then heals many others from the village and casts out demons. It took three days to get the wording of those 5 verses internalized to the point where Ambrose could tell the story naturally and accurately. Finally, surrounded by couch cushions to block the noise, they successfully recorded the story.

{David Joshua (Phillipines), Meleah (USA), & Youngshin (S. Korea) create makeshift recording studio for Ambrose (South Sudan)}

A few days later, Ambrose and Lokuta traveled to where the Lokoya people live in Magwi county where they will serve as missionaries for the next two years, planting churches, discipling believers, and recording more of God’s word into the mother tongue. They will play the recordings for the community check and verification process, and work with international language consultants each step of the way.

I was there in Juba for the beginning of this history-making process, walking through the repetition of those 5 verses with the rest of the group who had gathered to learn about Oral Bible Translation. At times we were all hot, tired and (dare I say) a little bored. But as we learned the process of Scripture translation, I gained a much deeper respect for the patience and perseverance of these translators who handle the Word of God with such care and honor. Oral Bible Translation is not a fast and sloppy process, rather a meticulous journey through the culture and background of the Biblical context, and how it can be best articulated in the words of the local language. That also requires a meticulous look at the local language and culture to ensure the translators choose the best local words to convey the Biblical text.

One of the things I appreciate the most about this process is the dignity it affords the mother tongue speakers. In Oral Bible Translation, the mother tongue speakers are the translators; they are the experts with the intuitive knowledge of how the language is supposed to sound. It was touching to see Ambrose stand a little straighter, not out of pride but in the confidence that he has something to offer his people as he bridges the gap between Juba Arabic, the market language and his mother tongue.

This experience led me to ponder those who were there when the first passages of Scripture were translated into the English language. I wonder how they felt when they heard or read those very first verses in their mother tongue. Now we take our English Bibles for granted, but for the Lokoya, their Bible is just being started, and in a few days, they will be able to hear a tiny, but significant, portion in their own language.

What a privilege I’ve felt to be part of this moment. It’s difficult to explain the awe and gratefulness filling my heart.

As YWAM Arua, our OBT journey is just getting started, but already we’re beginning language surveys in the Logani language in the Nuba Mountains of Sudan, in the Ofirika language of South Sudan, and in a “cluster” group of unreached languages in eastern DR Congo. David Afayo, one of our young YWAM leaders, is at the forefront of the OBT movement in our base, is spearheading Bible translation into Uganda Sign Language.

{A Nuba man, David Afayo (center), Njumi Mageland (right) in Nuba Mountains}

 

Suddenly it’s a whirlwind of Bible translation projects in our YWAM base, and my joy is overflowing. Most of the locations where these language groups live are expensive and difficult to reach, and often the situation on the ground is dangerous. However, as Njumi (our YWAM leader heading up the Longani project) said, “… the Word of God is not bound! Therefore [we] endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory” (2 Tim 2.9 - 10).

We will keep you updated as these projects move forward. Thank you everyone at Foothills, for your long-standing partnership to see God’s kingdom come in this region of Africa – we couldn’t do this without you. May God continue to fill you with peace in His presence!

With much love,

Vikki and John Wright