Last Sunday, Grace hosted our quarterly International Partners Lunch. Lunch was potluck style. Two pairs of our International Partners came and gave a report of their work. James and Lois Hafford serve with Wycliffe Bible Translators in Papua New Guinea and Skip and Ruth Sorensen serve with WorldVenture in Uganda.
The Haffords have been working tirelessly to translate the New Testament into the Native Wuvulu language. During the lunch, James gave us the privilege of hearing part of Revelation first in Wuvulu and then in English. With the New Testament translation completed, the people have been asking for the Old Testament. Lois is now working on that translation while her husband teaches other linguists in University near the border of Canada. Many of his students have already traveled all over the world to continue to reach every language and people group with the Good News of Jesus Christ. An amazing technology called Paratext allows Lois to co-ordinate with other translators and to upload recent translations for editing and review. Wycliffe’s big goal is to start translation of the Bible into every language where there is a need by 2025. James estimates that there are at least 1,000 language groups that still need the Bible.
Skip and Ruth Sorensen are on an extended furlough from Uganda. Prayers are much appreciated, as they had to return early due to Ruth’s health. At first, they thought it was spinal infection, but now the doctors know the problem is bone degeneration from an accident she had years ago. She is currently undergoing physical therapy in the States and is anxious to return to Uganda. Their work in Uganda is training Pastors and other leaders of the church in the intensive study of God’s Word. Books are a rarity in Uganda, so the Sorensens use study Bibles and commentaries purchased in the States to teach. They teach in English, but from time to time the Pastors need to read the passage in their own language for complete understanding. Another reason the work of the translators is vital to the mission. God works through one part of the church to bolster another. The Sorensens also help with maintain a fairly large farm to provide food and sellable produce for the school.