Excerpts from East Africa Branch prayer concerns posted at National Missionary Convention
The East Africa Branch had a spiritual retreat in October and we experienced God's power among us, as individuals and as a group. Please pray that the work He began in us that week will continue unhindered by us or by Satan.
The Kagulu translation is well underway and we praise God for allowing us to be a part of it. Since arriving in Tanzania over five years ago, we looked forward to the day when our "setup & research" phase would be finished and translation work would begin. 2002 has been truly a blessing as we have seen translation in the first language of the "Morogoro Cluster" taking place. We praise God for the enthusiasm Kagulu Christians feel about this program and we pray that God's Word would soon shine brightly among them. The first draft of Matthew has been completed and will be checked while it is used as training materials for an upcoming "Reviewers Workshop."
November 18-22 we will be hosting a seminar to train about 20 Kagulu speakers to serve as Reviewers for the Kagulu Scriptures as the Scriptures are being translated. Please pray for safe travel for the Kagulu men and women volunteering to serve in this capacity as reviewers. These are all well educated men and women, many of whom are taking vacation or leave from very important jobs in order to participate. Pray for a spirit of Christian unity among the group, parallel to that achieved in a recent dictionary building workshop, as they all come from a variety of denominational backgrounds.
The Doe people in the coastal region north of Dar es Salaam need your prayers. Our survey team is currently in the field conducting research among this people group, to evaluate their Bible translation needs.
Our primary area of work is in the southeastern quarter of Tanzania. This is the area where most of the "unreached people groups" of Tanzania live. Please pray for the approximately 25 people groups in that dark area who need the light of Christ. Please pray for protection for us as we enter this area of ancient strongholds.
Naomi Dobbins is one of our survey team members. She had a bad reaction to Larium and has been in the US for treatment since June of this year. She is still recovering. Please pray that the Lord will direct every step that she, her family and her doctors take and that He would work His perfect will in this situation and in her life.
The first Pan-Africa meeting of the Forum of Bible Agencies (FOBA) was held in Kenya last month. Tammie Harvey, the EAB Director, attended on behalf of PBT. There was a wonderful sense of unity and a tremendous desire among the Bible agencies, working throughout Africa, to work together in partnership to see the Great Commission accomplished in Africa in our generation. Pray for the Lord to bring this about and pray for the first Tanzania FOBA meeting, which is scheduled for February 2003. Pray also that we can be a uniting force, for the various Church denominations to join the Bible agencies in this Spirit-led vision.
Please pray for God to show us His plan for bringing His Kingdom to East Africa. Pray for Him to provide the necessary resources, including personnel (both national and expatriate), finances, and partnerships with Tanzanian churches and other organizations.
Brad is involved in the Doe survey mentioned above and reports that the survey is going pretty well. They are actually able to communicate via mobile phones in the African villages. They have collected the Doe history in a couple of places and did a few group interviews. They were directed to a pure Doe village and are planning on working in that village for a couple of days at least. It sounds like they might not quite get all the survey done, but we already talked about the possibility of Brad, Jeri and Babu going back out for a few days the first half of December to finish up if necessary.
We have 16 confirmations from people invited to the Reviewer's workshop next week and 2 others likely. We are only waiting on a response from a final two. I've (Tammie) got to get our PBT house set up as a guest house for the consultant and the two Kagulu translators to stay in.
Bishop Chitemo is starting the book of Mark and the reviewers will be trained to review what has been written in draft. Brad sent off a grant proposal to the University in London that specializes in Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) that will have several million dollars available in grants over the next 10 years to research and document languages that are in danger of dying. We could qualify for several of these, but have started with the modest request of about $60,000 to study and document the Kami language.
It is about 1 1/2 hrs from Morogoro and one of the languages we surveyed in the Morogoro cluster. We wouldn't target the group to do a full blown translation because the people are loosing their language. Yet it is a 9 9% muslim group, though there are several churches in the area.
The Kami people view the churches as being for the other peoples that have moved into their area. Brad can study and document the language rather easily from here, but the grant funds would provide us with some needed equipment that we could keep for future work, plus provide funds for training of some nationals that we could then utilize in future work as well.
We sold our old vehicle! This will allow us to move forward to get blueprints done and start on the renovations to our newly purchased home in the Dutch compound. We especially need to get the roof redone before the long rains start.
Brad, Tammie, Bradley, Yuda, & Morrie