With such nice want and so few Deaf Christians, who will do the work of signal language Bible translation?
Deaf Bible Society’s Mike Brabo says DBS works with Deaf believers worldwide to reply this query. “We make contact with Deaf Christians in a specific country to determine their interest, their vision [and] passion, and how we can come alongside them in the task of reaching their country with the Gospel,” he says, explaining how the method begins.
“As these conversations and the relationships develop, we then begin discussing establishing a sign language Bible translation in their native language.”
Why can’t Deaf simply learn the Bible?
Religious transformation is almost unimaginable with out God’s Phrase in a language the Deaf can perceive. Studying a conventional print Bible could be tough as a result of it’s a written model of a spoken language.
English, for instance, is each a spoken and written language. Many U.S. Deaf can learn an English print Bible. Nevertheless, that print Bible doesn’t present the identical “heart level” connection and understanding as Scripture in American Signal Language.
Signed languages are the primary – or, “heart” – languages of Deaf communities worldwide. To get God’s Phrase into extra signal languages, Deaf Bible Society helps Deaf believers type Bible translation groups.
“We encourage them to choose team members… who are actually maturing in their Christian faith,” Brabo says. “Ideally, [they will be] persons who have grown up all their lives in the Deaf community and are fluent in the local sign language. Having a teachable attitude is also crucial.”
As soon as Deaf believers hand-pick crew members and a crew chief, “we come alongside and provide training and equipping for specific roles that are needed on the translation team,” Brabo explains.
“We also make contact with different organizations and individuals to provide the funding for that team, and encourage the local churches to help fund at the level that they’re able to.”
I’m not Deaf… what can I do in Deaf ministry?
Even for those who’re not Deaf, there’s a spot for you in Deaf ministry. As a listening to individual with abilities in a number of signal languages and vital ministry expertise, Brabo works in tandem with Deaf translators. Nevertheless, his place will not be one among superiority.
“My role is that of a servant,” Brabo explains. “My role is to come alongside, to pray for, to encourage” Deaf translation groups and leaders.
He encourages the identical “servant heart” angle for anybody trying to assist signal language Bible translation. Go to Deaf Bible Society’s web site for methods to assist, and – most significantly – pray for Deaf believers all over the world.
“Ask God to bless them, to equip them, that they may go translate the word of God and see their Deaf community transformed by the Gospel.”
Header picture courtesy of Deaf Bible Society.