Driving Translation Forward

  • June 5, 2017
  • By: Amanda Cox
Mary Hildebrand standing by her car
Mary Hildebrand smiles as she donates her "God-sent" car.

It all started with a car that wouldn’t start. Mary Hildebrand and her late husband had their car suddenly quit on them just two days before an important appointment. It was pouring rain outside, but they decided to trust God and went car hunting anyway. Just as they were about to leave the dealership, the salesman remembered a car that had been recently returned. When he pulled it around front, they found that this car was just what they needed. “The Lord had it waiting for us; that’s the way I felt about it,” Mary said.

Years later as Mary looked at their God-sent car, which was now just sitting in the driveway, she knew she wanted it to go somewhere special. “I wanted someone to get some use out of it. I have friends that were missionaries on the field. The Gardners were one of the families that I grew up with, and their daughter, Brenda, was married to the late Chet Bitterman. That was what I had in the back of my mind.”

It was Mary’s closeness with the Gardners and Bittermans that prompted her to contact Wycliffe about a vehicle donation. Her car is now being used at Wycliffe’s Orlando headquarters to provide transportation for incoming staff and missionaries on leave.

Having partnered with Wycliffe missionaries and projects for years, Mary is glad that now her car is being used to support Bible translation. “I couldn’t think of a better place to put it,” she said.

Wycliffe believes Bible translation is foundational to fulfilling the Great Commission because hearing Scripture in the language you understand at the heart level, will transform you at the heart level. Mary agrees. “That’s my biggest concern,” she said, “to get the Word of God out in their language so they understand it. I just want [people] to have the opportunity to hear and accept him [Jesus] for themselves.”

Want to donate your car?

Non-cash donations are a creative, cost-free way to partner with Wycliffe. You receive a tax deduction, while meeting a tangible need of the organization. Wycliffe is currently in need of two more cars. Ideally these cars would be late models, with less than 50,000 miles and have a working air conditioner (since the Florida weather is warm year-round). If you or someone you know is interested in donating a car to Wycliffe, please call our Gifts in Kind office at 1-800-992-5433 (ext. 3894) or email us at giftsinkind@wycliffe.org. For more information about Gifts in Kind, you can visit wycliffe.org/donateyourstuff.