There are approximately 6,000 speakers of North Ambrym, a language spoken on North Ambrym Island in the country of Vanuatu. Work first began in 2012, and so far have an alphabet, literacy materials and a family story Bible have been completed in North Ambrym. The family story Bible has been developed for use on mobile phones and through an audio form, which has already been distributed to the people. The print version of the family story Bible was launched in October 2016 and is now in peoples’ hands as well.
The translation team has already drafted Genesis 1-11, the Gospel of Mark and the book of Acts, and the Gospel of Luke is in process. Once these books of the Bible are completed — along with any further literacy work and Scripture engagement tools — they will be distributed to the people in both print and audio formats. Praise God!
Members of the community are involved in the translation committee, including church, education and community leaders. Many of them also serve as translators, language helpers and as other contributors to the projects. As books and literacy materials are continuing to be translated, teachers (particularly those teaching grades K-3) have been trained in literacy in North Ambrym and are teaching their students how to read as well. This is laying a valuable foundation for when the Scriptures are available in print.
Translated Bible stories — particularly the Christmas and Easter stories — have been used by churches in their local contexts. The people are eagerly absorbing whatever materials have been completed and distributed, and are asking for more!
- As the translation team continues to work on literacy and Scripture engagement materials, pray that God would give them wisdom and discernment on how to best translate these pieces.
- Pray that the family story Bible would impact the lives of North Ambrym speakers, both young and old, as it is distributed into the hands of the people.
- The team will soon check the translation of Genesis 1-11, the Gospel of Mark and the book of Acts. Pray that their work would be fruitful and that these portions of Scripture can soon be finalized so the people can have access to them in print and audio form.
Make a Prayer Connection: Pray for God's provision for projects in Wycliffe's 2016-17 Gift Catalog. The goal of one of the 16 projects is to provide printed copies of Matthew, Mark and Luke to people in Vanuatu and two other countries.