The Pacific is home to thousands of islands, and with that comes a variety of landscapes. There are deserts, tropical rainforests, fjords and palm tree-lined islands. To add to the vastness of the region, nearly 20 percent of the world’s languages are spoken in the Pacific! From the beginning of the mission process in the early 1800s, believers in this region have played a huge role in bringing the Word of God to neighboring islands and language communities.
But churches often face difficulties in bringing the gospel to those in the Pacific — either due to issues in traveling to the communities (many islands are remote and require multiple forms of transportation to access), intense weather conditions or the prevalence of animism and other traditional practices.
Pukapuka is a small coral atoll in the northern group of the Cook Islands. Although about 500 people still live on the atoll, the majority of people in this language community have settled in New Zealand and Australia.
Work continues on a revision of the draft New Testament for the Pukapuka. Two translators are checking, reviewing and revising the epistles (Galatians through 2 Peter). The translation team recently printed copies of Matthew to Acts for key leaders and supporters to proofread and give feedback. The team also posts Scripture readings in Pukapuka on Facebook, and continues to get good comments from the community — even though the Pukapuka are scattered in numerous places.
Soon, in mid-July of this year, over 200 adults and teenagers will come by ship from Pukapuka to attend the triennial constitution celebrations in the Cook Islands’ capital of Rarotonga. Then, from August 7-9, the chiefs of Pukapuka will hold a historic conference on the Pukapuka language and Bible translation.
As the Pukapuka translation team continues to make revisions to the New Testament and perform community checks, ask God for unity so that soon everyone in this language will know the gospel in their own language!
- Continue to lift up the members of the Pukapuka translation team as they work hard to check, review and revise the epistles.
- Ask God to help the team complete the read-through and revision of the remaining New Testament epistles before the historic Bible translation and language conference.
- Pray that God would bring unity and a sense of direction to the chiefs and those attending the conference.
Make a Prayer Connection: Pray for Wycliffe missionary Anna Moore. Ask God to raise up a team of prayer and financial partners so that Anna may begin serving alongside national translators in Vanuatu in January of 2019.