Jim Bowen

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Latest Updates from Jim Bowen

25 January 2019

Sheffield: Story The Bible Workshop
S-STB Update #1: January 24, 2019
by Keith Benn, S-STB Coordinator

S-STB Workshop Dates: Tuesday evening April 23 – Saturday after lunch April 27, 2019
Comment: Workshop participants are asked to arrive Tuesday afternoon after 3.00pm, and before the evening meal at 6.00pm.

S-STB Costs – participants: $160 includes accommodation, food and workshop materials
Comment: Our goal is to keep the workshop as inexpensive as possible, bearing in mind that the workshop materials are $60 of the costs for participants.

S-STB Costs – families: Participants are encouraged to bring their families to the workshop. Family rates are available.

S-STB Accommodation: Tents and caravans (already on site).
Comment: Participant accommodation is basic: Feel free to bring all your own camping gear, or sleep in the tents already set up. Participants need to bring their own air mattress, sleeping bags etc. but not cooking gear.

S-STB Cooking: Adults not participating in the teaching program will be expected to help the kitchen staff.

S-STB Food Contributions: Any food contributions (potatoes, onions, vegetables, milk meat etc) are welcome. Our goal is to keep the workshop costs down, so food contributions will help us in that respect.

S-STB Teaching Program: Tuesday evening: 2 hours
Wednesday: 8.30am – 5.00pm; 7.00-8.00pm
Thursday: 8.30am – 5.00pm; 7.00-8.00pm
Friday: 8.30am – 5.00pm; 7.00-8.00pm
Saturday: 8.30am – 12.30pm

S-STB Workshop Content: In a Story the Bible workshop five skills are taught
#1:
Crafting a Bible story
#2:
Revising a Bible story to make it SAM (simple + accurate + memorable)
#3:
Telling a Bible story so that the lips and body language tell the same story
#4:
Teaching a Bible story so the hearer can repeat it back accurately
#5:
Leading a Bible study based on a story

Participants: We are only accepting 16 workshop participants. Registration (and payment) is through the Wycliffe Australia website wycliffe.org.au. Go to events, scroll down to Story the Bible – Sheffield Tasmania. Postal registrations are also possible.

This Update: January 24, 2019

25 January 2019

Kumkumari to Capernaum (K2C)*
Update #1
Jan 14, 2019

Itinerary: The Kumkumari to Capernaum (K2C) Study Tour itinerary has undergone a major revamp due to the realities of logistics. Now, instead of travelling from India directly to Israel, we will travel from Kolkota to Amman in Jordan, spend two nights at Petra, then go by land into Israel over the Allenby Bridge.
We have also added one more night in Jerusalem, giving us 12 nights in Israel, rather than 11.

A copy of the latest itinerary for K2C is available on request.

Tour Guide: Malcolm Barker (K2C Team Leader) and I are in contact with several Christian tour guides, registered with the Israeli Department of Tourism, requesting their services. Pray that the Lord will guide us to the one best suited to our needs.

Driver: We plan to hire a 20 seater van for the 8 days travel from Jerusalem to Caesarea to Galilee and back to Jerusalem. Pray that we can find a tour guide with a valid driver’s license (only certain people are allowed to drive 20 seater busses in Israel), to save us the extra salary of a driver.

Costs: When Australia applicants are accepted for K2C, they will pay $1,000. This covers the non-refundable deposit ($400) plus $600 accommodation deposit (refundable). With the high pressure of tourism in Israel, we need to book accommodation as soon as possible, otherwise the accommodation costs will rise as the less expensive places are filled.

Airfares: Every month air tickets rise by about $100. Once we have 5 participants on K2C, I will make arrangements for our air tickets. The sooner we buy air tickets the less we will pay. We need one more applicant to make the first five team members.

Application Form: Application Forms for K2C are available on request from Keith Benn, Wycliffe Australia K2C Coordinator; keith_benn@wycliffe.org.au; 0405 430 922

* Note: K2C is a Study Tour from ‘the Ends of the Earth to Where it all Began’, arranged by Wycliffe Australia.

14 May 2018

The relationship between the Papua New Guinea Bible Translation Association (BTA) and Wycliffe Australia is one of our most cherished and strategic. It is an exciting time as we are now collaborating in a number of areas. Wycliffe Australia CEO Barry Borneman recently returned from Ukarumpa where he facilitated a program planning course for 15 BTA language program coordinators. These people, who are key links to BTA translation programs, really enjoyed Barry’s practical and simple approach to planning. Plans for the remainder of the year are focussed on helping BTA to achieve goals in their strategic plan. This will include assisting BTA to re-energise a number of translation projects that have stalled for various reasons, enabling two BTA staff to study at SILA in Australia, and sharing skills in the areas of IT, media, finance and human resources between BTA and Wycliffe Australia. Our commitment to BTA is one of our largest in many ways and your financial support for this project has farreaching effects.

14 May 2018

Your gifts have been helping SIL Vanuatu to run a series of training courses in translation principles. The course is equipping local Ni Vanuatu Bible translators to comprehend and practically apply Scripture, as well as be able to train others in these skills. The participants have already begun implementing what they have learned in creative ways that are reaching their communities. Following the March 2018 workshop, one trainer said, “I am so thankful to have this chance to discuss God’s Word with like-minded people. I wish I had the same situation on my island.” More encouraging testimonies are sure to emerge from the next workshop planned for September. Please consider helping us to continue sponsoring this ongoing project so that more Ni Vanuatu people are better able to help their communities understand God’s Word.

14 May 2018

The Bunong New Testament, released in May 2016, is having such a significant impact in the Bunong community that momentum for the translation of the Bunong Old Testament is high! Wycliffe Australia translation advisors DiDi and MiMi recently returned from a visit to launch this new project. They are rejoicing over the strong foundation that is already in place there. Everyone, from top church leaders, to men and women from every church, is using the Bunong New Testament. A church planter told them, “I want to thank you for your teachings of how to disciple new believers, of building a firm foundation upon the Word of God, of how to be a shepherd to the people.” The Bunong church has invited Didi and MiMi to help them again. They have committed to financially supporting the new project and providing church members to work on the translation. Wycliffe Australia will supplement their efforts, mainly by covering the cost of travel and accommodation for those who travel away from home to attend workshops to translate the Bunong Old Testament.

24 February 2018

Taking the Next Step
A report on the Trenem Tingting Short Course
Rain welcomed us to Imayo village on Tanna island and remained our close friend for the rest of our stay. But the cloud and soggy ground in no way dampened the enthusiasm of the Imayo community who became the daily participants of the Trenem Tingting Course.
Only two of those we had invited and expected to come, came to the course, but as Loui boldly announced, “It just must be God’s will that we teach these people.” And so we did.
After devotions focussing on the creator rights of God over his creation, Ross, Loui and Epson opened the ‘show’ with a few short dramas. The dramas portrayed real life situations where we are prone to act before we think. We then moved quickly to various activities related to Bible reading and the errors we commonly make such as taking a glance rather than reading carefully. Or taking a single verse out of the passage and so distorting the meaning. Or trying to answer questions the Bible text doesn’t answer. And more!
Loui and Epson, members of Vanuatu Bible Translation, have listened, learned and taken minor teaching roles in these courses for the last year or two, but the Imayo course saw them take a good step forward. They really did step up to confidently present the prepared material using colourful illustrations to point out needed Bible reading skills. Loui then bravely tackled a passage from Mark’s gospel, helping the participants to read through it carefully and determine Mark’s intended meaning. Epson lead them through another activity to stimulate ‘asking questions’. They made comments, answered questions, chatted after hours. They excelled, and were pleased.
Perhaps even better than witnessing their teaching talents was seeing Loui and Epson’s pleasure in seeing their new friends respond with interest and many an ‘ah-ha’ as they grasped what was being presented. That seems like a sign that they are ready to take yet another step and the next one after that.
Back from Tanna, tired but happy and time to relax? No. There’s one more part of the men’s agenda to fulfill. Another step forward is that Loui has recently begun acting on his thoughts; “I hate seeing cartons of New Testaments in the storage container. We’ve got to get them out there,” he says. So Sunday saw us all at Melemaat church handing out New Testaments to Epson’s wider family, from South East Ambrym, who live in Port Vila.
Vanuatu Bible Translation members are increasing in confidence and competence. Thankyou Wycliffe Australia for financially enabling Loui and Epson to move forward. They are already warming up to give it another go in September, God willing!

Submitted by Lyndal Webb

29 May 2017

Taking the Next Step
A report on the Trenem Tingting Short Course
Rain welcomed us to Imayo village on Tanna island and remained our close friend for the rest of our stay. But the cloud and soggy ground in no way dampened the enthusiasm of the Imayo community who became the daily participants of the Trenem Tingting Course.
Only two of those we had invited and expected to come, came to the course, but as Loui boldly announced, “It just must be God’s will that we teach these people.” And so we did.
After devotions focussing on the creator rights of God over his creation, Ross, Loui and Epson opened the ‘show’ with a few short dramas. The dramas portrayed real life situations where we are prone to act before we think. We then moved quickly to various activities related to Bible reading and the errors we commonly make such as taking a glance rather than reading carefully. Or taking a single verse out of the passage and so distorting the meaning. Or trying to answer questions the Bible text doesn’t answer. And more!
Loui and Epson, members of Vanuatu Bible Translation, have listened, learned and taken minor teaching roles in these courses for the last year or two, but the Imayo course saw them take a good step forward. They really did step up to confidently present the prepared material using colourful illustrations to point out needed Bible reading skills. Loui then bravely tackled a passage from Mark’s gospel, helping the participants to read through it carefully and determine Mark’s intended meaning. Epson lead them through another activity to stimulate ‘asking questions’. They made comments, answered questions, chatted after hours. They excelled, and were pleased.
Perhaps even better than witnessing their teaching talents was seeing Loui and Epson’s pleasure in seeing their new friends respond with interest and many an ‘ah-ha’ as they grasped what was being presented. That seems like a sign that they are ready to take yet another step and the next one after that.
Back from Tanna, tired but happy and time to relax? No. There’s one more part of the men’s agenda to fulfill. Another step forward is that Loui has recently begun acting on his thoughts; “I hate seeing cartons of New Testaments in the storage container. We’ve got to get them out there,” he says. So Sunday saw us all at Melemaat church handing out New Testaments to Epson’s wider family, from South East Ambrym, who live in Port Vila.
Vanuatu Bible Translation members are increasing in confidence and competence. Thankyou Wycliffe Australia for financially enabling Loui and Epson to move forward. They are already warming up to give it another go in September, God willing!

Submitted by Lyndal Webb

09 March 2017

Lyndal Webb shares some short encouraging snippets of discussions from last September’s workshop.

Bible discussion on the last morning of the workshop:

‘OK,’ began Manita, ‘Verse 8 says tell God thank you, verse 9 says we must praise him,’ and he continued noting what David wrote in each verse. ‘Yes, but look at Verse 11 and 12,’ added Grem. ‘We must look only to God and we must talk about his miracles. That means how he has saved us, ah?’

‘You know,’ continued Grem, ‘at the first session of Trenem Tingting (name of the course) I didn’t really ‘get it’ but this time, I have. I see now that following God is not about ‘prosperity’. No, the good things from God are what’s in His Word. I get it now.’

Pier, a single young man, reflects on passages from Genesis and Ephesians:

‘My thinking changed through reading what God’s Word says about marriage.’

Praise God for the things that these participants have learnt. Pray that they will be able to share what they have learnt with their community.

30 January 2017

Both the local community and churches are supportive of the translation and literacy efforts. The publishing of Luke in March 2015 has been well received.

Déli Timothée, Sunday school instructor, says:

As a Sunday School instructor, I have realized that these translated Scriptures make teaching more effective. Children easily understand the message when they are taught in their heart language rather than in Fulfulde or in French. It has been a wonderful experience for me.

ZRA Konaï says:

I have never been to school, but thanks to the literacy classes, I learned to read and write in my language. Now I can read the book of Luke in my language that allows me to discover God. I now know that God loves me but he hates sin. I would love to live in the fear of God so that sin does not prevent me to benefit from his love.

02 January 2017

This project has been renamed. The following 2016 projects are now combined into this one project for 2017:
Project 8814 Consultant Support for National Translators – South Asia
Project 8810 K* Literacy & Health Training – South Asia
Project 8812 T* Translation, Literacy & Community Health Training – South Asia

30 November 2016

The Moba literacy project has been ongoing for a few years. We thank the faithful supporters who have given towards this project and enabled testimonies such as Noumpoa’s, mother of seven:

I had gone to spend Sunday night with my parents in order to be able to get medical care on Monday morning. On my return, I did not see my daughter, who is eleven years of age and illiterate.

After asking around, I learned that a young man came to take her Sunday night. Thank God that we learned in the primers the seriously bad consequences of child marriage and the advice that the primers gave us for having an enlightened marriage (to be at least twenty years old and have a job so as not to be always dependent on one’s husband). Thus I went to see the sub-chief of my village on Thursday. Since the sub-chief did not want to deal with the situation immediately, I told him that I preferred to put the problem into the hands of more competent authorities.

I was in the process of going to see that authority when I received a telephone call that my daughter had been returned. I am very happy that literacy brought me out of ignorance. Without literacy, my daughter would have had to live with the seriously bad consequences of child marriage.’

09 November 2016

One particular benefit of the Trenem Tingting course is that participants learn how to apply Scripture in very practical ways. For example, one man said, ‘I see now that following God is not about prosperity. No, the good things from God are what’s in his Word. I get it now.’

The results of the training are also having a ripple effect. In one community, an elder applied his critical thinking training by teaching the children to think before killing small crabs so that they could grow and reproduce. In the same community, the women who took part in an analytical skills course realised that their propensity to gossip was causing division in their village because they were jumping to conclusions rather than seeking truth from God’s Word.

31 January 2016

Since its publication in March 2015, the Gospel of Luke in Basnami* has been used in almost all the local churches and many home Bible study groups. And the impact of having Scripture in their mother tongue is very clear, as people begin to understand the meaning of God’s Word for themselves.

The team’s aim for 2016 is to finish Acts, draft Matthew, and expand their 11 literacy classes currently operating in the community.

*pseudonym

Thanks for your patience...

Waiting is hard, isn't it. But imagine waiting 2000 years for Scripture in your language! Thanks for your patience. And thanks for your generous support which will help bring the long wait to an end...