When I began my work as a Bible translator, our goal was to create an alphabet and a written version of Nabak, which was only a spoken language at that time. We then needed to translate the New Testament into their new written language.
But even back then, as we were nearing completion of the New Testament translation, we used what we had translated and applied it to something called The Jesus Film. The Jesus Film is a movie depicting the book of Luke as directly as possible. By paralleling Luke so closely, different translation teams can then record audio for the film in the language they are translating. This allows the people whose language is being translated to hear God’s word and see what life was like for Jesus and the disciples.
This is important for those who cannot read their own language yet, or those who might have some trouble reading. And, it can be shown to many people at one time with minimal setup. This focus on the audio part of translation has been growing in recent years, an important new way to reach the unreached.
I’d like to introduce you to a young missionary who has focused her work on this growing area of Bible translation. Bethanny Moore has been preparing for years now, lead by God to Papua New Guinea to help spread the Word. This young woman is one of the many young missionaries heading to the mission field, and I recently had a chance to ask her some questions.
Please take a few moments and get to know this amazing young woman!
Hi, Grace! I get to be a part of the incredible team at the Scripture Use Media department! We help families, villages, and language groups get access to Scripture in many ways. Since not everyone reads, we help Oral Communicators, people who learn and interact through storying, narrative, dialogue and drama, receive the Bible in ways that are understandable to them. There are over 4 billion oral communicators worldwide. I will be serving as a recordist for audio Scriptures with some of the 800 plus languages in Papua New Guinea! I will also get to help with distributing those Bible recordings through lots of cool gadgets like solar-powered, waterproof audio players, Wi-Fi boxes, and SD memory cards for cell phones. The greatest part is getting to see the Holy Spirit work in someone’s life when they hear the Bible in a meaningful way! The Bible points toward Christ and that is what it’s all about.
Most missionaries have an interesting story about how they ended up following the missions path, so why don’t you tell us your story? How did God start tugging on your heart to call you into missions?
My family laid the foundation for God to call me. It was through our homeschooling, my mom’s Bible teaching, and the local Mission’s Fest that I was saturated in mission culture and all the exciting things God was doing here and around the world. Books were very influential to me when I was young. I would read about all the historical missionaries like Adoniram Judson, Lottie Moon, Amy Carmichael, and David Brainerd. I remember the first book I read about missions. It was called The Queen’s Smuggler, and was about William Tyndale.
Well, despite all this, when the Lord called me in high school, I fought Him. I wanted to do things my own way, start my own business in photography, and live life on my terms. I struggled a lot. God kept calling and proving Himself. Scripture and various sermons told me that He was the rightful King of my life. Seeing missionaries who I had read about and who spoke at the Mission’s Fest, like Nard or Jo Shettler, emphasized to me that the stories were real and that God really was all-powerful and trustworthy. Finally, after a dream telling me to go as a missionary, God convinced me of His claim on my life, and I surrendered to His path for my future.
Now the question of “What to do?” came up. Having grown up in the mission’s world, with a grandparent and parents who had served overseas, I knew there were many ways for missionaries to serve! In 2014 I took a Wycliffe Discovery trip to compare Bible Translation and communications work. It was there, in Papua New Guinea, that God pointed me to a different role with Scripture Use Media. My adopted PNG mother, Liven, was blessing me with Bible verses in the trade language before we parted ways. But when I asked her to read them in her first language, she had to go get her husband to read it. I later learned that she had had her Bible in her language for 16 years, but without the ability to read it. That was what decided it for me. God laid it on my heart to help with the work of Scripture Use Media, which places the word of God in the hands of people around the world in ways that are easily accessible to them.
What type of education have you received to prepare for your ministry in Scripture Use Media?
The great guys at International Media Services, in JAARS, North Carolina, trained me in recording, planning, and dubbing. I am now an official International Media Specialist. I will also be taking Scripture Engagement courses at the Canada Institute of Linguistics (CanIL), and the Intercultural Communications Course (ICC) back at JAARS in the future.
When are you planning to head overseas?
At this point I should be heading over in 2018, probably in June. I need to finish my training at CanIL & ICC, and I need to reach the financial goal of 100% of my budget before I go.
Please check back shortly for moore of our Young Missionary Focus with Bethanny Moore!
Here is a link to a recent newsletter: https://us9.admin.mailchimp.com/campaigns/show?id=1884133
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They can reach me through email at: Bethanny_moore@wycliffe.org (2 n’s & 2 o’s)
At my cell: (717) 215-9929
Or through my personal ministry page: https://www.wycliffe.org/partner/bethannyMoore
Donations can be made online through my PMP, over the phone, or by mail.
My Ministry Account: # 232580
Or for Launching Expenses: #71-232580
Wycliffe Orlando: M-F 8am-5pm EDT
Toll free 1-800-992-5433
Or by mail:
Wycliffe Bible Translators
PO Box 628200
Orlando, FL 32862-8200
NOTE: Please include a separate note saying “Preference for the ministry account of Bethanny Moore # (232580 or 71-232580)