Pray With Us

Mark and Laura Woodward, Wycliffe Bible Translators, Tanzania

Dear <<First Name>>,

Thanks for your prayers and support for us, as we continue to support Bible translation. As we mentioned last time, we traveled to the UK in mid-December, and a lot has happened in the last three months!
Laura's health
Our reason for spending a few months in the UK has been to investigate some pain that Laura has been having. The pain has been there for over ten years, but the last few months it has been worse than normal, so we are hoping that it can be diagnosed.

At the moment we are still waiting to see a specialist, but in the meantime we have also been experimenting with some dietary changes, to see what might help.
Working from a distance
While in the UK we are both continuing to do our jobs online. Laura still talks with many colleagues as they think through various challenges in their life and work. She is also continuing to provide child safety training, and to respond to any emergency situations as they arise.

Mark is also keeping in daily contact with our colleagues throughout Tanzania and Uganda, as he manages the various projects and provides direction to the language work happening in both countries.

We have very much enjoyed seeing friends and family in the UK, and spending Christmas with Mark's family. We also had the opportunity to attend Mark's grandfather's funeral, who died in January at the age of 97 years and 365 days!
Last month Mark headed back to Tanzania for a three-week trip, where he met with the office staff in Dodoma, Mbeya and Mara regions. The trip was busy, as he helped the teams to plan for the year ahead and worked through budget and HR questions.

Mark was also able to accompany an international funder to visit the Bungu community in Mbeya, as his organisation supports the translation that is starting in Bungu and Pangwa, and hopefully soon in the Kisi and Manda languages too.
Other recent highlights include:
  • The Nyole New Testament was dedicated in Uganda in January!
  • The Burunge New Testament has now arrived at our Dodoma office, with 5,000 copies being stored in many large boxes! The community is currently planning a large celebration, probably for August this year, after harvest, so that people have enough money to buy the books.
  • The JESUS Film continues to be shown in various language communities, with plans to translate it into others in the coming months.
Project Funding Challenges
Thank you for your prayers for the project funding challenges that we shared about in December. While there are still ongoing conversations about some of the larger questions, the urgent issues were resolved at the end of December, meaning that staff representing the 17 language communities in Mbeya and Mara are able to continue with their work.
Looking Ahead
This week Mark has traveled back to Tanzania again for another two weeks of planning meetings, with the Dodoma and Mbeya teams, as they respond to the needs of the language communities and submit proposals and budgets for next year. For the Dodoma team in particular this will involve setting up meetings with various partners over the next few weeks, and then presenting their vision to funders in May. Mark will also be interviewing candidates for the role of manager for the Katavi project, so he would appreciate prayer for wisdom in that process.

Then after attending our friend's wedding in Dar es Salaam, Mark will fly to Thailand for a week of meetings with other language programs staff from around the world. The discussion will centre around multilingualism, urbanisation and Scripture engagement, and Mark's MA dissertation on the use of Scriptures in multilingual communities will be one of the papers discussed.

Thank you!

Thank you for praying for us, and for the communities that we are serving in East Africa. As we work together with our colleagues across Uganda and Tanzania we are excited to see Scripture being translated into over 30 languages, and communities learning to read and engaging with the Bible in various different formats.

We really appreciate all that you do to make this possible, and as we look ahead we are grateful that you are with us on this journey, and lifting all these things up in prayer.

Pe uPeeteli akhabhabhʉʉzya abhantʉ bhaala akhatɨ, “Ishi pe naamanya kʉtɨ zya nalyoli, ʉMʉlʉngʉ atakʉgana bha ndwɨmo! Ɨleelo akʉbhɨɨtɨkha abhantʉ abha vɨkholo vwonti bhe bhakumutinikha na kʉbhomba zye zɨkhondeeye pamiiso gaakwe. Ɨmwe mumanyile kʉtɨ ʉMʉlʉngʉ ásonteleziizye abhantʉ bhaakwe kʉbhalʉmbɨɨlɨla aBhaisilaeli iNtumi iNyinza, kʉtɨ bhawaaje uwutengaanu mwa Yeesu Kilisiti, ʉMwene wa bhantʉ bhonti.

Then Peter started speaking: “I now truly understand that God does not show favoritism in dealing with people, but in every nation the person who fears him and does what is right is welcomed before him. You know the message he sent to the people of Israel, proclaiming the good news of peace through Jesus Christ...

(Acts 10:34-36, in Malila and English)

Mark and Laura

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SIL International, Box 60368, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

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SIL International · Box 60368 · Dar Es Salaam · Tanzania

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