Pray With Us

Mark and Laura Woodward, Wycliffe Bible Translators, Tanzania

Dear <<First Name>>,

We are thankful for your prayers for us over the last couple of months, which has been a busy time. However, we are now in a period of waiting, as our work permits are in the process of being renewed.

Orientation for new staff

Part of Laura's role involves helping to give introductory training to new international staff arriving in Tanzania. In January we welcomed five adults and three children, who will be serving Bible translation projects throughout the country.

Laura helped to coordinate this orientation course, giving the participants a strong foundation for life and work in Tanzania, as well as orientation to our organisation and policies. These participants are now continuing with learning Swahili, before starting their work assignments in the coming months.
Planning Meetings
The first few months of 2018 are very busy as Mark helps to guide the Mara, Mbeya and Katavi projects (representing 20 languages) through a process of planning together with community members and funders, creating proposals and budgets, and then starting to implement those plans.

One key part of this process involves inviting representatives of each language community to meet with our colleagues, and with representatives of the international funding organisations, to all agree on the way forward for the project in their language community. These meetings happened in early March in Mbeya, and were very encouraging for all involved. One bishop commented that the meetings had been a "conversion experience" for him, and that he was now committed to doing all he could to promote the work in his church and community.

These all-partner planning meetings will take place in Mara next week (9-13th April) and in Katavi from 15-17th May. Please pray for wisdom for all involved in these meetings.
Nyakyusa New Testament to be Printed!
Just yesterday, Mark heard that the Nyakyusa New Testament has finished being typeset and checked, and is ready to be sent off for the final stage of printing! We pray that this goes well, and that the 800,000 Nyakyusa speakers in southwest Tanzania would soon have access to these Scriptures.
Mark met with leaders of various Bible agencies in Morogoro last month
A new role for Laura
Recently Laura was asked to take on a temporary new role as the Strategic Leader for Staff Care on the Global Team for Care and Wellbeing, while a colleague is on maternity leave. This means liaising with other staff who are working to promote healthy cross-cultural living and working environments around the world, and giving input into their overall strategy.

Please pray for wisdom for Laura as she shares her unique perspective within this team, and contributes to the strategic direction of this work around the world.
Work Permits
Every two years all our non-citizen staff are required to apply for work permit renewals. While this is normally fairly straightforward, at times there are requirements that cause the process to be delayed. Currently the government Department of Labour has put permits for our organisation on hold until they can conduct a routine inspection.

Since our permits have now expired, this means that we are now unable to work here in Tanzania. This is difficult at this key time, with community members and funders planning to arrive for key meetings in Mara next week!

We are hopeful that the inspection will take place in the next week or two, and permits can be issued again after that. Please pray for a timely resolution of this work permit situation, so that we and several of our colleagues can start working again soon.
Laura with her supervisor, Ruth
An unexpected guest, Olga, who has been hanging out by our front door for the past few weeks
We have also welcomed three chickens into our garden
The garden has sprung to life, with the rain of the last few months
Meanwhile, we are enjoying a period of rest as we await the issuing of our work permits. We have just enjoyed two whole weeks at home alone, with no travel, for the first time since we arrived back in Tanzania last June!

While there are things that we can do informally from home, we are very much praying that the work permits are issued soon.

Thank you!

Many thanks for all that you do to support us in prayer and financially. As we see the importance of this work to church leaders and community members, and as we sit with them to plan the future of translation projects, we are aware that you are an important part of this partnership.

We are excited to see translation work moving forward, as well as literacy and Scripture engagement, and a lot of other logistical support throughout Tanzania and Uganda. Thank you for all that you do to make this possible!

Abakiikʉlʉ abo balɨnkʉtiila, balɨnkwinama paasi. Looli abandʉmi bala balɨnkʉbabʉʉla balɨnkʉtɨ, “Fiki mukʉndonda ʉmʉʉmi mbafwe? Akajapo apa! Asyʉkile! Namukʉmbʉkege amasyʉ aga aababʉʉlile, bo alɨ na nuumwe mu Galilai, aatile, ‘Mpaka Nnyamundʉ abɨɨkigwe kʉ batʉlanongwa, akomeligwe pa kɨkohekano, na pi isikʉ lya bʉtatʉ asyʉke!’”

The women were terrified and bowed with their faces to the ground. Then the men asked, “Why are you looking among the dead for someone who is alive? He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Remember what he told you back in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be betrayed into the hands of sinful men and be crucified, and that he would rise again on the third day.” (Luke 24:5-7 in Nyakyusa and English).

Mark and Laura

Our mailing address is:
SIL International, PO Box 60368, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

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SIL International · Box 60368 · Dar Es Salaam · Tanzania

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