God's Word to the Islands
Neil and Kathy Vanaria serving in Papua New Guinea
This first page will remain static and all other pages will be changing.
Prayer and Newsletter updated March 17, 2014
The Fire Bible is Coming to Papua New Guinea
Thank you for visiting our website to share with us in the work God is doing in Papua New Guinea. It has been our joy to be missionaries in Papua New Guinea since 1988 and translators with the Mesem people of Morobe Province since 1993. In January of 2013, the Mesem people received the New Testament in their own language and are studying it with great joy. Realizing the importance of scripture we now enter a new phase of ministry, preparing a study Bible in the trade language of Papua New Guinea, so those without vernacular scriptures can continue to grow in their faith.
In this photo Newman, a young Mesem Man, proudly holds his copy of the Mesem New Testament. Until the early 90's the Mesem language was an unwritten language but thanks to the prayers and practical support of the Body of Christ, Mesem speakers now can read the scriptures and hold worship services in their own language. For the first time people can really understand the meaning of the good news and begin to study it for themselves. Each and every Mesem man, woman and child has been given the opportunity to have a New Testament. The Mesem men who worked on the translation are capable of drafting the Old Testament and plan to do so in the future.
But what of the hundreds of thousands of Papua New Guineans who have access only to a Bible in the trade language? The trade language is imprecise and very difficult to understand. One solution that has proved successful in other parts of the world is to create a study Bible, so that notes are available to help explain at length part of the text which are unclear due to the imprecise nature of the trade language. These notes, originally created by a missionary to Latin America, have been used all over the world to help indigenous pastors learn more about scripture and lead their congregation, as well as to challenge the average reader to dig more deeply into the Word of God.
The impact of scripture in the lives of the Mesem people has been evident as people are making decisions to move from the bondage of traditional animism to the freedom of living in reconciled relationship with their Creator through the sacrifice of Jesus on our behalf.This freedom allows people to live without fear in the magnificient creation God has given them. It is our desire to see this opportunity given to as many people as possible as soon as possible, that they might have the best possible witness of the scriptures available to them..
God's desire is that all people, everywhere will praise His Name. Will you join with us in seeing the Lord's Name made great in all the earth?