Yesterday the Wycliffe International Americas Area leadershipmet and I was with tham as I have been in Panama and Jamaica (see those blogs for more).
I love the fact that the "first" language of wider communication in this set of meetings is Spanish, then English and then Portugese. This means that I have to pay more attention (or my mind wanders more easily when I don't) and that I spend most of the time with headphones on and the dial tuned to 88.3 for simultaneous translation.
Let me say here that these servants who do this translation work are my heros! I can't imagine all that they have to do intelectually to do this job so well. I'm grateful for their gifting and their willingness to stand in the gap.
I'm becoming more and more convinced that I should find a way to work on learning Spanish. I've said this with some regualrity ever since my first trip to Costa Rica with Faith Church (Indy). Many of my friends and colleagues would agree that this is a good thing for me to do.
On top of that, Kirk Franklin (the Director of Wycliffe Bible Translators International, not the singer) said in his very inspirational closing comments just a couple of days ago that we each should choose one of the 9 official languages of this organization and learn it between now and the next convention. It was convicting in a good way.
Having said that...and knowing myself all too well...I would be happy for you to pray that I will do what I intend to do about this.
At this gathering we celebrated the 25th Anniversary of ALEM (Brazillian organization which supports Vision 2025 and which is part of A Toda Lengua. To see more about them (and read more if you can read Portugese) go to their website. You can also follow the link in the text to the A Toda Lengua website to see about them. You can read much of that site in English or Spanish.
This photo is of four of the ALEM leaders as well as people from SIL in Brazil and one other Brazilian leader. After a recognition and hearing from them, we gathered around them an prayed for their ongoing ministry. I'd love to visit Brazil some day.