A major project is set to provide bibles in Indigenous languages, and Griffith has helped the project on it’s way.
Representative for the The Bible Society’s RIMS (Remote Indigenous Ministries Support) Project Richard Allcock recently visited Griffith on a fundraising mission, and said the “overwhelming” response from the community was amazing.
“This project was important to preserve language and religion for Australia’s first people,” Mr Allcock said.
“It encompasses all Christian denominations, and is extremely important in preserving Aboriginal culture.”
This major project is part of The Bible Society’s RIMS (Remote Indigenous Ministries Support) Project, and is part of The Bible Society of Australia’s 200th Anniversary push to provide scriptures Aboriginals.
“Funding is needed to support the printing and distribution of the Murrinhpatha Mini Bible, Modern Tiwi project, Eastern and Central Arrernte Bible translation (New Testament and Old Testament portions) and Kriol Audio Indigenous Scriptures for our Indigenous brothers and sisters in Australia,” Mr Allcock said.
The Project is divided into four fundamental areas: Publication of Indigenous Bibles, recording of Indigenous scripture, supporting indigenous translation, designing Indigenous Bible resources and workshops.
Audio scriptures are a vital part of this project, as Australia indigenous culture is predominately an oral ‘story-telling’ culture in which information and traditions are handed down from one generation to the next in the form of verbal stories.
“In my own opinion, when I met a few people in Darwin, I went up with one of the translators. I was told by people there this project has a huge impact on the communities in the Northern Territory and certain parts of South Australia by engaging with scriptures and the word of God,” Mr Allcock said.
“In this modern day and age a lot of people leave their communities and go wayward, but by having the resources supplied to the community this is also spiritual food that is much-need and much-deserved.”
“It’s stabilising the people that want to be stabilised - in their own culture.”
For some indigenous languages the Bible translation work is the first and only piece of written language. These people are used to hearing their language in spoken form rather than reading it.
As a result, reading is not as valued a skill in many remote communities, many Indigenous Christians in these communities told the RIMS their motivation to read well was purely so they could read the Bible.
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