written by Tim Gilmore (Translation Advisor)

We set out on a Community Test to see if the translation work we were doing would be clear and natural to everyday people living out in the Zinza communities. We were in a great mood as our group of three (Pastor Julius Lukafuba, Barthazari and myself) travelled for a whole week visiting villages, repeating the same task with different groups, sometimes young, sometimes old; male and female.  In each place we got answers to some long held questions, along with suggestions for minor improvements, and everywhere people were very pleased. 

This positive response from the community did a lot to make up for the problem we had encountered the very first night, when Pastor Lukafuba’s money, glasses, and checking notes were all stolen from his guest house room, which he had left momentarily.  We all gathered and prayed together about the situation, as it was going to be quite difficult for Pastor Lukafuba to operate without his reading glasses; also what would he do without the questions he had prepared to ask people in each village?

However, as the week went on, we found other ways to check our work without Pastor Lukafuba needing to read, and he remembered much of what he had wanted to ask.  Concerning the loss of money (about $40-a lot of money here), we saw how God provided Pastor Lukafuba with gifts from various Zinza friends along our journey, e.g. sacks of corn and rice and fruit for his family for his return home.  When we passed through the city of Mwanza on our way home, I was able to help him to replace his reading glasses. 

So, despite the disappointment of the theft, we arrived home knowing the Lord had been with us, and encouraged about the progress of our translation.

photo above: Community testing in a Zinza village (photo: Tim Gilmore)