A Bible translation group uses cultural pride to address spiritual needs.

By October 28, 2005

India (MNN)–The World Bible Translation Center is trying to reach a people group who remain fiercely independent of the prevailing culture in India.

Spoken in the Awadh (Oudh) region of Uttar Pradesh, WBTC’s Ervin Bishop says Awadhi has been consdiered a dialect of Hindi for years. But the speakers have their own literature and folklore to share, a sub-culture in the prevailing one.

Not only did that cultural need provide a platform for outreach, Bishop says the linguistic needs were ready-met. “It has the same alphabet and shares the same features of the Hindi language. The education in those areas has been in Hindi, but the people have held on to their language and they’re very receptive to publications.”

That reception makes them open for a Bible in their own language. A New Testament was completed almost 10 years ago.

Bishop says the Old Testament is nearly ready for dedication. “The work has now been completed and, in fact, it’s being printed as we speak. Plans are to introduce it in December, this year. It’ll take place in Bihar, which is the center of interest for Awadhi speakers.”

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