The letter you sent has been translated and read to me. (Ezra 4:18 NLT)
Happy International Translation Day!
For many years, the church has celebrated September 30 as a day to honour the Bible translation work of Jerome, who translated the Bible into the Latin Vulgate, the lingua franca of the 4th Century AD, so that people in his community could understand it. He believed, as we do, that God wants his Word to be accessible and understood by all people. And we also rejoice that the Bible is translatable, and that Scripture portions have been translated into at least 3350 languages worldwide (http://www.wycliffe.net/en/statistics).
In 2017, September 30 was declared to be an internationally recognized day to celebrate the work of translators in general – International Translation Day. It is now widely acknowledged that the work of translation promotes peace, is crucial for development work and education, and enables cross-cultural communication and understanding. You are part of an important work that truly is bringing peace on earth! For more information on International Translation Day, see https://www.fit-ift.org/international-translation-day/.
This year, 2019, has been celebrated worldwide as the International Year of Indigenous Languages. Language remains vital for identity and cultural transmission. And as minority communities and their languages feel the pressure of globalisation, it is wonderful that the work of preserving minority languages is receiving attention. There is no better way to celebrate a community and its language.
As Christians, we know that God delights in all languages and people groups. The Lord loves the small. And so being part of a translation movement that is both bigger than us, in terms of global scale and God-honouring significance, and that also delights in the local, unique and small is such an amazing privilege.
We are thankful for every partner with us in this work! We praise God for people’s commitment to seeing communities thrive through language development and translation work. We thank the Lord and pray for all of those involved in translation work. God bless you as celebrate the worldwide work of translation. A very happy International Translation Day to you!