StoryTogether

"Before we took the StoryTogether training, we had worked with local believers to prepare Bible stories in their minority language. But using the StoryTogether process really improved the stories. On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being perfect, I'd say our earlier stories were about 3-4 in quality and the new stories are about 6-7. That's big improvement. Translation consultants are helping us get the stories to 8-10 in quality. The StoryTogether process has been well worth it. We've gotten good quality Bible stories in a matter of weeks instead of years. Our local partners are eager to share these improved stories and report dozens coming to faith in response to them."

— Missionary

"The StoryTogether process has been well worth it. We've gotten good quality Bible stories in a matter of weeks instead of years. Our local partners are eager to share these improved stories and report dozens coming to faith in response to them."

— Missionary

"We've gotten good quality Bible stories in a matter of weeks instead of years."

— Missionary

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What is a StoryTogether project?

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A StoryTogether project is a coordinated series of actions to develop accurate and appealing Bible stories that are crafted by mother tongue speakers and used by them and others to present the gospel, equip disciples of Jesus, and form healthy, reproducing churches.

What is the StoryTogether process?

The StoryTogether process is a multi-lingual, multi-crafter, and multi-source method for multiplying followers of Jesus, oral Bible stories, and churches.

  1. By "multi-lingual," we mean it is a collaborative process in which speakers of different languages work with each other to put Bible stories into their various languages.
  2. By "multi-crafter," we mean that the stories are crafted by teams of people, not by an individual working alone.
  3. By "multi-source," we refer to the fact that the teams of story crafters develop an intimate knowledge of the Bible stories through multiple Scripture resources rather than simply working from a single source of the biblical story, such as an existing printed story in English, Spanish, or French.

The process is not about just producing high–quality Bible stories, or even audio recordings of Bible stories, although it does both. These stories are a means to an end. The end is to see people have an opportunity come to faith in Christ and live the abundant life. That happens as they hear the biblical stories, believe, grow in their knowledge and obedience to him, and fellowship with others in healthy churches that start other churches.

Q & A

Questions

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Answers

 
 
  • What sets StoryTogether apart from other processes for putting Bible stories into other languages?

    The StoryTogether process is more systematic and rigorous than most instances of Bible storying, but it is more flexible, less tedious, and much faster than Bible translation processes.

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    The StoryTogether (ST) process includes careful community testing of the stories, followed by revisions, more testing, and so on until the story is of acceptable quality. Community testing involves telling or playing recordings of the crafted stories for ordinary people in the community and dialoging with them about the stories to see if they understood the meaning and if they can repeat them. StoryTogether projects also include backtranslation, which is "the process of translating a document that has already been translated into a foreign language back to the original language--preferably by an independent translator." In ST projects we obtain an oral backtranslation of oral stories into a language that a theological reviewer can use to evaluate the stories.

    Most of the facilitators in the StoryTogether pilot projects were experienced with Chronological Bible Storying. They found the community testing process to be an essential step in improving the quality of the stories. After using the StoryTogether process, each of them said in essence, "Knowing what I now know about community testing--and having caught the many mistakes that I didn't realize were there--I would never want to develop a set of Bible stories without community testing."

    The StoryTogether process is also distinctive in that it is capable of working with multiple languages and dialects simultaneously in a single workshop. It is possible for a skilled individual facilitator to work with as many as four different languages in a single workshop. This multiplies the impact of the facilitator's expertise. A skilled pair of facilitators could conceivably facilitate projects in two dozen languages in a given year. Their expertise can affect many more languages than if they were to become experts in just one language and be the primary translators themselves.

    The StoryTogether process is designed not to require literacy on the part of the story crafting team. This means that the process can go forward immediately instead of having to wait until team members acquire the levels of literacy necessary in other approaches. By virtue of being entirely oral, this story crafting process can be done in languages that do not have an alphabet and writing system.

    The StoryTogether process was developed so as not to require a trained Bible translator to facilitate it or a professional linguist to serve as a consultant to it. There are too few of these valuable resource persons to meet the huge need. So this team-of-teams process utilizes mother tongue speakers' expertise with their own language—and group interaction—to refine and improve the stories. Biblically knowledgeable facilitators and theological reviewers help teams of mother tongue story crafters to make sure they've achieved acceptable standards of quality in the stories they produce. (If trained Bible translators and professional linguists are available, they can be involved in the ST process to improve the stories even further.)

    The StoryTogether process is not about simply producing audio Bible stories. It is focused on helping people come to faith in Christ, grow as his disciples, function as part of a healthy church, and reproduce their faith in the lives of other people.

  • How do you work with different languages in the same workshop?

    Everyone who participates in a given workshop needs to speak a single shared language.

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    Usually this is a national or international language. Many people who speak a minority language as their mother tongue also speak one of these national or international languages.

  • How do the participants help each other on their stories if they all speak different languages?

    They can speak to each other in the shared trade or national language.

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    Additionally, many of the people who will be on storycrafting teams in StoryTogether projects live in multilingual communities. So in addition to their own language, they may speak a market language and/or a national language. They often hear other languages spoken, so even if they don't speak those languages comfortably themselves, they are able to follow pretty well the stories told in those languages.

    Ideally, the languages represented at a given StoryTogether workshop will be related languages. When the participants all speak related languages it makes it easier for them to give meaningful feedback to each other. A linguistic solution that works in one language may also work in the related languages. We've been pleasantly surprised, however, to find that even when one of the languages at a workshop is dissimilar from the others, the participants still benefited significantly from seeing the nonverbal aspects of the storytelling style of the other language teams. Just watching the posture, movement, gestures, and facial expressions was often stimulating and instructive. And of course it is possible to get ideas from storytellers' rate of speech, use of pauses, volume, and pitch even when we don't understand their language.

  • Is this process actually Bible translation?

    No, it isn't, but it can be adapted for translating the Bible.

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    The StoryTogether process includes many activities that are part of Bible translation.

    • It involves reading and/or hearing stories from the Bible in one language and telling them in another language.
    • It gives careful attention to key terms in the biblical passage.
    • It draws on suggestions that respected Bible translation organizations have developed for dealing with the various linguistic challenges that arise in putting biblical content into the languages of the world.
    • It utilizes techniques for working with multiple languages in a single workshop that The Seed Company, a Bible translation organization, developed for its translation projects.
    • It does community testing of the stories to make sure that they are effective.
    • It utilizes the process of backtranslation to evaluate and, if necessary, correct the biblical stories that teams produce.
    • It requires that someone with theological training review the biblical accuracy of the stories that teams produce.
    • It produces high-quality audio recordings of the biblical stories that can be used in a variety of ways.

    It is certainly possible to use the StoryTogether process with somewhat different guidelines that would result in it being a component of a Bible translation project. IMB and The Seed Company have partnered in projects designed to produce both audio recordings of crafted oral Bible stories by using this process which then led into a written translation project. The Seed Company co-sponsors other projects that use their process from which the StoryTogether process was adapted, for producing oral Bible stories and for training Bible storytellers as part of a larger Bible translation project. In those instances the correct answer would be, "Yes, this is a helpful component to a Bible translation process."

    But as IMB more often practices it, we do not think of the StoryTogether process as being Bible translation per se. We think of the stories that result from this process as being a form of biblical proclamation, not Bible translation. That is, they should be evaluated by the standards one applies to preaching or teaching. We expect the stories to be highly accurate (far closer to the words of Scripture than any sermon); in fact, we have a step in which we verify that every assertion in the biblical story is justified by Scripture. But the stories are crafted with the experience of storytelling in mind, not with a focus on their being a translation.

    As local people put the Bible story into their own storytelling style, they shape the story in ways that may not follow translation standards, especially the standards of those who prefer a formal equivalence approach to Bible translation. (Formal equivalence seeks to preserve the lexical details and grammatical structure of the original language.) These departures from strict standards of Bible translation, however, may be part of telling the story effectively in their cultural storytelling style.

    • ST teams may re-sequence the events of the biblical story to follow patterns of development that their culture uses when telling a story. In a Kenyan culture, the storyteller begins by summarizing the story in one sentence. For example, "This is the story of how David defeated the giant Goliath, cut off his head, and delivered Israel from the Philistines." In that culture they end their stories with the same one-sentence summary they began with. This is not how the Bible usually tells its stories, but it is how people in certain cultures expect a good story to be told.
    • ST teams may use repetition of certain key sentences or key phrases, which makes for good storytelling in their culture, but which is not, strictly speaking, the wording of the Bible itself. The Bible may say the phrase or sentence once, but in their story the team may use that same phrase repeatedly. This is especially common in cultures where storytelling involves a mix of speaking and singing.
    • Storytellers sometimes convert indirect speech into direct speech in order to make a story more vivid and emotionally engaging. For example, in the story of the Gerasene demoniac, Mark says, "As he was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed with demons begged him that he might be with him" (Mk. 5:19 ESV). ST teams have frequently said in their stories, "As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed with demons begged Jesus: 'Jesus, please, please let me go with you!'" Note also how for clarity the storytellers use "Jesus" instead of the pronouns "he" and "him" and use the repeated "please" to add bring out the pleading quality of "begged."
    • At times, good storytelling requires that the storyteller make explicit in the crafted story information that is only implicit in the biblical story. For example, Jesus' parable of the Good Samaritan does not explain what a Samaritan was. He did not need to explain that; his audience knew about Samaritans and the animosity between them and the Jews. When people do not have a printed Bible, with its marginal notes and footnotes to clarify this kind of information, then the storyteller may make this information available to his listener by making the implicit information explicit in the story. So, a storyteller might say, "Along came a despised Samaritan," where the adjective "despised" gives today's listeners a basic understanding that Jesus' listeners had on that occasion. Whenever feasible, we prefer to give background information and explanatory information before we tell the story itself, rather than include it within the story. However we sometimes make the implicit information explicit within the crafted biblical story itself.

    In addition, in some StoryTogether projects, the stories may be based on one passage of Scripture, but may include selected details from other passages of Scripture that discuss the same event. For example, no biblical author includes more than three of Jesus' seven sayings from the cross. But a storyteller might want to include all seven when she tells the story of Jesus' crucifixion. Drawing from multiple passages can make the told biblical story more factually complete, easier to understand, or more meaningful, but the resulting crafted story is not Bible translation per se. Every assertion in the crafted story will be biblically anchored, but the crafted story may draw from more than one biblical passage. Sponsors of a StoryTogether project could choose not to take this step; they may have good reasons to insist that each crafted story be based on a single passage of Scripture. This is acceptable in a StoryTogether project whenever the local situation makes this seem advisable.

  • Is a StoryTogether project simply about making recordings of Bible stories?

    No, the process has several important goals. Making recordings of Bible stories is only one of them, and it is not the ultimate goal. The ultimate goal of a StoryTogether project is to equip Christians to tell biblical stories in their language and storytelling style in an accurate and interesting way within their community, lead people to faith in Christ, and disciple them into healthy reproducing churches. Developing the stories is a critically important means to this end.

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    Simply creating the stories and recordings of them is not the ultimate aim of a StoryTogether project. However, in some cases where there is already an effective evangelism, discipleship, and church planting strategy in place, the StoryTogether process can be used to generate Bible stories to be used in the existing outreach. The emphasis in the workshop on telling stories in ministry may be less because the participants are already actively doing it.

  • How much does it cost to do a StoryTogether process?

    The chief costs of a StoryTogether process are travel, housing, and meals for the workshops. Those vary from project to project. ST projects require a pair of audio recorders. Good quality digital recorders can be purchased for under $100 USD per language team.

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    The StoryTogether process has been developed with the hope that it can be inexpensive, so that groups of local believers could continue crafting stories in their language without needing large sums of money. These projects do not require expensive equipment. Teams need some kind of audio recording device, but we have found in our workshops outside the United States that some of our workshop participants already had cell phones capable of making audio recordings. Digital audio recorders can be purchased inexpensively, but buying the cheapest available recorders often leads to trouble. We have had good success with Olympus digital recorders costing about $40-50 USD each.

    The chief costs of a StoryTogether project are related to travel to attend workshops and the cost of meals and housing during the workshops. In some cases the story crafters' churches have provided financial support.

    The other primary cost of a StoryTogether project is the financial support that may be necessary if people are to work at the story crafting consistently. When sponsors want to produce stories quickly, then they frequently must help the story crafters to work at it consistently. If not, the progress is understandably slower. How much this costs depends on the local cost of living.

  • Does a StoryTogether project violate guidelines against creating financial dependency?

    If handled well, it shouldn't.

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    Because a StoryTogether project has the potential of providing accurate, appealing biblical stories to everyone who speaks that language, it is justified to spend church or mission funding on it. Historically speaking, very few language groups have translated the Bible themselves initially. That has almost always been reliant on outside funding. A similar situation exists with regard to putting Bible stories in languages that do not have them. Only a few people would receive financial support in a ST project; this is different from paying outside funds to every pastor or evangelist, which does create dependency.

  • Who does the story crafting?

    In a StoryTogether project, the primary story crafters are native speakers of that language.

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    Cultural outsiders may provide training to them, coach them as they do it, and help with the evaluation, especially the biblical and theological evaluation of stories. But the chief responsibility lies on the shoulders of the cultural insiders who speak that language as their mother tongue.

    This approach improves the quality of the resulting stories and the pace at which they can be produced because it relies on people who already know intimately their own language and their own storytelling customs. It has been proven consistently in the realm of Bible translation that mother tongue speakers can be excellent translators.

  • If I'm trying to put together a team for a StoryTogether project, what characteristics should I look for in people on the team?

    An ideal team size is 3 to 5 people. Among those 3 to 5 we would like to have both men and women. It is helpful to have at least one person who is biblically knowledgeable and theologically informed. It is possible to have a successful project without such a person, however, especially in situations where there are few or no Christians. Every member of a StoryTogether team should be someone who enjoys experimenting with language and is sensitive to how his or her language works.

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    People who enjoy wordplay, make puns, and like to compare their language to other languages are often good candidates for a StoryTogether team. It is helpful to have team members who are representative of the intended audience for the stories. For example, a story crafting team made up of highly educated pastors and Bible teachers is less likely to come out with stories that appeal to the common person. Pastors tend to use technical language and biblical terminology that doesn't communicate as well. An uneducated farmer or grandmother who is a skilled storyteller is often an excellent contributor to the StoryTogether team.

  • What stories do you develop in a StoryTogether project?

    In the first workshop or two, the primary focus is on training the local teams in the StoryTogether process. They need opportunity to develop their skills and their confidence. So we begin with shorter and simpler stories. We often use a series of stories taken from Mark 4-5 to teach the StoryTogether process. These also happen to be stories that are useful in ministry. Once the teams have been trained in the StoryTogether process and have successfully worked through several stories of increasing difficulty, then the team members and other stakeholders can decide what additional biblical stories they want to develop.

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    In some StoryTogether projects, project sponsors agree in advance on what stories will be developed. They have need of specific stories for their various teaching aims, so this is a point of discussion in the early phases of planning.

  • How much training does it take to be a facilitator of a StoryTogether project?

    Christian workers who have experience with Bible storying, theological training and good language skills can pick up the StoryTogether process pretty quickly. If they observe and assist in a two-week StoryTogether workshop, that will prepare them to co-lead a StoryTogether workshop. But even experienced practitioners have found it helpful to attend three StoryTogether workshops before they try to facilitate one independently.

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    We want trainees to observe at first, then assist the facilitators in tasks of increasing complexity. Later they can lead a workshop with the supportive coaching of an experienced facilitator, and then finally facilitate the process independently once they and their coach are convinced that they are ready to do so. Depending on people's background, knowledge, skills, and confidence, they will move at different speeds toward being ready to facilitate the process independently.

  • Do the people in the StoryTogether project do anything with the stories besides create them and record them?

    StoryTogether participants are strongly encouraged to share the stories with family and friends and others in their community.

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    Wherever circumstances permit, they go into the community in the late afternoon and evening during the workshop to share the stories with people who speak their language. In this way they combine community testing with outreach efforts. The facilitators help them realize that the most natural testing of all is the testing that comes in the course of sharing the stories with those who have never heard the gospel. A complete StoryTogether workshop includes vision casting for sharing the stories, seeing people come to faith, and the new believers likewise learning and sharing the stories with others. The StoryTogether workshop, however, does not teach a specific evangelistic or discipleship method. If the existing strategy is already oriented to a particular evangelistic presentation it can be incorporated into the StoryTogether workshop, as long as it is compatible with the oral, narrative thrust of the workshop.

  • What is community testing?

    Community testing involves taking the biblical stories that the small group has crafted and presenting them to people who speak the language in which the story has been prepared. Teams dialog with ordinary speakers of the language to evaluate whether the stories meet our standards for accuracy, naturalness, understandability, and oral repeatability.

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    Sometimes this testing is done using a live telling of the story; in other situations the testing is done using the audio recording of the story. There are advantages and disadvantages to each approach. The participants ask those who have heard the story to answer questions about it and to retell it. The participants seek permission to record the answers and the effort to retell it. Later the teams use those recordings to evaluate how well the persons in the community understood the story and how repeatable their story seems to be. Participants also learn to ask open-ended questions as a way of discerning the comprehension of the story by members of the community. All this information guides the ST team as they revise the story to ensure that is biblically accurate, natural, understandable, and repeatable.

  • Does anyone check the stories for accuracy?

    Yes, every story is checked for accuracy. Decisions about who does the checking depend on the skills and availability of the project facilitator, the number of languages represented in the project, and the aims of the project.

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    When the members of a language team believe that they have their story in finished form, they provide a copy to the workshop facilitator, who works with them to verify that every assertion in the story has a legitimate biblical basis. The facilitator works with them to see if anything essential to the story has been left out. The facilitator also reviews with them the results of the community testing to determine that the listeners understood the story accurately. If members of the community repeatedly misunderstood the story, then the team works together to determine if there is some factor in the story that is contributing to misunderstanding. They work until they believe they have created a story that has the best possible chance of communicating the biblical message accurately. If the story is being crafted in a language which has a written Scripture, then of course the told version is compared to the written translation and adjusted as needed. If the stories are being crafted as part of a Bible translation project, then they are checked according to accepted translation criteria.

  • How accurate do the stories have to be to be approved?

    Stories prepared in a translation-oriented project meet the standards of Bible translation. Stories prepared for use as proclamation, that is, in evangelism, discipleship, leadership training, and the like, may not include embellishment or speculation. Every assertion in a crafted biblical story needs to be supported in Scripture.

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    Careful exegesis of Scripture underlies these decisions about what the Bible teaches and what the story can and must say. The process of verifying biblical accuracy is called "anchoring." If there is a written form of the language, the simplest way to do the anchoring process is to write or type a transcript of the oral story and then go over it assertion by assertion, penciling in Scripture references for each assertion. If the stories are in an unwritten language, we usually make a written transcript of the oral backtranslation and use that to do the anchoring. Theologically knowledgeable people are invited to review the stories for biblical and theological content. If they find problems they notify the project manager, who works with the team to address the problems.

  • Do the stories that these teams create follow the Scripture exactly?

    The StoryTogether process makes sure that every assertion in the biblical stories that we produce is substantiated by Scripture. We do not allow the storyteller to embellish the story with his or her own imagination. But the stories do not necessarily follow the wording of Scripture exactly. In many situations where we have StoryTogether projects, this is impossible anyway, because those languages do not have a written Scripture.

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    In situations where there is a Bible translation, the StoryTogether teams will use the written translation as a reference, but they are not seeking simply to produce an audio version of the printed Scripture. A told story is often different from a written story, so the told stories that the StoryTogether process produces may be different from the wording of Scripture at some points, even though the told stories may quote Scripture verbatim at other points in the story. See the answer to the question, "Is this process actually Bible translation?"

  • How many stories can you do in a single workshop?

    This varies considerably, depending on the experience of the story crafting team and the length of the workshop. In initial story crafting workshops, when the teams are learning the ST process, we have seen teams finish from 3 to 5 good-quality Bible stories in 10 workshop days. Experienced teams working intensively and efficiently have produced 5-8 high-quality stories and audio recordings in a two-week workshop.

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    In some cases the story crafters were unfamiliar with the Bible, so they needed more help with understanding the biblical stories before they could begin crafting them. Their productivity was lower as a result.

  • How many stories could a team produced in a year's time?

    Teams who are working at story crafting consistently can produce an average of about one well-crafted, community-checked, backtranslated, theologically-reviewed and audio-recorded story per week. But if the team is not able to work at the crafting task consistently, the pace can be much slower.

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    The pace at which teams can produce stories is also affected by the education and ability of the team members and availability of Scripture in other languages that they understand well. In some cases the pace is also affected by social disruption, illness, changes in the composition of the team, and such matters. As in all endeavors, the motivation level and work ethic of the team members are also a factor.

  • Where has this approach been used previously?

    Among other places, it has been used in Papua New Guinea, Madagascar, West Africa, South Africa, Peru, and in multiple locations in South Asia and East Asia.

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    Can you help us add another country to the list?

  • Could this process be used in North America?

    Yes. This process can be used anywhere.

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    It offers a useful way of getting Bible stories into languages of minority groups in the United States and Canada. Churches and other ministries reaching out to immigrants may find this a good process for helping immigrants have oral Bible stories in the language of their heart.

  • Where does funding come from for projects like this?

    Funding comes from a variety of sources. Many projects are the result of a partnership between local Christians and churches and missionary organizations of various kinds.

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    Christian foundations have funded some projects, as have individual donors, although in these cases they have consistently partnered with others who also bring resources to the project. Sometimes the contributions from partners can be non-cash contributions that are valuable. Individual congregations may allow use of their facilities and provide meals to the teams as they craft the stories. Churches may free up some of their capable leaders to be involved in the project while continuing their financial support to them.

  • What are the primary challenges you have seen thus far in the StoryTogether projects?

    The most frequent challenges have to do with the fact that this is a team-of-teams approach. Simply getting people together to work collaboratively is a challenge for a variety of reasons.

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    • In some cases it is a security risk to get that many people together in one place.
    • Sometimes the various small teams are reluctant to work with each other because their different communities have a history of conflict or because of lack of trust toward strangers.
    • Some story crafters cannot be off work for one or two weeks.
    • Rural people sometimes are not accustomed to travel away from home. Taking them to meet with other teams is disruptive to them and their family.
    • Coordinating schedules can sometimes be difficult.
    • Agreeing on the set of stories that all the groups are going to work on takes some negotiating.

    The project managers for the StoryTogether pilot projects have found various ways to address these difficulties.

    • In some cases local churches have raised funds to cover the travel, housing, and meal expenses during the workshops.
    • In other cases project sponsors have provided funds to make up the loss of income during the time the participants took off work to attend the workshop.
    • In still other projects, the sponsors have employed people to do the story crafting tasks (in addition to other conventional translation tasks).
    • Another solution is to work with only two or three language groups, rather than having a larger project with half a dozen or more language groups involved. In projects with only two or three language groups, there are trade-offs. They give up some interaction in order to be able to meet closer to where the two or three language groups live and to keep the size of their meeting small enough not to draw unwanted attention.

    In some of the StoryTogether projects, it has not been a problem for the teams to get together for two weeks every three months to compare progress on the stories they've worked on independently during the previous three months. These are places where churches are more numerous, the story crafting participants are full-time church or denominational workers or their spouses, and there are no security issues.

    In one StoryTogether project, after the initial two-week training workshop, members of the small teams have not gotten together; instead, the workshop facilitator has transmitted the audio recordings from one small group to the others. So the three small groups have given feedback to each other based on hearing the audio recordings. This is not as good as seeing the stories told live and responding to the whole event of storytelling, but it does ensure that each group does get feedback from other groups. In that particular project, the project facilitator meets with one small crafting group every Tuesday, meets with another small crafting group every Wednesday, and meets with a third small crafting group one weekend a month in the distant rural area where they live.

  • I would like to have a StoryTogether project for the people with whom I work. How I get started?

    Planning for a StoryTogether project begins with an individual Christian, a church, a mission organization, or another entity that sees the need for and value of this project and who is willing to take the lead in organizing it. If the dream begins with an individual, we encourage the individual to seek out partners who share the vision and who will share responsibility for the StoryTogether project. This collection of interested individuals and entities are what we refer to as the "project sponsors" of the StoryTogether project.

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    The project sponsors pray for the project, cast a vision for it, enlist the necessary people to be involved, arrange funding and other resources, and connect the StoryTogether project to other ministry that is already underway or that is planned. Frequently the project sponsors are strategists or team leaders from mission organizations who see the need for Bible stories to strengthen their existing work with a people group or to enable them to begin outreach with a Bibleless language community. Potential project sponsors can write StoryTogether@IMB.org for more information.

  • How can I get this training for myself and some people I work with?

    You can send an e-mail to StoryTogether@IMB.org describing your interest in training and how you hope to use it.

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    Someone will be in touch with you about the opportunities that are available. Normally the StoryTogether training is on-the-job training in workshops where mother tongue speakers are crafting biblical stories into their language and storytelling style. These workshops are held in locations that serve the purposes of the project sponsors and the crafting teams.

    StoryTogether workshop facilitators have found that it is often helpful to participate in at least three workshops. At the first workshop the beginning facilitators primarily observe; they also preview and later review each day's events with the workshop facilitators. Depending on their background and experience, they may assist in certain tasks in the workshop. At the second workshop they will take a co-leading role and will receive considerable coaching from more experienced workshop facilitators. If the facilitators being trained are progressing well, then in the third workshop they will take primary leadership responsibility with an experienced facilitator observing, assisting as needed, and providing extensive coaching in the evenings in preparation for the next day's activities. If all goes well in those three workshops, then the facilitator may be encouraged to facilitate the next workshop independently, but with others to assist him or her. In some cases it may take more experience and practice before the facilitator feels comfortable with leading a workshop independently.

  • Can I get copies of your workshop plan and training materials?

    Much of the explanation about the StoryTogether process is available on this site or in our download area. The StoryTogether workshop plan and training materials are provided to people who attend the StoryTogether workshops.

  • Who manages these StoryTogether projects?

    Each StoryTogether project needs a project manager. The project manager coordinates planning within an entity or among several entities that sponsor a StoryTogether project.

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    The project manager has many important responsibilities:

    • The project manager coordinates details such as schedule, location and logistics for the workshops, housing and meals, and maintains regular communication with the local partners.
    • The project manager works with stakeholders in the selection of the languages that will be represented at the workshop and the individuals who will make up the story crafting teams.
    • The project manager coordinates the choice of which stories to craft with the project sponsors and the workshop facilitator.
    • The project manager is frequently asked to enlist several local non-Christians as subjects with whom the workshop facilitator can demonstrate how to test a story in community or how to elicit a backtranslation.

    The project manager should be selected by the church, ministry entity, or other partners who are sponsoring the project. The project manager will need good interpersonal and organizational skills and a good grasp of the process and outcomes of a StoryTogether project. In some cases the project manager will be responsible for following up with the individual teams after each workshop to encourage them to continue work on their stories between workshops.

    The project manager also enlists a workshop facilitator, or preferably, two or more workshop facilitators. The workshop facilitator is responsible for leading the workshop, coaching the story crafting, and supervising the checking and revision process. The project manager and workshop facilitator work together carefully to make sure that the meeting space is adequate for the needs and that the appropriate materials, teaching aids, and so forth are ready on site by the time the workshop begins. It is preferable for the workshop facilitator to provide the ongoing encouragement and guidance to the individual teams after the first workshop and throughout the duration of the project. But if the workshop facilitator is not able to do that, then the project manager or some other person needs to be available to interact consistently with the story crafting teams between workshops. This ongoing (often weekly) contact is essential for the teams' effective functioning and productivity. This is a critical part of the planning for a StoryTogether project; the project should not begin until it is clear who has this follow-up responsibility.

    Occasionally in smaller StoryTogether projects (ones that include only two or three language groups), the workshop facilitator may also take on the duties of a project manager. This is not recommended, however. In most cases the project manager should be someone other than the workshop facilitator.

    In some StoryTogether projects, the workshop facilitator will also provide the theological review for the stories that are crafted. Some sponsoring entities will decide, however, that another person should carry out the theological review of the stories. This third-party review is advisable, lending added credibility to the undertaking. The person doing it must understand the goals and values of the StoryTogether process. As StoryTogether sponsors are discussing a potential project, they should determine whether third-party theological review is required or merely desirable. For ST projects aiming at Bible translation, this third-party review is essential.

  • Are there trained consultants who check the quality of work in the StoryTogether projects?

    The StoryTogether process always includes theological review of the stories, but it does not require that this be a certified consultant of the sort that is common in written Bible translation projects. Sponsors of individual StoryTogether projects may choose to enlist someone in this role, especially if the stories are being crafted in a language in which there is no acceptable written translation of the Bible. But especially when an acceptable written translation of the Bible does exist, a theologically informed person can function in the theological review role. When the StoryTogether process is used for actual Bible translation, then checking by a qualified translation consultant is essential.

Give

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Argentine Sign Language

    Deaf Argentine (ASL):

    Nearly a quarter of a million people in Argentina are Deaf. To our knowledge, no Deaf-led churches exist. When Bible stories get crafted into Argentine Sign Language and begin to spread through the Deaf community of Argentina, effective evangelism, deep discipleship, effective training of leaders, and church planting will flourish. Is God leading you to provide His story in their language – their sign language - to Deaf Argentines so His Deaf-led church will grow? Let's do this, church!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Bengali Sign Language

    Deaf Bengali (BSL):

    Deaf Bengalis in Bangladesh are one of the largest Deaf people groups in the world without access to any Scripture stories in their heart language. There are almost 750,000 Deaf Bengalis, and they come from Muslim and Hindu backgrounds. Work must begin now to train Deaf Bengalis to craft Bible stories in Bengali Sign Language. It's all about establishing and multiplying His Church for the furtherance of God's kingdom among Deaf Bengalis. By faith let's see it come to pass!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Chinese Sign Language

    Deaf Chinese (CSL):

    Nearly seven million people are Deaf in China making them the world's largest unreached Deaf people group. About fifty Bible stories exist in Chinese Sign Language, but more stories are needed to increase growth of Deaf-led Chinese churches. Your church can help Deaf Chinese believers receive training in how to craft more sign language Bible stories. God's kingdom will expand among millions of Deaf Chinese as you help provide His story in their language of Sign.

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Colombia Sign Language

    Deaf Colombian (CSL):

    Many Deaf people in Colombia are open to the Gospel, but they don't have access to an understandable Bible. You can provide His story in their language when you support a series of StoryOne workshops for the Deaf of Colombia. They will learn how to craft Bible stories using sign language, and they'll discover ways to easily share those Bible stories with others. Since Colombia has 250,000 people who are Deaf, now is the time to help them get those sign language Bible stories!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Czech Sign Language

    Deaf Czechs (CSL):

    A small number of the 50,000 Deaf Czechs in Eastern Europe pledge their loyalty to Jesus. Some Bible stories in Czech Sign Language exist. Others need further revision. His Deaf-led church will grow when Bible stories come to life through the language of sign. As your church provides His story in their language, Deaf believers in the Czech Republic will be able to craft Bible stories to share His story with Deaf Czechs, and His Deaf-led church will grow!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Ecuadorian Sign Language

    Deaf Ecuadorian (ESL):

    We found Christ followers among Ecuador's 75,000 Deaf people, but very few leaders. There are a handful of churches where they gather, but no Bible stories exist in the language of their hearts: Ecuadorian Sign Language. Think of what will happen when we can provide His story in their language. Enhanced evangelism. Deeper discipleship. Increased Deaf-led church planting. Take on the Deaf Ecuadorian StoryOne project and watch God work through your church to reach the Deaf of Ecuador!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Egyptian Sign Language

    Deaf Egyptians (ESL):

    Egyptian Sign Language is the heart language of almost half a million Deaf in Egypt. Believers among them are few and far between. Deaf church leaders and Deaf-led churches are even fewer. Only eight known recorded Bible stories exist in Egyptian Sign Language, so Egyptian Christians want to develop more Bible stories using sign language to reach more Deaf men, women, students, and children across Egypt. They need your help to receive training to craft more stories to go from 8 to 88!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Ethiopian Sign Language

    Deaf Ethiopians (ESL):

    Nearly 450,000 people in Ethiopia have ears that cannot hear Words of Life. They are Deaf. Among them a few followers of Jesus meet together regularly. They don't have Bible stories using their sign language, but you can help give them those stories! Are you ready to see more Deaf Ethiopians follow Christ? Do you want to see more Deaf-led churches emerge and grow in Ethiopia? You can provide His story in their language to Deaf Ethiopians so they "hear" wonderful Words of Life!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Ghanaian Sign Language

    Deaf Ghanaian (GSL):

    Nearly 125,000 Deaf people live in Ghana. Some follow Jesus and meet in Deaf churches led by a few Deaf Christian leaders. A small set of Bible stories is available in Ghanaian Sign Language, but it's not enough. When additional Bible stories are developed and crafted by Deaf Ghanaian believers, the spiritual landscape among Deaf Ghanaian will change. Your church could spark that change as you provide His story in their language - in sign language - so His Deaf-led church in Ghana grows!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Hungarian Sign Language

    Deaf Hungarians (HSL):

    Nearly 50,000 people are Deaf in the Eastern European country of Hungary. The numbers of Deaf believers, leaders, and churches are negligible. This is due in some measure to more Bible stories needing revision in their language: Hungarian Sign Language. Without adequate Scripture, churches die. Believers struggle to grow. When you help Deaf believers in Hungary get trained to craft Bible stories in their unique sign language, His Deaf church will grow, and Deaf believers will grow and thrive.

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Indian Sign Language

    Deaf Indians (ISL):

    India is filled with over a billion people. Six million are Deaf. Deaf people in this vast Asian country need Bible stories crafted in their unique regional sign languages. As your church helps Deaf believers of India receive training to craft additional Bible stories using sign language, we'll see intentional evangelism that results in biblical, Deaf-led churches across India's Deaf communities. Let's collaborate to see how God provides His story in their language for the Deaf of India!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Indonesian Sign Language

    Deaf Indonesian (ISL):

    1.2 million Deaf people have no Bible in their heart "sign language" inside Indonesia. Think about that. Have you thought about what life would be like without your Bibles? You can help provide His story in their language to Deaf communities in Indonesia! Believers from a small core group in Indonesia want this badly, and they say it's urgent. Let's come alongside them today so that by next year's SBC, we'll hear stories about how sign language Bible stories in Indonesia sparked a movement!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Madagascar Sign Language

    Deaf Malagasy (MSL):

    No known believers. No leaders. No churches. It's a barren spiritual landscape for over 100,000 Deaf people on the island of Madagascar. Be a part of God's solution to grow His Deaf-led church in Madagascar when you help provide StoryOne training workshops for Deaf Malagasy "persons of peace." You'll enable the Malagasy to craft Bible stories using their sign language, and believers, leaders, and churches will be the result. Make sure LIFE comes to that barren spiritual landscape!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Mexican Sign Language

    Deaf Mexicans (MSL):

    The Deaf in Mexico don't have any Bible stories using their sign language. Imagine how difficult it would be to grow as a disciple if you didn't have access to Scripture. Not much growth, right? You can provide His story in their language to Deaf people in Mexico by supporting StoryOne training sessions. Help Deaf believers in Mexico get trained to craft Bible stories this year so they go from having NO stories to having MANY signed Bible stories to share with Mexico's 700,000 Deaf people.

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Philippine Sign Language

    Deaf Filipino (PSL):

    Believers are few among nearly half a million Deaf of the Philippines. The same is true for Deaf Filipino churches and Deaf leaders. Access to Bible stories is THE way forward, but right now, no Bible stories exist in their sign language. The StoryOne training process will enable Deaf believers to craft Bible stories using Filipino Sign Language to reach their Deaf neighbors. Let's look forward - in faith - to deeply grounded, growing and thriving Deaf-led churches in the Philippines!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Romanian Sign Language

    Deaf Romanians (RSL):

    More than 100,000 Deaf people live in the Eastern European country of Romania. Presently there are very few Romanian Deaf believers, leaders, and churches. Think how that could change when you choose to provide His story in their language – their sign language. Without access to Bible stories, results remain the same. However, with access, results will be glorious. We'll see broader evangelism, deeper discipleship, and more Deaf-led churches in Romania. Jump in and help!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Russian Sign Language

    Deaf Russians (RSL):

    Deaf people in Russia number about 750,000. Although they have access to a few Bible stories in Russian Sign Language, many more Bible stories are needed for increased momentum in God's Deaf-led church in Russia. Deaf believers in Russia want to learn how to craft more Bible stories using their sign language to share His story in their language and to grow disciples. They want to train Deaf leaders to plant churches. Help the Deaf in Russia get this vital training this year!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 South African Sign Language

    Deaf of South Africa (SASL):

    Few believers exist among the Deaf community in South Africa, and there are even fewer Deaf church leaders and Deaf-led churches. They have 20 Bible stories using their sign language, but they want to craft more stories to increase momentum and to build a Deaf-led church in South Africa. Will you provide His story in their language? With your help, Deaf believers in South Africa will learn to craft more sign language Bible stories to make disciples and plant His Deaf-led church across South Africa!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Taiwanese Sign Language

    Deaf Taiwanese (TSL):

    Ostracized by the hearing majority, the Deaf of Taiwan live at the bottom of the socio-economic ladder. Out of 125,000 Deaf people living on the island, a few follow Jesus and meet together regularly for worship and fellowship, but there are no Deaf church leaders. Bible stories and story sets in sign language are sorely needed. Help provide His story in their language – their sign language – alongside the few Deaf believers in Taiwan and watch His Deaf-led church grow!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Thai Sign Language

    Deaf Thais (TSL):

    Only two Deaf churches exist with a handful of believers among 300,000 Deaf people in Thailand. Unfortunately, as is the case with many Deaf communities around the world, the Deaf in Thailand have an insufficient number of Scripture stories using their heart sign language. Momentum for Deaf-led church planting must be quickened! Join this collaborative effort to provide His story in their language and make disciples among Deaf Thais. Let's see His Deaf-led church multiply in Thailand!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Turkish Sign Language

    Deaf Turks (TSL):

    No Bible stories exist in sign language for one quarter of a million people in Turkey who are Deaf. Not surprisingly, there are only a few Deaf believers and no Deaf-led churches there. Deaf believers in Turkey sense a strong urgency from the Holy Spirit to craft Scripture stories using their sign language to provide His story in their language to Deaf Turks. Walk alongside these Deaf believers to reach their neighbors and plant His Deaf-Led church in Turkey!

  • Deaf Peoples   〉 Vietnamese Sign Language

    Deaf Vietnamese (VSL):

    Almost half a million people in Vietnam are Deaf. Very few pledge their allegiance to Jesus Christ. Deaf leaders and Deaf churches are sparse. One clear reason we don't see a thriving Deaf-led church in Vietnam yet is because they don't have access to His story in their language – their sign language. A few Deaf Vietnamese believers want to craft Bible stories using Vietnamese Sign Language and they're ready to begin. Will you come alongside these Deaf Vietnamese believers today?

  • Northern African and Middle Eastern Peoples   〉 Chad StoryTogether Project

    Description:

    This project will provide access to God's Truth for four people groups, two Bible-less and two with inadequate Bible access. This project will equip teams of heart language speakers to develop biblical stories that can be used in evangelism, discipleship, and church growth. Each language team will be equipped for ongoing Scripture resource development beyond the life of the project to give each language broader and deeper access to God's word.

    Goals:

    This project will result in the following outcomes for at least 3 desert-dwelling Bible-less people groups:

    • Teams of heart language story crafters meeting regularly to develop, test, and record Bible stories that are exegetically accurate, communicate clearly in the heart language, and are told in a natural storytelling style of the people group.
    • The stories that have been developed are being used in a church planting strategy that includes evangelism, discipleship, and leadership development.
    • The stories being told have contributed to the growth of the church: new believers, new discipleship groups, and new churches.
    • The stories have strengthened the discipleship efforts of the church, resulting in a unified body of local believers who obey God's word and are equipped to share stories from God's word.
    • The stories have been recorded and distributed via media appropriate to the culture, including radio. This project includes independent third party evaluation.

    People Groups Served By This Project

    • Baraka*:

      The Baraka* are a large, primarily Muslim, people group living in the country of Chad. They speak a widespread trade language. Although Scripture resources exist in their language, Baraka families need to hear the Gospel in stories, songs, and proverbs for His truth to be understood and permeate their lives. Work has begun to craft portions of Scripture in their language. Will you join us in this momentous task so more Baraka will hear and understand God's Word?

    • Tawakal*:

      The Tawakal* of Chad have absolutely no Bible stories in their heart language. None. They are Bible-less! The Tawakal* are farmers by background, and they are increasingly converting to Islam. They're searching for Truth, and they desperately need access to Bible stories in their language. Training gears up soon to help the Tawakal* speakers develop Bible stories to clearly and accurately communicate the Truth to their people. Help us to Provide His Story in Their Language this year!

    • Xawiyh*:

      The Xawiyh* of Chad are a desert-dwelling, nomadic people who have a reputation for being great warriors. They exert tremendous power and are deeply respected by members of their community. However, they are spiritually lost. Their reputation will never give them eternal life. The Xawiyh must come to know God through Jesus, but for that to happen they need enhanced access to the Gospel in their language. Will you help them get more Bible stories this year? *Name changed for security

    • Mumkinat*:

      Most Mumkinat* have never heard His Story. Many of them are wealthy Muslim merchants who wield high influence across Chad. Their families practice Folk Islam mixed with traditional African religions and Animism. The Mumkinat* sorely lack Bible stories in their heart language, but you can help change that this year! Provide His Story in Their Language to the Mumkinat People of Chad and imagine the possibilities of what God will do among their tight knit community when His Story starts to spread!


    *Name changed for security.

  • Northern African and Middle Eastern Peoples   〉 The Horn of Africa

    Description:

    This project will provide access to God's word to over 17 million people speaking 8 different languages in the Horn of Africa. We will train teams of heart language speakers to develop accurate biblical stories in their own language and storytelling style for use in evangelism, discipleship, and church planting.

    Goals:

    - heart language story crafters meeting regularly to develop, test, and record Bible stories that are accurate, communicate clearly in the heart language, and are told in a natural storytelling style of the people group
    - stories being used in a church planting strategy that includes evangelism, discipleship, and leadership development
    - strengthening the discipleship efforts of the church resulting in a unified body of local believers who are obedient to God's Word and equipped to share stories from God's Word
    - stories recorded and distributed via media appropriate to the culture


    People Groups Served By This Project

    • Frost*:

      While neighboring peoples are Orthodox, the Frost* People have been Muslim for as long as they can remember. As a minority group living in a rural district inside the Horn of Africa, the Frost* have not had access to God's Word in their own language--until now. We need your help this year to provide His story in their language. Bible stories in their language and storytelling styles will soon spread across those rolling hills to reach the 100,000 Frost* men, women, and children with Good News!

    • Barao*:

      The Barao* grow cereal crops and keep small herds of livestock to support their families. They live in a rural area in the Horn of Africa, and Islam has been their religion for as long as they can remember. Out of a quarter million Barao* only a few individuals follow Christ. That won't be the case for long as the Barao gain access to Bible stories in their heart language. We need your help to Provide His Story in Their Language so Barao* families can hear the Good News and follow Him together.

    • Aqsa*:

      The Aqsa* are a Muslim people group working as herdsmen and farmers in the Horn of Africa. Aqsa* children learn to be warriors, and warrior character traits are highly valued in families. Stories about warriors are eagerly shared, but the Aqsa* have yet to hear Bible stories in their language. The Aqsa* must have access to the Truth through Bible stories in their heart language, using their storytelling styles. Will you help? May we see many Aqsa families sharing Bible stories this year!

    • Rhagin*:

      The Rhagin* were mistreated, oppressed, and despised in the Horn of Africa. Today they number over three million, and many eagerly search for knowledge and truth. They need access to God's Word! The Rhagin* are Muslim, and although the Bible existed for them the past century, it is in a neighboring language that is despised as the language of their oppressors. Don't you want to change that? Help us Provide His Story in THEIR Language so the Rhaghin will receive it and begin to follow Him.

    • Kebad*:

      The Kebad* of the Horn of Africa are quite friendly and seemingly hospitable on the surface, but in reality, they're closed to foreigners who want to live among them. Even though the Kebad* are fluent in many languages, they do not have Bible stories in THEIR heart language yet. Your help is needed to Provide His Story in Their Language so the Kebad* can come to the Truth. When they begin to tell His Story, their influence will cause quite a shakeup in the religious environment of the Horn!


    *Name changed for security.

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Acchami

    Acchami:

    The Western Hills of Nepal were a center of unrest the past few years. In the midst of that unstable political climate, we've heard reports that hundreds of Acchami pledged their allegiance to Jesus instead of remaining ideologically bound to Communism! They need His Story in Their Language of Accamami to help them plant churches and make disciples. Will you help them and other Christ followers begin crafting Bible stories in Accamami this year?

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Awadhi

    Awadhi:

    Awadhi is the main language spoken by roughly 21 people groups in Western Nepal and North India. Most Awadhi speakers are Hindu, and a few are Muslim. No Bible stories exist in the Awadhi language yet. However, several Christian groups are working together to train Awadhi language speakers to develop Bible stories. Please pray for this important undertaking and join us to make Awadhi Bible stories a reality. This time next year, may we be able to say, "The Awadhi speakers heard the Good News!"

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Dangaura Tharu

    Dangaura Tharu:

    The Dangaura Tharu People in Southwest Central Nepal have a long history of being ostracized and oppressed. As agricultural workers, they've had little human hope for a very long time. We want them to have Bible stories in their language so they can know Jesus, the Hope of all nations. Will you help provide His story in their language to the Dangaura Tharu of Nepal? Pray with us and help bring Good News to this precious people who don't have it yet.

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Deukhuri Tharu

    Deukhuri Tharu:

    The Deukhuri Tharu people worked in agriculture on the plains of Southwest Central Nepal for a long time. Through the years, they were scoffed at, scorned, and taken advantage of through extortion and deceit. Today many Deukhuri Tharu live hand-to-mouth working as day laborers. They have little hope. You can help Provide His Story in Their Language so the Deukhuri Tharu hear Bible stories in their language beginning this year. Help them know they have a future and a hope!

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Dhimal

    Dhimal:

    The Dhimal are a people group who live at the southern tip of Nepal and in the West Bengal region of India. Many are farmers from Hindu and Animistic backgrounds. They don't have Bible stories in their language yet. Not even one. We long to Provide His Story in Their Language! When we began this effort recently, God reminded us that this is a holy task requiring cooperation from many in the Body of Christ. Join us to provide Bible stories to the Dhimal beginning this year.

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Dipayal

    Dipayal:

    To our knowledge, in Eastern Nepal there is no Dipayal person who follows Jesus. Similar to many people groups in Nepal, the Dipayal don't have a way to hear the Good News unless someone tells them. That's why we love to use Bible Stories, and that is why we need your help to Provide His Story in Their Language to the Dipayal People of Nepal. We're making plans now and we need your help to go forward. Will you come alongside us to give Bible stories to the Dipayal in their language soon?

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Doti

    Doti:

    There's a group of people in the far western hills of Nepal who speak a language far different from Nepalese. It's called Doti, and even though thousands of people speak it, they don't have any Bible stories in their language yet. How will they hear, and how will they know and respond without Bible stories in their language? Some of us who follow Christ want to see Doti Bible stories crafted this year. Do you want to join us? Together let's Provide His Story in Their Language of Doti!

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Eastern Gurung

    Eastern Gurung:

    Ten people groups living in Nepal speak the Eastern Gurung language. It's their heart language, and we believe God wants us to use it to craft Bible stories. You can help us Provide His Story in Eastern Gurung to reach these ten different people groups in Nepal beginning this year. Work with a group of us who love God and these ten people groups. Together let's see what God does when thousands in Nepal hear Bible stories in Eastern Gurung for the first time!

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Eastern Magar

    Eastern Magar:

    In Nepal there are no Bible stories in Eastern Magar. No Bible stories means that thousands of Eastern Magar speakers have no access to the Gospel. They're in spiritual darkness. That's the situation now, but we hope it's not for long. We want to see His Story spread like a bright light everywhere Eastern Magar is spoken. Will you pray about joining us? Together, we can Provide His Story in Eastern Magar so thousands of people in Nepal can hear Bible stories in their heart language soon.

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Eastern Tharu

    Eastern (Kochila) Tharu:

    Eastern Tharu Hindus are an unreached people group living in India and Nepal. They don't have any Bible, and as far as we know, there are very few Christ followers among them. These Hindus must be given an opportunity to hear Scripture stories in their heart language. Come alongside us to craft Bible stories in Eastern Tharu. Together let's see how disciples, leaders, and churches spring up in India and Nepal when thousands begin to hear His wonderful words of life in Eastern Tharu!

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Kagate

    Kagate:

    Several people groups throughout Eastern Nepal speak the Kagate language. They don't have any Scripture stories in Kagate, but that is about to change! Kagate speakers love music, so we want to craft Scripture Songs to communicate His Story to them using their musical styles. Work begins in earnest this fall, and we'd love to have your help. Pray for the crafting of these Scripture songs and ask God to cause these songs to spread far and wide among Kagate speakers.

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Kham Magar

    Kham Magar:

    The Kham Magar People of Central and Western Nepal love to tell stories, but they don't have any Bible stories to tell yet. Scripture materials are in print, but the vast majority of Kham Magar don't read. So how will they hear? Through Bible stories! Help us Provide His Story in Their Language – their spoken language of the heart. We need your help to come alongside a group of Christians and local storytellers this year so Bible stories can be crafted and shared among the Kham Magar People.

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Sonaha

    Sonaha:

    The Sonaha are Hindu and Animists, and they primarily work as lower caste fishermen in Nepal. They don't have any Bible stories in their heart language yet. We need your help to Provide His Story in Their Language. Will you join us? Thankfully, we began crafting Bible stories for the Sonaha recently. Much more work is ahead, so please come alongside us to quicken the development of these Bible stories. Together let's give God glory when the Sonaha hear His Story in their language this year!

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Western Magar

    Western Magar:

    Approximately 400,000 Hindu and Buddhist background people in Nepal speak the Western Magar language. They are without Jesus Christ and without hope. They do not know the great news of God's love because they have no way of hearing about it. Will you help us Provide His Story in Their Language this year? Together let's turn the tide for good to give Western Magar speakers access to Bible stories they can understand.

  • South Asian Peoples   〉 Western Tamang

    Western Tamang:

    The Western Tamang is a people group living in Nepal's remote mountain region. They are remote to us, but not to God! Although this community of Hindus has very limited access to Scripture, that's about to change. Work is currently underway to craft Bible stories for the Western Tamang in their heart language. Pray for us. Will you walk hand in hand with us to accomplish this holy task? Together we can Provide His Story in Their Language for the Western Tamang in Nepal.

  • Southeast Asian Peoples   〉 Remote Island Peoples

    Description:

    These "Remote Island Peoples" of Southeast Asia are on our radar. We want them to be on yours. Picture faraway beaches. Remote islands. You're there with five people groups who speak five different languages who have little access to the Good News. Believers from these islands want to be trained to craft Bible stories in their heart languages to share with their people groups. Will you walk alongside them in prayer and in financial support?

    Goals:

    (1) Five teams of local heart-language Bible story crafters will have learned to develop, test, and record Bible stories that are accurate exegetically, communicate clearly in the heart language, and use the natural storytelling style of the 5 people groups. (2) The 5 Bible stories developed in each language will have been used in a pilot project to verify the effectiveness of heart-language Bible stories in evangelism among the 5 people groups. (3) The stories will have been audio-recorded and distributed via culturally appropriate media. (4) Groundwork will have been laid for another project to develop additional Bible stories in these 5 languages. If another project is implemented, that will advance evangelism, discipleship, church planting, and leadership development activities among these same 5 people groups, 4 of which are unreached people groups (UPGs).


    People Groups Served By This Project

    • Sayang*:

      In southeast Asia Sayang* people work hard to maintain and protect their tradition and customs. They are Muslim, and they work as fishermen and farmers. Because of bad experiences they've had with mining companies, the Sayang are wary of outsiders. They have no written Scripture and very few Christians or churches. Help provide His story in their language and you'll enable the Sayang to hear Bible stories, many for the first time. Together may we see God turn their darkness into light!

    • Makan*:

      The Makan* people live on an island in Southeast Asia, and they primarily farm and fish for a living. Christianity is their religion, but the Makan also follow aspects of their traditional religion and Islam. Makan Christians' spiritual growth and ability to share their faith with neighboring ethnic groups will be improved when you help Provide His Story in their widely-spoken trade language. Equipping them to develop and share biblical stories could have far-reaching impact. Join us today!

    • Chowo*:

      Chowo* people in southeast Asia have an independent streak. They live simple lives based on dry-land farming and forestry in rural areas, with poor transportation. Traditional animistic practices continue even though they consider themselves Muslim. The Chowo have only portions of written Scripture in their heart language. You can help provide His story in their language by enabling local Christians to be trained to craft Bible stories in the Chowo's heart language and storytelling style.

    • Bunga*:

      The Bunga* people are Sunni Muslims who live on six different islands and speak over 12 unique dialects. They make their living farming, logging, or fishing, and they have limited access to health care. Because they have a New Testament in just one of their dozen or more dialects, the Bunga people have a large Scripture gap. In addition, the numerous non-readers among them need God's truth in oral and audio-recorded forms. Will you help provide His story in their language?

    • Gunung*:

      The Gunung* people in Southeast Asia promote peace. They retreat rather than engage in conflict. Portions of written Scripture exist in their heart language, but many cannot read. If Gunung people have heard about Jesus, it most likely came from Muslims, not from the Bible or from Christ followers. By teaching local believers how to craft Bible stories this year, you will help provide His story in their language so the Gunung can meet Jesus, the Prince of Peace! *Name changed for security.


    *Name changed for security.