New leadership at Bible Society New Zealand

Bible Society New Zealand is delighted to announce the appointment of a new CEO, Neels Janse van Rensburg, who will commence his tenure on 1 April 2019.

The current General Manager of Manna Christian Stores, Neels has more than 18 year’s experience in fostering operational efficiencies across the corporate, private and non-profit sectors. He served as a Chief Operating Officer and Divisional Director at a number of different organisations in South Africa. More recently he worked as a senior manager at the ANZ Bank in New Zealand.

Neels joined Bible Society in January 2013 as Missions Delivery Manager before moving to Relationships Director, where he was responsible for all external stakeholder interaction and mission resource delivery. continue reading →

Restoration of the wounded heart

Rwanda is a country in the process of rapid transformation. Its recovery from the brutal 1994 genocide that claimed one million lives is a slow, difficult and ongoing process.

It was one of the most violent killings the world has ever seen. Women and girls were raped, while countless children witnessed the slaughter of their parents, often by people they had previously known as friends and neighbours. All of this left many people in Rwanda traumatised.

Now the Bible is helping heal these deep wounds of the past with its message of hope, forgiveness and restoration. Bible Society Rwanda is helping lead the way with a project aimed at healing trauma with biblical audio material. This project is very important for the Rwandan community, especially for Christians, who make up more than 93 percent of the 12 million plus population. Many people go to church to see if they can find peace and healing. Biblical trauma healing is restoring their hope and helping reconciliation among the Rwandan people who are being transformed with the Word of God. continue reading →

Thousands in the middle-east receive the Bible this Christmas

Thousands of migrant workers from labour camps in Qatar attending the Festival of Peace received free Scripture in their concert Christmas gift bag!

As churches wrapped up Christmas gifts for festival attendees Bible Society included a copy of the scriptures in each gift bag.

FestivalOfPeaceWordPressPostSmlBible Society in the Gulf States (BSG) distributed 2,000 Hindi, 2,000 Nepali, 1,000 Telugu, 500 Sinhala, 1,000 Tamil and 1,000 Malayalam New Testaments to many of the 10,000 festival goers on both days.

The Festival of Peace, held in Doha, was organised by American singer, songwriter, music producer and Pastor Don Moen. continue reading →

Nuns in Iraq stay strong amidst the horrors of war

An order of Dominican nuns in Iraq, committed to living and preaching the Gospel amidst the horrors of war, are determined to stay.

“We will not leave our people. Wherever they go, we will go,” says Sister Huda who is 66 years-old. She, along with other remaining sisters, is serving 200 children, most of whom are from Mosel.

Bible Translation Work

The Dominican Nuns also partner with Bible Society Iraq to facilitate Bible Translation work. Bible Society Iraq CEO Nabil Omeish explained the two groups have been working together for 30 years on the Bahdini (Kurdish language) New Testament Bible translation and are also working on the Old Testament. continue reading →

‘The Word became… fresh’ by Sophia Sinclair – CCC

What happens when a church commits to reading the entire Bible together in a year?

By Sophia Sinclair – Christian Community Churches

We live in a place and time where the Bible is more accessible than ever—we’ve got apps, different translations, audio Bibles… yet so many of us struggle to develop a consistent reading habit and rhythm.

At the end of last year the team at Hukanui Bible Church addressed this issue by posing the challenge: Let’s read the entire Bible together in 2018. They arranged for people to buy Bibles, advertised the challenge and encouraged anyone and everyone to join in.

“Everyone had the same reading plan, about three pages of the Bible each day, covering an Old Testament reading, a New Testament reading and a Psalm or Proverb. We gave out 25 Bibles at the start, and that jumped to 50,” says elder and Pastor Gary Gilpin. “Now, I’d say we have about 60-70% of our church reading along through the Bible at the same time”.

continue reading →

The Well Good News of Christmas is going, going, gone! (nearly!)

More than 80,000 copies of The Well Good News of Christmas have flown out the door in just over six weeks.

This little book has been so popular that we’re going to print some more! Thanks to the generosity of our supporters, another 20,000 copies of the free children’s book are currently being printed to meet this demand.

“It’s been a huge success with churches, partner organisations, families and individuals all keen to get their copies in the run up to Christmas,” said Stephen Opie, BSNZ Programme Director.

Churches and organisations have been able to order up to 250 copies of The Well Good News of Christmas and individuals up to five copies. continue reading →

Kiwi-voiced audio Bible now playing!

A new audio Bible read and recorded in a Kiwi voice has been released by Bible Society New Zealand in partnership with Rhema.

Read by Rhema long-time announcer Andrew Urquhart, The Kiwi Audio Bible, took a marathon five years to produce with Andrew recording in weekly slots of four hours at a time. The playing time for the Bible from start to finish is nearly 80 hours. continue reading →

Earthquake strengthens translator’s resolve

A powerful 7.5 magnitude earthquake in February rattled forest villages and properties in central Papua New Guinea where thousands of people live in the forested highlands.

Joel Peters, Bible Society Papua New Guinea (BSPNG) Translations Officer, reports the earthquake resulted in the loss of more than a hundred lives with thousands of locals displaced and property devastated.

The area is also home to BSPNG translators working on the Yuna Bible translation, one of BSPNG’s most remote projects. Translators in this region lead subsistence lifestyles, and their locally made homes and vegetable gardens were washed away by landslides.

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A labour of love in the Hano translation project

On an isolated Vanuatu island, sisters Colinette and Annie Gaviga are completing the final draft of the New Testament in Hano, the language of the Raga people of Pentecost Island.

Over 20 years in the making, the Hano translation project has spanned generations. The Hano translation project began in 1997, when a Hano speaker, Mark Gaviga, approached John Harris, then Bible Society Australia’s Director of Translation, about the possibility of a Hano Bible translation project. John agreed and soon the Hano project began through the Bible Society of the South Pacific with John as the translation consultant.

That year, in the mountain village of Lavusi, Mark Gaviga, with John’s help, began the Hano translation – eating, sleeping and translating in Mark’s one-room house. Everything was handwritten in exercise books. Mark’s young daughters, Colinette and Annie, were curious onlookers. continue reading →

Bible translation challenges – the Word of our God endures!

In recent months the world has been experiencing a spate of natural disasters including earthquakes, floods, bush fires and volcanic eruptions.

Some of these have impacted translation projects both in Papua New Guinea (PNG) and Vanuatu. In PNG a recent 7.5 magnitude earthquake destroyed two translation centres. And in Vanuatu, a volcanic eruption twice derailed the launch of the newly translated Havakinau New Testament. But despite it all, God’s Word endures… continue reading →