Why do I work in a ‘dying’ language?

ABOVE PHOTO BY MARC EWELL

Where I work, the youth don’t speak their heritage language – they’ve ‘shifted’ to using a regional dialect of the national language. But for the middle and older generations who are bilingual, their perspective on life is still best expressed through their heritage language. So for deeper discipleship, for the gospel to ‘dialogue’ with their values and beliefs, it is important that these generations can engage with the gospel in their heritage language – a language that may look like it is ‘dying’, yes, but one that is still very much alive in their mouths, minds and hearts.

This story is from Wycliffe Today – February 2018 Edition (PDF)


About the Author: Philip Swan, translation advisor for the Kemtuik and Nimboran people in Papua, Indonesia. Find out more


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