Translation: Kulvi Outer Seraji
The translator of the mother tongue is Br. Simm*. Br. Simm is fully committed to the translation of the Bible into Outer Seraji language, and is persistently working to bring it to completion. Br. Simm joined FOA (Friends of Agape) in 2008 after having surrendered himself to Lord and His ministry. After finishing his Bible studies Br. Simm joined Friends of Agape and committed himself for full-time ministry. He is committed to evangelization and establishment of the churches, but did not get much success in winning souls to Christ due to language barrier and Western mode of the Christianity. The people in region love to read and listen in their own mother tongue, because it is the language of their heart, familiar and pleasing to them.
In 2010, some audio Bible stories, poems, songs were produced in the Outer Seraji language, which were highly appreciated and accepted by natives. And a miraculous transformation took place in region as 3 main churches and 15 house churches were established. Eventually, believers demanded a translation of the Bible in their mother tongue.
Testimony of Br. Simm:
Br. Stan Simm* is from a traditional Brahmin family in Himachal Pradesh, deeply rooted in traditional religious rituals and meditations. While all things were apparently going smoothly, his father suddenly became seriously ill. They prayed to their gods and goddesses to heal him and made all kinds of offerings, but within a month’s time, his father died. This incident shook Stan Simm and he lost faith in the gods who didn’t answer his prayers. The family was in a big financial crisis and their relatives and friends left them. Stan became very much depressed and suicidal. He became addicted and lost interest in life.
At that time, Pr. Sammi* who is also from the same community came to Stan’s house and told him that there is a God who loves him and died for his sins. Stan’s eyes were opened and he decided to follow Jesus. His life was changed and he was delivered from all addictions and depression. Later, the pastor took him to a prayer meeting where he committed his life to serve the Lord. After a short Bible School training course, he started to work as a pioneer church planter and planted 3 house churches. Later on, he was married to Karina*, who was also a believer from similar background and they are together serving the Lord today and involved in Bible Translation. Stan Simm has translated the entire New Testament with his team into the Kulvi Outer Seraji language and Karina translated it into Baghlayani. The translations will be soon be released for distribution. Karina and Stan’s vision to have the fully translated Bible available in their mother tongues coming to fruition sooner than they ever hoped for.
A few personal stories of the church teams that partnered with the mother-tongue translators:
Many other translators of the Outer Seraji language assisted Stan Simm, including the members and pastors of the churches established by Friends of Agape.
In the words of Pastor David S.*,
“After coming to faith, I was involved in ministry by 2007, but I was not happy and satisfied due to Western influence in Christian living. Due to this being strange to our culture, I lived a life of seclusion. When I came to know about the translation of Bible in our mother tongue, I was really very happy and excited about it. Translated letters were read in church and translation was very praiseworthy. I decided to be a part of this translation work and it was a privilege for me. Today, I am happy and proud to be a part of the Bible translation work in my mother tongue.”
In the words of Pastor Hall*,
“I have been serving the Lord from 2006 onwards by composing and singing songs in our mother tongue. I wished that the Word of God would reach to the Outer Seraji people in the Kulvi Outer Seraji language. I was a popular local singer, but I was empoisoned by a lady due to jealousy. It had bad effects on my body and I lost my voice too. But my Savior healed me and now I sing unto the Lord. Moreover, I can now preach in the Outer Seraji language, because the Word of God is being translated to my own mother tongue. It’s awesome and I praise God for this!”
*Name changed for security purposes.