Spring 2014 Newsletter on the Kabardian and Adyghe projects

Don't biblical texts sometimes seem contradictory? And isn't it these very contradictions that make them relevant to all people, regardless of their ethnic, linguistic or historical contexts? The Bible is not abstract ideology, but rather a practical source of life, springing from God Himself, who is Love. Whoever reads the books of Job, Ecclesiastes or Proverbs as ideology may be at a loss. Whoever reads them from within real human situations may taste their all-embracing character. Likewise, the messages from the two translation teams, Adyghe and Kabardian, whose members gathered for a discussion at the recent IBT seminar on the Wisdom and Poetic books of the Old Testament at first seemed contradictory.

February 2013 Newsletter on the Yakut project

When in the 19th century Archbishop Innokenty served the Divine Liturgy for the Yakut people in the Yakut language for the first time in their history, those who were present were so profoundly touched by the opportunity of addressing God without a translator that they fell on their knees in deep veneration and decided to set that day as a Yakut national holida

November 2012 Newsletter on the Kalmyk project

The Kalmyks are famous for their Kalmyk tea, a very special drink with cream, salt and spices, but no sugar. You drink a cup of this tea for breakfast and you do not have to eat any food till lunch time. They boast of their keen eyesight and good teeth thanks to this sugarless diet. The Kalmyks are the only Buddhist people in the whole of Europe, so they should be, and actually are, contemplative in comparison to other Europeans. They have deservedly earned their reputation as calm and peaceful people, who are never in a hurry. They have also earned their reputation as an intellectual nation because they have adopted chess as their national game and it is being taught even to little children from the first years of schooling...

September 2012 Newsletter on the Dolgan project

The Dolgans are a young nation. For their national identity was recognized only during the 20th century! Their language derives from Yakut and although culturally and ethnically these two peoples of the North are distinct, for many years the Dolgans were used to calling themselves “Yakut”. Only in the 1960s did scholars decide that the Dolgan language was sufficiently different from Yakut that it could be considered a separate language and not just a dialect. But reality is that the newly recognized Dolgan national language is on the edge of extinction...

June 2012 Newslatter on the Crimean Tatar project

It was an ordinary working day in our IBT office. Two translation teams had come to Moscow for consultations. For both teams it was the final stage of their work. Both Bibles are already fully translated. In one case the Bible is almost ready to be submitted to the publication department, and the last technical details are being discussed. In another case the team is working with the third and fourth drafts of different Bible books. I was intrigued by the similarity of these two situations and I wondered how the translators representing two great people groups, one from the Caucasus and one from the Crimea, feel after their tremendous work.