The United Bible Societies announced that in 2017, the Bible has been translated in 49 languages spoken by more than 580 million people.
According to the organization’s 2017 Global Scripture Access Report, seven communities—Mozambique, Myanmar, South Sudan, Taiwan, Turkmenistan and Vietnam, received the very first full Bible in their native language.
Also, four communities received their first New Testament translation, and nine communities received their first translation of additional portions of Scripture.
Since languages change and develop over time, Bible Societies are dedicated to revising current translations of the Bible.
“When I read the Bible in my mother tongue, it goes to my heart. It resonates deep into my soul.” Michael Perreau, Director General of the United Bible Societies
“The Bible for everyone. This is the mission that drives us forward in everything we do, and Bible translation plays a central role in that as we seek to serve churches of all denominations,” said Michael Perreau, Director Deneral of the United Bible Societies.
Perreau said in an interview with Premier, “”When I read the Bible in my mother tongue, it goes to my heart. It resonates deep into my soul.”
The organization also recognized the need of disabled people to read Scripture. Bible Societies in 32 countries ran Braille projects to have the Bible available to visually-impaired readers.
The initiative produced Braille Bible in two languages: Luganda (Uganda) and Khasi (India). The Spanish version or Dios Habla Hoy is now also available in Braille ready to be printed on demand in Latin America.
In addition, 26 sign language projects are ongoing to provide translation of the Bible, with 10 more in the planning and preparation stages. The United Bible Societies hopes this project will reach 12.9 million Deaf people in the world. Technology is being used, too, to help Deaf translators in providing the Scripture to the Deaf community.
“What an encouragement to see the impact of this work in 2017 – not just the numbers of translations completed, but how lives are being changed, too,” said Perreau.