Here We Go…

Welp. Here we go. I have now joined the ranks of I’m-doing-something-with-my-life-so-now-it’s-time-to-blog-about-it bloggers. Truth be told, I always enjoyed reading my friend’s blogs, but never thought I would, myself, partake.

But here we are.

So the question of the hour is posed: “Why have you stared this blog, Leah?”

In a nut shell:
Wycliffe Bible Translators. Papua New Guinea. Ukarumpa International School.

In a very large explanatory nut shell:
I have joined Wycliffe Bible Translators and will be teaching at Ukarumpa International School in Papua New Guinea. I will be teaching math, probably 7th-12th grade (I REALLY need to brush up on my Calculus, I’m a bit frightened) and helping out with ESL (English as a Second Language) to missionary kids whose parents are a part of the Bible translation effort in Papua New Guinea. There are some local (New Guinean) kids who go to the school too, but it is mainly (80%) missionary kids (MKs). I am hoping to later become a translator myself, but for right now, we’ll just help with the translation needs behind the scenes as a teacher.

Overwhelmed? Me too. So let’s start at the very beginning (a very good place to start).

Why Missions?
I was called into missions when I was 16. A speaker came to my church for a missions conference and gave the alter call. The Holy Spirit was YELLING at me to go. And after a few minutes hesitation and the Holy Spirit giving me the sarcastic “Really?” (I like my Jesus sarcastic sometimes, it works with my demeanor), I went to the front and “answered” my call to missions. I don’t know if “answered” is the correct verb, but I definitely acknowledged that God wanted me to go. Where was the speaker from you ask? That leads us to the next question:

Wycliffe Bible Translators?
The missions speaker at my church was from Wycliffe Bible Translators, so they have always been present in the back of my mind, but not the first missions option I sought out. In the summer of 2011, I began looking up international missions schools at which to begin my missions journey. I knew God wanted me to teach and now it was time to add the “missions” part to the teaching. I found schools that my heart was drawn to in three countries – Albania, Russia, and Papua New Guinea. I began praying and researching each school via YouTube and their own school websites. Ukarumpa in Papua New Guinea eventually became my “favorite” because of its resemblance in size to the school I grew up going to and, more so, it’s association with Wycliffe Bible Translators.  The notion that the two things God placed in my heart – translation and teaching – could be found in one place sealed the deal and I began the application process.

Here’s a fancy graph about my call to missions and the cool things God did:

How does teaching help with translating the Bible?

  • If there aren’t teachers, then qualified people working in the field (translating the Bible into languages that don’t have one yet) are removed from the field to fill the teaching vacancy. (Not on my watch)
  • If there’s not a school, parents would be responsible for homeschooling their kids while also learning a language and then translating the Bible into that language. (I know that parents are awesome…but that’s just a ridiculous expectation)

So, armed with all of this new info, I think we will leave it at that for the first explanatory blog of explanations. You know where I’m going, why I’m going, and what I’ll be doing. We’ll get into the fine details next time. Like…where in the world is Papua New Guinea? What language do they speak there? Why is Bible translation a big deal? How can you afford to go?

So, until next time (i.e. next week) here are some links to keep you busy and entertained:

Peace out homie homes! – Leah

One thought on “Here We Go…

  1. Wow, Leah! So excited to read about this part of your life! Will be keeping you in my prayers and reading this blog on a regular basis! So proud of you! Can’t believe it’s been thirteen years since I met you as a sweet 7th grader!

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