God’s book is being opened today!

God’s book is being opened today!

Ani Marmar aku Kholbokha a Galdelain Korr Kitimi. (I am Marmar of Kholbokha family, the clan of Galdelan from Korr). This is how Pastor John Ndegwa, a Church Relations Officer at World Concern Nairobi office, introduces himself to me. He is Rendille by virtue that he served as a missionary among the Rendille people for a period of 9 years. Besides, his first months at Korr, Nick and Lynn Swanapoel, the first missionaries to serve with the Rendille project had hosted him, taught him how to read and write in the Rendille language preparing him for his new assignment.

As the dedication drew nearer, John was elated but making his way to Korr was proving strenuous; he had not settled on any means of transport despite time running out. Two days to the dedication, God opened a door for him. A deliverance church in Nairobi needed someone to deliver a new motorbike to one of its missionaries who is based in Kurkum, a 600KM ride from Nairobi. Unknown to him, two other missionaries had expressed interest to attend the dedication with him. “With my friends on board, we could not all fit on one motorbike. I chose to travel by bus so that my friends could ride on the motorbike to Korr. I knew how to find my way to the Old BTL Centre, the dedication venue,” John says.


“On the eve of the dedication, my missionary friends on their way to the dedication venue met an excited group of Rendille boys on the road. They asked them what the excitement was all about, and the boys in unison mentioned of a God’s Book that was going to be opened in their community. This did melt my heart. All age groups knew what was happening in their community,” John reports.

“The village and neighborhood was in dance and singing. I had never seen such a happy people. It was colourful and humbling to see their Daasanach friends in attendance. According to their beliefs, the camel had ‘eaten’ their Bible and that is why they never had one but on this day, the same treasured animal was returning their ‘eaten’ Book. It was indeed a new dawn for the Rendille people. A day we all had waited for long. ” John concludes.

As this became a reality, John was already in the future of this great community. In a period of five years, he prays for Rendille Christian marriages and stable families, Scriptures being taught both in primary and secondary schools, a church in every ‘goob’, (village) and a transformed community by the grace of God.

Praise God for the availability of Scriptures in the Rendille Language. Praise God for making the long awaited dedication happen. Praise God for all the men and women who took an initiative to bring this to fruition. Pray for the Rendille Church to grow in the knowledge of our risen Lord, Jesus Christ. Pray that the Word will go forth so that God’s people will experience His daily presence in their lives. Pray for funds and plans to start translation of the Old Testament.

Photo: Rendille Bible Translation team (left) Joshua Galimogle, Nick Swanapoel (centre) and Laban Eysinkeele (right). Photo credit to to Esther Havens and The Seed Company

By Daisy Kilel

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I asked of the Lord to serve at BTL

When Mong’are completed his secondary education, he left his village to Nairobi to secure a job. It was during this time of trusting God for an open door of employment that his neighbor who was a grounds man at BTL informed him of an opportunity. This led him to joining BTL in the year 1996 as a casual worker. He served in this role for three years and then his term came to an end. While walking out of BTL’s gate that last day of service, he asked God if He would give him another chance to serve at BTL. “I had loved working at BTL and also came to love the people that I served with. I experienced a great change from my previous engagements in different organizations; people were kind to me, they were caring, they shared in my troubles, we related equally and even supported me with transport, I loved the place so much.”

A month later after that plea to God to serve at BTL, God heard his request. He was recalled to serve at the staff lunch, known then as the ‘stomach club’ where he was to cook meals for staff members. He served in this role for another three years when he was promoted to serve as a cleaner. “I served in the stomach club until the year 1999, when God opened a door for me to serve as a cleaner. I enjoyed working, until, God again promoted me to serve in the Business services department; a role that I hold until today.”

Mong’are currently supports translation by ensuring that the project staff receives their parcels in good time, parcels are picked from the courier service, and office premises are secure and many other related assignments. He passionately executes his duties because in his heart, God called Him to the ministry of BTL. “Through the services that I have offered and continue to offer at BTL, translation has progressed. If the project staff requested to have their computers delivered and I did not organize for that, translation work would have slowed down. If the office was not cleaned, dust and insects would begin to inhabit making the place unsuitable to work. If the staff members never had food to eat, their energy levels would have gone low rendering them unable to work. I am happy that God called me to serve in the most humbling Ministry.”

His over twenty years’ of service at BTL have not gone without notice from the people who have heard about his story and the duration of service in the organization. “I have had people ask me what keeps me in BTL? The life of Paul becomes my reference point to them. Serving at BTL is a calling, it has its own challenges but when you know who called you, you stand with God’s work; Paul did and God worked greatly through him for His glory. As BTL marks a wonderful season in ministry, my desire is to see BTL continue to perform its mandate to the unreached groups.”

BTL@40 | #40yearsofexistence | #bygracealone |

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Digo Complete Bible Dedication

The work of the Digo Bible translation began in the year 1987. Twenty years later, the Digo New Testament was published and launched. Thirteen more years, the Old Testament was completed. Finally, the full Bible has been published and it’s now here with us awaiting dedication tentatively in the month of May.

Digo Bible Offloading
Photos: During the offloading of the Digo Complete Bibles in November 2020

The Digo Church has been most expectant of their complete Bible. During the first dedication committee meeting held on the 30th of November, the enthusiasm of the church leaders was unmatched. Rev. Njora of Healing Homes Ministry could not hide his joy. “I am not a Digo native speaker but my church will be able to use the Digo Bible to evangelize to the Digo community during the crusades. We shall have a Digo speaker to read the Scriptures. We would have failed as a church if we do not focus on evangelizing to the Digos who are dominant in the area.”

Bishop Peter Mwero of PEFA Church present at the event said, “God has never missed a person to carry on His work and therefore He will not miss people to stand with the remaining work until the dedication and even spreading the word of God in Digo land.”


The dedication committee members are zealous in the preparation plans towards the launch of the Digo Bible. As in Proverbs 3:5-6, we are trusting and acknowledging the Lord in our dedication plans. We are praying that the Lord establishes the activities we have for that big day.

Pray for receptive hearts of God’s word in the Digo Church. The Lord has done well for the Digo community; let His Name be praised forever and ever, amen.

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Digo complete Bible dedication committee

2020 Highlights – Bible Completions and Dedications

Praise the Lord for the great things He has done during this uncertain and unpredictable year in Bible translation. We are grateful to God that translation work could still continue despite the challenging period of Covid-19 pandemic. This newsletter highlights some of the accomplishments in Bible translation achieved during the year. Digo complete Bible dedication happening soon, Duruma complete Bible on its way for printing, Ilchamus New Testament at its typesetting stage, and the Chonyi New Testament at the Final checks stage. Please Read the full updates here.

2020 Highlights - Bible Completions and Dedications

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Rev. David Lebarleyia, Samburu Project Officer holds up the SD cards during the dedication last year.

I want to be a follower of Jesus

After the dedication of the Samburu New Testament a year ago, a day has never gone by without a Samburu guest visiting the Samburu BTL office to either get the Samburu New Testament or an SD card with the recorded Samburu NT, 31 Bible stories, Jesus film and Samburu hymns.

A recent guest to our office is Mr. Leaburia. His elder brother had earlier been to the office to get an SD card so that he could listen to the Samburu audio Bible. When he reached home, he thought of inviting his younger brother, Leaburia so that they could listen to the audio Bible together.

The following day, after listening to the audio Bible, Leaburia walked into the office asking if he could purchase the SD card for himself. “Would you kindly sell one SD card to me? I listened to the Samburu audio Bible and I loved listening to Jesus speak. I also want to get saved; I want to be a follower of Jesus.” We sold him an SD card and led him to Jesus. The joy in our hearts was unmatched. The word of God never came back void.

“So shall my Word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.” Isaiah 55:11 ESV

Photo: Rev. David Lebarleyia, Samburu Project Officer holds up the SD cards during the dedication last year.

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BTL donates food and medical supplies to Ilchamus

BTL donates food and medical supplies to 910 households among the Ilchamus community in Marigat, Baringo County

On Wednesday 25th November 2020, Bible Translation and Literacy (BTL), in partnership with friends of BTL flagged off food and medical supplies to 910 households among the Ilchamus community in Marigat, Baringo County. This community has been affected by cases of insecurity and floods due to rising levels of Lake Baringo waters which has displaced hundreds of families rendering them helpless.

The most affected parts in the larger Baringo South include Ilchamus and Mukutani wards. This dual crisis has seen most families face hard times of lack of food supplies and other essential services such as medical services.

BTL food and medical supplies Ilchamus community in Marigat
BTL food and medical supplies Ilchamus community in Marigat

During the flagging off of the event for the relief consignment at Kiwanja Ndege IDP camp in Marigat ward, the BTL National Director Rev. Peter Munguti, noted that the community had been severely affected in the recent past by incidences of insecurity and also displacement by the rising waters of Lake Baringo. “Today we are here to bring support to the affected community due to the rising levels of the Lakes Baringo waters. Through partnership with the friends of BTL, we have decided to work together to support the affected persons today. These packages will be able to reach over 910 households for about two weeks.”

While emphasizing on the need to work together in reaching out to the displaced families, Rev. Munguti urged the National and County governments to offer the displaced people a space to rebuild their homes and to support them in construction of their houses. This he noted would enable them to go back to their normal lives, and perform their day to day duties. Rev. Munguti also mentioned the effects of COVID 19; he called upon the medical fraternity to provide the displaced with essential items like face masks and sanitizers to prevent them from contracting the virus.

Rev Munguti hands over food to Ilchamus people
The BTL National Director, Rev. Peter Munguti hands over food to Ilchamus people

Apart from the medical support provided to the community, the food relief package will see every household receive maize flour, rice, beans, sugar, tea leaves, cooking oil, soap and sanitary packages. The areas targeted for assistance included in Ng’ambo, Kiserian and Salabani locations.

As an organization serving among the Ilchamus community through Scripture translation, community development and language development programmes, we are glad together with our partners to have aided this community with food and medical supplies during their time of need.

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Bukeyo Garawahle enrolled for the Tirrim Literacy Programme

More and More of Jesus

Two years ago, Bukeyo Garawahle enrolled for the Tirrim Literacy Programme with the intention of learning how to read and write in the Rendille language.

“I was excited to learn how to write numbers and also to write my name in my language. At the time of my enrollment, the Rendille New Testament had just been dedicated but I could not read it. As the classes progressed, my desire to learn how to read grew the more as I really longed to read this Holy Book in my own language and to know Jesus more personally.”

Bukeyo Garawahle enrolled for the Tirrim Literacy Programme
Bukeyo Garawahle enrolled for the Tirrim Literacy Programme

Bukeyo graduated from the literacy class in August 2020, which marked two years since the launch and dedication of the Rendille New Testament. She was gifted a copy of the New Testament as a reward for completing her classes successfully. “I cannot imagine that I can now read God’s word in my own language! This is a precious Book to me. Jesus is everything to me. I am eager to share my new faith in the village.”

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Lamb of Sheep

My son found the lost sheep

Nang’uyana Galoro is a teacher at the Rendille Adult Literacy program in Korr. One morning, she walked into the Rendille Translation office with a big smile on her face holding a copy of the Rendille New Testament and her mobile phone. She requested if we could charge her phone battery which was low as she desperately needed to speak to her son who was 300 KM away from Korr looking after goats and the sheep.

As her battery charged, she was joyous and kept uttering a blessing to us, “may the Lord bless you for translating the sweet word of God into my language.” At first, we could not understand what she really meant. In the Rendille culture, you only bless someone who has done something big for you.

She then continued, “Last evening, I received a phone call from my son who is far away taking care of my livestock in search of water and pasture. He informed me that some of the sheep and goats got lost while grazing and he had spent the whole day looking for them but could not find them. I promised to pray for him to find the goats and sheep. It was at that time that I recalled the Scriptures from Luke 15:1-7 about the story of the shepherd, who lost one sheep, looked for it and found it. This also reminded me of the Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ as mentioned in John 10. I prayed for my son and the lost sheep and goats knowing that God was assuring me in His Word that my son would find the lost sheep and goats.”

When the battery was fully charged, Nang’uyana called his son while with us in the office. True to her faith in God, her son informed her that he had found some of the sheep and goats.

Nang’uyana left the office with great joy in her heart. Indeed, Jesus is our Good Shepherd, who knows all about us and our needs.

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Teresia Rotich left Marakwet Article

Marakwet Audio Bible is my Pastor

Teresia Rotich is an elderly lady from the Marakwet community. She usually holds a personal worship service every Sunday outside her house. One day, Rev. Paul Kanda a BTL translator from the community decided to pay her a visit at her home. During this visit Rev. Kanda realized that it had been difficult for Teresia to attend the usual Sunday services because she had been ailing. He also noted that for the past five years, she had been struggling to sing her favorite hymns and read the Scriptures due to her failing eyesight as a result of ageing.

It is for these reasons that Rev. Kanda presented her with the Marakwet audio Bible. Upon receiving the audio Bible, she was very grateful to God and to BTL. In her own words, listening to the audio Bible made her feel like she was attending church every day; the Marakwet audio Bible was like her pastor speaking to her. Since then, other elderly Marakwet ladies from her neighborhood join her to listen to the audio Bible at the Sunday service outside her home.

Together with these audio Bibles, the Marakwet team has been distributing the Book of Genesis in the Marakwet language which was completed and dedicated not long ago to aid the women to study God’s word together during their group meetings.

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