Montrose Bible project raises half of goal

Area community churches have rallied to raise about $30,000, half of the $60,000 goal, needed to translate the Bible into the language of the Me'phaa, an indigenous ethnic group in Mexico.

A little more than 18 months ago, Nick Wolverton, a field representative for Wycliffe Bible Translators, paid the churches of Montrose a visit to speak about Wycliffe and its projects.

That visit prompted a vision for Howard Davidson to bring the Bible to a group of unreached people and that spawned a community wide project to translate the Bible into a new language. Since then, community churches have rallied to raise about $30,000, half of their $60,000 goal, to translate the Bible into the language of the Me’phaa, an indigenous ethnic group in Mexico. Adam Miller, a financial adviser with ElderAdo Financial, is also part of the project and said of the 7,000 languages spoken globally, 2,000 don’t have a Bible translation.

Many community churches, such as Cedar Creek Church, First Presbyterian, Montrose United Methodist, All Saints Anglican and Montrose Christian Church have become involved with the project, with others expressing interest.

“It’s really unique to have churches from five-plus denominations all coming together around Bible translation,” Wolverton wrote in an email. “They may not agree on everything but they certainly agree that God’s word is central to what they believe and that everyone should have the chance to understand it in their own language.”

Miller expresses great satisfaction in seeing the churches on board with the project. Montrose Christian Church originally pledged to donate $100 per book of the Bible and has raised $10,000. There are also community organizations that have gotten in on the act. A local foundation that wishes to remain anonymous has matched every $1,000 donated by each church involved.

“We hope to see the fundraising wrap up for this portion of the project this year,” Miller said. “It would be great for the community to fully fund a Bible that will wind up in the hands of 150,000 people.”

Miller also says the project will hopefully promote literacy and the spread of the Me’phaa language. Davidson pointed out the economic benefits to translating the Bible.

“Developing nations need to translate the Bible and a written language,” Davidson said. “The creation of a Bible creates a written language and it almost always improves the quality of life for that group.”

There will also be a chance for the community to meet the missionaries involved with the translation. Mark and Esther Weathers, the Wycliffe Bible translators involved with the translation will be at the flapjack breakfast fundraiser at Applebee’s March 22 from 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and the cinnamon rolls and coffee fundraiser at Heidi’s Brooklyn Deli on March 25 from 8–9:30 a.m.

No tickets will be needed for the Heidi’s fundraiser, but the flapjack breakfast will be $5 per person. Tickets are available from Miller by calling 970-249-9900.

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