Trauma Healing in Africa

Since 1997, war in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has traumatized countless men, women and children. Reports of genocide, rape and a host of brutalities issued from the DRC for years, as armies, rebels and home-grown militias battled for power. More than 5.4 million people have been killed in the DRC since fighting broke out in 1998. This is the largest death toll associated with any conflict since World War II. Survivors in the wake of this ongoing tragedy carry not only the physical scars of war, but also deep running emotional wounds. Working with minority language speakers, Wycliffe Bible Translators has created Trauma Healing Materials. These resources facilitate grief and forgiveness counseling among the 215 languages in DRC. While these concepts can be taught in languages of broad regional communication, they often touch peoples' thoughts and feelings best when translated into local languages.

Even with the extensive use of the four national languages in the churches, there are still many needs for Bible translation in DRC. Language surveys are a high priority for the next few years, to measure the adequacy of comprehension of existing Scriptures as well as to establish priorities in planning further local translation projects. Both the size of the various ethnic groups and the degree of Christian penetration vary widely. Some of the people groups with whom staff are working are quite large (200,000 to 1,000,000). There is an established church amongst almost all language groups, but many are hampered by the lack of mother-tongue Scriptures and other factors.
There are 215 living languages spoken in the DRC, a country with one of the greatest needs for Bible translation. About 120 languages in the country are still waiting to receive the hope of God's Word in their own heart language.
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