*This week, we will be featuring some articles shared from the blog of our future team leader. You can read all of Heather’s articles here.
What do communications and Bible translation have to do with each other? Well, since you’re wondering, let me share with you a little about it.
There are many different facets of communications, but the particular aspect that I work in roughly falls under the public relations category. It is the communication that Wycliffe does to inform and engage the public in supporting Bible translation.
Information drives decisions from what kinds of items you will buy, to where you go to school, even who you will marry, what church you’ll attend, where you will live, what you should eat, how you should feel about world events, or even who you should vote for in the next election. Information also tells us about past events and helps us make educated guesses about what might happen in the future.
Different media serve as means to consuming this critical information. What is your preferred media? The internet, radio, television, newspapers, magazines, books, text messages, word of mouth, something else? Most of us use many of these types of media.
Professional communicators working for organizations like Wycliffe help keep the global church informed about some of the ways that God is at work today. In Wycliffe professional communicators gather information and inspiring stories about Bible translation and put it into helpful media tools like websites/social media, books, videos, publications and more. These help local churches and individual Christians become informed so that they can make decisions about how God may desire them to become personally involved in Bible translation.
I’ve heard countless stories from people who now support Wycliffe (as missionary staff, donors or people committed to pray) who have shared that an article, a video, a brochure, a photograph, a presentation, or other media played an important part in God leading them to get involved in Bible translation. They’ve said, “I read this article, watched this video, or saw this inspiring photograph…and then I knew that God wanted me to help.”
Inspiring stories shared in media created by professional communicators in Wycliffe plant the seeds that later yield a harvest of people that become involved in Bible translation through prayer, giving or joining the Bible translation team.
Without those inspiring stories and media tools most people would never know that hundreds of millions of people still do not have God’s Word in a language they understand. Most people would not know about the opportunities to become involved. Most people would probably never decide to to be involved in Bible translation. Those millions of people without a translated Bible would wait a lot longer before they had God’s Word in their language.
I love the way the Wycliffe USA web site describes it: “These are the storytellers who invite the public to look, learn and listen as God’s Story of all time changes lives. Through their creativity and imagination, they inspire and invite others to come play a part in the global Bible translation movement.”
Professional communicators have a critical role. More people are needed to fill open positions in the communications domain. Positions include journalists/writers, editors, video and audio production specialists, marketing specialists, graphic designers, photographers, web and social media specialists, people skilled in leading creative teams, and more. Applicants must have professional training and/or experience in order to be qualified.
My primary role is serving as the director of the Wycliffe News Network, a global team of journalists and photojournalists who gather inspiring stories about what God is doing in Bible translation. You can learn more about what I do on our about us page. I’ve been leading creative teams and providing consulting in communications in Wycliffe for years. I really enjoy it because I know that God uses the stories and media tools I’ve been involved in creating to get more people involved in this aspect of His work.
What about you? Are you interested in using your communications skills to serve those who don’t yet have God’s word in their language? You can be a professional communications missionary! Like me, you may find this work a very fulfilling way to use the gifts and talents God has given you to serve His Kingdom. Remember, that Wycliffe is a global association of organizations, so you don’t need to be an American to get involved.
Watch this brief video to see to behind the scenes as colleagues from Wycliffe Canada work to gather information for stories for Fall 2010 issue of Wycliffe Canada’s quarterly publication, Word Alive.