Tonga: Vision for Bible Translation workshop

Bible Translation Organization Tonga (BTOT), an affiliate of Wycliffe Bible Translators, seeks to engage the people of Tonga in Bible translation, and to challenge people to consider Bible translation as a calling.
In July, BTOT held a one-week workshop for those interested in Bible translation, to tell them more about the need for Bible translation and the importance of having a Bible in your own language, and to give an idea of how Bible translation is done and what skills are involved in Bible translation. The course was organized by Tevita Lālahi (BTOT secretary), with assistance from the BTOT board. Lecturers were Paulus & Antje Kieviet (Isles of the Sea) and Barry & Marg Borneman (Wycliffe Australia), while Tevita also gave a number of presentations.
Twelve participants attended the workshop, while various others dropped in for one or more half-days. Some of these were young people with an interest in missions or Bible translation (e.g. connected to YWAM), others were pastors and church leaders.
The course went very well, with a lot of interaction and much enthusiasm from the participants. Topics included: Vision for Bible translation, BT history (e.g. a presentation on the Tongan Bible), Translation, Literacy, Scripture Use, Language Learning, Grammar and Phonetics. There were also various stories of Bible translation projects, either told by us lecturers, or shown on DVD.
Even though several participants remarked that churches in Tonga tend to be quite inward-looking, it was heart-warming to see this group of people with a heart for missions together.