Dear Prayer Partner

Happy New Year! We look back over 2018 and thank God for the many wonderful ways His kingdom has been extending. We also thank you for standing with us in prayer.

We look forward with expectation, knowing God is touching hearts and working in ways we can not even imagine. Below are some items for prayer that will already bless you as we move into all that God has for us in 2019!
Family Engagement in Malawi
Last year we ran a campaign to support the distribution of Family Engagement Packs in Malawi. Local pastors identify families who are longing to own Bibles and who would commit to reading them together.

11 part-time Promoters travelled on bicycles, to reach 902 families in poor, remote regions. Each family received a pack with a Bible, Daily Reading Guides and a Children’s Bible. Each family made commitments to reading together on a regular basis and applying the teaching to their lives. 902 families, with an average of 5 people, are studying God’s Word daily - that's 4,510 people.

Recipients are full of praise for the family project saying it has helped their devotional life and strengthened their families. A colleague in Malawi reported the following: ‘This was the most inspiring and motivational project as the less privileged were given a smile. Most recipients expressed shock as they received their package. They couldn't believe it. They are full of gratitude for this great gift that has brought hope in their lives.’

Pray for the Family Engagement in Malawi
  • Join us in praising God for the families that continue to gather daily around His Word in Malawi and for the impact these families are having in their wider communities.
  • Pray that the habit of daily Bible engagement would be sustained and that more churches would embrace the need to help their people to regularly interact with the Scriptures.
  • Pray for the Promoters who travel to remote areas on bicycles, that they would know God's protection and be so blessed as they share His Word with families.
Waray NT launch 2018
New Testament launch in the Philippines

November was a joyful month for the 2.5 million speakers of Waray on the islands of Samar and Leyte in the Philippines: the New Testament was launched in the three dialects of the Waray language.

The Bible in Western Waray has been available since 1984 but it has always been very difficult for speakers of the other two dialects – Northern and Eastern Waray – to understand. The Philippine Bible Society has been working on changing this for a number of years .

Last month, hundreds of Waray speakers gathered to launch the Waray New Testaments. Happy Waray Christians formed a motorcade to drive around the city for an hour ahead of the formal launch ceremony. The image shows a tuk tuk driver taking part!

The launch was held on November 26, which was also the 119th anniversary of the Philippine Bible Society. A Bible Society spokesperson said, “Looking out into the crowd and seeing every single hopeful face was a reminder of our mission and vision. We work to make the Bible known... We want to see Warays – and all Filipino people – transformed through God’s Word, for the Bible is the one true guide to life.”

Pray for the Philippines
  • Give thanks that the New Testament is now available to many more people in the Philippines. Praise God that so many people turned up to the New Testament launch, full of hope and expectation. 
  • Pray for the Waray people who have recently received the New Testament in a language they can clearly read. May the Spirit bring the message alive and stir hearts to respond to God.
  • Ask the Lord to spread His Word to all Filipino people and that they would be hungry to read it so that they might grow closer to God.
Armenia's Border Villages

The border regions in Armenia are often very isolated. Young people in particular feel cut off from the world, so when the Bible Society visits to distribute Bibles and share God’s message, it can be quite an exciting occasion!

Bible Society staff member, Arshavir is often moved by the response that he sees in people.

A teacher recently invited the Bible Society to visit and asked them to bring Bibles. She spoke of their wonderful Bible Hour in school and how sad it is that they receive so few visitors because they are so far from the cities. It is a real joy for the Bible Society staff to visit this, and other schools, especially when they see such eagerness in teachers and pupils to engage with the Bible.

The team also finds a warm welcome among the armed forces. Arshavir shared a beautiful story of how one Gospel booklet was given to a young girl who shared it with her dad who was in the army. He was so impacted by it that he brought it to read every day in the army. Before long he had arranged with the Bible Society to bring copies for each soldier in his unit. He testifies to the impact the Gospels have had on his life, ''As a soldier, I am convinced that the major lesson of the Bible is humility, and the example comes from Jesus, who descended from God and became a man like us to show us the power of humility. The soldier must be aware that the humility is a strong weapon. A man is strong when he knows to forgive and to be humble.''
Pray for Distribution in Armenia
  • Please pray for Arshavir and the Bible Society in Armenia. Pray that they would know God’s protection as they carry His presence and light to the border towns and villages.
  • Pray for the spread of God’s Word to these more remote parts of Armenia. Pray for those who feel forgotten, that they would know they are never forgotten by their Heavenly Father.
  • Pray too that nothing would stop God’s Word reaching those who want it. Thank God for providing and pray for His favour and a new sense of His presence. 
  • After several years without any staff we are pleased to report that a new Development Officer, Julia McKinley, has been appointed for the National Bible Society of Ireland. Please join us in praying for Julia and for the members of the Board who have worked hard to get to this point. Pray for new opportunities and for the development of the work again in the Republic of Ireland.
  • The launch of the first Papiamentu Study Bible will be held on January 26, 2019 in Curaçao. This is an Antilles island in the south Caribbean. The Papiamentu Bible was made available 15 years ago and the need for a study Bible has been expressed by churches for some time. Pray that this Study Bible will help many grow deeper in faith.
  • The Albanian Bible Society have been running successful Sports Ministries for some years. Pray for their plans to build a sports stadium as a social enterprise to raise both funds and awareness for the Bible Society and to impact young people and their entire community through sport.
  • Pray for the Bible Society staff in South Sudan who have been working in a very volatile environment. Pray for God’s intervention in the government so that peace may prevail.
We really value your prayers at the start of this year as we are looking at some changes.

Leah McKibben is moving on from her role as Project Manager. Pray that she will know God's hand as she steps out into a new calling. Leah has been with the Bible Society for 10 years and many of you will have heard her speak or corresponded with her over the years. We will miss Leah but know that God has great things ahead for her.

This means we are advertising for a new position. See below for details and please do share the information with anyone you think would be interested in the post.

Community Partnerships Manager
Could you be the next member of our team? We are looking for a new Community Partnerships Manager … could it be you?

Applications need to be returned by midday on Monday 28th January to  or by post, marked Private and Confidential, to Catherine Little, Bible Society in NI, 27 Howard Street, Belfast, BT1 6NB.
Speaking Engagements
Mon 28 Jan, 8pm – Catherine is speaking at Cairnalbana Presbyterian Women
Wed 30 Jan, 8pm - Catherine is speaking at Aughnacloy Presbyterian Women
Thur 31 Jan, 8pm - Catherine is speaking at Terrace Row Presbyterian Midweek
Fri 1 Feb – Catherine will be attending the SAMS Friday Night Live event
Sun 3 Feb, 6pm - Catherine is speaking at Ballyclare Reformed Presbyterian Church
Sun 10 Feb, 11am - Catherine is speaking at Sydenham Methodist Church
Mon 11 Feb, 7.30pm – Catherine is speaking at Shaftesbury Square Reformed Presbyterian Women’s Fellowship
Tue 12 Feb, 8pm – Catherine is speaking at Mountpottinger Presbyterian Women
Thur 14 Feb, 8pm - Catherine is speaking at St John’s Mothers’ Union, Lurgan

Meetings and Events
Catherine will be attending a meeting of the Bible Societies from the Europe & Middle East regions in Budapest from Tues 15-Thur 17 Jan. Pray for her as she travels and as she meets with staff from other countries. Pray that this will be a great opportunity to build on relationships that have already been formed and to begin some new ones.

Mon 21 Jan – Pray for the meeting of the Bible Society NI Board of Trustees
Thur 24 Jan – Catherine is meeting with the leadership of the British and Foreign Bible Society and the Scottish Bible Society in Edinburgh. This is an opportunity to develop partnerships, fellowship and strategy for the three Bible Societies in the UK.
Charity Registration Number NIC102557