“It was like a large mirror was put up to show me my life, the good and the bad. I now see areas I have to fix and work on with my wife and family. It was really helpful.”
In March 2014, nineteen translators and their wives from the Aitape West Translation Project, which works with 10 different languages, attended a week-long spiritual retreat at the SIL Wewak Centre. Ben and Miriam Aringana, regional directors for Bougainville, taught multiple sessions on Christian marriage and parenting, the role of husband and wife in translation, and challenged all participants to evaluate their walk with God.
One evening, the participants were told to discuss with their families the question, “Are you a child of God or a child of Satan?” One translator shared that at first, he was rather cross. “Surely there is another option, not just two. Can’t you be 50/50?” He shook his head, “This week showed me that there is not a third option.”
Many translators expressed how they wished they had received such teaching years before when they were newly married and before they had children. Dominic explained, “I thought my marriage was good, however the retreat showed me I have lots of things to work on in my married life.”
At first, some of the translators thought a spiritual retreat would be like other workshops—more like going to school than being refreshed. Afterwards, Vincent shared, “I am so happy this spiritual retreat happened. At the retreat I saw that God opened my eyes to the way of Christian marriage and showed me where I stand with God. I know that I am on God’s side.”
“I want to give a big thank you to all those you supported this retreat financially.” he continued, “Without support, this retreat would not have happened. Thank you too, to all those who prayed and made this retreat a success. Thank you.”