“If you are really praying for something, and if you really want something to happen, sometimes God can put the finger on you.” Katawer grinned, remembering his journey to becoming a translator for the Arammba people.
Back in the 1980s, the Arammba had begun praying daily for God to send a Bible translator to their area. One day in 1989, a missionary came and settled in Kiriwa village. “We thought, he will be the one who will be the translator in our area,” explained Katawer. But, the man wasn’t able to stay and soon left.
So the Arammba people began praying again, and another missionary came and settled in Kiriwa. “Again, we thought he’d be the one who will be helping us in translation,” remembered Katawer, “but he was here to teach in a Bible school, and then when that was done, he left. And then, we had no hope. We thought, no one is ever going to help us on our translation. We had been praying for years and felt like giving up.”
But then, the Boevés, from the Netherlands, arrived in Katawer’s area and explained that they were there to help with Bible translation. “We were very happy!” Katawer’s eyes shone. “In 1999 he called a workshop and taught us how to go about translation.” Katawer and a team of four other translators first tackled the book of Jonah and later the book of Genesis.
“After it was printed, we brought it back to the village,” Katawer explained. “That day, everybody celebrated the dedication of Genesis. All the Arammba villages gathered together, and we had the first dedication, and everybody was happy.”
After so many years of praying, the Arammba finally had Scripture in their own language. “I didn’t know that I would become the translator,” Katawer said, “but I’ve learned about praying for something to happen. Sometimes, when you pray, God will say, you are the one to be doing the work!”