Recently missionaries Carol and Chuck Kaptain traveled back to Papua New Guinea to attend the presentation ceremony for the revised Bible translation Carol worked so hard to complete.
She was to be honored for her many years of service and work on the translation. They were celebrating the arrival of 3,000 copies of the newly revised New Testament in the Yagaria language. Believers from more than 70 churches gathered for the ceremony.
The churches planned the entire program, featuring speeches, feasting, drama, dancing and parades. Before beginning their plans, they prayed and asked God how He wanted them to show the importance of His Word.
Many wore traditional dress to show what a special occasion it was. Church leaders and Bible teachers painted their faces. One man's smiling face said "thank you, Lord" -- literally spelled out.
As they gathered for the ceremony, truckloads of people came by, singing and praising God at the top of their voices. A procession of more than 3,000 sang praises as they made their way to the place where the Bible was dedicated. They then sat in the scorching hot sun for five hours listening to dedication speeches. All sat in silence as they listened; only occasionally breaking out in cheers in response to one of the speakers. As a result of the testimonies during the ceremony, many believed on Christ and more asked to be taught.
The Yagarias fervency for the Lord continues to flow over into every area of life. Often at night, the sounds of spontaneous worship break out in various homes, and God delights in the praise of His people.