Lisa Kappeler made her first trip back to the Uriay village where she lives. She made the trip in a dugout canoe with an Abau couple and their two children. She sat on some wooden slats in the back for the two-hour trip.
“As we got around the last bend to the village, I could hear people hooting and hollering as they came towards the sand where we’d shore,” wrote Lisa. “It wasn’t the whole village but there was a good number of folks there to greet me. Several of the guys even hugged me as I got out of the canoe. Many of you know already how unusual that is culturally – but it was super encouraging to me.”
“Wekot fried some sago pancakes for all of us and they gave us coconuts to go with it. Everyone came to the house and we just sat around and caught up on all the babies that had been born since I left and just life in general. The saddest news was that the church hasn’t been meeting together. There were really only four couples living in the village at this point while two other couples had come back from the bush for the day just to see me. Aendru, his wife, their new twins and 2-year-old son came back just to see what the translation plan would be – that was super encouraging.”
While the church had stopped meeting, now with Lisa’s return two believers committed to come and help her with the translation of the Scriptures into the Uriay language.
After a warm reception and welcome Lisa needed to return to the Uriay village for a time.
“Just as we were leaving, Stiben and Dakruma got back from the other side of the river where they’d been all day. She came up and hugged me and was genuinely excited to see me. It was so sweet to hear her giving credit to the Lord for taking care of her and her family since I left. It came so naturally from her that I know that she continues to look to Him daily. Her husband came up and hugged me with their son on his shoulders – another sweet reunion just before heading out. So we climbed back into the canoe – sitting on the slats again—and off we went.”
Pray for Lisa as she translates God’s Word into Uriay. Pray that the Uriay believers will begin to meet together once again. Pray too that some will be willing to help with Scripture translation.