Sara Madjingay Bible Translation Project

Profile of the Sara Madjingay-speaking People

Location

  • Primarily in Chad, Africa
  • There are approximately 2300 speakers in the Central African Republic

Speakers

  • 183,000 (Ethnologue)

Religion

  • Primarily Christian (91% adherence with 32% evangelical)
  • Animism and Muslim beliefs have a strong influence

Literacy

  • Literacy primers and Old Testament storybooks were written and distributed
  • New primers were printed in December 2013

 

Overview

The Sar language, also known as Sara Madjingay, Sara, Sara Majingai-Ngama, is spoken mostly in the southwestern part of Chad, Africa. This region includes the cities of Balimba, Koumra, and Sahr. The Sara Madjingay dialect is the major language for six tribes of Chadians.

Chadian believers received their first New Testament in 1972 through Baptist Mid-Missions missionaries. In the same year, the Chadian government, in a spirit of nationalism, attempted to force all citizens to undergo pagan tribal initiation rites. When the believers refused to submit, 13 Sara Madjingay pastors from the original translation team along with others were tortured and killed. They stated that they found their courage to die for their faith in the Word of God.

Bibles International completed and dedicated the second Sara Madjingay New Testament in 1986. Wear and tear from constant use, along with jungle rot and mildew, left the people with not one copy from the first edition. Over 100 pastors teach from the Sara Madjingay, and evangelists preach from it in itinerant work. Missionaries and Bible school students travel into the bush with their New Testaments to share the Scriptures with other Chadians. The majority of the New Testaments from the second edition have been sold.

The Sara Madjingay now desire an entire Bible, and work is progressing on the translation of the Old Testament. The goal is to complete this Bible in 2017 and print 20,000 copies.

 

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