Paite Bible Translation Project

Profile of the Paite

Location

  • Several of the provinces of Northeast India

  • According to the Ethnologue, these people are a secluded tribe

Language Family

  • A Chin language (part of the Sino-Tibetan family)

Speakers

  • 78,000 in India; 91,800 worldwide (Ethnologue)

  • 86,000 in India; 12,000 in Myanmar (Joshua Project)

Religion

  • 99.7% of the people are Christian

Existing Bible Translations

  • Portions of Scripture were published in 1940 by the British and Foreign Bible Society

  • The first New Testament was translated in 1951

  • The first Bible was published in 1971

  • BI published the complete Bible in 2004

Paite

Overview

The Gospel came to the Paite people around 1900. The last half of the 20th century saw a great change among the people with demon worship being put away. It is believed that most of the Paites have heard the Gospel with many of them turning to the Lord. Before the Lord called him home, Jam Khothang, one of the main translators, said, “We are eagerly awaiting the Word of God in our language. Only younger people read Hindi or English [both of which have an entire Bible], [but] even then there is no understanding of the content. We want an accurate Bible in Paite that is readable and that will help us know God in our language.”

Bibles International adopted the Paite project in 1984, working with a national, H. Nengzachin. However when Dr. Henry Osborn began working with Bibles International, he realized that the work done by Nengzachin was a word-for-word translation from the KJV. The decision was made to start the work from scratch. This was a severe blow to Nengzachin, and he resigned from the project. The work was restarted using Jam Khothang. Sadly Pujam, as he affectionatley came to be known, did not live long enough to see the dedication of the Paite Bible, as the Lord took him home 12 months before the dedication of the Paite Bible in February 2005. Latouungam (Angam) Rongmei and Kim Hibbard are the consultants working with the project now.

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