Central Office

The 73rd Indian Republic Day Flag Hoisting Ceremony of the Bible Society of India

The flag hoisting ceremony was held on the 26th January early morning at the BSI William Carey Centre office, No. 16, Hall Road, Bangalore – 560 005 and in all the offices of the Auxiliaries. A report with pictorial presentations as follows:-

Central Office with Karnataka Auxiliary:

Rev. Dr. M. Mani Chacko, the General Secretary of the BSI welcomed the gathering and hoisted the flag. Mr. Paul Stephen, Director, Publishing and Marketing Department delivered the Republic Day message calling out the Christian community to be mindful of our duties as good citizens to be caregivers when the society is in need, by abiding with the Laws of the Land in accordance with our Indian Sovereign Constitutions. He concluded his message by saying “Let us continue to serve the nation with Christian values of Liberty, Equality, Justice and Fraternity. Let us not be distracted by the challenging environment to follow and practice our faith. As we involve ourselves in the ministry of the true living Word of God, let us strive to bring the idea of republic Liberty, Equality, Justice and Fraternity into reality in whatever possible way as an individual and as an organisation. That should be our vision for the new and emerging India.”

Republic Day Observed at Auxiliaries:

Rev. Soma Bhatkar, Auxiliary Secretary of Ranchi Auxiliary hoisted the flag and Sr. Marketing Staff Mr. Victor topno shared the message.

Rev. Mathew Skaria, Auxiliary Secretary of Kerala Auxiliary hoisted the flag and shared the Republic Day message

Rev. K. John Vikram, Auxiliary Secretary of Andhra Pradesh Auxiliary hoisted the flag and delivered the Republic Day message

Rev Brajendra Kumar Kauri, Auxiliary Secretary of Odhisha Auxiliary hoisted the flag and delivered the Republic Day message

Rev. Dr. Yiepetso Wezah, Auxiliary Secretary of Dimapur Auxiliary hoisted the flag and delivered the Republic Day message.

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ANTI CONVERSION BILL- A CHRISTIAN RESPONSE

Rev. Dr. M. Mani Chacko, General Secretary, Bible Society of India

India is a secular democracy where “…religious liberty of both the individuals and associations of individuals united by common beliefs, practices and discipline” is constitutionally guaranteed. The Indian constitution in Article 25 grants to the citizens of India of all religious persuasions freedom to profess, practice and propagate their faith in a way that does not disrupt public order and does not affect public health and morality adversely. Although the Article 25 of the Indian Constitution ensures a fundamental human right of the Indian citizens in no case to be subverted otherwise, several differing attitudes have emerged since its promulgation. Objection to conversion is one of them.

Hindu fundamentalists claim that Christian missionaries and workers forcefully convert Hindus to Christianity. Therefore, Hindu antagonism towards Christianity has accelerated the attitude of Christian persecution spreading across India. Mass re-conversion ceremonies, destruction of churches, and brutal assaults on Christians and pastors have been increasingly evident in the recent months. 

Therefore in spite of the constitutional guarantee as a fundamental human right of every Indian citizen to practice and propagate her/his religion, today there is a strong opposition and challenge to it from Hindu fundamentalists in different forms in various parts of India. Anti-Conversion Bills have been passed in almost 10 states in India. Hence, the Christian believers are falsely alleged against, threatened, and forcibly curbed against practicing and propagating their faith. Those who have not encountered the explained conditions however live in fear of imminent persecution of whatever form. This situation requires us to see the issues involved in a little deeper level.  

Today all the Christians need to have a clear understanding about their purpose of their mission in the contemporary society. All the Christians need to know the struggles of people and response to the need of the people around them. There are various ways in which the Christians can do mission in the midst of the present day challenges.

1. Commitment to the Humanistic Nationalism and Nation

The Christian should strengthen the humanistic nationalism. They must show concern for the weak and marginalized, which is the characteristic of Christian life. The Christian approach to nationalism should start with an active involvement in the struggle for democracy without partiality. Christians have to be convinced that participating in the civic and political life is an essential expression of Christian faith. All the Christians need to love the nation and need to do the best for the upliftment of the nation.

2. Establishing a Just Society

For the Christians, proclamation of the Gospel is the service in which the church can render to every individual  and to all humanity. Service is the basis of Christian mission and justice is its primary concern. God is just, so the mission of the church is not only to preach the Word of God, but to bring justice and peace.  The Christian’s mission is to fight against all kind of oppressive structures and establish righteousness.

3. Getting Into the Politics

Hindutva is a religious ideology, but it is used in India to achieve political ends. The church therefore, should co-operate with any group, both religious and secular, to raise social consciousness among the people. The church should not be churchy, dealing only with the pious activities within the church compound, but they must be conscious about the things going on around them. The Christians must cooperate with the politicians, government, etc…, to eradicate the evil of religious violence.

4. Answer to Violence

Hindutva is also the ideology of religious violence. As an ideology of violence, it needs a hate object to keep itself through aggression. So for them Christians and Muslims are hate objects. Thus, the church as a whole should not look into their threats, but should stand against it and continue the option for justice even in the midst of suffering.

5. Having an Inter Faith Dialogue

Dialogue with other Faiths is the characteristics mode of the church. It will help people from other Faiths to develop positive attitude in the society by giving importance to religious harmony and peace. By maintaining a proper dialogue there will be mutual understanding between different religions.

6. Using of Proper Terms like Conversion

The term conversion often leads to misunderstanding in the context of religious pluralism. Therefore, Christian conversion needs to be reconsidered and interpreted in the light of recent developments in pluralism. The reason behind Christian mission is to transform the lives of the people and not to convert them into new religion or doctrine. The Christians must not have an aggressive attitude towards people of other Faiths or convert the people by force. Rather the Christians need to think openly from the standpoint of religious faith and response positively to the claims of others in the pluralistic socio- religious context of multi- faiths.

7. Maintaining Indian Identity

The Christian identity should not be mixed with that of west. A Christian Indian identity needs to be developed in India. In fact, Christians do participate in the life of the nation along with the people of other Faiths. But it is important to assert their Indian identity. They must be acquainted with the culture. They must heal it and preserve it. 

Conclusion

Hindutva and its ideology reflect the threat to Indian society. The promoters of Hindutva have intensified their efforts to change the country into a monolithic Hindutva mould. Their efforts have resulted in innumerable atrocities being inflicted on religious minorities. Such acts of violence and the ideology that legitimizes them, threaten to destroy the very democratic, secular, and civilizational fabric of the Indian society. It erases the pluralism that underpins the unity of the nation. It undermines the principles of freedom, equality, and justice, as well as to the multi-religious and plural-cultural nature and heritage of Indian society. Therefore, we need to respond with utmost caution and alertness in the present day context.

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Obituary: Rev. Dr. P.N.S. Chandra Bose

Dear Co-Workers in Christ!

With profound sorrow, we share the news of the demise of Rev. Dr. P.N.S. Chandra Bose on the morning of December 9, 2021 in a hospital at Hyderabad.

Rev. Dr. Chandra Bose was the President of the Bible Society of India between 2013 to 2019, Vice-President between 2007 to 2013 and he served as the Executive Committee member until the end.   He was 72 years old.  His funeral was held on the 10th December 2021 at Guntur, Andhra Pradesh.  Rev. Dr. Bose is survived by his dear wife, the Vice-President of the Bible Society of India, Dr. Mrs.  P. Leela Bose, a son and two daughters.

Rev. Dr. Chandra Bose was deeply involved in the work and ministry of the BSI both at Central Office and also at the Andhra Pradesh Auxiliary.   His love for God and God’s Word were truly commendable. The contributions he had made to the work and ministry of BSI is immeasurable.  He was a deeply committed and dedicated Christian leader.

We give thanks to God for the life and witness of Rev. Dr. Chandra Bose.  His demise has left a deep void in BSI which is difficult to fill. We will dearly miss him and would ever be grateful to Rev. Dr. Bose for the immense contributions he has made in fulfilling the Mission and Vision of BSI.

May the Lord comfort and strengthen Dr. Mrs. Leela Bose and the dear family members in this difficult time.

The thanksgiving service for the life and ministry of Rev. Dr. P.N.S. Chandra Bose was held at Jehovah Shalom Church in Guntur on 17th December, 2021. The services rendered to several areas of ministry by Rev. Dr. Bose were remembered and in particular, his services towards the Bible cause were venerated. The Rev. Dr. M. Mani Chacko, BSI General Secretary, highlighted the contributions of Rev. Dr. Bose to BSI and in particular to Andhra Pradesh (AP) Auxiliary. Rev. K. John Vikram, AP Auxiliary Secretary, read out the condolence messages of Dr. Michael Perreau, UBS Director General, and the Most Rev. Dr. P. C. Singh, Moderator, CNI and President BSI. Bro. Johnson, AP Auxiliary President and Rev. K. John Vikram have presented 20 Bibles to the family of Late Rev. Dr. Bose to distribute to the staff of the Hospital which was his last desire.

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INTERRUPTION AT CHRISTMAS

MATHEW 1:18-25

Rev. Dr. M. Mani Chacko
General Secretary,
Bible Society of India   
  

We have tremendously high expectations of Christmas. We want everything to be perfect. We have pictures in our minds of children playing, church choirs singing, and people smiling and getting along. But often it is not that way. It is supposed to be, as the song says, “the most wonderful time of the year” and the “hap-happiest season of all.” But for many it will be a very difficult time because something has interrupted the joy. It may be COVID 19, sickness, or death, or divorce, or loneliness.

We look to the Christmas season to be a time of perfect peace, harmony, and joy. But the first Christmas was not that way. It was an interruption.

Interruptions can happen at any good time. Consider the timing of Joseph and Mary’s interruption. They were engaged to be married. Like Christmas, an engagement is supposed to be a wondrous time. But it was during this time that an angel appeared to Mary and told her that she would miraculously, as a virgin, conceive and give birth to the Son of God. What joyful news! Yet, what an interruption! How would she explain her pregnancy to Joseph? Would he believe her? Would he be willing to take on that responsibility? This was not in their plans. And yet, she accepted it.

We know how Joseph responded. He didn’t believe her. How could he? His plans for a happy home with the woman he loved were dashed before his eyes. His life, as well as hers, had been powerfully interrupted.

If we are not careful, our response to an interruption can send us down the wrong path. Joseph nearly went down the wrong path. When he discovered Mary’s pregnancy, he was devastated. He couldn’t buy her story about a virgin conception. As much as he loved her and wanted to be with her, there was nothing to do but divorce her.

A betrothal – an ancient engagement – was much more binding than today’s engagements. The only way out of one was divorce. In fact, Joseph had the right to have her stoned to death for infidelity. Yet because he was a good man, he did not want to harm her or even embarrass her. He would divorce her privately. This was Joseph’s human response to a powerful interruption. But what a mistake it would have been.

Often an interruption brings on a knee-jerk reaction. We make decisions that, if we were better informed, we would not make. We must be careful that when we face an interruption, we don’t just react according to our own fears and feelings.

The key to handling an interruption is to get God’s take on it. Thankfully, God rescued Joseph from his error. I can imagine Joseph, having learned of Mary’s situation, tossing and turning in bed, trying to decide what to do. Finally, he decides. He will divorce her privately. But while he is sleeping an angel of the Lord appears to him in a dream and says,

“Joseph, don’t be afraid to take Mary as your wife. What she says is true. The child in her womb is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son and you are to give him the name Jesus because he will save his people from their sins. This is in fulfillment of what God said through Isaiah the prophet, ‘The virgin shall conceive and give birth to a son, and He shall be called Immanuel meaning ‘God with us.'”

Joseph awoke with a changed mind. He would not divorce Mary. He would take her as his wife and help raise this miraculous child. He had gotten God’s perspective of his interruption.

When you encounter an interruption, whatever it may be, don’t react according to your own feelings and thoughts. Seek God’s direction. Remember Proverbs 3:5-6: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; think about Him in all your ways, and He will guide you on the right paths” (HCSB).

Here are three words to remember when you encounter an interruption.

Prayer

The first thing to do when your life is interrupted is to stop and pray. Pray for guidance. Pray for courage. Pray for help.  When you look to God He will help you.

Perspective

Put the interruption in the proper perspective. How bad is it really? How long will it actually be important?

Providence

Keep in mind that God, in God’s providence, is still in control of your life. Nothing can happen to you without the leave and notice of your Father. He still has all of the hairs on your head numbered.

Interruptions can at times positively redirect our lives. This was true of Joseph and Mary. Their plans were interrupted, but oh what an interruption. Can you imagine a more wonderful privilege, or a more challenging responsibility, than to be the human parents of the Son of God? The direction their future took was not what they had planned, but it was so much better.

Have you ever considered that God could do that kind of thing in your life? Not that you would be made the parents of the Son of God, but that God would take what seems to be an interruption, an unforeseen problem, and use it to set your life on a new and better path.

Whatever interruption you may be enduring right now, why not look at it in a different light, and ask, “God, are you using this to do something great in my life?” Then begin to look for the marvelous things He will do.

Whatever interruption you may be experiencing this Christmas, there is one thing you can do: stop and give thanks to God for Jesus. And as you praise and thank God, even in the midst of difficult circumstances, something of the peace that Jesus came to bring will be yours.

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TOWARDS A THEOLOGY OF DEATH

Rev. Dr. M. Mani Chacko
General Secretary
The Bible Society of India

In the recent past, we had to confront deaths of several of our loved ones, including nine of our own dear colleagues succumbing to the Covid Pandemic. All of them could be, without any shadow of doubt described as “persons who have lived a life of kenosis”, emptying their own lives for the development of the other. The departure of the above loved ones made me to ponder over the importance of developing and practicing a Theology of Death by the Church at large so that people do not become afraid of death but instead face death boldly viewing death as a natural and normal process of life. For this, Job 1:21 is taken as a tool from which a few pertinent observations are culled out to develop a Theology of Death. Job is regarded as a blameless and righteous person, who shunned away from all evil. Yet he had to undergo suffering including the death of his children. When the news reached Job about the death of all his children, he got up, tore his robe, shaved his head and fell to the ground in worship and remarked “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised” (1:21).This statement of Job is moving and thought provoking. It projects three elements which can help us in developing a Theology of Death.

  1. Firstly, the Nothingness of Life.

Job’s statement “Naked I came…naked I will depart” points to the fact that Job understood the ordinariness and the impermanence of life. He realized human life is fragile and that he is nothing. In the Biblical account of Creation in Genesis 2:7, it is stated that God formed the human out of the dust of the ground. So the human according to the Biblical writer is nothing but dust. Dust and ashes in Hebrew thought stand for nothingness and ordinariness. This thought is beautifully expressed further in Isaiah 40:6-7 where it reads “All people are grass; their constancy is like the flower of the field. The grass withers, the flower fades… Surely, the people are grass”. Uncertainty of life and certainty of death are emphasized here. Job knew well that if one is born, he/she is to die. Life and death are part of a natural process. Hence Job was able to affirm “Naked I came…naked I will depart”.

  • Secondly, the Sanctity of Life.

Job continues his theological utterance by stating “The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away”. Here Job acknowledges that the life is God’s. God is the source of life and hence God is its owner. If God is the owner of life, God the owner can take away life as per God’s will. When God the owner of life takes life away, we have no right to question God, the owner and fall into skepticism. Rather we need to thank God for the life given and lived till death. A primary element in a Theology of Death is God’s ownership of Life. In Genesis 2:7, it is written that after forming the human out of the dust of the ground God breathed into his nostrils the breath of life. The Biblical account reiterates the fact that God is the source of life and that God gives life as a precious gift to the human to live and to experience the joy of living. Because life is God’s, life is sacred. There is sanctity in life. The human needs to realize this aspect and receive this gift of life with a sense of gratitude and be responsible in living the life which God has given. Life is not to be wasted away. Rather it is to be lived in all its fullness. Job realized this great truth and therefore in the midst of bereavement he was able to say “The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away”.

  • Thirdly, the Approach to Life.

Job’s last statement “let the name of the LORD be praised” is equally significant. It is also to be noted that Job tore his garment, shaved his head and worshipped God and uttered the above statement. These are amazing words and the wonder of it grows when we realize the context in which these words were spoken- loss of everything including all his 10 children!  His approach to life during the moments of crisis was not one of dejection but one of creative outlook. He did not question God by asking “Why?” Rather out of great humility he worshipped God by saying “Let the name of the LORD be praised”.

Creative approach was the way Job encountered suffering and death. Dr .Paul Tournier in his book “Creative Suffering” writes about 330 world leaders like Hitler, Napoleon, Lenin, Alexander the Great who all came up in life as orphans. They all faced Life and its challenges with a creative outlook. Religions have put forward different views on Suffering in life. In Hinduism, there is the doctrine of Karma that suffering is because of one’s actions. Good intent and good deed contribute to good karma and future happiness, while bad intent and bad deed contribute to bad karma and future suffering. There is the doctrine of Kismet in Islam that suffering is the will of Allah. In Zoroastrianism, there is the teaching that evil/ suffering is caused in life by Ahriman, the God of Evil and good and prosperity by Ormazd, the God of Goodness. Buddhism advocates the view that suffering in life is due to one’s Attachment to worldly desires and the way out of suffering is to detach oneself from the world by following the Eightfold path. In Christianity, the way to face suffering is by the way we approach suffering by making suffering creative. Paul and Jesus are the best examples of Creative Suffering. Paul says, “… I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.  I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength” (Philippians 4:11-13). Jesus in the midst of agony and pain cried out “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit” (Luke 23:46). Both Paul and Jesus approached suffering with a creative outlook.

CONCLUSION

Death is a somber subject indeed. None wants to face it. We take all precautions to escape death like medication, exercise etc. Yet the reality is, it comes irrespective of caste, color, creed, gender or age. None can escape death. The best option humans have is to realize that Life is nothing; Life is to be received as a gift from God to be lived responsibly and Life and its challenges including death have to be faced creatively with a spirit of optimism. By developing such a Theology of Death, life continues on the planet earth in all its fullness. Death ceases to be a threat to be afraid of. Rather Death becomes a part of the process of living.

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OBSERVANCE OF INTERNATIONAL LITERACY DAY

SEPTEMBER 8, 2021, 9.00 AM

The Bible Society of India had the privilege to observe the “International Literacy Day” throughout our offices in India.  

Imagine how different our life would be if we had never learned to read or write or understand any writing.  For millions of people in the developing world, this is the reality.  The lack of education significantly impacts their ability to step out of poverty.  Literacy unlocks human potential and is the cornerstone of development.  It leads to better health, better employment opportunities, safer and more stable societies.

The Bible Society of India observed the International Literacy Day on September 8, 2021. We are committed to pray especially for children that they may gain wisdom, and discernment through education to experience  the fullness of life God intends for each of them.

World wide, an estimated 250 million children, adolescents and youth weren’t in school and more than 100 million youth are not learned (Global Education Monitoring Report 2020). Despite progress over the recent decades, many children in school do not achieve functional literacy and numeracy skills due to overcrowded classes, lack of supplies of books and materials, unskilled teachers, who need more training, or disruption due to disasters and prolonged crisis like the Corona virus pandemic as in the pass two years.

The choice to intentionally engage in literacy activities is integral to the Bible Society’s mission. The ability to read the Bible for oneself, find meaning from it, and digest it as God’s message for one’s life, family, community, and society is a vital resource  the value of which cannot be overstated.

Literacy is a prerequisite to the majority of current Bible translation and engagement programmes, which aim for transformation at the personal, familial, and societal levels.

Although an audio or visual experience may be the initial way a non-literate person experiences the Bible, the ultimate goal of Bible engagement is to be able to navigate through the Bible oneself.

Concerns for intercession were:

  1. Pray for an end to the generational cycle of illiteracy and poverty.
  2. Pray for parents to support their children’s education.
  3. Pray for children’s safety at school.
  4. Pray for protection of children who aren’t attending school.
  5. Pray for girls growing up in cultures that do not value their education.

 

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OBSERVANCE OF INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PEACE

 

The United Nations General Assembly had declared 21st September as International Day of Peace. It is observed to be a day of global ceasefire and non-violence. Currently, we see political turmoil, violence and war in Afghanistan and between Israel and Palestine and conflicts in different parts of the world. The Bible Society of India came together as a community of Bible workers to pray for International Peace and to seek God to restore peace on this earth.

Our three North Eastern Auxiliaries namely, Aizawl, Dimapur and Shillong prepared the order of service for the day. We sought God for his forgiveness for all humankind as we have not always acted for peace. We ignore God’s calling to be peacemakers to our neighbours, communities, states and nations. We as a community might have caused divisions among ourselves and to people around us.  We sought God to make us a channel of peace to others.

Intercessory prayer was offered for the peace in Israel and Palestine, where violence and war continue to injure, kill innocent people and destroy properties. We asked God to take control of the situation and speak to the leaders of Israel, Hamas and Palestinian so that they come to negotiation table to resolve differences and restore peace in their land.

We also offered prayer for peace in Afghanistan as the Afghans are living under threat; especially the women are curtailed from their freedom of movement and education under the new Taliban rule. We pray that the Lord would grant the political leaders to rule their country with justice and equality, and peace may be restored in their land.

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OBSERVANCE OF INTERNATIONAL TRANSLATION DAY

SEPTEMBER-30-2021

Language is a means of communication. The International Translation Day is a special day in the history of translation of the Bibles. It is a day to pay our tribute to the translation work done by our language professionals, and the translators. The task of translation plays an important role in bringing nations together, facilitating dialogue, understanding and cooperation, contributing to development and strengthening world peace and security. On 24th May 2017, the resolution approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations was to commemorate the role of language professionals and the translators. Thus, the United Nations declared 30th September as the International Translation Day.

Generally, on 30th September the United Nations celebrates the feast of St. Jerome, one of the pioneers of the Bible translators, who is considered the patron saint of translators. St. Jerome was a priest from North-eastern Italy, who is known mostly for his endeavor of translating most of the Bible into Latin from the Greek manuscripts of the New Testament. He also translated parts of the Hebrew Gospel into Greek. Jerome died near Bethlehem on 30th September AD 420. Thus, to remember this great saint Jerome and his contributions towards the translations, we, the members of the Bible Society of India are gathered together to celebrate this special day dedicating our present language professionals and the team of translator into God’s hand for the extension of God’s reign.

The Bible Society of India in all its offices observed the International Translation Day during our morning prayer.  A special order of service prepared by the BSI Translations Department was followed.

We had video presentations on the following topics:

  • Bible for everyone
  • Bible translation in Braille Script
  • Jesus and the deaf man from Mark 7:31-37 (Sign language)
  • Greetings from the United Nations officials

Please continue to pray for:

  • Sustenance and wisdom for all Bible Translators
  • Protection over their family members
  • More Bible Translators to be trained and raised up
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OBSERVANCE OF INTERNATIONAL SIGN LANGUAGES

 

The Bible Society of India joins the deaf community around the world in celebrating the International Sign Language Day representing more than 70 million people on October 4th, 2021.

The theme for this year is “We Sign for Human Rights.”  It is a celebration and voicing with collective efforts of the deaf communities.  Civil society agencies and organizations, Churches and governments to recognize the sign languages as the heart language of the deaf and to promote the sign languages.

The deaf children from Deaf Biblical Ministry, Dimapur, Nagaland brought greetings, offered a special song and read the Bible portion from St. Mark 7:31-37 in sign language.

Rev. Dr. Along Jamir, Associate Director, BSI Translations gave reflection on this special day.  

What is Sign Language?

Sign language is not just a tool for communication.  It is a natural language and it has its own components such as shapes, facial expression, location, movement and orientation.  Language always comes from the heart, to express feelings, imagination and ideas.

They hear with their eyes!

They speak with their hands!

Sign languages exhibit the same linguistic universals and written/spoken languages.  The phonemes, morphemes, and syntax can be analysed in sign languages, as genre, function, sequence, narration and meta narration too.

It is their identity, consciously assumed it is life!   Each deaf community in every country of the world speak a different sign language.

Deaf Culture and Sign Language

Their identity as deaf, deafness, deafhood is what defines their culture, their culture is a way of feeling and seeing the World from a minority culture and language that is oppressed by the dominant language and culture of the hearing.  They are people lost in the midst of a world of hearing, such identities that deserve to be taken into account by the hearing community, not through pity but giving due respect and upholding their values, cultures and language.

Just deaf (Never deaf and Dumb)

Sign Language is not universal

They have proper grammar

Intercessory prayer was offered for the deaf community as this is the largest unreached people group to acquire the Bible in their language.  Please join us in praying for the deaf community in our country and continue to journey with us, as Bible Societies across the continents take new initiatives to bring God’s Word in sign languages.

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BIBLE SOCIETY OF INDIA – ANNUAL PLANNING WORKSHOP 2021

 

The Publishing and Marketing Department of the Bible Society of India conducted the Annual Planning Workshop 2021 for all the Auxiliaries and Central office for planning and reviewing the Scripture publishing, printing and distribution. The Annual Planning workshop was conducted from 20-24 September 2021 and UBS Publishers Institute was held on 28 & 29 September 2021 virtually under the theme ‘MEET THE MOMENT AND BUILD THE FUTURE’

The Auxiliary Secretaries and Marketing staff of 17 Auxiliaries participated in these events. The key note address was delivered by The General Secretary Rev. Dr. M. Mani Chacko.

The following is the brief summary of the address.

Planning for the future, while living in the present, is a challenge. How do you simultaneously plan ahead and be in the moment? If you don’t have a deliberate plan, you are not likely to move in the right direction, or to create the life you want to live.

You need to live in the present, because that is what brings you peace, gratitude, and happiness. If you’re constantly depressed about the past, or anxious about the future, you’ll miss your life happening right in front of you.

How do you plan for the future while living in the present?

While different approaches will work for different people, there are some best practices to follow that can help you be present in the moment and working towards a bigger, brighter future.

  1. AWARENESS OF SELF

Being self-aware is a key to creating any change in your life, and it can help immensely when you are trying to balance the future with the present.

Psychologists point out that there are two selves in human. They talk about a “future-self” and a “present-self,” almost as if they were two different people, and about how important it was to give both of those “selves” a voice.

  • SETTING SMART GOALS

One of the best actions you can take is to set SMART goals. Goal-setting is very much a plan-for-the-future activity, but making sure your goals are SMART allows you to balance that future plan with your present life.

A SMART goal is a goal that is designed to maximize your chances of success. SMART goals are:

Specific: clearly defines the goal and your desired outcomes

Measurable: allows you to track your progress and know when you’ve succeeded

Achievable: realistic; something you can actually do

Relevant: falls in-line with your overall vision for your life

Time-based: includes a deadline to help you stay on track

Why does following the SMART framework allow you to live in the present while planning for the future?

 When you have a SMART specific goal, that you know you can reach, and that applies to your life, you have realistic expectations that help you be confident in your plans.

Basically, taking the time to frame your goals as SMART goals will not only get you where you want to go, but it will also allow you to live your life as you get there.

  • CREATE ACTION PLANS

Along these same lines, deliberately-designed, action plans can help merge your future and present selves. What action could you take today that will keep you in-the-moment while also satisfying your need to “create happiness” in your future?

If you know where you want to go, you can get there—no matter where you are currently. You will not simply be living for the moment: you will be proactively moving in the right direction. This is the balance we are all looking for.

  • TRACK YOUR LEARNING

Vernon Howard states “Always walk through life as if you have something new to learn, and you will. Life presents us with lessons every day. Some of these lessons are so profound that they bowl us over. Others are so nuanced that we can barely recognize them.”

When you look out for learning opportunities, you are balancing present awareness with future benefit. Recognizing and applying these lessons to the future helps you in simultaneously live in the present while planning for the future.

  • CONTROL YOUR THOUGHTS

Your thoughts shape your reality. Every thought you have manifests itself in some way. Thoughts can inspire goodness and positive change, or can end up leading us down unproductive or even harmful paths.

Thoughts are undoubtedly powerful, but there is something even more powerful, that is YOU. You have control over your thoughts. You will have to learn to think thoughts that lead you to actions that serve both your present and your future selves. Your past and your future are not mutually exclusive when it comes to focus.  Claim them both, live them both.

The General Secretary concluded his Key Note address saying “We need to ‘Meet the Present and Build the Future’. These reflections apply to an organization like Bible Society of India as we plan for the future. The present Moment has to be met and along with Meeting the Moment, we need to Build the Future.”

There were sessions from the Publishing & Marketing department, CRRM department and Media & Special Audience Department highlighting the performances, plans and strategies.

17 Auxiliaries presented their 2020-21 performance and their future plans of distribution.

The UBS Publishers Institute was conducted by Dr. Barine Kirimi and Rev Arun Sok Knop. The participants were benefited by the inputs shared by these experts on various aspects of Bible Publishing and Distribution.

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