Archive for the ‘Burundi 2011’ Category

Bujumbura Covered Market – Part 2 (2011)   Leave a comment

Here is the outside of the Market as we approach the entrance.  If you look carefully you can see Bill’s head in the distance (Hearing interpreter, USA).  If you have great eyesight you can pick out Julia (Deaf USA).

Here is the entrance with Chirapa (Deaf Thailand) taking a picture.

Tarja (Deaf Finland) signals everyone to catch up so we can enter as a group.

Here is the entrance.  Can you find it?

You are correct.  It is on the right side.  If you have problems with claustrophobia you may want to stay outside.  I can see the heads of five of the consultants in training and the interpreter in the next picture.  Can you?

Anil (India), Chirapa (Thailand), Luka (Kenya), Bill (USA), Julia (USA) and Tarja (Finland) – from closest to most distant.

In the next picture we are at a wider spot in the middle of the market and can see the exit.  Again I see five of the consultants in training, but not the same five.

Anil (India), Aris (Colombia), Julia (USA), Luka (Kenya) and Tarja (Finland) from closest to most distant.  Again Tarja is the easiest one to find.

Here is the view after we exited.  In the middle distance is my favourite tree in Burundi.  One of these trees was right across from our Hotel.  I call the tree a Flame Tree for its bright red flowers.  It may be the same as the Royal Poinciana (Delonix regia) but I am not an expert.  I see it in many tropical locations around the world.


Posted 18 December 2011 by prpttccnsltnt in Burundi, Burundi 2011

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Day 12 – Bujumbura, Burundi (16 November 2011)   1 comment

Yes, this post is late.  With the last minute details of leaving Burundi and then folks arriving in and leaving Kenya it didn’t get posted.  We had folks stranded at an airport when their flight was cancelled.  We had folks miss their flight when the road to the airport was closed for six hours due to a terrible accident.  Now Geri and I are on our way to Korea, having already made a quick trip to Malaysia.  We have Deaf people from many places in Asia and the Pacific coming for meetings and some of them do not have visas yet.  Please pray.

Burundi has about ten million people.  There is no accurate count of the number of Deaf but there is probably at least 30,000 to 50,000 Deaf people.  In the whole country there are only two interpreters.  My interpreter for the trip was Bill Ainsley.  He spent a lot of time with these two interpreters.  Here is a short piece he wrote, using third person.

While in Burundi, our interpreter, Bill Ainsley, had the opportunity to meet with the two interpreters serving the entire deaf population of Burundi…1) Nijebariko Alain Chabel (taller one in picture), and 2) Koudra Massepe.  (BTW, Bill is the guy in the middle.)
Neither interpreter has had any formal training, so much time was spent sharing “interpreter stories”…how to handle certain ethical situations, features of sign language grammar, cultural mediation, etc.  They ended up with 11 pages of sign language grammar items and interpreting tips!  These “items” and “tips” gave “titles” to what they have already been doing as interpreters, thus creating a mental toolbox of skills to strengthen their interpreting.  Bill wants to collect a box of sign language and interpreting resources to send to them (books, articles, etc.).  The sign language of Burundi has strong roots in American Sign Language, so if you have anything you can donate–please contact Bill at  Anything would be so appreciated!
The two interpreters have called 5 other interested people who are supposed to have met on Monday evening, November 21, 2011, to discuss establishing a National Interpreter’s Association.  (We haven’t heard from that about the meeting yet.)
They have asked us to pray for 1) their efforts in establishing an Interpreter’s Association and 2) their continuing efforts to recruit and train additional interpreters.
Bill Ainsley

Day 11 – Bujumbura, Burundi (15 November 2011)   Leave a comment

There are many things about Burundi which I enjoy.  There are a few things which are less than enjoyable.  One is the slow connection to the internet.  Kenya now has a connection to a fast fibre optic line which runs down the east coast of Africa.  So far I don’t think it has reached Burundi.  Posting these blogs has caused me to have some strange hours, even stranger than I normally have.  I also have been trying since Sunday to post a short video to YouTube.  The video is less than a minute of a song from the church service.  Once it got all the way to 90% before quitting.  Wednesday morning it finally succeeded in uploading.  Yeah!!!!!  I will try to embed it on this page but if that doesn’t work you can see it at (high definition) or (standard size).

I stayed up all night Monday to post the blog about the dedication so I skipped the checking session on Tuesday and took a long nap.  Here is the report I got back on the sessions.  The first picture shows Tarja (Finland) and Chirapa (Thailand) leading one session.

As you requested the DOOR translation team invited people who knew very little about the Bible. One of the stories checked was about Abraham, Sarah, Hagar and Ishmael.  This story was new to most of those watching.  After watching the first part of the story they thought that it was Sarah who was expecting.  It wasn’t until the end of the story that they realised that Hagar was the one who was expecting.  This is just the sort of challenge which these checks are supposed to reveal.  The consultants in training told me that the information was in the video.  This may mean that there was  problem with how the information was presented.  We will be working with the Deaf translators to make this part of the story more clear.  Adding the background pictures should also help clarify the situation.

Another comment was that there were Kenyan SL signs in the translation in certain places.  This is a danger with doing the translation outside of the language area.  All of DOOR’s Burundian, Ethiopian, Ghanaian, Ugandan and Tanzanian teams live in Kenya for 9 months each year working together on translation.  It is a great environment but there is the danger of borrowing signs from the dominant language – Kenyan SL.  One of the purposes of the months back in their home countries is to replace any Kenyan SL signs with Burundian SL signs.

Posted 17 November 2011 by prpttccnsltnt in Africa, Burundi 2011, Deaf, Sign Language

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Day 10 – Bujumbura, Burundi (14 November 2011) Dedication Day   1 comment

The scheduled start was at 9.  Almost no one was there at 9.  Not even all of the Door Burundi SL team were there.  I got a little worried.  I had time to take pictures without people in the way.

I shouldn’t have worried we were just on Burundi time.  We started a bit more than an hour late.  I counted about 100 people in attendance.  Here is a picture of the crowd.

There were speeches, introductions and many thank yous.  On stage right was a table covered by a sheet.  Finally the time came for the unveiling.

The DOOR Burundi SL translation team then told what this event meant to them and about all of the work which went into producing the translation on this stack of video Bibles.  I know some of their hard work.  This is my third trip to Burundi to work with them.

Then we had a celebration song.  I really enjoy the singing in Burundi.

Once all of the speeches were done and the final prayers said it was time for distribution.   I have many pictures of people receiving their Burundi SL Bible portions.  One of the ones most meaningful to me shows one of the former DOOR translators receiving his copy.

BTW, I am trying to follow Man Di’s advice to put in more pictures and fewer words.  Let me know what you think.

Posted 15 November 2011 by prpttccnsltnt in Africa, Burundi 2011, Deaf, Sign Language

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Day 9 – Bujumbura, Burundi (13 November 2011)   1 comment

Patrick met us at our Hotel.  Then he and Luka procured two taxis for us.  As usual I get to sit beside the driver in the front seat.  The back seat situation is  bit more crowded.  My taxi often has all four ladies in the back seat – Aris, Chirapa, Julia and Tarja.  We headed toward Lake Tanganyika, at first on main roads and then more narrow bumpy roads and then unto even smaller roads.  Eventually the taxi could go no further.  We walked the last 100 meters or so.

Worship was already in progress when we arrived, the large drum beating out the rhythm for the singing.

Moses led the first song.  He is on the far right of this picture below.  I can’t identify everyone in the picture.  Julia and Tarja are next to Moses.  The lady in “pink” with the pink hat is Edith who has been a great help with improving the translation.  (I await the artists to tell me the right name of the colour I call pink.)

Below is a still picture from a video of the third song.  I am trying to upload the video but that may not succeed.  If it does I will come back in a add the link.

Moses delivered the message.

Here are two pictures of the last song.  The man in the first picture was formerly a DOOR translator.  They announced his engagement at this service.

Do you remember a week ago when I got to hold a baby?  I didn’t get any pictures then but she was back this Sunday and I have a picture.

Tomorrow (or actually today since fit is after midnight) is the dedication starting at 9 am Burundi time.  Please pray.

Posted 14 November 2011 by prpttccnsltnt in Africa, Burundi 2011, Deaf, Sign Language

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Day 8 – Bujumbura, Burundi (12 November 2011)   Leave a comment

Since the consultants in training and the DOOR translation team has made such great progress, Saturday was a non-working day.  We answered emails, washed clothes, went on walks, shopped and had lunch together.  In the evening the Burundian Deaf hosted a small social for us.  We sat around and talked and of course ate a meal.  As the honoured guests we got to serve ourselves first.

Here are Chirapa and Julia ready to begin eating.

Tomorrow we will be visiting a different Deaf church.  There are three Deaf churches in Bujumbura and we will have the privilege to worship with two of them.

Posted 13 November 2011 by prpttccnsltnt in Africa, Burundi 2011, Deaf, Sign Language

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Day 7 – Bujumbura, Burundi (11 November 2011)   Leave a comment

FINISHED on Friday

The consultants in training and the DOOR Burundi SL translation team finished the last story today.  That doesn’t mean that we have stopped working.  We are now going back and looking at some of the earlier stories again.  It does mean that we have Saturday off, except for a social put on for us by the Deaf.  We leave in a few minutes so I probably won’t post this until afterwards.  It is now Sunday evening and I am just now posting this.  Sorry.

We have has some very faithful people coming each day for the checking.  I really like the colourful outfits the ladies wear.  The poor guys don’t seem to get to wear the colourful clothes.  Here is a composite picture of some of the outfits.

If the internet speeds up I will post a photo of the restaurant visit on Wednesday, Day 5.

Posted 13 November 2011 by prpttccnsltnt in Africa, Burundi 2011, Deaf, Sign Language

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