Keep The Faith About Town
Over 100 people from across the UK attended the recent launch of the first ever Jamaican Patois Bible, held at the Jamaican High Commission.
This translation, which will be available in both a written and MP3 format, will enable people who speak Jamaican patois to read and hear the Bible in their own language for the very first time.
Rev Joel Edwards, Lord Michael Hastings, Chaplain to the House of Commons Rev Rose Hudson-Wilkin and former England footballer, Linvoy Primus, were amongst those present.
The Jamaican High Commissioner, Her Excellency Aloun Ndombet-Assamba, welcomed the publication saying it was “an important piece of work.”
The Rev Courtney Stewart, General Secretary of the Bible Society of the West Indies, flew into the UK especially for the launch. He told the attendees, “This New Testament will achieve a kind of engagement of our people with the Word of God in a way that has never happened before. There will be transformation in people’s lives. For the first time, they will have an understanding of God’s Word.”
Marcus Prince Johnson, son of the beat poet Linton Kwesi Johnson, read the Lord’s Prayer in patois, whilst UK rapper Dwayne Tryumf closed the event with a reading of The Beatitudes in patois.
The Jamaican Patois Bible is a project undertaken by the Bible Society of the West Indies, and has taken 20 years from start to finish.
Church leaders, present at the launch, welcomed the translation. Rev Carver Anderson, Executive Director of charity, Bringing Hope, told Keep The Faith, “I’m excited. I call this Bible theological contextualisation for Jamaicans. I will take this to the streets, and look forward to it.”
Rev Claudette Douglas, of the Holy Apostles Theatre Ministries, was elated about the translation. “For more, it’s a breakthrough, a ground-breaking moment with JA turning 50, and at last giving itself permission to recognise its own language as having integrity, authenticity and the anointing of God.”
The Patois Bible was published in Jamaica at the end of October to coincide with Jamaican’s 50th Independence Anniversary celebrations.