A six-month update from the field…


The middle of August marks our 6-month anniversary working with Etnopedia in Mexico!  Your prayers and financial support continue to help us move forward and accomplish much with this ministry.  As indicated in our last post, we recently made a huge breakthrough in our research of Nepal’s ethnic people groups.  Having this information gathered in one location provides a common ground from which missionary movements in all languages from around the world can collaborate towards reaching the hundreds of nations within Nepal, many of whom still have no access to the Gospel message of Jesus Christ.  Very little is known about many of these people groups, but this list provides the framework within which research can be gathered and updated until the day that the ‘reachedness’ status of each group transitions from Red (unreached) to Green (reached) with the Gospel.  Nepal is one of our top-five priority missionary sending countries of the world based of the shear number of unreached ethnic people groups.  The other four are China, Bangladesh, India, and Pakistan.  You can read more about this on the Etnopedia English page.  More about ethnic people group research can be found at Etnopedia.info.

One significant advantage we have living in Mexico is our close proximity to a rapidly growing Evangelical movement with many young people eager to take the Gospel to the ends of the earth.  Over the past several months we have helped mobilize many Latin Americans who are now in the process of preparing to serve as Bible translators and church planters among the least reached nations of the world.  The Etnopedia research site, because it is translated into Spanish (among other languages), has become the primary source of ethnic people group information for Spanish-speaking missionary candidates from through Latin America.

We also partnered recently with Wycliffe/SIL to train a large group of children’s ministry leaders on how to effectively mobilize kids to eventually serve as Bible translators among unreached people groups.  Such training for kids starts from a young age as they begin to learn about and develop a heart for unreached people groups.  And as they grow older they can make education and career decisions that will lead to their being placed within an unreached people group.

Back in the office, Drake has been leading the development of the Etnopedia Mapping Project, a revolutionary system that leverages technology to map the locations of people groups from anywhere in the world.  Knowing where a people group is located is one of just a few critical pieces of data a missionary needs to reach them with the Gospel.  An example of this system in action can be viewed by visiting our profile for the Botche Akha people group of Laos.

Even as she learns Spanish and has been dealing with a parasite problem that has been the likely culprit behind recent digestive problems, Megan has been diligently recruiting and training new members to our translation teams.  God is really blessing the Etnopedia Spanish translation team with volunteers from as far away as Argentina and Australia who have taken on this vital work as their ministry.  Megan spends a great deal of her time these days training new members over Skype.  She is now focusing on developing our French-speaking and Korean-speaking language teams.

Outside of work, we find ourselves enjoying Oaxaca and its people more and more each day.  It is really growing on us and feels more and more like home.  Things are different here of course.  We don’t have all of the conveniences found in the States.  Overall quality of life here is best measured by its relative simplicity.  Sure, we don’t always have running water, we wash our clothes by hand, and have to carry our trash several blocks down the hill early in morning each week…not to mention often being woken in the middle of the night by our neighbors setting off fireworks!  But after a long week either in the office or after several days and nights on the road for a research trip, the value of setting out for a walk on a cool evening down to the Zócalo (main square) where we can drink fresh horchata, eat cactus fruit-flavored ice cream, and hear numerous indigenous languages conversing all around us is well, as they say,….priceless 🙂

  • Please pray for Drake as he works through the tedious process of fully implementing the Etnopedia Mapping Project while training new team members around the world on developing maps from the field.
  • Please pray for Megan as she herself develops full Spanish fluency, while managing communication with many new and potential recruits to the Etnopedia team.
  • Please pray that Megan would be fully cleansed of a parasite that she was recently diagnosed with.  Please pray that she would be healed of digestive problems that have been difficult to manage with our varying food selection and availability.
  • Please pray for us and the Etnopedia team as we move forward with all of these projects, that we stay in step with our Guide, the Holy Spirit.
  • Please pray for more laborers to go to the field (Matthew 9:38), to serve as Bible-translating, church-planting missionaries among unreached people groups.  We also desperately need new members for our team.  We are severely short-handed relative to the massive amount of work.  Please pray that more mission-minded people would choose to serve in the much needed area of research into unreached ethnic people groups.  Even today, there are still MILLIONS of people around the world, many within small ethnic groups, that no one knows anything about.

“And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.”  – Matthew 24:14

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