Update and Prayer Requests: September 2021
Valerie and Nicasio Martinez
Translating God's Word with and for the people
who speak Quiatoni Zapotec
Dear friends, we are sad that we have several items of bad news.
With very heavy hearts, we heard that Karina (our colleague-friend who’s been intubated in the hospital for six weeks) passed away Friday night. We don’t know any more at this time. Her family and our colleagues who were helping to care for her would appreciate your prayers.
Beto’s mother-in-law is dying from diabetes. Her husband, their children and their families would appreciate your prayers.
Pastor Delfino (the pastor of our local church) is on oxygen at home because of covid. His wife passed away two weeks ago from covid. Again, your prayers are appreciated.
I keep forgetting to tell you that Nicasio found a room to rent for his office! You may remember that in February, Nicasio gave up his office that’s next door to our house (on our other piece of land) so that his parents could live there. They have adjusted well to living there and being more independent. One big perk is that their children who live in Oaxaca City are able to come and visit them more often.
Meanwhile, our living room became the “attic,” with all Nicasio’s office stuff stashed there. (Good thing we didn’t have any visitors in the house during that time; we saw visitors only on the porch.) Then in May, Nicasio found a place that fitted what he needed and is just a few blocks from our house. After getting internet service provided for and a few pieces of furniture, he moved into his new office in June. Thank you for praying for just the right place for him!
After working off and on for about six years on a small book describing Quiatoni Zapotec’s grammar, it has finally jumped through all the hoops (checking it for accuracy, terminology and Spanish) in early September! I was very happy to print 25 copies of it and look forward to distributing it. I hope it will be helpful to the bilingual teachers and people who speak Quiatoni Zapotec. (You might remember that people put down indigenous languages by saying that they don’t have any grammar.) The title in English would be A Peek at Quiatoni Zapotec’s Grammar.
Nicasio is really enjoying teaching his class on Indigenous Languages for the Master’s program of translation and interpretation. He likes all the reading he’s doing in preparation—and thanks to my niece, has discovered an African author who is influential in decolonizing the mind, that is, encouraging people to write in their own indigenous languages instead of the main European languages. Nicasio’s also enjoying the positive feedback from his students; how they are discovering the worth and value of their own languages and cultures.
All our regular activities continue: Nicasio is revising the book of Acts; he pastors a small group of young people; he’s teaching a couple of people on-line to read and write in Zapotec; he pops over to see Mom and Dad several times a day; and he and Beto take turns teaching in the Zapotec church service.
I continue working on the bilingual dictionary, keyboarding hundreds of illustrative sentences I found in a notebook (from the early 1990s!), and working on a book about the back-strap loom.
Beto continues to work on translating the Psalms, studying and recording Acts, and working on digital projects to make the translation and recording of it available on cell phones.
Rusty had a doctor’s appointment last week to go over his bloodwork and CT scan (check-up for the testicular cancer; he had surgery in March for it). Rusty was delighted that the doctor said, “Everything looks good. See you in six months!” since he thought it was going to be three months for the next check-up. We are so thankful for this great report!
As always, we thank you for your interest, prayers and support for our ministry of Bible translation and for all of us involved in making God’s Word speak Quiatoni Zapotec.
love, Valerie and Nicasio