RICHMOND, Va. -- The first man to translate the New Testament into Lungga will also be the first South Pacific consultant for the United Bible Society.
Alpheaus Zobule, who is studying for a doctorate in theology, was the first man to translate the bible into his native language, Lungga, as well as the first to create a writing system for the language, Virginia's Richmond Times reported Monday.
It took Zobule five years to translate the New Testament and write three grammar books in Lungga.
"The reaction of the people when they heard the Bible read in their own language for the first time was that of joy," said Zobule. "Many wept realizing that they could now read the most important book in their life. Also they felt that their language was important and that they were important."
Zobule will return to Ranonga to become the first Pacific islander to work as a United Bible Societies translation consultant in the South Pacific.
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