At Bossey, Ewell and Schweitzer lectured in the class of Fr Prof. Dr Lawrence Iwuamadi on Intercultural Biblical Hermeneutics. Schweitzer focused in his presentation on the history and mission of United Bible Societies, which was founded in 1946, in a time when Christians of all confessions joined hands for reconciliation and healing. Today there are 150 Bible Societies operating in 250 countries.
“The principle of locality inbuilt in the structure of locally rooted Bible Societies, rooted in the local churches, means working with local people, local translators, equipping and empowering the local church for this mission,” said Schweitzer. “Everything starts with a local request.”
Schweitzer also emphasized that the translation process does not take place in a vacuum. “It is part of a historical process, carried out in a particular context at a particular time,” said Schweitzer. “This means that a number of factors play into the exercise of translation.”
Ewell shared about challenges and joys of ecumenical translation projects. “Engaging in Bible mission is never a one-way process,” she said. “Everybody is involved: donors, translators, community.”
Both lecturers encouraged Bossey students to get connected with their local Bible Societies and also to think about creating, together, a space for engaging with the Scripture that leads to transformation of our communities.
In the Ecumenical Centre, discussions focused on preparations for the 11th WCC Assembly and how the United Bible Societies can participate. Ewell and Schweitzer expressed their strong will to accompany the assembly team. Time was given also to discussion on the WCC-United Bible Societies joint book project Your Word is Truth. The Bible in Eleven Christian Traditions, which is in the final stage of publication.