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Missionary Interview

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To most, missionary work consists of distributing food, medical clinics, spreading the gospel, and other various types of humanitarian work. I must admit, I also pitched my tent in this camp for many years. I had never sat down face to face and talk "ministry" with a missionary before, it wasn¹t until this interview that I really got a personal look into the heart of a real life missionary.

First to be interviewed was Jonathan Burmeister with Wycliffe Bible Translators. Jonathan was very open and willing to share with me "his story" as a missionary. A career missionary for over 30 years now, Jonathan and his wife Nancy are from Chicago. They met at seminary where Jonathan was preparing to be a campus pastor and Nancy was pursuing her interest in biblical archaeology. It was there what they learned about the need for Bible translation for the many minority language groups around the world that did not have any Scriptures. After much prayer and consideration Jonathan and his wife joined Wycliffe Bible Translators in 1971, and were assigned to work in Cote d¹Ivorie in West Africa. In 1973 they were invited to serve among the Anyi people in the southeastern part of Cote d¹Ivorie. Anyi is spoken by about a million people in West Africa.

During this time, Jonathan and his wife trained a team of Anyi literacy workers and Bible translators and built a training center in the town of Aboisso where they lived for more than 15 years. After much translation work, the New Testament for the Anyi Sanvi dialect was dedicated in 1998. Jonathan and his wife are also responsible for producing various bible based, evangelistic FM radiobroadcasts in the Anyi language. It was obvious to see Jonathan's passion and love for the Anyi people throughout my interview with him; He encouraged me to pray for him and his wife as they continue to minister to the West African people.

Second on my "missionary journey" was Jonathan Swanson. I must say right off that bat that my interview with Jon really opened my eyes to the various elements and day to day living of an American missionary. Jon has been a missionary for over 15 years and serves with Campus Ambassadors (affiliated with Conservative Baptist Home Mission Society). Based out of His home, John works along side with college students living in the east coast.
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