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Faithful in All | The Liberian Civil War
Episode 10710th May 2024 • Essentially Translatable • Lutheran Bible Translators
00:00:00 00:34:03

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In the past 60 years, missionaries with Lutheran Bible Translators have seen war and destruction effect the growth of ministry—but the faithfulness of God has never been disrupted. On this episode of Essentially Translatable, host Rich Rudowske celebrates the organization's 60th anniversary and explores a significant pivot in the history of Lutheran Bible Translators during the 1980s and early 1990s.  

This episode brings listeners stories from the Liberian Civil War and the impact it had on the organizations’ approach to Bible translation. With extensive translation work being done in Liberia at the time, the war disrupted operations but subsequently led to a shift towards local ownership and partnerships within translation efforts.  

Hear interviews with Alvina Federwitz, Jim Laesch, and David Federwitz: all missionaries who were affected by the civil war in Liberia in various capacities. Reflect on Alvina’s first-hand experience with the violence of war. Consider the challenges Jim faced in regulating administration during a period of great uncertainty for the organization. And learn from David as he explains the outcome the war had in leading to the formation of the Liberia Translation and Literacy Organization (LIBTRALO).  

Through God’s faithfulness, a transformative impact came from this crisis. Lutheran Bible Translators pivoted to an innovative strategy of fostering local ownership and engagement within the language group when no other options were available. Today, this groundbreaking approach has become the ideal standard and continues to be used by the Bible translation community in the modern era.  


  • Stories from the Liberian Civil War are shared in reflection of the 60-year history of Lutheran Bible Translators. 
  • The civil war prompted the organization to prioritize local ownership of translation projects—an innovative decision.  
  • Learn more about LIBTRALO here 




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