21.05.2020

One Word, Many Tongues

  • 1/11
    Community Evangelist Albert Asante Odoom translates into the Ga language. He is also the Assisant Youth leader for the Accra Apostle area and serves the East Legon congregation
  • 2/11
    Community Evangelist Odum and wife, Sister Florence, are both legal practitioners. Their 3 children are their ‘lords and judges’ at home
  • 3/11
    Community Evangelist Odoom, interpreting for Apostle Boakye in a service at East Legon in September 2018
  • 4/11
    Priest Dr. Emmanuel Kwasi Agyemang serves with the East Legon congregation. He has been the leader of the medical teams for the Accra Apostle Area youth camps in recent years.
  • 5/11
    Priest Dr. Agyemang, with wife, Sister Patricia, and their child
  • 6/11
    “My most memorable and honourable moment” he says, Priest Dr. Agyemang interpreted for the Chief Apostle in January 2019, when the Church leader conducted a Ministers’ and Wives’ divine service at Koforidua
  • 7/11
    Priest Daniel Adzavon also serves with the East Legon congregation. He is the Youth Priest of the congregation.
  • 8/11
    Priest Adzavon, with wife, Sister Belinda, and their daughter. Sister Belinda played an immense role for the translation of the first online divine service into the Ewe language
  • 9/11
    Priest Adzavon with Sister Adelaide and daughter, at the Chief Apostle-led Ministers’ and Wives’ divine service at Koforidua on 26th January 2019.
  • 10/11
    Deacon Isaac Kweku Asenso of East Legon Congregation; always helping Priest Agyemang for quick and easy translation to the Twi language.
  • 11/11
    Priest Dr. Agyemang and Deacon Asenso busily at work to beat the deadline

Three ministers – Community Evangelist Albert Odoom (CEv. Odoom), an aspiring legal practitioner; Priest Dr. Emmanuel Agyemang (Pr. Agyemang), a medical doctor; and Priest Daniel Adzavon (Pr. Adzavon), a telecommunications engineer – have dedicated themselves to translating the online divine services into the main 3 languages spoken by most members in Ghana – Ga, Twi and Ewe respectively. They share their experience so far.


How has the experience been for you?
CEv. Odoom: “It has been very humbling and joyous. To me, it is a call to duty, to serve the Lord and my fellow brothers and sisters by helping to bring the Word of God to their understanding.”
Pr. Agyemang: “Very interesting, I have enjoyed it so far. I feel blessed to be a part of the team to help spread the gospel. As a Priest, I find it a duty I hold very dear”
Pr. Adzavon: “Just awesome! It is an awesome experience.”


Which of the online services did you find most challenging?

CEv. Odoom: “I would say the Easter Sunday Service by our Chief Apostle. One of my recorders developed a fault a day to the service, so I had to transcribe the whole preaching before recording the Ga translation. Doing all that in the house with the kids around, especially during the COVID-19 lockdown, was quite challenging.”
Pr. Agyemang: “So far, most have been fairly easy. The challenge has been to finish it up and distribute early so members can listen to the sermon, maybe around 10 AM, as we normally do.”
Pr. Adzavon: “The first online divine service with our District Apostle. I had the summary in Twi and because I am not fluent in the language, I had to call in my wife who had to translate to English for me to translate into Ewe. It took me almost 5 hours to get it done.”


Did you have any experience with divine service translation? Any memorable occasions?
CEv. Odoom: Yes, I have been translating for about 15 years now, having had the privilege of translating for the departed District Apostle Klaus Saur. One memorable experience I would never forget was at the 2017 Youth Camp in Cape Coast. Lead Apostle Oppong-Brenya beckoned me from the congregation to interpret for then Apostle Benjamin Ohene-Saffo. I was very surprised when I heard my name, because I had not been given prior notice. As a result, I was lost in thought momentarily just before stepping to the altar. I believe the Lead Apostle felt I could deliver, and God being always faithful saw me through successfully.
Pr. Agyemang: “I have had some experience but not for an online divine service. My most memorable one is the Chief Apostle Service in early 2019, when we had the Ministers’ and Wives’ divine service at Koforidua. It is my most honourable moment.”
Pr. Adzavon: “No, I had never done any translation prior to this call up.”


From your perspective, is there anything that should be improved for the online services?

CEv. Odum: “Not really I must say. So far, so good.”
Pr. Agyemang: “I think if there was an interpreter by the Apostles doing the English translation, it would help. Just as was done for the Chief Apostle in Easter, we finished fairly early because we could do a direct translation rather than a summary of the service.”
Pr. Adzavon: “So far it has been good. However, sometimes the person translating from German to English is not so understandable. I actually enjoyed the translation of the Chief Apostle’s service where the interpreter was right near the altar (social distancing). Picking that into other languages was much easier.”


So the next time you receive an audio clip via Whatsapp saying, 'Me nuanom adɔfɔ', 'Anyɛmi mɛn yɛ sumɔlɔ mliŋ' or ‘'Nɔvi lɔlɔtɔ'; it is a peaceful greeting meaning, ‘My beloved brothers and sisters’.

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