When it came time recently to update a highly effective Bible program for Morocco, TWR’s ministry to the region had to practically start over because the old scripts had been destroyed.
The new work on The Way of Righteousness is part of the flourishing production underway of TWR broadcasts in North Africa and the Middle East. When the older version of The Way of Righteousness in Tamazight, a language spoken by millions in Morocco’s Atlas Mountains, was sent to TWR for broadcast, the man who translated and produced it destroyed the scripts. Opposition to Christianity, including legal restrictions, is strong in Morocco, so all evidence of the work was deleted as a security measure.
The Way of Righteousness has become the centerpiece of TWR’s outreach to Muslims globally. It is acclaimed for its effectiveness at explaining the truth of the gospel within the cultural context of Muslims seeking to understand the Bible.
Refreshing a Proven Program
“We want to take the scripts that have been kind of revised by Paul Bramsen, who wrote the scripts for The Way of Righteousness and has updated the English scripts a bit, and to refresh program,” said Nathan Anderson, TWR ministry director for North Africa. “Maybe even have a new sound to it with two voices. We just want to improve it and make it even more interesting to listen to.”
Anderson said the same Christian brother in Morocco has taken on the task again and, having the existing audio and Bramsen’s updates to work from, is recreating the scripts.
Production work is also in progress in Algeria on The Way of Righteousness, this version in the Kabyle language spoken by the Amazigh people, who in the past were known as Berbers. In fact, the Tamazight speakers in Morocco are also part of the Amazigh culture.
One of the team members in Algeria is a highly gifted producer who endured years of persecution by her own family because of her faith, Anderson said, while another is a church leader. Anderson is eager to have the team work on other programs after it is through with all the episodes of The Way of Righteousness.
Anderson was also asked by Bernard Oosterhoff, TWR international director for Central Asia, the Middle East and North Africa, to help develop a ministry to Kurdish people. With a population estimated to be over 35 million, the Kurds are a people group concentrated mainly in Turkey, Iraq, Iran and Syria and considered unreached by the gospel.
New Developments in the Middle East
Through a partner ministry in Turkey, TWR is collaborating with a Christian radio station in the southern part of the country where there is a large population of Kurds who speak Kurmanji. Calling the relationship with the FM station “very, very strategic,” Anderson said work is underway to produce Kurmanji editions of The Way of Righteousness, a new version of the popular Women of Hope and Power in Persecution.
Women of Hope is already on the air in another Kurdish dialect, Sorani, over a network of Christian FM stations in northern Iraq. These broadcasts differ from the usual broadcasts of Women of Hope in that the roughly half-hour recorded programs are bookended by segments in which several women discuss the content.
Anderson said he hopes TWR will be able to partner with this ministry on other programs in the future.
There are other programs that play essential roles in TWR’s concerted effort to meet the needs of Muslim listeners who desire to know more about the gospel. One example is The Prophets, created and presented by Abdoulaye Sangho, TWR international director or West and Central Africa. Others include Talmatha and a series of programs called Oasis of Hope.
“But I think The Way of Righteousness has been a great way to kind of bridge the divide for a long time and move us in the right direction of how to produce good content for Muslim audiences,” Anderson said.
Photo: A Kurdish family enjoys a picnic in northern Iraq. (Photo courtesy of IMB.org.)