Mbeya NT Cluster | Kinga
This language group is participating in the Mbeya NT Cluster project.
About 140,000 Kinga people live in Tanzania, and perhaps half or more live outside of their traditional homeland in the country’s southern highlands. The Kinga are businesspeople, and they travel extensively. Many have moved to larger towns and cities throughout the country. Those who remain in the mountains grow cool-weather crops like potatoes and wheat. The cool climate helps protect mountain-dwellers from tropical diseases of the lowlands, like malaria. However, because so many people travel, HIV/AIDS is a significant problem among the Kinga.
Eager for God’s Word in their mother tongue, a Kinga translation and literacy team has been attending the workshops offered by SIL in Mbeya, Tanzania. The team, representing three denominations, began work in 2003 and has laid a foundation for Bible translation with careful linguistic work. They developed a new way of writing their language, and they have been studying the ways their language functions and compiling a dictionary. Some team members are teaching Kinga people to read so that they will benefit from the new translation. Drafts of Jonah, Ruth and Mark available at the start of the project gave them a good head start.
News from the Field
There are 10 languages in the Mbeya cluster, living in the mountains and plains of southeastern Africa: Bena, Bungu, Malila, Ndali, Nyakyusa-Ngonde, Nyiha, Safwa, Sangu, Wanji, and Kinga. Praise the Lord that the project is fully partnered. In 2003, several church leaders formed a council to initiate Bible translation projects for their people. Forty leaders representing 10 languages and nine Christian denominations have committed to the project.
The Mbeya cluster touches over 3 million speakers of 10 languages that live in the mountains and plains of southeastern Africa. In 2003, several church leaders formed a council to initiate Bible translation projects for their people. Forty leaders representing 10 languages and nine Christian denominations have committed to the project.