2008 is Year of the Bible

This story was in the Solomon Star Newspaper last Saturday:

PRIME Minister Dr Derek Sikua has endorsed 2008 as the Year of the Bible.

This was after he met with a delegation from Solomon Islands Christian Association (SICA) and Solomon Islands Full Gospel Association (SIFGA), Wednesday this week.

The church groups met the prime minister at his request.

The endorsement of 2008 as the Year of the Bible coincides with the planned launch of the Solomon Islands pijin bible this year.

Martha Matzke of Solomon Islands Translation Advisory Group (SITAG) said the launch of the pijin bible is an important achievement for the country.

“The pijin bible will give many Solomon Islanders access to God’s word in a language that is easy for them to understand,†Mrs Matzke said.

“In addition, New Testaments will also be launched in the Natqgu language of Santa Cruz and Wala language spoken on Malaita,†she said.

Mrs Matzke said SICA and SIFGA have been planning for the year of the Bible and are outlining activities that will celebrate the arrival of the pijin bible.

They were also encouraging bible study and raise the awareness of the importance of God’s word.

“A working group has been formed to carry out the plans,†she said.

She added that Prime Minister Sikua was very supportive of the Government declaring 2008 The Year of the Bible.

Dr Sikua had given his Minister of Home Affairs, James Tora, the task of drawing up a cabinet paper for presentation.

The document is expected to be completed by next week when it will go to cabinet for final approval.

The document, to be approved as The Year of the Bible, is a part of the stated government policy.

The Solomon Islands Philatelic bureau has chosen to honour The Year of the Bible with a stamp commemorating 30 Years of Bible translation in this country.

The stamp will be issued on Independence Day.

Mrs Matzke said during the church groups audience with Dr Sikua, they prayed for him and presented him with the plan for the Year of the Bible.

This is the first time for The Year of the Bible to be declared in Solomon Islands.