During the Lexicography course, the Eastern Slovak Romani team was encouraged to think of a dictionary project that might actually be useful for their people and areas. There is already a bilingual dictionary available for the language and even some online resources, so a traditional dictionary was deemed less helpful. Now, even though that dictionary is not widely used due to dialectal issues, the team knew that copies were available and well-known. However, during our in-class discussions, the idea for a Bible dictionary started to generate excitement.
Throughout the remaining course, the students’ desire for a Bible dictionary intensified greatly–especially Marek who works regularly with youth and young Christians. He started to see the usefulness of having more educational material to use alongside the Scriptures they are so faithfully translating. This desire to be a part of creating a dictionary was regularly verbalized, and there were even several, sometimes intense, discussions about the real possibility for creating such materials. While there are great obstacles to overcome in finding funding and support for such a project from within Romani communities, I saw a passion ignite within Marek to fight for the intellectual, educational, and literary future for his people—a passion to see his people grow in their ability to understand and know the Bible, and to find his place in joining the Holy Spirit in this work of searching the mind of God and enlightening humanity with the light of the knowledge of who is this Jesus. – Joel Brown, August 2019