Surinam president Santokhi receives the NBV21 Bible 

In Surinam, last Saturday, president Chandrikapersad Santokhi was presented with the first copy of the NBV21 Bible. This Bible was presented to him by Rieuwerd Buitenwerf, General Secretary of the Bible Society for the Netherlands and Flanders and Erny van Axel, General Secretary of the Surinam Bible Society. This took place during the celebration in the Grote Stadskerk in Paramaribo at which the NBV21 was introduced.

In his speech, Santokhi explained what he considered to be the importance of the Bible, “Every day, the Bible gives people a great deal of hope, people who lose hope through developments they may not understand – if something happens in their private lives, in their environment or in the country. The Bible makes the connection between believers and the Creator.”  

Santokhi emphasized the importance of a new translation in new, current Dutch for younger people. He also drew attention to the input from Surinam. He considered it to be significant and important that the NBV21 was created based on responses from all Dutch speaking countries.  

During the celebration of the NBV21, this translation was embraced by the different cultures of Surinam. There were prayers in Aukan and Javanese, and there were colorful Javanese, Hindustani and Marron dances.  

NBG51 and NBV21 translations 

In the days before the presentation, the Surinam Bible Society organized presentations and interviews, during which the Dutch delegation talked about the NBV21 and discussed Bible translations in Surinam. Unlike in the Netherlands and Flanders, in this country the 1951 NBG translation is still the most commonly used translation. The 2004 Nieuwe Bijbelvertaling (NBV) did not really catch on, one of the reasons being the absence of reverential capitalization and the translation choices that were sometimes very different from the translation people were familiar with. Because this criticism has been incorporated in the NBV21, there now is enthusiasm about this new translation. In Surinam, too, experience has shown that the Dutch used in the 1951 translation is now seriously dated.  

Different cultures and languages 

The population of Surinam consist of different population groups. At school, Surinam people learn Dutch. Dutch is generally spoken in churches in more densely populated areas, and the Bible that is read is in Dutch. But at home, people often speak the language of their population group, and in the interior of the country, Dutch isn’t spoken as much. For that reason, the Surinam Bible Society is working on Bible translations in the different languages of Surinam.  

Photo: Rieuwerd Buitenwerf (left) en Erny van Axel (right) are presenting the NBV21 to president Santokhi  

© Photo NBG, Paul Doth 

English News

Was dit interessant of nuttig? Deel dit bericht met je netwerk!