Positive outlook on the alphabet

On Sunday I attended a meeting at the nearest Embera church and it went well. Cornelio,a trained Embera teacher,had gone to the Indigenous Education office to find out whether there was anything of interest going on. It turns out that a couple of people have been moved around,so there is an opening . . . →Read More:Positive outlook on the alphabet

Alphabet survey seminars

Yesterday Doug,Abundio,Julio and Chaz attended a meeting with a team headed by the unofficial chief’s education coordinator. We were cautious about this meeting because of a distrusted person who was in attendance. The coordinator asked us to do a series of training seminars on linguistics so those trained could visit remote villages,do . . . →Read More:Alphabet survey seminars

Quick answer to prayer

Thank you for praying regarding my accepting the role of linguistic advisor for the group I mentioned yesterday. I definitely will not accept the role at this time. The group’s goal appears to be that of funding the linguistic research project of a private individual,part of which is introducing yet another alphabet proposal! We . . . →Read More:Quick answer to prayer

This week with the alphabet

While there have been some positive steps in the N. Embera alphabet saga,there are still some rocky areas we need to go through.

The first objective has been met:the alphabet deemed unusable by the people is no longer under consideration. On August 16th a resolution was drafted to use different letters. The church . . . →Read More:This week with the alphabet

Chaz in the Darien

View from town of Sambu toward pedestrian bridge to Puerto Indio.

Doug and I were invited to attend a regional congress and present the 1974 alphabet,the one the church uses. We had to go out a day earlier than we thought,because of the limited flight schedule,but it was a time to . . . →Read More:Chaz in the Darien

Friends we didn’t know we had!

Doug Schermerhorn,our partner with New Tribes Mission,informed us that one of the Embera church members on the alphabet committee had a meeting with a government official a few days ago. This person is wanting to help the church with the alphabet situation. She is aware of certain people in government who don’t want . . . →Read More:Friends we didn’t know we had!

Recent developments

Last Friday the Panamanian government launched their new bilingual education program,supporting education among the indigenous groups in the native language first and then later in Spanish. As part of this declaration,each group received an “official”alphabet. Unfortunately,the one put in for Embera was the universally rejected one,with less than a handful . . . →Read More:Recent developments

After the Congresses…

Thank you for praying for the two Embera congresses,where the official alphabet was discussed. The church is encouraged by the current situation.

At the first congress,which was convened by the chief who is recognized by the government,the commission which had been promoting the unusable alphabet did not even show up. So their . . . →Read More:After the Congresses…

What’s been happening

Helga dropped me off at 11 AM on Wednesday morning at yet another Embera alphabet meeting on the way to taking her parents to the airport. This meeting was brief and productive,yet it turned into two lunch periods and another meeting on the other side of the city,which was also positive,for the . . . →Read More:What’s been happening


Yesterday the Embera church decided that they needed to show that alphabet is not just theirs but the people’s. So they have sent a couple of men to go around to all the villages to collect signatures from community leaders who are in support of the alphabet. Please pray for them;travel can get expensive . . . →Read More:Signatures


Chaz reporting:

The alphabet issue is getting more intense. We had a couple of the regional chiefs in our house yesterday along with two officials from the Ministry of Education and several Embera church members. The idea is to work together on a common alphabet,so that the upcoming bilingual education program actually enjoys success. . . . →Read More:Meetings,meetings,meetings!

Alphabet issue –current status

The Embera church representatives are getting together their arguments for why the alphabet they want should become the official Embera alphabet. It has been neat to see how they have changed their attitude from one of passively waiting for others to come around to their point of view to that of actively stating their case. . . . →Read More:Alphabet issue –current status

The Embera alphabet situation

Thank you for praying for the Northern Embera alphabet situation. This month will be a crucial time because a commission has gotten an alphabet approved which is not the one the Embera church has used for 30 years and is not even the one the Embera teachers have tried to promote during the past 15 . . . →Read More:The Embera alphabet situation

N. Embera alphabet issue

The Northern Embera alphabet has been an issue of debate for more than 30 years. To make a long story short,the Embera Evangelical Church has supported one specific alphabet that whole time and events in the last few years have indicated that sooner or later that particular alphabet would become the official Embera alphabet . . . →Read More:N. Embera alphabet issue

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