Posts Tagged ‘Consultant Seminar’

September prayer letter (see at the end why I’m going to discontinue my blog but also how you can still get updates)

Dear Family and Friends,

Our new director encouraged us to read Milton Vincent’s The Gospel Primer, so Oksana and I decided to incorporate it into our family devotions. Vincent gives us many reasons to rehearse the gospel daily to ourselves, one of which is how it cures distrust of God by reminding me of His sacrifice of His Son’s life for me. What a powerful and precious truth!


We are thankful for the safety God gave us on our trip to Ukraine and Eurasia in June and enjoyed spending two weeks in Ukraine with family and friends. My workshop preparations during the first week went smoothly, so thanks for praying.

We covered a few more verses than any previous workshop, but are still moving at about 25% of our optimal speed. The main translator plans to take language courses to improve his skills, so PRAY for this to help significantly with the project. Thank you for praying for us as we guided the translators through some complicated linguistic issues. The discussion ended up being so simple that I wondered why I was concerned–surely, it was because God answered prayers! We do another Eurasia-Ukraine trip in November/December, so PRAY for preparations for that. We also need to renew Oksana’s Ukrainian and international passports during the next two trips, so PRAY for God to guide us regarding how to accomplish that task.


We PRAISE God for providing a minivan for us just a week before we headed down to SC. It enabled my mom to travel with us, which really helped my wife, who enrolled in a driver’s training course while we were down there. PRAY as Oksana studies for the permit exam, while also trying to keep up with a busy toddler who doesn’t seem to like sleeping too much!

I am thankful for how well the courses went at BJU. Though it was an extremely busy time before and during the two courses, everything fell into place quite nicely, with three others helping to bear the teaching load. I really enjoyed the teaching experience and the two students, who are both seriously considering joining BI someday–so that goal was certainly accomplished. Plus, I learned much more about Bible translation work and began implementing that into the BI system–so that goal was also met. PRAISE God for how He sustained me during those three weeks because of your prayers! PRAY for BJU as they rework their linguistics program to attract more students.

We also squeezed in a meeting with a new church, and I had the privilege of speaking twice (once to the senior saints) at our former sending church, Mt. Calvary Baptist. In addition, we got to spend an evening together celebrating three years of marriage.


We returned home on a Saturday and began hosting guests for the BI consultant seminar the following Monday, with the seminar beginning on Tuesday. Around 20 of us gathered to collaborate with each other and to learn from an Old Testament expert about Aramaic, textual criticism, theology, translation problems, and Bible software programs. PRAISE God for His blessings on the seminar!

I’ve begun looking ahead to the Haitian Creole OT workshop at the office in late September. PRAY for my preparations and for good progress on the project. We will represent BI at BJU’s missions conference in early October, so PRAY for safety as we travel down again and for God’s blessing on recruiting. We also have a two-day trip to Cleveland in early September.

Because of security concerns in certain countries, I will need to discontinue my blog. I will send out “feature” emails between prayer letters (no more than one per quarter) and “weekly” emails that give a few requests. If you would like to receive either of these, please send me an email at doctor_troy05@yahoo.com and indicate “feature” and/or “weekly” in the subject line.

For the sake of Christ,

Troy (for the three of us)


Read Full Post »

After being away for almost a month for furlough in Quebec (and one deputation meeting in NJ), the work really piled up, and I’ve not been able to catch up. It seems that fairly significant things (including approving two NTs for formatting) keep coming across my desk as I try to get caught up. So, I have to give those things my attention instead of the emails, some of them waiting for me since early in the summer.

One event that occupied my attention was the Bible Faculty Summit at Appalachian Bible College in WV. It was a great time of fellowship and academic challenge as we shared scholarly papers with each other and just grew in our professions and in our walk with the Lord. It was also nice to get to know ABC better. It was my second time to visit but my first time to get a tour. I appreciate their desire to keep things simple but squarely focused on the Lord. My friend, Dr. Mark Ward, is the main driving force behind this summit (though he’s only one on a committee), and I really appreciate his desire to provide a forum in which well-trained fundamentalist men and women can gather to sharpen one another academically and spiritually. I hope to keep attending in years to come! (My main purpose in attending is to network with profs to get more recruits and maybe even to get help with our translator/consultant tools.)

2017.08 Bible Faculty Summit

While traveling for that, I was also preparing for the upcoming Consultant Seminar, which I lead every year. It got off to a great start on Tuesday morning. During the opening session, I shared an article, “The Life of a Consultant,” that I had written to help candidates considering becoming a consultant. They need to know what they are getting into before they get into it too deeply. Then, I reviewed the life of Ross Hodsdon, who had been with BI since it began in 1981. He actually joined BMM in 1976 and then in 1989 he became a translation consultant. He had worked with at least 21 languages in 14 countries, and he was directly involved with the publishing of 23 NTs/Bibles. Ross died last Sunday, and he will be greatly missed. But what a legacy he left behind! And his imprint is all over BI’s material and consultants. Somehow he managed to be extremely productive in consulting while also developing translator/consultant tools and recruiting extensively. Few can do all those things well at the same time!

We focused on Scripture Use (or Scripture Engagement) for this seminar, and we had a special speaker on Thurs-Fri to address this topic. It was a very fruitful time of discussion and learning. Pray for wisdom as we implement these ideas into our current workflow.

We have two more days of seminar, when we will have just BI members and will focus on tools development.

Praise God that at least 2 of the attendees are planning on joining BI in the future, and others are quite likely. (The seminar is always a time of recruiting, and this year it was more so than in the past, since we had more non-BI members than members.)



Read Full Post »

I just realized that I never updated our “where are we?” page for August. Here’s what happened (and why we didn’t have time) last month and the beginning of this month:

Aug 3-13: hosted an intern

Aug 9-16: led the BI Consultant Seminar (which includes activities almost every evening)

Aug 17-19: BI Annual Retreat

Aug 20-Sept 3: Metanoia NT workshop

Sept 3-14: vacation in Ukraine

Sept 18: Calvary Baptist Church, Westminster, MD

Now I will update our blog for the rest of this month and October.

Read Full Post »

Dear Family and Friends,

In Jay Adam’s A Theology of Christian Counseling, my current counseling book to read, he points out the seriousness of the accusation “That isn’t fair!” that counselees often make. It’s tempting to say such words when we don’t understand how good things can happen to bad people and vice versa. But with this accusation the counselee is “challenging the justice of God and the faithfulness of His Word.” It also demonstrates “a clear lack of faith.” As believers, we must trust God and accept by faith what He says about how He will reward good and punish wickedness.


The month of July began with Oksana attending (with me at her side) BMM’s Candidate Seminar. We enjoyed the fellowship and learning at the week and a half of orientation, and we are rejoicing that Oksana now has “appointee” status. Eventually, we’ll both be commissioned by our new church in Grand Rapids, and she’ll then have full missionary status. PRAY as we continue to seek monthly support, which is currently at 81%. PRAISE Him for the 1% increase!

During the seminar, Oksana’s dad had some sort of mild heart attack. He refused to get medical help, and passed away a few weeks later. He most likely died in the same spiritual state he was in throughout his life—a hardened atheist. Oksana wasn’t able to make it to Ukraine for the funeral, but she got to visit his grave when we stopped in Ukraine after the Metanoia NT workshop. PRAY for her and her family as they now deal with the loss of two loved ones—her nephew and her dad. PRAY especially that Oksana’s brother-in-law will turn from alcohol and false religion and run to Christ.



In August, I led another Consultant Seminar, which was probably the most well-attended since I began leading in 2007. Current consultants, prospective consultants, and others enjoyed our focus on dictionary-making and literacy. It does no good for us to publish the Scriptures if the recipients can’t read, and one thing that encourages literacy is having a dictionary in the target language. PRAY for wisdom to put into practice all we learned. PRAISE God for my mom’s leadership over all the food service. Next year our new administrative assistant, Becky Holub, will be in charge. PRAISE God for His provision of a new assistant!

After the seminar, we enjoyed three days at the annual BI Retreat. We are thankful for the emphasis on living by faith. On October 20, we’ll have our annual BI Harvest Dinner, which will focus on our Chad and Central African Republic projects. PRAY for a good offering.


The day after the retreat, Oksana and I flew to Eurasia for another Metanoia NT workshop. We checked James, 1-3 John, and Mark 1:35-3:22. I’m so thankful for Oksana’s significant aid as my Russian interpreter. PRAY that God will provide more funds for her to go again in January (designate gifts to “Troy Manning—Passage”), which we need until we get full support. PRAY for better progress on this project too and for the health of the two translators.

PRAY for the Haitian Creole OT translator to finish enough material for us to have a workshop in November. He’s been struggling with electricity outages in Haiti.

For the cause of Christ,

Troy (for both of us)


Read Full Post »

The summer has flown by and is not going to slow day in August. It really picked up speed in July when we went to BMM Candidate Seminar in early July for Oksana. Here’s a picture of her class:

Class of 2016.jpgAfter the seminar we had a few meetings in PA and NJ and then headed across the eastern states to WI for the Bible Faculty Summit hosted by Maranatha Baptist University. Here’s a picture of the group of profs (and others) who attended that.

2016.07 Bible Faculty Summit.jpgIt was a great time of fellowship and learning. I really appreciated the warm-hearted scholarship taht this summit promotes. I hope I can attend next year’s summit which will be hosted by Detroit Baptist Theological Seminary.

On Tuesday of this week we at BI will begin our annual Consultant Seminar. It should be our best attended seminar yet, as we’ll have around 30 by the end of the week. We look forward to learning about lexicography by an SIL expert, whom we have invited to teach us. She has a wealth of training and experience so I know we will learn much. We hope to make dictionary-making more a part of our process. I will be leading the seminar, and my mom with Oksana’s helping will be overseeing food preparations, so it will be truly a family affair!

Our annual picnic is right after that and then we fly out to Eurasia for another workshop on the Metanoia NT. So, as I said earlier, it’s going to be a very busy month. We look forward to taking a vacation in Ukraine on our way back from the workshop.

Read Full Post »

Dear Family and Friends,

Did you notice anything different about the appearance of this letter? Some things have changed in both the header and the footer! That’s because God has wrought a marvelous work in my life by joining Oksana Novikova and me in marriage on July 25. We can testify to the truths of Lamentations 3:25-26: The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. God was good to us throughout our years of singleness, and He’s been good to us as He has drawn us together and is now causing us to be more and more “one flesh.” We thank God for my mom and the dear believers at Victory Baptist Church in Reading, PA, who helped us put together a beautiful wedding and even facilitated bringing friends and family from around the world (especially Ukraine) to celebrate with us. Keep PRAYING for us as we adjust to married life and as Oksana gets acclimated to the USA. PRAY also that churches and individuals would partner with us as we seek 28% of additional monthly support. And PRAY that God would provide funds so Oksana can travel to Eurasia with me in January to be my Russian interpreter. We’ve seen some funds come in, so keep praying! If you want to give, you can send your gift to BMM and designate it “Troy Manning-Passage.” The Lord led me to move the workshop from November to January to give us plenty of time for her to gain the necessary travel authorization. So far, the “adjustment of status” process is proceeding smoothly.


Two weeks after the wedding, I headed back into the office to lead our annual consultant seminar, where we had 25 in attendance. We enjoyed learning about how to relate better to the millennials (or “generation Y”). We also discussed ways to improve our translator training. We are close to completing a Linguistics Translator Training Manual that will help our translator know better how his/her language works, so that he/she can write a more consistent form of the language, and so that we can save months of work at the end of the translation work, when we have to standardize all the completed material.



After the seminar, Oksana and I headed to a local B&B for BI’s annual retreat. One of my favorite activities at this event each year has been waking up early to watch the sunrise over the lake and sipping coffee as I have my personal time with the Lord. For the first time, after eight years of passing the morning by myself, I finally had company! B&B’s are so much better when you can enjoy them with someone!


This fall Oksana and I are visiting supporting churches and connecting with non-supporting churches in PA, IL, and MI. We’ll also be doing some recruiting at Maranatha Baptist University. It’s been a joy to have a traveling companion and helper in the ministry. It’s quite evident that support-raising goes so much better when I have a sweet wife to connect with the people. PRAY for God’s protection, power, and provision as we travel together. By late October, though, we’ll be mostly at home, getting settled and preparing for workshops and more church reporting early next year.

Thank you for praying! God is answering!

For the cause of Christ,

Troy (for both of us)

Read Full Post »

We praise the Lord that a couple has committed to taking us on for $200 per month! That brings our support level up to 72%!

Oksana’s and my first three weeks in Michigan together have been quite busy. I set aside the first week to help her get established. We got a good start to that process, but we are still working on that. Today is only her 5th day at home by herself to get oriented to my house. During the second week of August the annual Consultant Seminar, which I lead, began. Our days were busy from 6 am to 8:30 pm. We ended up housing a family of 7 because they had an emergency situation come up. We were thankful to be able to serve them in that way, but that made our life even more interesting.

The seminar was a real blessing as we had around 25 in attendance for the 6 days. Mark Vowels from BJU was our special speaker for the first two days. He addressed the issue of how to relate better to millennials, the next generation at BI. On the second day he spoke about contextualization and then gave us some feedback regarding our short-termer programs. On the following days we deal with NT Quality Checks, OT Translator Training, NT Translator Training, a book study on Job, Discourse analysis, a new linguistics translator training manual, new word formation, strategic planning, and various IT matters. I’m thankful for a good team that helped me pull together a successful seminar, even though I was quite preoccupied with personal matters for the 5 weeks before the seminar.

The day after the seminar, Oksana and I headed north for the annual BI retreat a local bed & breakfast called “The Shack.” BI has been going there for over 15 years. I had been going up by myself for the past 8 years. It has gotten harder and harder to be by myself. As I was getting to know Oksana during last year’s retreat, I texted to her that I hope I never have to return to The Shack by myself. She also desired the same thing. But neither of us thought the Lord would actually work it out such that she would be with me the following year. Praise God for working wonders to bring her here so quickly so we could enjoy the retreat together! One of my favorite activities is getting up early to watch the sun rise over the lake, while sipping coffee and reading the Bible. It was a joy to do that with her this year!

IMG_2570We have two more weeks in MI before we begin traveling to other states. Our first trip will be to SC to report at Mt. Calvary Baptist Church in Greenville, SC, on Sept. 9 and then to enjoy a wedding reception on Sept. 10. I look forward to showing Oksana my old stomping grounds and introducing her to family and friends. If you will be in the area that week, please look us up! We will be worshipping with Mt. Calvary the following Sunday before heading back up north.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »