Belarusians have their own Bible

Vasil Syomuha - translator of Holy Write into modern Belarusian

Belarusians have their own Bible

Belarusians have their own Bible - full translation of the Holy Write into modern Belarusian language is carried out by well-known translator Vasil Syomuha and published with the financial support of simple citizens of Belarus, and the Belarusians, living in the USA and Canada.

Vasil Syomuha began his work in 1988. Then on the initiative of the lord Filaret (head of Orthodox Church in Belarus), the Bible commission, in which Syomuha was involved, was created. However lately he left the commission and continued to work independently.

Translation was made from Church-Slavonic, though as Syomuha says, he constantly "consulted" other translations and commentaries, critical literature and the works of theologians. There were many translations: Synod translation into Russian, translations into Ukrainian, Polish, German, Bulgarian and Czech. Vasil Syomuha used only one translation, which had no any connection with the church - Francisk Skorina`s translation. “Skorina wasn’t a church person and his translation, to my deepest regret and to the shame of all churches, hasn’t been recognized by the churches till now!” -Syomuha tells. – “But most of all I interested, how this or that place is treated by Orthodoxy and Catholicism. I had Protestant translations as well. Martin Luther's translation helped very much… It was made in XVI century, and it seemed to me more convincing and clear, than Russian Synod translation”.

The Bible in Belarusian was edited by Jurka Rapetski (Canada). And its publication could appear much earlier, because the commission of the Russian Orthodox Church in America was ready to finance it. However Alesya (daughter of Syomuha), the owner de-jure of the copyrights of the translation, rejected the offers. She wanted the first Belarusian version to be published in Belarus. Syomuha was delighted with her decision. Further Syomuha`s children - Alesya and Sergey - were searching for the publication. “I only can note regretfully, that neither the state, nor public organizations - civil or church - helped us”, - establishes Vasil Sergeevich. -“The Belarusian s living in America and Canada, and also some Belarusian businessmen helped”.

The Bible was published with the blessing of the American metropolitan of the Belarusian Autocephalous Orthodox Church in the USA and Canada Father Nikolay.

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