There are more than 400 known sign languages in use around the world today. Yet not one of these has a full Bible in their language – and only five percent of sign languages have Bible translation work started.
This is according to DOOR International, a nonprofit faith-based organization which partners with deaf believers worldwide to develop sustainable church planting movements.
The deaf are one of the largest unreached people groups, with an estimated .2 percent reached globally and only two–four percent in the US reached with the gospel of Christ, DOOR International revealed in its recent report.
Some deaf people who have been to church have quickly turned away due to unobliging programs. The deaf community does not always see their deafness as a disability, but rather a different way to navigate the world.
“Communication is a basic human need. Language is the primary way to communicate, but its expression is different between the hearing and deaf communities. Spoken languages are expressed through oral and aural means – spoken with the voice and heard by the ears. Signed languages are expressed gesturally and visually – signed by the hands and face and seen by the eyes,” Deaf Bible Society says.
In March of this year, Deaf Bible Society introduced the Deaf Bible app to help persons with hearing impairment experience the Bible in their sign language for the first time. The app helps users experience Sign Language Bibles in an interactive and easy to use interface with 25+ sign language translations featuring skilled signers in sharp, close-up, color video.