First Gurbet-Serbian-English picture dictionary

written by OM EAST

The first Gurbet-Serbian-English picture dictionary caught the attention of the local press in Southern Serbia. They featured a photo of author Goran Saitović holding the new book, designed and published by OM EAST.

Goran speaks a dialect called Gurbet, spoken by a predominately Muslim Roma group in Serbia and other parts of Europe. The author lives in a Roma area of a town named Leskovac, where he builds relationships and reaches out to the community. His vision for this multi-lingual dictionary is to promote literacy among his people, and to help Serbian or foreign believers learn Gurbet so they can tell Roma about Jesus in the dialect closest to their hearts.  

“I want to see Roma reading more in their language!” declared Goran. “Maybe this generation is not reading so much but I hope the next generation will.” In his hometown, a school teacher has already been using the dictionary’s grammar sections to educate students that have chosen to study Gurbet.

“Goran has such a heart for his people,” said Simon,* OM EAST’s production coordinator. “This publication is a tool to help those who will join him in sharing the gospel among Gurbet speaking Roma, and lays the foundation for future Christian materials.”

After fifteen years of serving as a pastor, Goran is now translating the Bible into Gurbet, working together with other OM EAST partners. With great enthusiasm, he voiced plans to translate an illustrated children’s Bible storybook and an evangelistic comic book.

“We need Christian books in our Roma language,” stated the former pastor. “There are few available and we still need the Bible!”   

Praise God for the helpful new resource and the significant step it represents in providing further literature for the Gurbet Roma. Please pray Roma will gain a greater desire to read so they can discover God’s truth for themselves.   

*Full name not included for security

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