At Deaf Bible Society, we strive to grow God’s kingdom utilizing today’s technology. Livestreaming Christian events, such as concerts and church services in American Sign Language, has the capacity to reach Deaf people from a distance.
Since 1990, pastor Greg Laurie has hosted Southern California’s famous Harvest Crusade. This weekend-long outreach features relevant topics and pop culture bands. In 2012, livestreaming was born into Crusade’s culture, allowing thousands of people to be present right from their living room. Later, Deaf Bible Society was introduced to the scene and began livestreaming the program to Deaf viewers around the world. Their intention was specific; to provide Deaf people full access to a life-changing weekend. How? Focus on interpreters who are providing American Sign Language. Their first attempt resulted in over 1,000 Deaf people tuning in.
Historically, Deaf communities have not had full access to Christian speakers and Biblical resources in their own language. Receiving information through closed captioning is misunderstood to be the answer to the language gap. Sign language, which is often a Deaf person’s first, or at times only, language does not have a written form leaving Deaf people to struggle with the grammar of a written language.
From the first livestreaming moment, doors opened, making way for strong Deaf leadership and representation in the Christian Deaf community. This was something rarely recognized before!
One of Deaf Bible Society’s Scripture engagement leader reports, “Deaf people are not just people who need to be in the ‘Deaf Section,’ or who need sign language interpreters. They are human beings who want to learn about God and what God has done for them [in their own language].”
God’s love, hope, and redemption come alive when the Gospel is presented in their heart language.
We, at Deaf Bible Society, want to impress the importance of sign language by standing alongside those who have been marginalized. We believe that the Great Commission is true for all people, including the Deaf. Our goal is to make God’s Word accessible in every sign language. God allows us to support Deaf communities in tangible ways such as livestreaming. This is very encouraging for many Deaf people who have waited a long time to have access to Biblical content.
After this I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. Revelation 7:9a.