My Interpreter – My Friend


An exciting time for each of us was the morning when we met our interpreter for the first time. Young men, who were students at the local Seminary, would gather in Mbale to greet us and offer their time and linguistic talents for the week to come. I remember meeting my assigned interpreter, Peter, for the first time. This tall, young, soon-to-be pastor with a wide smile and a friendly laugh would be my companion, and soon my friend. One day, as we walked along the dirt trails from one remote village to the next, we came across a very vocal pet goat that was all tangled up in its rope. Peter, quite use to this scene, thought nothing of it, and proceeded to just walk by. But I stopped and pleaded with him to please rescue the poor thing. That day Peter received a famous nickname from me – and is now known throughout the region as “Peter- the saver of goats.”

Chuck’s interpreter, Ernest, was a local teacher who had come to serve our team. As they walked through the cornfields heading toward a mud hut, they came across a farmer who happened to be aiding a goat in the birthing process. Chuck’s role was to soothe the goat as she gave birth, and now, my city-slicker husband  has a kid named after him in Uganda.

Peter and Ernest were our interpreters for two years in a row and together we shared the message of Jesus Christ with many remote villagers on the outskirts of Mbale.