Before Roland Seiler became a Christian he wanted to be Bill Gates. But once God got a hold of his heart, all he wanted was to instead serve the Lord with his passion for information technology (IT).
When he heard a Wycliffe missionary give a presentation at his church in 1990, Roland left the church convinced God was calling him to serve in Bible translation through IT. Although his wife Susan was initially hesitant, soon she knew that God was calling them both as a team to the work.
With a new path for their lives, the Seiler’s gave up their apartment, put everything in storage and went to New Brunswick to attend Quest (Wycliffe Canada’s orientation program). After finishing training—Roland graduating with a Bachelor of Mathematics degree with a Computer Science Major and Susan Scripture typesetting—they left for their assignment in Mozambique, Africa.
Once arriving Roland set up a network in the new Nampula center and traveled to locations throughout Mozambique to help translation teams with computer issues. Susan took up the task of Desktop Publishing and helped with creating literacy and Scripture materials. The couple took on many other roles throughout the years, including running a small printshop and running the Nampula centre finance department.
The Mwani New Testament was dedicated in 2013. Since then, Susan has helped teams complete the Makonde New Testament and the Takwane Hybrid Bible.
In 2012, Roland and Susan moved to Johannesburg South Africa but continued supporting the work in Mozambique through finance management and typesetting. In 2015, Roland was asked to work part time in finance support for Wycliffe South Africa setting up a regional finance support system.
“God prepared me to work with nationals who cannot do both translation and financial reporting,” explains Roland. “We need to make finance simple and doable so Bible translation can be central to the work and finance can be off to the side.”
Susan spent the last term as a bookkeeper for SIL Southern Africa Service Group and continues to prepare Scriptures for printing. She is currently working with the Nyungwe project in Tete, Mozambique. The group will soon be ready to print their New Testament.