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The vision of Global Recordings Network essentially is that no barrier would separate any person from understanding the precious message of the Gospel. The focus of our efforts has been on overcoming the obstacles of language, culture and literacy. Now, by the grace of God and with the help of ministry partners, efforts are being made to overcome another significant barrier - that of the non-literate deaf.
It is easy to imagine that the deaf can easily read captions in videos and that they can understand pretty much the same as everyone else. But the grim reality is that people born deaf or who become so in early childhood have a significantly smaller chance of becoming fully literate than others at the same social standing in their society. Language acquisition itself is much slower than for hearing children, and without specialized care, the sad fact is that comparatively few become proficient readers.
In the USA, even though many programs are offered to provide special education for hearing-impaired children, a staggering 30% remain functionally illiterate when they reach adulthood even though the nation as a whole claims less than 15% functionally illiterate adults. If they are twice as likely to be illiterate than the average adult in a sophisticated country with much help for the deaf, what about those who live in less developed lands? How will they "hear"?
As GRN is working hard to incorporate videos along with our audio recordings, the wonderful possibility is open to provide the Gospel across this significant barrier. A partnering ministry named World Language Movies has made thousands of videos using our Good News audio and Bible pictures, and recently filmed it in American Sign Language. See a trailer (shortened version) below.
You can also download an ISO image of the complete program to burn to a DVD.
It is significant that the the Gospel Message and portions of the New Testament are only available in about 8 sign languages of the world, but messages of other beliefs have been translated into as many as 35 varieties. With more than 70 million deaf people in the world, 80% of whom are in developing countries, shouldn't they have the chance to 'hear' the truth of the Gospel in a way they can understand?