…But the word of God is not bound! – 2 Timothy 2:9b
Marilyn Escher is a “retired” WorldVenture worker, still on the job as a Global Resource Specialist, working to finish up the translation of the Bible into Wolof. Wolof is spoken by 5 million ethnic Wolofs in Senegal. Because of her age (77), mission leadership recommended she evacuate from the field temporarily.
She had 24 hours notice before the borders closed. Twelve hours to pack during the night hours and four days to get from Senegal to COVID-free Fort Bragg, California where her brother is pastor of Grace Community Church (CB). He and his wife, Valerie, were willing to have Marilyn self-isolate with them before she drove to Tacoma, Washington to stay with retired WorldVenture colleague, Mary Anne.
The travel agent worked all afternoon to get her on the last seat on the second to last commercial flight out, with an itinerary on Ethiopian Air from Dakar to Lomé, Togo, where she stayed overnight in a hotel; across the continent to Addis Ababa, up to Dublin; then to Washington DC where she discovered her flight to Sacramento was cancelled. Rescheduled for a later flight, she had to stay overnight in a Sacramento hotel before picking up a rental car to drive to Fort Bragg.
Plans for returning to Senegal were postponed several times as the percentage of positive cases kept rising. At first Marilyn wept, then she remembered how many times in Senegal she had wished to be imprisoned like Paul when he had the time to write his letters to churches.
Marilyn says, “Now, away from the interruptions of other ministries and needs in Senegal, I accept the opportunity of the confinement, to focus on checking 5,000 verses in the 11 books that remain to be consultant checked. I am thankful for the many commentaries and checking helps on my laptop, and for the internet which connects with translator, language helpers and a consultant in Senegal as well as with consultants in other countries. Most of all, I am grateful for the continuing, faithful support of prayer partners.”
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