Translation Advisor for the IkizuandZanaki languages
MICHELLE AND ANDREW SANDEEN
Michelle (then Smith) began attending Calvary Chapel Olympia with her family in 1992. She first felt called to missions while attending Hope College. Because of her love for words and language, she was drawn to linguistics and Bible translation. This calling was confirmed through short-term missions trips to Bible translation projects, at which she saw how having Scripture in local languages gave churches a strong foundation. She became a member of Wycliffe Bible Translators, and completed a Master’s degree in Applied Linguistics and Exegesis as training for serving overseas.
In 2006, Michelle left for Tanzania, East Africa. Two years later she was in Olympia for a six-month home assignment, and met Andrew Sandeen at Calvary. They were married in 2009 and then served together in Tanzania until 2014. They worked together with a number of Tanzanian translators and other diverse staff as part of the Mara Cluster Project, a multi-language project doing linguistics, literacy, Scripture Use, and Bible translation in the northwest part of Tanzania.
The Sandeens now live in Pennsylvania. Andrew has a secular job, but Michelle, now a member of Wycliffe Associates, is continuing to do Bible translation work. She is the translation advisor for the Ikizu and Zanaki languages, checking and editing their Scripture drafts from her home office. She also takes care of the couple’s two young children, Zarya and Jerod.