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Blog Articles by: Brenda Cartwright

Living Loud: Allen Snare – Deaf Pastor, Evangelist, and Missionary

Deaf Culture   |  Sunday, April 14, 2019

By Brenda Cartwright

This article is by Brenda Cartwright. Brenda is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, and well known presenter. Brenda is the "Dear Abby" for the interpreting world - author of the Dear Reality column in the VIEWS publication from Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and the book Encounters With Reality: 1001 Interpreter Scenarios. She will be contributing blog articles for Signing Savvy on interpreting, Deaf culture, and answering a series of "Dear BC" interpreter questions.

This article is part of our "Living Loud" series, which highlights famous people who are deaf or hard of hearing and their impact in the world.

Allen Snare was born Deaf with his hearing twin sister Faye on April 14, 1947. Allen grew up in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, with his three brothers and three sisters who were all hearing. He attended the Pennsylvania School for the Deaf in Philadelphia and he loved it! He had full access to communication at school. However, access at church was a different story.

Allen Snare
Allen Snare during an interview. (Photo Credit: Jim Bracelin. Testimony of a Deaf Man.)

Allen grew up attending church with no interpreter. He was clueless of what was being said, until one day, in 1968, when he was invited to a church hosting a week-long revival conference. It just so happened they had an interpreter. That was the first time Allen was exposed to an interpreter. Bill Rice III was a visiting Pastor from the Bill Rice Ranch, a ministry with a goal of reaching the deaf through local revival meetings, regional events, and camps. Bill’s wife Mary interpreted while Bill preached that day. "When Bill Rice asked me if I was saved I told him 'I never heard of that before'; even though I grew up in church my whole life. Once Bill Rice explained who Jesus was and how he died on the cross to save us from our sins, so that we can go to heaven and not hell, I got saved..."3 Allen finally understood what being saved meant.

Allen was convinced to go to Bible college when he saw an ad for it in the Branding Iron, a newspaper for the deaf from the Bill Rice Ranch. Allen went in 1971, but he felt out of place with only eight other deaf people. In 1975, Allen graduated from Tennessee Temple in Chattanooga. Allen was debating between preaching and becoming a missionary; he felt God called him to be a preacher.

Allen pastored in many deaf churches in Texas, Colorado, Alabama, and Ohio. When Allen was living in Texas, he went to Colorado to host a camp revival for a week. While Allen was there, the interpreter introduced him to a nice deaf woman named Debbie. When Allen returned the following Fall, he asked the congregation after he finished preaching who would like to be saved and Debbie came forward. When Debbie got saved, Allen knew she was the one. He and Debbie started dating and they got married on July 22, 1978.

Allen teamed up with Bill Rice III again, the man who first introduced him to an interpreter and helped him to understand the meaning of being saved, when he played the lead role in the movie When Silence Speaks. The movie was produced by Bill Rice III and released by Bill Rice Films Production in 1994. It was a fictional Christian movie about a deaf man, Gordy, played by Allen, searching to understand the meaning of the cross. Allen’s son, John, also was in the movie in the role of a young Gordy.

“ My Heart’s Desire Is To See More Deaf People Saved.
     - Allen Snare

Allen pastored in Pennsylvania for 12 years at Faith Baptist Church in Fairless Hills; he thought he would preach there until he died. However, God had other plans; he was let go from that position.

Allen reached out to Ted Camp, the founder of Silent Word Ministries and told him he was called to serve with him at Silent Word Ministries. At first Ted was hesitant, so they both prayed about it for a week. Allen contacted him a week later stating "God still wants me to join your ministry."3 Ted agreed and Allen and his wife moved to Georgia to start serving for Silent Word Ministries in 2000. Allen is still a full-time missionary with Silent Word Ministries. He travels wherever he is called. He’s been to ten different countries for missionaries and to preach at revival meetings.

Sadly, Debbie was diagnosed with colon cancer the year he started with Silent Deaf Ministries. She fought cancer for five years and in 2006, Debbie passed away. Together they raised a wonderful family. They had three children. Their daughter Joy is hearing, and their two sons, John and Justin, are deaf. Allen is now a grandfather of three. He has one deaf granddaughter and a hearing grandson and granddaughter. They all know sign language.

You can find Allen’s testimony as well as preaching videos on YouTube. He plans to serve the rest of his days as a deaf evangelist to honor his mission statement: "My Heart’s Desire Is To See More Deaf People Saved."

Resources

  1. Barr, Jon. Introducing Allen Snare. Silent Word Ministries, Retrieved from: http://newspaper.silentwordministries.org/article/introducing-allen-snare/

  2. Barr, Jon (2017, September 5,). Monthly Prayer Letters. Silent Word Ministries. Retrieved from: http://silentwordministries.org/2017/09/05/2017-09-sept/

  3. Bracelin, Jim [Jim Bracelin]. (2014, June 5). Testimony of a Deaf Man [Video File.] Retrieved from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VMwGbDXgRa4

  4. Bracelin, Jim (2018, April 4). Monthly Prayer Letters. Silent Word Ministries. Retrieved from: http://silentwordministries.org/2018/04/06/2018-04-apr/

  5. Silent Word Ministries. Our Mission Team. Silent Word Ministries. Retrieved from: http://silentwordministries.org/missionteam/

  6. When Silence Speaks. IMBd. Retrieved from https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1732762/

 

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About the Author

Brenda CartwrightBrenda Cartwright is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, well known presenter, and author of several best selling sign language and interpreting textbooks from the RID Press. For the last 30 years Brenda has been the Chair of the Sign Language Interpreter Program at Lansing Community College in Lansing, Michigan.

More about BC  |  Articles by BC

Your Interpreter Committee

Your Interpreter Committee

Interpreter Tips   |  Sunday, March 17, 2019

By Brenda Cartwright

This article is by Brenda Cartwright. Brenda is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, and well known presenter. Brenda is the "Dear Abby" for the interpreting world - author of the Dear Reality column in the VIEWS publication from Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and the book Encounters With Reality: 1001 Interpreter Scenarios. She will be contributing blog articles for Signing Savvy on interpreting, Deaf culture, and answering a series of "Dear BC" interpreter questions.

All of us have heard “little voices” in our head. There may be a voice when you do something you shouldn’t, when you receive praise or when you’re trying to stay motivated. It could be the voice of a parent, a coach, a teacher, a friend, or anyone.

This chorus of voices is sometimes referred to as “The Committee” by interpreters.  It represents our minds talking to us while we’re working, playing and living life. Think about what you hear when you’re interpreting. Is your Committee nice? Are they supportive? Do any Committee members have a louder voice than the rest? Below are examples of possible Committee members:

  • Mr Worry
  • Ms Confident
  • Ms Positive
  • Mr Wet Blanket
  • Debbie Downer
  • The Lifeguard
  • The Cheerleader
  • The Saucy One
  • The Judge
  • The Critiquer
  • The Exaggerator
  • The Discourager
  • The Analyst
  • The Chairperson
  • The Optimist
  • The Compromiser
  • The Perfectionist
  • The Critic

Do you need to silence or fire someone? Do you need to add someone to your Committee?

Who is on your committee? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

 

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About the Author

Brenda CartwrightBrenda Cartwright is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, well known presenter, and author of several best selling sign language and interpreting textbooks from the RID Press. For the last 30 years Brenda has been the Chair of the Sign Language Interpreter Program at Lansing Community College in Lansing, Michigan.

More about BC  |  Articles by BC

Signs That Are Close... But Not the Same - Set 10

Signs That Are Close... But Not the Same - Set 10

Learning Tips   |  Monday, March 4, 2019

By Brenda Cartwright

This article is by Brenda Cartwright. Brenda is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, and well known presenter. Brenda is the "Dear Abby" for the interpreting world - author of the Dear Reality column in the VIEWS publication from Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and the book Encounters With Reality: 1001 Interpreter Scenarios. She will be contributing blog articles for Signing Savvy on interpreting, Deaf culture, and answering a series of "Dear BC" interpreter questions.

This article is part of our “Signs That Are Close... But Not the Same” series, which highlights signs that look similar, but have different meanings.

Hello! Brenda Cartwright (BC) here. Let's continue on the fun topic of: “Signs That Are Close... But Not the Same.”

The ASL signs shown below look similar, but are not the same. There are many ASL signs that when produced look similar, but in fact have a completely different meaning. Below you will find examples of such signs. Watch closely to see if you can see the difference. In addition, watch my eyebrows, look to see when I tilt my head or lean my body in a certain way, even what my mouth is doing. These nuances are called inflections and trust me, inflections matter. Enjoy!

1. Cafeteria vs. Twin vs. Restaurant

CAFETERIA has the C handshape move from one side of the chin to the other, while TWIN uses the same motion, but uses the T handshape instead. RESTAURANT also uses this same motion, but uses the R handshape. 

You can remember the difference between these signs because they each use the handshape that the word starts with (Cafeteria = C handshape; Twin = T handshape; Restaurant = R handshape).

It is called an initialized sign when the first letter of the word is the handshape used in the sign. Often initialized signs are an indication that the sign is a Signing Exact English (SEE) sign, however, these three initialized signs are all excepted as American Sign Language (ASL).

Cafeteria
Twin
Restaurant

2. Socks vs. Stars

SOCKS have the index fingers brush against each other while pointing down (palms inward) and STARS have the index fingers brush against each other (palms outward) while pointing up.

To remember SOCKS, think of the index fingers point downward towards your socks and the movement suggests the sliding on and off of socks. You can also think of knitting socks. Although there is not an early record of the sign for SOCKS in older dictionaries, there is a compound sign described as using your index fingers as knitting needles to make the sign for KNIT and then pointing to your feet. Because of this, it is believed that the sign for SOCKS evolved from the idea of making a knitting movement while pointing to your feet.1

To remember STARS, think of the index fingers pointing up towards the sky, where the stars are. This sign originated from the old French sign for ÉTOILE (star), which is now used in French sign language for ASTROLOGIE (astrology). The sign originally had the index fingers pointing into the sky, indicating points where stars might be, however, the ASL sign evolved over time to have the two index fingers closer together so they make contact.1

Socks
Stars

3. See vs. Watch

The 2 handshape (also called the V handshape) is used when signing both SEE and WATCH because the two fingers represent the eyes and what the eyes are doing.

The big difference to spot between these two signs is the palm orientation. SEE has the palm facing the body and WATCH has the palm facing outward.

When signing SEE, the palm faces the body and the 2 handshape starts at the face, just below the dominant eye, and pulls away from the body. This movement represents the concept of seeing from the eyes.

WATCH has the 2 handshape, with the palm facing outward, point straight out from the face and move out - think of pointing at what you are watching.

See
Watch

4. Enough vs. Full

When signing ENOUGH, the dominant 5 handshape, with the palm down, slides across the S handshape, suggesting that you are scraping the extra off of the top because there is already enough. To sign FULL (as in "a full container"), the dominant 5 handshape moves across the S handshape from dominant side to non-dominant side and suggests that a container is filled to the brim. There are multiple movements when signing ENOUGH, while there is one swift movement when signing FULL.

Enough
Full

How can I figure out the difference between signs on my own?

If you see two signs that look close, but not the same, but you’re not sure, you can use Signing Savvy features to help you figure out the difference. All of our signs have sign descriptions and memory aids that members can access. Reading the sign description and memory aids for the signs can help you figure out the small differences between them that your eyes don’t catch at first. We also recommend using the pause and slow motion feature to slow down the video, so you can take a closer look. These features are available to Signing Savvy members.

Take a look, it's in a book!

These examples are aligned with the Visual Discrimination section of Lesson 6 (page 72) from Lessons and Activities in American Sign Language by Brenda E. Cartwright and Suellen J. Bahleda. Check out the book for more ASL Activities and watch for more examples from this series: “Signs That Are Close... But Not the Same.”

Resources

  1. Shaw, E. & Delaporte, Y. (2014). A Historical and Etymological Dictionary of American Sign Language. Washington: Gallaudet University Press.
 

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About the Author

Brenda CartwrightBrenda Cartwright is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, well known presenter, and author of several best selling sign language and interpreting textbooks from the RID Press. For the last 30 years Brenda has been the Chair of the Sign Language Interpreter Program at Lansing Community College in Lansing, Michigan.

More about BC  |  Articles by BC

Interpreter Q & A: Using Your Phone During a Break

Interpreter Q & A: Using Your Phone During a Break

Interpreter Tips   |  Tuesday, February 26, 2019

By Brenda Cartwright

This article is by Brenda Cartwright. Brenda is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, and well known presenter. Brenda is the "Dear Abby" for the interpreting world - author of the Dear Reality column in the VIEWS publication from Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and the book Encounters With Reality: 1001 Interpreter Scenarios. She will be contributing blog articles for Signing Savvy on interpreting, Deaf culture, and answering a series of "Dear BC" interpreter questions.

Dear BC,

During a lull in a staff meeting where I was interpreting, I used my phone to enter some appointments into my calendar (and check my grocery list). Afterwards, my team interpreter told me that she thought doing that was rude and unprofessional. Do you agree?

Sincerely,
Just Multitasking

An Experienced Interpreter's Perspective:

I think each situation is different but I am taking a "lull during a staff meeting" to mean that no interpreting needed to occur. In that case, I think it would be okay to check your phone. It is a good idea to always check with your interpreting partner and your client beforehand. During breaks, I often use that time to discuss how we think things are going and any ideas for the rest of the meeting. We need to be prepared to interpret during breaks as well. This would prevent resentments or misunderstandings like this from surfacing later.

Experienced Deaf Consumer's Perspective:

If by "lull" you mean checking your phone while your partner is interpreting, then yes, it is rude – you should be working. But, if by "lull" you mean "break" and that everyone is out of the room or standing around talking, then no, generally that’s not a problem. I understand when interpreters need to use the phone or check messages during breaks (I do, too). However, if I needed to speak to the “big boss” during the break, and I saw you checking your grocery list, it would make me feel uncomfortable because this is still work time for me. In the future, I suggest checking with your client and partner before doing personal things on work time.

What's your take on checking your phone during a break? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
 

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About the Author

Brenda CartwrightBrenda Cartwright is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, well known presenter, and author of several best selling sign language and interpreting textbooks from the RID Press. For the last 30 years Brenda has been the Chair of the Sign Language Interpreter Program at Lansing Community College in Lansing, Michigan.

More about BC  |  Articles by BC

Interpreter Q & A: What are our boundaries as interpreters to say something to a Deaf client about their right to request a qualified interpreter?

Interpreter Tips   |  Wednesday, February 20, 2019

By Brenda Cartwright

This article is by Brenda Cartwright. Brenda is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, and well known presenter. Brenda is the "Dear Abby" for the interpreting world - author of the Dear Reality column in the VIEWS publication from Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and the book Encounters With Reality: 1001 Interpreter Scenarios. She will be contributing blog articles for Signing Savvy on interpreting, Deaf culture, and answering a series of "Dear BC" interpreter questions.

This article is part of our "Dear BC, Interpreter Q & A” series, which answers questions on interpreting and Deaf culture from multiple perspectives. This article was also published in the Fall 2018 (Issue 35 Volume 4) Edition of VIEWS Magazine from RID. VIEWS is a digital publication distributed quarterly by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and dedicated to the interpreting profession. The magazine includes RID member spotlights, announcements from the RID board, and engaging stories about issues impacting the interpreting community. See this article (on page 28) and more in the Fall 2018 Edition of VIEWS Magazine from RID.

Dear BC,

During a doctor’s appointment I interpreted, the doctor referred the Deaf patient to physical therapy. When we were leaving the office, the Deaf client asked me about my availability to interpret her upcoming physical therapy appointments. I told the Deaf woman my schedule and she said, “Oh well, that’s fine, if you can’t come, my daughter will come and interpret.” Her daughter is a young girl who can sign, but she is not an interpreter. The daughter has no training or certification.

What are our boundaries as interpreters to say something to a Deaf client about their right to request a qualified interpreter? I don’t want to look like I’m just trying to make money. My concern is also that her doctors will begin to think that they don’t need to hire interpreters for her because she can just bring her daughter for free.

Sincerely,
Concerned Interpreter 

The video features a full interpretation of what is discussed in this article.

An Experienced Interpreter's Perspective:

If the patient prefers a relative, that is their choice. At the same time, doctors need to be educated about the hazards of using family members to interpret. Liability issues should compel them to want to avoid lawsuits.

An Experienced Deaf Consumer's Perspective:

The NAD has a position paper on this topic. It explains the cons of using family members to interpret. This is an on-going dilemma, especially in rural and remote areas where there are few interpreters. It is unfair to put the burden to interpret on family members, regardless if they are qualified/certified.

What's your perspective? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

 

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About the Author

Brenda CartwrightBrenda Cartwright is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, well known presenter, and author of several best selling sign language and interpreting textbooks from the RID Press. For the last 30 years Brenda has been the Chair of the Sign Language Interpreter Program at Lansing Community College in Lansing, Michigan.

More about BC  |  Articles by BC

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