Staff Spotlight: Shamalia Snipe

Meet a First Bible Regional Manager at American Bible Society

This is part of a series of staff spotlights at American Bible Society. We hope you enjoy getting to know our staff members, who are using their gifts to advance the gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.

Today, meet Shamalia Snipe, who serves as regional manager for Latin America and the Caribbean for the First Bible team. In this role, Shamalia serves 22 Bible Society partners as they provide God’s Word in the languages and formats that speak to people’s hearts.

Tell us a little about yourself!

I became a Christian when I was 13. Ever since then, I’ve been working out my salvation with fear and trembling as God works in me, giving me the desire and the power to do what pleases him—as Paul says in Philippians 2:12-13!

I was born in St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands and was raised on the island of Antigua, where my family is from. I definitely identify with my Caribbean roots! I came to the United States when I was 8. I graduated from Boston University with my undergraduate degree and received my MBA from Eastern University. I have been married for almost 16 years, and my husband and I have two beautiful daughters, ages 11 and 2.

I’m an ordained minister at my local church and serve as a missions director with my husband. We have always had a passion for missions, and I’ve been involved in going on mission trips and leading short-term missions for over 20 years. That passion was ignited in me at 16—I just knew that God would send me somewhere to share his gospel.

At Boston University, I connected with Intervarsity Christian Fellowship and went on my first mission trip to Antigua, Guatemala. That was surprising because I didn’t know that there was another Antigua! Before that trip, I’d experienced a significant journey of forgiveness in my personal life as I reconciled with my mother. While in Antigua, I was asked to share my testimony with a group of high school girls. Many of them approached me and asked how they could experience the same forgiveness in their lives. Afterward, the principal of the school told me that their staff had been praying for two years that God would speak to these girls about forgiveness. It blew my mind that God could use a broken vessel like me to be an answer to someone’s prayers so that lives could be transformed. I’ve been looking for ways to be used by God ever since!

What did you do before coming to American Bible Society?

After I graduated from Eastern University, I went to work at Geneva Global as a project manager. American Bible Society was one of our clients, and we were helping the organization with philanthropy research. In 2007, I and three of my colleagues had the chance to join American Bible Society and continue the work we’d been doing by starting Global Scripture Impact. It was an eventful year for me—I started at American Bible Society in January and got married in June! I’ve now been here for 16 years. For me, this job has been an answer to my prayer to connect my business skills with my passion for mission.

Can you describe your role and responsibilities at American Bible Society?

I am the regional manager for Latin America and the Caribbean on the First Bible team. My role can be summed up with four Ps: partnership brokerage; program design and planning; procurement of global resourcing; and philanthropic reporting and accountability. It’s a multi-faceted role, but my main goal is developing and strengthening regional strategy for our First Bible ministry, which helps deliver God’s Word to waiting people.

I work with 22 Bible Societies in my region and manage a broad portfolio of projects. One of my job functions is to build relationships with our Bible Society partners. In my region, trust and relationships are very important! Before we talk about work, we talk about our families and personal lives and share meals together. I often help our Bible Society partners get the resources they need to complete their work and visit them to assist them in planning, exploring ministry opportunities, and building capacity. Since the pandemic, this is mostly done through Zoom calls.

I also facilitate relationships between our Bible Society partners and internal ABS staff, external ministry partners, and sometimes even donors! It requires me to oversee several areas, but in the end, our work helps remove barriers that prevent people from encountering God’s Word and experiencing life transformation through Jesus Christ!

What’s it like to visit other Bible Societies and see ministry happening in real time?

It’s amazing! Witnessing ministry is what reenergizes me for what I do here at American Bible Society. It refreshes me and encourages me to continue serving the Lord. I remember the faces, smiles, tears, and testimonies of God’s power. It’s awesome to just step into someone else’s context—to see what they see, live where they live, eat what they eat, and see the wonder of God’s beautiful creation in remote places. I’ve slept on boats that serve as Bible distribution hubs in Brazil and Paraguay, experienced extreme temperatures, and heard stories of the difficulties people face. I also have the chance to encourage people I meet. If I can help someone come to faith or stay strong in their faith, it’s a day well spent!

It’s also a blessing to meet and interact with so many different people. I remember watching people row up to our Bible distribution boat in their little canoes in the Amazon. I met children in Nicaragua who welcomed a hug and a children’s Bible as a precious gift. I’ve met former gang members who murdered people, but now they worship and praise God. I remember a man in Honduras who was delivered from the bondage of Satanic worship. He had told God, “I worship the devil. I know he’s powerful. If you want me to serve you, you have to show me that you’re even more powerful.” This man saw a hand lift and pour water over him, and he heard God say, “I am cleansing you from your sins and purifying you.” That was enough for him, and he came to faith! These people remind me why I do what I do. So many others are hungry and in need of Christ’s love and salvation. Why would I be anywhere else?

What do you enjoy about working at American Bible Society?

I love working with like-minded people who are about God’s kingdom-building work. I love praying together, sharing God’s Word together, and our shared mission. I also love being able to talk about faith and encourage and pray for one another. It’s a real blessing, and not something many organizations have. Despite the challenges we may face, we’re still working together toward the same purpose . And we have hope that God will work it all out. It’s the same with our Bible Society partners. I’ve known many of them for 16 years or more! They have prayed me through things, and I’ve prayed them through things. We’ve watched kids grow up and seen people get married. To me, this is a place you know you can retire from. It’s the place I know God has called me to be. It’s a joy to get up each morning knowing that I’m serving the Lord in this capacity.

What would you want to say to people who support the work of American Bible Society?

We all partner in God’s work in different ways. We offer our talent, resources, prayer, and time. As you give your resources to American Bible Society, you can rest assured that God’s work is being done and lives are being changed as we continue to reach people who are hungry for God’s Word. The faith I’ve witnessed in my work is humbling. People understand that God moving in their situation is their only hope. Either he will move, or it won’t happen. And miracles do happen! God is saving, delivering, and transforming lives in ways we can’t imagine. If you have the chance, I encourage you to go and see what God is doing. See how he is moving. He is alive and well, and he is doing a mighty great work that you’re a part of! Your gifts and resources are fulfilling his purposes in people’s lives.

Would you share your favorite Bible verse with us?

There’s one verse that has stuck with me since I became a Christian:

Trust in the LORD with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.

Proverbs 3:5-6 ESV

This was one of the first verses I memorized as a teen. It’s been a life verse that reminds me to trust the Lord for everything. He will never leave me, forsake me, or fail me. He has promised to make my way plain and direct my path. I can confidently trust him as he continues to order my steps. When I seek him, trust him, and wait for him, I know I can’t go wrong.

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