The AMERICAN BIBLE SOCIETY is an interdenominational, donor- supported, nonprofit ministry whose mission is to make accurate and affordable translations of the Bible available to everyone. Founded in New York City in 1816, ABS is dedicated to the purpose of presenting the Bible in compelling ways, enabling readers to experience life in its fullness through faith in Jesus Christ. ABS has a number of "firsts" in its record books: the first Bibles in hotels, the first pocket Bibles for soldiers (during the Civil war), and the first Bibles provided for the U.S. Military in 1817. The Society extends its outreach internationally through the United Bible Societies (UBS), a fellowship of 126 international Bible societies, and was instrumental in founding this global fellowship in the interest of greater ministry impact and efficiency. In 1999 alone, more than 63 million copies of the Society's publications were distributed throughout the United States and the world. The CONTEMPORARY ENGLISH VERSION was published by the American Bible Society in response to an urgent need for a translation that would reach those many millions who are not reading the Bible. The goal was a Bible that is a serious translation-not a paraphrase-that combines historical and scholarly accuracy with contemporary language that everyone can understand. The result is a Bible that resonates with all people, wherever they may be in their spiritual journey. At last, a Bible that is easy to read, yet allows for a deeper connection to the very God who created us. Never before has there been a Bible that speaks so clearly to the heart and the mind of every reader.