Learn to communicate God’s Word to oral-preference cultures
Monday 5 - Friday 9 November, 2018
Redcliffe College, Gloucester, UK
Sponsor: Redcliffe College, Wycliffe Bible Translators, SIL

The art of storytelling has far from died out, and the need for good biblical storytellers is as strong as ever in a world of oral cultures, postliterate societies and oral-preference learners.

If you are interested in story crafting, or are serving or planning to serve with a culture who either have no Scriptures, or prefer audio and visual ways of learning, then the Chronological Bible Storying course will give you the tools you need to be effective.

This course will equip you to help others engage with Scripture in a deep, relational way as you deliver the biblical narrative through the art of storytelling.

This unique course features no texts, no handouts, and no written aids. The intense 5-day course is entirely oral and participatory, and it is essential that you are able to attend each day.

Chronological Bible Storying will help you to:

  • help others learn and internalise the story
  • lead a discussion about the spiritual application of the story
  • begin storycrafting with a Bibleless language group, or people who have access to Scriptures but need help engaging with them

The dates for this course are 5-9 November 2018 (with an
optional pre-course social time together on the evening of 4
November). The tuition fees are £250 per student.

For more details on the course and booking information see Redcliffe's website.

Redcliffe’s Bible Storying course is delivered by the Centre for Linguistics, Translation and Literacy, a partnership with Wycliffe Bible Translators and SIL International.  [more...]

Oral Bible Translation
Authors: Margaret Doll, Willis Ott (2018)

"A live celebration streamed over the Web. The audio-text translation group that Yun had decided to join rejoiced to finish their translation in only a few years! Many others had watched the video, recorded a translation, and added improvements and suggestions."

"Here is one dream that is becoming a reality: oral translation."

This article shows how dreams from several years ago are becoming reality in the area of Oral Bible Translation.

In October 2018 the first Oral Bible Translation Conference will take place.  [more...]

2018 - Emerging Practices
Monday 1 - Thursday 4 October, 2018
International Learning Center, Rockville, VA, USA

The Oral Bible Translation Conference will be held this October.

The steering committee includes representatives from American Bible Society, Faith Comes By Hearing, Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics, International Mission Board, Seed Company, SIL, Wycliffe US, and Wycliffe Global Alliance.

Scripture Engagement Strategy and Methods
Friday 17 August - Tuesday 18 December, 2018
Sponsor: Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics (GIAL)

It's all about connection...

Scripture Engagement is about connecting with God through connecting with His Word in the context of connecting with each other.

The next online Scripture Engagement course at the Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics (GIAL) is beginning soon (August 17 to December 18, 2018). Click here for expedited application.

This interactive course introduces you to the most recent thinking in Scripture Engagement. It provides practical methods for increasing engagement with God’s Word and teaches strategies for identifying the most appropriate methods for each context. Find more information here.

Email Timothy Hatcher with questions at tim_hatcheratgial [dot] edu.  [more...]

In Swahili, English, and translatable into other languages
Author: Katherine O'Donnell (2018)

This is a simple children's Sunday school curriculum, outlining the Bible passage to use, some key teaching and application points and a memory verse for each lesson.

It is hoped that a teacher may use this in conjunction with Mark’s gospel in their language. It is based on Mark as this is often the first gospel to be translated by Bible translation teams in Tanzania.

The final approved and formatted version is the Swahili one, however the written content of the English one is the same and can be used as a source text for translating into other languages.  [more...]

Author: Andreas Ernst (2018)

Is it possible for rural communities to develop entire radio dramas through oral processes only, without writing a script?

Our dramas have not only been able to reflect the complexity of life and the consequences of sinful attitudes and behaviour, but also the power of God at work and the attitudes and readiness to help that Christians can and should be displaying.

In this article, Andreas Ernst (based in Cameroon) presents a participatory oral approach for producing audio dramas. He argues that "Scripture engagement is all about dialogue, about interactivity", and shows how a wide range of people from a local community can be involved in developing a radio drama, without a written script.

Audio dramas can transmit educational content in an emotionally engaging way, leading to positive social change. For Scripture engagement, a participatory approach to developing such dramas offers a powerful way to let the Holy Spirit work in the hearts and minds of participants and audiences as they discover just how tangible the presence and guidance of God can be in their lives. The author has witnessed the joy and excitement of participants as they were able to share their personal experiences, views and creative ideas in the process of developing the story and while acting out their roles.  [more...]

Author: Michelle Petersen
Published by: Global Forum on Arts and Christian Faith, vol. 5:A58-A86 (2017)

"When local arts call to people at a deep level, they see the relevance of God’s word to their spiritual hunger and are free to commit to Christ while remaining members of their culture."

"The word that gives life rightly lives in all parts of our lives as it is sung, danced, dramatized, drawn, and told in stories and poems, as well as being studied and read."

Article abstract:

Because languages and arts are means of communication, principles from the field of language development that communities apply to strengthen language vitality also strengthen the vitality of local artistic genres. Arts development expands a community’s existing uses of orality and arts to new topics and functions to better meet community goals together.

Status development activities increase the number of domains of use and the level of respect given local artistic genres. Corpus development activities describe genre forms and create new works in them. Acquisition development activities add to the number of people who perform or experience new works, and increase people’s interest in them.

When communities work together to meet their Kingdom goals, arts development activities add to the number of people who encounter God’s word in life-transforming ways.  [more...]

Comic Bible Society
Author: Art Ayris, President, Comic Bible Society (2018)

The most popular global reading format is comics. In almost every area of the world, sequential art is an effective inroad into Scripture engagement and bridge to Scripture explanation and reading. Super Bible.TV hosts the most complete graphic adaptation of the Bible ever done in numerous languages. With over 2,000 pages and 10,000 panels this graphic translation of Scripture covers all 66 books of the Bible and is a key Scripture bridge for Bible-less peoples, non-believers and the functionally illiterate.

The decline in Bible reading among millennials and teens has been documented by a recent Barna Report funded by the American Bible Society, demonstrating that 32% of Millennials never read the Bible but the percentage is even more drastic among teens at 48%. Meanwhile, in the greater public sphere comics readership has grown 42% the last five years. The Comic Bible Society sees the continuing growth in comics readership but the plummeting Bible engagement as a dynamic intersection to enter with Holy Writ.

In this article, Comic Bible Society President Art Ayris shares the top ten Scripture engagement keys his non-profit organization uses to engage various languages in Scripture: cultural acceptance, reader engagement, efficiency of format, educational, literacy, effectiveness, evangelism, transcultural, social media and Scripture engagement.  [more...]