Using Media

EthnoDoxology Volume 4, No. 4 (2010): 22-31
Author: Michelle Petersen

Scripture Relevance Drama is a tool for facilitating use of translated Scripture and developing minority languages. Indigenous authors and vocal actors dramatize local life situations as contexts for characters telling topical Bible stories. Other plays explore community development and health issues, such as how to avoid malaria, the benefit of immunizations, or the need to cover local wells to protect young children from falling into them.

The Lunaba Drama Team takes their culture’s artistic tradition to a wider audience through their weekly half-hour radio drama program. The Lunaba Drama Team is also continuing to give live performances. The framework presented in this paper may be used for developing Scripture Relevance Dramas and/or Community Development Relevance Dramas in local languages with or without the radio distribution strand.  [more...]

Author: Rev Mark Brown

So I offer the challenge: that we inhabit this digital space, become part of the culture and learn the language of what Marc Prensky calls the, 'Digital Natives'. Those of us who have adopted technology later in life he describes as, 'Digital Immigrants' and like anyone immigrating to a new country, there is a need to learn.

Mark Brown, CEO of Bible Society New Zealand, outlines some of the cultural shifts that need to be understood in order to encourage Scripture engagement among 'digital natives'.

At Bible Society New Zealand in response to the appalling Bible engagement rates amongst Christians we wanted to find out, 'Why don’t people read there Bible more often?' The overwhelming reason is that people are distracted, their attention drawn to other things as they scan their environment.

To stimulate conversation, the author presents some provocative predictions of how the web might influence the production, understanding and appreciation of the Bible.

The paper was presented at the symposium: Christianity in the Digital Space, at St. John's College, Durham, UK, July 2009. Notes on the subsequent discussion can be found here.  [more...]

Author: Lamar Vest (President and CEO, American Bible Society)
Published by: The Huffington Post (11 May 2010)

"The Bible has yet to beat the perception of being a dusty old rule book among millennials largely because to substantiate relevance and garner interest, the text first must be read... The message of the Bible is unchanging, but how we deliver that message not only can change, but must."

Lamar Vest discusses some of the strategies the American Bible Society is using to encourage the millennial generation to engage with the Scriptures, including creative delivery methods and "new tools that put the user in the driver's seat of their Bible experience".  [more...]

Author: Gilbert Ansre
Published by: International Journal of Frontier Missions (12.2 Apr-Jun 1995)

Oral-Scripture in Africa is the highest potential medium of outreach for the salvation message on the continent today and into the 21st century. This is because it is capable of reaching both the literate and the teeming millions of non-literate people.

Dr. Gilbert Ansre (who served for 15 years as a UBS translation consultant) examines the literacy rates in countries in Africa, observing that:

1. Not all people who claim they can read actually can do so.
2. Not all who can read actually do read.
3. Not all who actually read do read well.
4. Not all who read well do actually read Scripture.
5. Not all who read the Scripture do so regularly.

Faced with these realities, Ansre outlines some of the responses made by the Bible Societies in Africa in the 1990s, including:

9. They confess that they have hitherto failed to emphasize Scripture use and call on all concerned to promote it vigorously.
10. Aware of the great potential in audio-media, they prayerfully dedicate themselves to support its promotion.

  [more...]
Author: Viggo Søgaard
Published by: International Journal of Frontier Missions (12.2 Apr-Jun 1995)

Need orientation is very important for audio-Scriptures and with that follows careful research of the intended audience. When the apostle Paul spoke in a synagogue, he could freely quote from the Old Testament, but when he taught the Gentiles in Athens he had to begin with the concept of God. Similarly, our audio-Scriptures need to be prepared for specific audiences and associated materials need to be made so that the audience can understand.

Viggo Søgaard describes how audio Scriptures saw a slow but steady acceptance from the 1970s onwards, as people saw the need for something more than printed Bibles. He charts the work of early pioneers like Dr. Harvey Hoekstra and of ministries to provide audio Scriptures for the blind.

The author offers a series of challenges to the church in the promotion of the Bible in audio. For example:  [more...]