The Staff Welfare Association organized a Cultural programmed virtually to enable the BSI Staff to have a time of relaxation to the body and rejuvenation to the mind. It was very innovatively done through virtual. It was a time to experience God given talents to individuals as well as groups. The staff presented a skit on the title “Lockdown Diaries” which spoke about the impact of lockdown on people from different walks of life . The BSI team virtually presented a pre-recorded multi-lingual song beautifully.
The BSI Ranchi Auxiliary organised a two day workshop on Building Digital Communities to build awareness on the digital Initiatives undertaken by the BSI. The two workshop included ‘talks’, ‘discussion groups’, and ‘hands-on’ experience on using the digital.
Mr. Samuel Thambusamy presented the opportunities and challenges of the digital for Bible Societies. He introduced the digital initiatives ( such as Dot Bible, Project Engage, Social Media) undertaken by the Media department and how these initiatives can help inScripture Engagement, Bible Advocacy and the promotion of the Ranchi Auxiliary.
We had overa 100 people attend the first day of seminar, which was primarily focussed on BSI supporters.
The second day of the seminar was primarily focussed on the youth. Surprisingly, even adults wanted to be a part of the Bible Funshop. The Bible Funshop is designed for groups to read the Bible together in a new and creative way using arts and the media.
The Bible Funshop is about reading familiar passages of Scripture in unfamiliar ways and learning from one another! We had a great time reading John 6: 1 – 12together at Bible House Ranchi. Young people made Vblogs and Facebook posts based on the lessons they had learnt.
Children and young people were introduced to the Digital Bible tools such as Bible Apps, Youversion Bible reading plans, and Bible game Apps such as Guardians of Ancora.It is always a joy to help children and young people engage with Scripture and see them take a deep dive.!
We hope that children will
Read the Bible
Listen to the Bible
Learn from the Bible
Live out the Bible
And share it’s Light to people!
The response to the Digital Initiatives was overwhelming and it was amazing to see people’s willingness to embrace the digital.
Thanking God for the Telugu Bible Translation. This is the Bi-centenary year of the first published Telugu New Testament. Thanking God for the tireless effort, grit and determination of Ananda Rayar, an Indian Christian, who completed the Telugu New Testament Translation even after the untimely death of the missionaries.
Bible reading can be done through creative ways. The Bible Fun shops are designed to introduce Kids to digital bible resources and also help kids creatively engage with the stories in the Bible using digital tools.
We set out to the Bible Funshop arranged at Jagiri village in South Gujarat. It took us almost 6 long hours to get to Jagiri, Valsad District, Gujarat. The drive took us through Baroda, Surat and many other places. Enter the Dangs area and the contrast is striking.
We arrived at an English Medium School. Yes, an English Medium School in the middle of nowhere. The English medium school is the result of one man’s commitment to serve the people in the area: to give them a future and a hope lest they be left out or lost to impoverishment. Interestingly, he belongs to this area. The school is built with a vision to help educationally disadvantaged children in the area. About 235 students study here.
The Gujarat Auxiliary had planned a Bible Funshop at the HIM English School. The Bible Funshop is aimed at helping Digital Natives creatively engage with the Bible. I had the privilege of interacting with Class VIII students. We had around thirty boys and girls at the Funshop.
We started with a few Bible songs. Then, the kids watched a video of God speaking to the boy Samuel who was growing up with Eli at the Tabernacle. After the video show, I asked the boys to imaginatively write a letter to Hannah about how Samuel felt growing up in the temple all by himself without a family ( in Samuel’s own words). I also asked the girls to imaginatively write a letter to Samuel about how Hannah felt leaving Samuel at the Tabernacle under Eli’s care ( in Hannah’s own words). This reading of the Bible using the tools of imaginative draws its inspiration from Dr. Gerald West’s Contextual bible studies It was great fun to see the kids use their imagination and write the letter. That it was a residential school added to the understanding of their context as well!
I surprised the kids by asking them to read their letters and make a little Vlog! I also did a quick tutorial about framing, lighting and video capture to help them with the basics of video making. We had very limited time was limited and there wasn’t much we could do. My aim was to trigger their imagination and help them creatively express themselves. The kids throughly enjoyed the activity. Once, everyone had finished with the VLog, we all enjoyed watching the vLogs played on the big screen!
It was a long journey into the Dangs. But, I am grateful to the team from the Gujarat Auxiliary for planning the Bible Funshop at the HEM English School in the Dangs.