Help! Hardly anyone can read the translated Scriptures. What can we do?
This is a one-page poster or course handout. It reminds us that if a lack of literacy skills is cited as a barrier to Scripture use, then the solution can be found in both literacy and oral strategies. Good Scripture use promotion strategies will often need to move in both of these directions.
So, if people say "The New Testament is not being used because people can't read it!", the response is not only "OK, we'd better do some literacy so they can read it". It should also be: "OK, we need to explore ways of them getting to hear it as well." [more...]
“The illustrations captured the imagination of the children.”
Mary Beavon describes a Scripture Use activity their team used in an area of Cameroon where churches are small, travel is difficult, and people have little money. They developed Scripture Big Books (from Shell Books), which served to both teach the Bible and promote literacy. They were used in churches and open air. Though it is not a sustainable activity, it provides useful manuscripts and exposes people to written forms of the Bible. [more...]
There is more to reading the words on the page than meets the eye. In order for the Bible to be read with comprehension and understanding, resulting in an appropriate response to God’s communication, the reader must be equipped with the skills to analyse, evaluate and assimilate the information.
Lyndal Webb argues that it is not enough to train people in basic reading skills. In order for them to be able to better engage with the Scripture they read, they need to move along the 'Literacy Line', developing higher literacy skills.
This article contains an appendix with suggestions on ways of training people to develop further. [more...]
"Social activity is our responsibility in the discipling process. Once a person has responded to the love of Christ, we are to help them grow up in their faith. Setting them free from the chains of sin and yet not removing them from the chains of illiteracy and thus oppression is not loving my neighbor."
In 'Is Hearing Enough?', Don Edwards presents research carried out in India, where a significant percentage of new church leaders and believers cannot read. He argues the case for literacy to play an important role in discipleship efforts as part of what it means to love our neighbor.
In the light of the growing focus on Orality, the author challenges us not to lose sight of the vital role that literacy plays in grounding believers in their faith. [more...]