What's happening in the diocese?
The Big Bible Study
Please consider bringing a group from your parish to the Big Bible Study, which will be hosted by Bishop John & Archbishop Bernard Longley in Worcester Cathedral on Sat 24 September, 10am-1pm.
The Cathedral will have an exhibition on the King James Bible in the Chapter House until the end of August. Admission is free and will feature other activities and exhibits.
Parishes can also borrow this exhibition for their own use: Borrow the Telling Tales exhibition
Good Book - some ideas to promote greater interest in the Bible in your church
Host a children's art competition in your local school, church, art club or youth group, asking everyone to depict an image of hope based upon a Bible Story. Consider hosting an exhibition of the art at a library or civic centre and Bible Society will donate Bibles to give as prizes. See www.biblesociety.org.uk/imagesofhope [8 page downloadable guide].
Host a Bible reading marathon in a public space (or Church), possibly during the season of Lent and invite local politicians, head teachers, police to consider reading a chapter. Close this event with a corporate act of worship. See http://www.2011trust.org/ and http://www.400yearsav.org/
Host a Flower Festival on your church's favourite Bible stories during the autumn; or prior to the festival involve people in a local survey of favourite passages; involve local photographic club for an exhibition later.
Have a Miracles of Jesus DVD discussion group. See http://www.miraclesofjesus.co.uk/
Start a Bible Film Club
Invite church members to think of a few words to describe the impact that scripture has had on their lives, beginning with the word ‘now'. ‘Now, I know that I am loved' and ‘Now, I have sense of vocation' are two examples. Having thought of their words, they should write them on a piece of A3 card boldly and have someone take a digital photo of them for use on the church website, notices and Facebook profiles. This could introduce the churches 2011 celebrations. See http://www.biblefresh.com/
Visit the Telling Tales Exhibition in Worcester Cathedral or book it for your own church. Contact the cathedral office 01905 732900
Take up the E100 Bible Reading Challenge to read through the Bible. Leaflets available from Scripture Union, or see http://e100.scriptureunion.org.uk/
Offer a sermon series on what the Bible says about (eg) money / marriage / the poor etc (i.e. as against using only the lectionary) in order to show that the Bible is relevant to everyday life.
Encourage your congregation to perform a dramatic presentation from the Bible, for example, using the Dramatised Bible.
Explore the opportunities of 2011 Trust (http://www.2011trust.org/) and Biblefresh (http://www.biblefresh.com/). New ideas will and opportunities will be added continuously throughout the coming months.
Consider the lectionary option of holding a sermon series on themes/books of bible (e.g. 6 weeks on Ephesians 1 - 6) Guidance for this is given in New Patterns for Worship: see, for example, http://www.churchofengland.org/prayer-worship/worship/texts/newpatterns/contents/sectioncnotes.aspx
Use the Sunday sermon slot as a bible study (sometimes) - give a text or story and let congregation discuss in small groups!
Start every PCC with a reading bible / short reflection/talk
Encourage members of your congregation to set up and join a Bishop's Certificate study group in your area. Contact the Department of Training and Development for more information: 01905 732812 and firstname.lastname@example.org
Promote the use of Bible reading notes amongst members of the congregation. See the Links section below for ideas and suggestions.
Introduce the Open the Book project in the schools of your parish, enabling children to hear the story of the Bible at school in their primary years. Contact Jonathan Rendell on 01905 732825 and
Arrange to hold a screening of KJB - The book the changed the world, a 90 minute drama/documentary which tells the story of the King James Bible: "from the dangers and intrigues of the Court of the Virgin Queen, through battling Bishops and squabbling scholars to 17th century terrorists and their infamous ‘Gunpowder Plot'. And through it all one man held sway, the Scottish King James VI, who took the English throne, confounded his enemies and delivered a single, great and towering work which still bears his name today". Visit http://www.kjbthefilm.com/ or download details of how to screen it at church: screening pack for KJB film
Links to Bible Reading Notes:
- Church House Publishing produce a series of notes to follow the Common Worship Lectionary: http://www.chpublishing.co.uk/product.asp?id=2395750
- Well established notes for personal Bible study following different reading schemes are produced by, especially, The Bible Reading Fellowship and Scipture Union:
- Scripture Union also produce an online resource for engaging differently with the Bible in daily devotions. https://www.scriptureunion.org.uk/89157.id
- The University of Nottingham have produces a series of videos, one for each book of the Bible, giving an introduction to contemporary biblical scholarship http://www.bibledex.com/
Parish Toolkit - pdf to download