Welcome back to the fortnightly round-up of what’s new and exciting on The Big Bible Project website.
Due to Greenbelt, house moves and conferences, this is an overview of the past month’s posts! We want to thank all those of you who visited us on the stand at (soggy) Greenbelt, and welcome all those of you who have signed up for this newsletter.
Thanks also for all your prayers for Bex’s house move, and to Christ Church Winchester for praying me off this past Sunday. She’s safely moved into a house in Durham, although a little of her stuff remains in Winchester!
August 15 – September 14 2012
Our #digidisciple(s) have continued to provide excellent content, and below, we’ll attempt to summarise by theme.
Andy Byers reflected theologically upon ‘unordained voices‘ – how can God use them powerfully, and also reflected upon technological dystopia and utopia. Kate Bruce reflected powerfully upon always being prepared to talk to those from a range of cultures, and never think that you have learnt it all about preaching. Nancy Wallace continued her series on ‘Women in the Gospels‘ in looking at the woman brought before Jesus for stoning.
The Church Sofa considered how @YouVersion (the free Bible app) can, and has, changed his Bible reading habits. Dot Gosling looked at a passage in Colossians, encouraging us to stop thinking that we’re not good enough, and accept/believe the promises that God has given us – something that Ned Lunn also developed in his piece on over-acceptance.
Anna Drew reflected upon a newspaper piece that challenges the mental health of Jesus - next quarter she plans to give us some advice on writing good headlines. Jenni Osborn got plenty of debate going reflecting upon her year of #3goodthings, whilst Ernie Feasey reflected upon the messages and opportunities contributing to his decisions about vocation.
Paul Blakey reflected upon some of his experiences with the Olympic Gamesmakers, and Games Pastors - how such events can unite rather than divide us, echoed in Thomas Mathie’s post, and something Micha Jazz also reflected upon on return from a pilgrimage to Assisi. Robb Sutherland reflected particularly about how people had drawn together in the mud-pit that was Greenbelt, with further reflections from Dyfed Roberts and Emma Major.
Pam Webster gave us the first review of housegroup materials, Life on the Front Line, by LICC - as it ‘really’ works in practice. We’re keen to hear from other housegroups to feed back what housegroup materials work/don’t work for you.
The rest = repeat of last month’s content:
We are starting discussions for #BigRead12 Advent, where we’ll be looking for 25 daily entries (preferably a mix of text, image, video, poetry) on the theme of ‘Waiting’. Advent is a time of waiting for God’s arrival, for his promise to us on earth. What does ‘waiting’ look like for us, as we wait with hunger, for a job, in line (always the wrong one?), and for the special time of Christmas. What do you associate with ‘waiting’ and might you be keen to contribute?
We have confirmed with SPCK that for #BigRead13 Lent we will be using Rowan Williams book The Lion’s World. There will be some similiaries with #BigRead11 and #BigRead12, in that weekly housegroup materials will be provided free-of-charge, Rowan Williams will provide video content, and we will encourage conversation online, asking for. Unlike Tom Wright’s books, however, this has not been written as a Lent reflection, but has strong themes that will be drawn out in materials for four housegroups, through blog posts throughout the week, and also materials for Holy Week.
A number of #digidisciple(s) asked for a monthly theme, so the first theme, picking up on Greenbelt, is ‘What is a #digiparadise – for you?‘, which Pam Smith, Bryony Taylor and Bex Lewis had discussed in a session at Greenbelt, and both discussed further in their digidisciple posters – Pam talking about the value of ‘haptic’ (touch) and Bryony providing a number of brilliant Bible verse adaptations suitable for Pinterest. Jacks Davie picked up on this, asking “digiwhat?”, and then reflecting upon what it may look like for her, and the communities it offers, whilst Lucy Mills popped off on a bit of a tangent, but used the concept of #digiparadise as a great starting point! Rector Chick called for the ‘blindness’ we experience on the internet to ‘heighten our hearts‘.
Megan Gray identified how Facebook friendships have allowed her to have deeper conversations with people in the times that face-to-face meetings happen, and also questioned research questioning the identity that people create for themselves with their Facebook profile photos. Tim Hutchings took this on to consider how social media has changed our behaviours in relationship to death and grieving. The Aletheophile asked whether, as bloggers, we are inviters or provocateurs? Muriel Sowden’s post picked up on this - celebrating diversity is important, but we need to ensure that that doesn’t become division. Jonathan Blundell asked us to look for a love that would destroy all evil.
Ali Gledhill looked at the first ‘social media Olympics’ and considered our obsession with the new – and encouraged us to take on board stories slowly, and repeatedly, especially the gospel story. Nick Morgan also encouraged us to sometimes think before we post/tweet, etc. Andy Byers considered whether the Bible on an iPad can be called ‘The Bible’, and whether format changes our relationship with content… and continued this questioning with his post on screens as oracles.
Bex Lewis reviewed Richard Littledale’s book Who Needs Words, a great guide to better communication (within the church), and we provided a small extract on the theme of ‘storytelling’, which is the theme for this year’s Christian New Media Conference (#CNMAC12). Tony Whittaker picked up on this theme of story, and recommended a number of links into Sci-Fi which can allow us to connect with fans of the genre.James Robinson gave us an insight into his ‘unconference’ style session coming up at #CNMAC12.
Anders Orsander gave us a real insight as to how social media can be more fully integrated with church life, to provide different opportunities for sermons, whilst Andrew Salt gave us an insight into using Google + on Hootsuite on the Android platform. Digital Fingerprint provided a series of guides (designed for Universities, but still relevant), to get you off the starting blocks with a range of social media.