News and Reflections
In reviewing our Bible Grant Program in the recent years, we have noticed a decrease in requests for Scripture coming from prison chaplains and people who are incarcerated. We believe this decrease has to do with organizational staffing and policy changes, and that the need for hope and reform remains in all prisons and correctional facilities. We were searching for ways to help more people behind bars. People who are incarcerated are all too often out of sight and out of mind—but they do not have to be forgotten. They need hope.
The Massachusetts Bible Society likes to share how the Bible inspires in new and exciting ways. Recently, we heard about the podcast on the for reading the Bible in a year by Father Mike Schmitz of the Catholic ministry at the University of Minnesota Duluth. The podcast is number one in America, with more than 238 million downloads and counting, landing a billboard in Times Square. They have listeners of many faiths and atheist followers from around the world, as well. The podcast has the largest following of any podcast in America.
The "Exploring the Bible" series has been a wonderful addition to our church’s adult education program. It provides a challenging yet safe space to examine the Bible among a diversity of backgrounds and previously held opinions. Additionally, the materials are well developed and easy for laypersons to facilitate which takes pressure off of our pastor and staff.
-Todd Vosper, Saint Paul’s United Methodist Church, Coronado CA
For over 210 years, the Massachusetts Bible Society has been at the work of distributing God’s word - the Holy Bible - to those in need. Small churches, hospitals and hospices, prisons and street programs have all benefited from this dedicated service mission. We have found ways to encourage small groups of people to really study the sacred texts to help apply old lessons to current problems.
As a career professional in the field of education and child care before coming to MassBible, I was intrigued by Frank Thomas' lectionary column in the November 3rd edition of The Christian Century. Drawing on sacred text (1 Samuel 1:4-20) to ask what our society would look like if we truly held a sacred view of children, Dr. Thomas reflects on the far ranging impact of the world pandemic.
-Dr. Ted Wilson
November 14, Ordinary 33B (1 Samuel 1:4–20)
Living by the Word What if we put children at the center of our policies and decisions? by Frank A. Thomas October 19, 2021