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02 February 2010

Press release

The Bible: Tedious and taboo or transforming and true?

The Bible: Tedious and taboo or transforming and true?

National campaign to encourage confidence in the Scriptures launches with UK tour

Biblefresh is a movement to help the Church gain appetite and confidence in God's word.

A 13 city tour is well underway with events still to come in Belfast, Manchester, Liverpool, Bournemouth, London and Exeter. The tour will be exploring the theme of "The Bible: Tedious, Taboo and Toxic, or Transforming, Treasured and True?" and sharing the vision for practical ways churches can re-engage with the Bible.

The Biblefresh partnership of over fifty agencies, festivals, colleges and denominations have joined forces to see churches grow their confidence in the scriptures during 2011, coinciding with the 400th anniversary of the King James version of the Bible. It is the first time so many agencies and organisations have come together to promote God's word in this way. Partners include the Bible Society, Wycliffe Bible Translators, Scripture Union, London School of Theology, CWR, UCB radio and the Evangelical Alliance among many others.

The coalition has been formed in response to recent findings about the Bible's place in the Church; for instance, only 1 in 7 churchgoers say they are confident in their knowledge of the Bible, and 76% of church leaders associate Bible poverty with the UK where the Bible is no longer at the centre of public or family life.

The strapline for Biblefresh 'It could change your world' was praised by the Bishop of Durham at a recent launch in the North East on 26 January. Bishop Tom Wright spoke of the Bible as having a transforming effect.

He said: "The Bible is there to enable us to be the people of God for the world, the people through whom God's story becomes the world's story. Bible readers, Bible prayers and Bible understanders are world transformers."

Rob Bell, founding pastor of Mars Hill Bible Church in Michigan, said about Biblefresh: "Any time people begin to engage with the scriptures in new and fresh ways, unbelievable things begin to happen. Who knows what Biblefresh will lead to, but it will be interesting and unforgettable.'             

Ann Holt, Executive Director of the Bible Society, said: "The Bible has become toxic for many in British Society and the confidence of Christians to rely on their Scriptures publicly has consequently been knocked. Biblefresh will help confidence recovery."

Biblefresh participants are asked to consider a four-pronged pledge with their church to: read the Bible, be trained in handling the Bible well, give towards a translation for Burkino Faso and provide the opportunity for people to experience the Bible in new ways. The leaders' guide on the newly-formed website www.biblefresh.com offers a whole host of ideas and resources to inspire and equip individuals, churches and communities to read, study, meditate, listen, learn and live the Bible.

The remaining Biblefresh gatherings are:

Belfast: 1-4 February, Kingdom Come, Spires Conference Centre

Exeter: 3 February, Belmont Chapel

Manchester: 10 February, Fresh Thinking

Bristol: 28 February, Bristol Cathedral

Liverpool: 16 March, Grace Family Church

Bournemouth: 18 March, Moorlands College

London: 30 March, London Institute for Contemporary Christianity

Anyone interested in attending can register with name and event location by emailing biblefresh@eauk.org
Ends

Media Enquiries

Danny Webster
Tel: 07766 444 650
Email: d.webster@eauk.org

Notes to Editors

The Evangelical Alliance
We are the largest and oldest body representing the UK’s two million evangelical Christians. For more than 165 years, we have been bringing Christians together and helping them listen to, and be heard by, the government, media and society. We’re here to connect people for a shared mission, whether it’s celebrating the Bible, making a difference in our communities or lobbying the government for a better society. From Skye to Southampton, from Coleraine to Cardiff, we work across 79 denominations, 3,500 churches, 750 organisations and thousands of individual members. And we're not just uniting Christians within the UK – we are a founding member of the World Evangelical Alliance, a global network of more than 600 million evangelical Christians. For more information, go to www.eauk.org.