ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Bible Storytelling by The Backyard Bards at CMS Summer Under the Son

Updated on January 24, 2013
BlossomSB profile image

Bronwen was a teacher for over forty years. Degrees include School Librarianship, Psycholinguistics and Theology, and Applied Linguistics.

Church Missionary Society Summer Conference

I have just returned home from the CMS 'Summer Under the Son' Conference. The weather wasn't wonderful, ranging from what was very cold for summer to a scorching 35C degrees, but the Conference was just great. It was held in the very extensive and beautiful Adventure Resort near the town of Cowes on Phillip Island, and extended over six days.

There were groups for three to four year olds, for primary age children, for high schoolers, for young adults, for aspiring youth leaders, there was even a creche, and, of course, there were the sessions in the main auditorium for the adults. I saw some of the former groups enjoying music, great activities and games, learning about Bible stories and meeting missionaries from around the world.

Every morning, the adults' sessions began with prayer, singing rousing songs with a six person band that nearly raised the roof, and a Bible Study led by the Revd. Dr. Peter Adam, Principal of Ridley College, Melbourne. Keynote speakers included Bishop Mouneer Anis, of Egypt, Dr. Lindsay Brown, International Director of the Lausanne Movement and former General Secretary of the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students, and a number of missionaries.

The Bards: Bible Storytelling

The Bible Studies were based on the Old Testament Book of Esther and were introduced each morning by a most professional 'reading' of the chapters of Esther that were to be examined that day and led most ably by the Revd Dr. Peter Adam. These studies were interesting, enlightening, sometimes humorous and entertaining, but never dull.

However, we soon found that the reading was not a reading as such at all, but a Bible Storytelling by three actors, members of The Backyard Bard, a Christian theatre company from Melbourne. The Bards had memorised the whole of Esther and acted out the relevant chapters in a powerfully dramatic way. As we were swept up in the emotions they portrayed, they became ours, too. The presentation was deeply impressive and became one of the highlights of each day for us. The actors really made the word of God come alive.

My friends and I had not heard of the Backyard Bard before and were eager to learn more. We discovered that the members belong to an Australian theatre company whose actors are dedicated to helping people to engage with God's Word. They really help their audiences to connect with the Bible stories, committing whole Books of the Bible to memory and sharing them with a passion that is quite infectious.

Members of The Backyard Bard can be invited to perform at many different types of Christian events, such as Conferences, youth events, church services, even at weddings. They hold workshops, seminars and one-day courses in both Biblical Storytelling and in Public Bible Reading. The last mentioned is very helpful for people who regularly read the Bible in church and want to improve their skills. The actors' presentations are especially popular at Christmas and Easter.

Each year this Christian theatre company have major productions in which they present a large section of Biblical narrative at events hosted by churches, high schools and university groups right across Australia.

Pray that more people will become involved, as this is a great and God-led venture.

Backyard Bards in Action
Backyard Bards in Action | Source

Secularisation and Pluralism

The talks and interviews each day with missionaries were inspiring, as were the many less formal groups on offer in the afternoon. The ones I found most interesting were three presentations and discussions on Secularisation, Desecularisation and Pluralism.

I think that sometimes we do go around with our heads in the sand and there is so much happening spiritually in many countries around the world. We need to attend conferences like this to be awakened and made aware, to learn, to be inspired, and to have our 'batteries recharged.'

CMS is to be congratulated on the great results of what must have been months of planning by quite a number of people.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • BlossomSB profile imageAUTHOR

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 

      6 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      Deborah Brooks: Yes, they were so good and it really was such a good idea as it makes the stories come alive. I'm not sure if I could remember so much to try and do it, too, but I certainly appreciated it. Thank you for your vote.

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 

      6 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      Wow..I would be have loved to have been there to see the actors acting out the book of ester....that is a great idea...I studied the book of ester with you beth moore series...great hub...voted up..debbie

    • BlossomSB profile imageAUTHOR

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 

      6 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      Yes, it would be so good if some church community groups like this could start up. The girls' club at our church learn and recite like a choir whole chapters - it's most impressive. I love your idea of acting out Bible stories with your children. When I was young it was so easy to learn things by heart, but it seems to be much harder now I'm older.

    • indanila profile image

      Inda Blackwell 

      6 years ago from Hampton Roads

      This is very interesting! My husband and I recently decided to have a weekly family devotional time. I wanted a way to make it interesting to the little ones and the preteens as well. I thought acting out some scenes from the Bible was a great idea. I wish there was something like this going on here locally. Nice hub!!!


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)