Tag Archives: Network of Biblical Storytellers

Learn the Pentecost Story by Heart with #StoryonFire

The #StoryonFire Challenge

Join others in learning the Pentecost story by heart! The #storyonfire series offers a step-by-step tutorial for learning Acts 2 for Pentecost. The best way to keep up will be via Facebook or Twitter. Follow @FaithandWonder on Twitter and use the hashtag #storyonfire to share your thoughts along the way. Sessions are short (1-5 minutes) and you can certainly choose to do more than one in a day.

Whether your goal is to tell the story at home, to a friend, or in worship–join us!!! Story-learning in groups can be quite a powerful tool.

For families/teachers wanting to learn the text with children, I would recommend trying to learn only Acts 2:1-4.

RESOURCES Mentioned Along the Way!

Day 1: Story and Pronunciations

Print this out: Acts 2 NRSV and read it aloud!

And here is a video with pronunciation help!

You can also look up the pronunciations at this site:  http://netministries.org/Bbasics/bwords.htm

Day 3: Map It

The way I read the story, the narrator is clearly amazed that all these people from all these places are gathered together. For an idea of how far they’d come, check out this MAP.


Day 9: Spin the Wheel!


Spin the wheel (just click the image above) and read the final part of the story according to the indicated feeling. (Repeat!)

The Resurrection Story: as seen and told by women


Matthew 28: 1-10, 16-20
as told by “ByHeart”–Shelley Gnade and Mary-beth Howard (beginning at 2:30)
with opening commentary by Dr. Tom Boomershine
a video produced by The Seed Company in conjunction with the Network of Biblical Storytellers

For more of the Seed Company/NBS stories click HERE.

telling TOGETHER

Shelley and Mary-beth are an incredible storytelling duo based out of Delaware. They are amazing. I am always inspired by what happens when the story is told by more than one person.  I had my first experience of actually doing it at the NEXT Church conference–Jeff Krehbiel and I told a story together. My initial preparations were done alone. When Jeff and I got together to practice, I was amazed by the new things I saw/experienced in the text because of the space that was made present in telling it together.

For all ages: Try telling this story (or another) with a partner! Read the story aloud a few times, and begin by remembering it TOGETHER (in your own words).

For the younger set: Grown ups and kids tell together. For the folks with really young children–start simple–read the story aloud and give them a cue when it’s time to say “DO NOT BE AFRAID!”

Here is the story broken up for telling (CEB):  Matthew 28: 1-10, 16-20.


Five Things to Remember…


Professional biblical storyteller Tracy Radosevic’s online workshop:
“Five Things to Remember When Telling Biblical Stories”


to WATCH or NOT to watch

Last week Tracy Radosevic, professional biblical storyteller, professor, and Dean of the Academy for Biblical Storytelling, gave a fantastic live online biblical storytelling workshop. It is FULL of great stuff–you’ll probably want to watch it more than once! During the Q&A time at the end, someone asked Tracy if it is better when learning a biblical story to watch someone else do it first. Tracy said that most of the time it is best to NOT watch. I AGREE. If I watch someone else tell the story–it is hard to get it out of my head. (For the same reason, I do not read other people’s sermons before trying to write my own!)

Especially when I was first learning stories, if I saw someone tell the story I was learning I could not get their telling choices out of my head!!! Part of learning a story by heart is learning it for yourself–finding how it reaches YOU. It is hard to do this when someone else’s telling is in front of you. If you are a beginner adult teller and want to learn biblical stories, perhaps avoiding a video of story you’re learning would be the best option. You can just skip the video and move right onto the activities!

So WHY do I put up videos of the stories I’m hoping people will learn?

1) I want people to have access to biblical stories being told. Even if you never learn to tell them yourselves, you have at least had an experience of it being told. I love pairing biblical and personal storytelling. If you watch the biblical story and then tell your own stories, something very special has happened…something formational.

2) This blog is for people of all ages. A video telling can be a great starting point for group/family discussion.

3) It is my hope that in having many people tell the stories of God on this blog, you will see that there are many types of tellers. Perhaps it will make it easier to find your own voice.

4) I just LOVE watching other people tell stories.

These are just a few reasons. Tracy’s observation does have me thinking of some fun ways to approach video story-learning on the blog–stay tuned! I am hopeful that over time enough stories will be told here that even if you don’t want to watch the story you’re learning, you’ll be able to watched stories that are connected to yours (i.e., if you’re working on the story of the transfiguration, you might be able to watch a story about Moses or Elijah as you prepare).

I am excited about the possibilities…and grateful for Tracy’s wisdom and encouragement over the last few years as I’ve learned to tell the stories of God! (Check out Tracy here!)


This Wednesday, February 19, 3p.m. EST–check out the next installment of the #biblestoriesrock workshops–Things to AVOID When Telling Biblical StoriesJason Chesnut and I will be your workshop leaders!

To view on Google+ (you can ask questions at the end!!!) click here:

To view on youtube (you can watch, but won’t be able to participate w/ questions)

Paul the Humorist?


Before watching the video below, read Paul’s words to the church in Corinth (from 1 Corinthians 1:10-17).

Now I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,
that all of you be in agreement and that there be no divisions among you,
but that you be united in the same mind and the same purpose.
For it has been reported to me by Chloe’s people that there are quarrels among you, my brothers and sisters. 

What I mean is that each of you says,
“I belong to Paul,”
or “I belong to Apollos,”
or “I belong to Cephas,”
or “I belong to Christ.”

Has Christ been divided?
Was Paul crucified for you?
Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? 

I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius,
so that no one can say that you were baptized in my name.
(I did baptize also the household of Stephanas;
beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized anyone else.) 

For Christ did not send me to baptize but to proclaim the gospel,
and not with eloquent wisdom,
so that the cross of Christ might not be emptied of its power.


1 Corinthians 1:10-17
as told by Ron Coughlin at the Festival Gathering of the Network of Biblical Storytellers ’13

But that’s not a STORY!!!

Any scripture can be told “by heart”–even Paul’s letters. In fact, most of the people to whom Paul wrote could not read–they relied on someone reading the letter aloud. Think about the difference in the experience of reading the letter to yourself and then hearing Ron tell it by heart.


For all ages:

The Corinthian church was filled with people who were very different–and had different thoughts about how to be the church. Paul wanted them to be UNITED in their faith. In order to get a sense of how Paul felt, tell a story about a time you tried to help people get along. (My mother used to request only one thing for Christmas every year–peace in the family. Perhaps I should call her and get her to tell me a story!)

For the older set:

From Ron’s telling, what can you surmise about the Corinthian church?

What are the ways in which today’s church experiences such divisions? Tell a story about church/faith division…then begin to tell this section of Paul’s letter to the Corinthians.