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[ACNS, by Gavin Drake] A new collection of resources to strengthen and support the use of the Bible in the life of the Church has been published by the Anglican Communion. Described as a tool-kit, the Deeper Engagement collection of educational resources has been prepared by the Communion’s Bible in the Life of the Church (Bilc) project “to encourage us, as churches, to engage more deeply with the Bible,” the co-ordinator Stephen Lyon said in a letter to Primates.
Deeper Engagement is a collection of around 120 different educational resources from different parts of the Communion. They have been gathered “to help us in our engagement with Scripture,” Mr Lydon said. “Most have been used to great effect already and those responsible for creating them are enthusiastic about sharing them with others in the Communion.”
In the foreword, the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby says “I see this project as utterly foundational for our life together. I can hardly stress that enough.”
The former Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, said that he hoped that the resources would help to develop “a wider and fuller biblical literacy” within the Anglican Communion.
Bishop Williams, who was Archbishop of Canterbury when the Bilc project began in 2009, said: “To be a biblical church is surely to be a community that lives out this great story [of creation and redemption] day by day and commends it to people everywhere as the most comprehensible truth possible about the nature of God and God’s world.
“May God use this work to further that end, in our Communion and in all communities of his people.”
Deeper Engagement was produced following a request by the Anglican Consultative Council when they met as ACC15 in Auckland, New Zealand, in 2012. It follows Bilc’s first publication, Deep Engagement; Fresh Discovery, which was published that year.
The Anglican Communion Office has sent thousands of printed copies of the new resources, together with a memory stick, to all primates and archbishops as well as a good number of bishops and theological colleges throughout the Anglican Communion.
The resources have also been published on the Bible in the Life of the Church website: bilc.org. The contents of the website can be freely downloaded, used, and adapted for local contexts.
“The Anglican Communion has said consistently in its official documents that the Bible plays a central role in its life,” Mr Lyon said. “Would all our churches provide enough evidence to show we are living by this? Deeper Engagement is designed to encourage and help us live up to these ideals.”