The Bible Workbench: Life-Based Bible Resources, 800-624-4644, www.bibleworkbench.com.
Bible Workbench, a weekly Bible study program, is designed to help adult study groups understand the meaning of their own experience rather than simply learning about the scriptural text from a teacher. Each week's study focuses on a selection from the Sunday lectionary, and includes:
- Exploring the Pattern: specific questions for personal reflection on themes and motifs of the text
- Parallel Readings: poems and excerpts from contemporary books and news magazines that echo the text and help relate the text to participants' lives
- Critical Background: noted scholars offer an academic look at the text to help put it in context
- The study group first explores what is going on in the text, then shifts its focus to how this story is happening in the world, and finally questions how the story is an event in their lives. Sessions last 50 minutes or longer, depending on the time available to the group. Groups can be led by a lay individual or team.
This curriculum can also be used for individual study or sermon preparation. It is published by The Educational Center, Charlotte NC, William L. Dols, Editor. Dols is an Episcopal priest with a PhD in biblical studies and psychology. A team of editors develops each issue.
Curriculum parts: Weekly study material (15-20 pages) is designed to fit in 3-ring notebooks. Studies are sold by year or half-year subscriptions or by single issues.