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Market Day

Posted by Connie Seale , in Orality, Africa 22 January 2019 · 0 views

A story as shared with me by IWs to Africa:


Pastor G and the Sunday Market


In West Africa, each town and village has a weekly market day. Perhaps normally they have some things available but on "market day" it is like the mall comes to town. On that day of the week, merchants come from all over and set up their displays in the open market. This makes for a crowded open air event. This is pretty good for all involved except for the church in a town that has its market day on Sunday.


Pastor G was assigned to a church that had its market day on Sunday. To his dismay, he found that the church goers were coming in late and by the end of the meeting, there was only a handful left. Their thoughts were consumed with the buying and selling of the day. He asked the Lord, "Why did you send me here?!" And he was thinking about asking for another assignment.


Pastor G had taken a first-level orality training learning how to tell the Bible story and ask the questions. First he decided to use it with the morning meditations that he led. Those attending really liked it! Then he used it at a ladies' retreat. The ladies told him, "You need to show the other pastors how to do this so that they can do the same when they come speak to us!"


He was thinking about his problem with the Sunday mornings and decided to use an oral type approach for his Sunday morning messages. Over the next months he saw that people were now arriving early and staying for the whole morning to the very end of the service which was 1:00 pm . After a while, he asked some of his parishioners what was making the difference. He said, "When I first came here, you came late to service and left early, now you are coming early and leaving late. What has happened? They replied, "Oh Pastor, we don't want to miss a thing. This is making us STRONG."


Pastor G no longer is seeking another assignment and God is using him to build the church in the Sunday market town. The other pastors in the area have seen what happened and now his director wants him to train all the pastors in his district so that they can begin to teach in this way as well. Pastor G is also involved with a group who are creating sets of stories in his mother tongue, so that lay people will have a source of prepared stories that they can learn and tell to others.


We praise God for what He has done!

New to the Orality Blog?

An oral learner is:


Someone whose most effective communication and learning format, style, or method is in accordance with oral formats, as contrasted to literate formats.
Someone who prefers to learn or process information by oral rather than written means. (These are literate people whose preferred communication style is oral rather than literate, even though they can read.)
Someone who cannot read or write (this represents about 5% of the world's population).

Did you know?


There are an estimated 4.35 billion people who are oral learners. This includes 3 billion adults, 900 million very young children, and 450 million children between the ages of eight and fifteen; all of these have basic or below basic literacy skills. They are oral learners because of their limited literacy skills.
The vast majority of missions work has been done for a literate audience. Unfortunately the vast majority of the true audience is therefore not able to connect with the Gospel.
Oral cultures are very relational - they share their lives with one another.
Most oral cultures will communicate with one another in narratives, dialogues and dramas, proverbs, songs, chants, and poetry. When asked what he thought about a new village school headmaster, a Central African replied "Let's watch how he dances".

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