I was greatly heartened to read Ched Myers’ account ("Stories to Live By," March-April 2000) of a people’s Bible reading, motivated by a commitment to transformation and accepting of diverse readings. Here in Glasgow there is a five-year-old group committed to just such an enterprise—the West of Scotland Contextual Bible Study group, an ecumenical group of trained readers and facilitators. We inherited our approach from Gerald West, a socially engaged South African biblical scholar, and have adapted it to the culture of the West of Scotland (although we have worked further afield).
I recognize the experiences of interpretive struggle and the battle to hear divergent and suppressed readings. I also recognize the joy of seeing the liberative resources of the Bible working to open up possibilities of real change in hard places. Our group has worked with socially engaged poor urban parishes, justice and peace groups, community initiatives in the fields of drug rehab and work with ex-offenders, ecumenical groups, and groups at the margin of the churches.
We would be delighted to hear more from Ched Myers about his experience of reading the Bible in this way and would love to be in touch with other groups with similar experiences.