A friend of the United Bible Societies China Partnership (UBS CP), Bao YQ, shares her thoughts on the impact of the scripture literacy project after visiting a scripture literacy class recently in a rural area in China.
China – Zhao Ying, a quiet lady with a shy smile, was sitting among elderly participants of a scripture literacy class, carefully tutoring her grandma, one of the students, to write. Her youthful look caught my attention. “What is a young girl doing in a literacy class for elderly people?” That was the first thought that popped into my mind.
When I approached her, she lifted her head slightly and smiled, saying softly, “My name is Zhao Ying. My grandmother registered me for this literacy class. Seeing that I had nothing to do at home, she signed me up hoping that I could come to church with her and listen to God’s Word.”
Then she told me about her grandma. “My grandma, Feng Guimei, is 64 years old. When she was young, her family was very poor and she has many other siblings. As a girl, she didn’t have a chance to read or write, so when she knew that the church is starting a literacy class, she signed up immediately!”
How has the class been for her? “I have been attending the scripture literacy lessons with my grandmother since the first lesson and I have never missed a single lesson. I enjoy going to church with my grandmother. The instructor would teach the class how to read and write new words and sentences from the Bible. I will then support my grandmother as she learns to write during class time. My grandma is old and she can’t remember a lot of things, but I will help her recall each lesson and revise with her at home.”
“I think every class is particularly meaningful. Besides helping my grandma, I can also listen to the teacher sharing Bible stories. I know more about the Bible now than ever before. I’m enjoying coming to these classes more and more because I can feel the love, care and peace here!”
Listening to Zhao Ying’s sharing, a thought dawned onto me. I saw the significance of scripture literacy classes: for not only will these classes help the elderly read God’s Word for themselves, they could also indirectly draw other family members to His Word.
My prayer is that all people will have a chance to read and listen to God’s Word and that the Heavenly Father will continue to bless this ministry of teaching illiterates to read and write using the Bible.
Story and Photos: UBS CP
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