Harvesters Promoting the “I Read the Word” Campaign
Karmen Kristan – Harvesting in a Catholic bookshop
Karmen Kristan is a devout and active Christian that has sought God in many ways and knows a lot of Catholic movements from the inside. She has been a helpful volunteer in the previous four Bible marathons. She was willing to help even in the most critical of times when both her husband and she had lost their jobs. Yet she always remained calm and trusted the Lord would provide for her and her loved ones. As of last autumn she works as a new Catholic bookstore manager in the western part of Ljubljana. Her costumers are mostly Catholic believers; members of different movements and priests. Of course she is now much busier than during her unemployed times, but she was really excited when we invited her to become one of the “Harvesters”. She says that according to her feeling “there are still too many Bibles gathering dust on the shelves of Slovenian Christian homes. So people really need to receive training on how to pray with the Word and especially, on how to witness to others about their reading habits”. She is really looking to receiving some training herself, because even the most devout Catholics are not used to talking about their faith in Slovenia. Karmen feels one can really grow spiritually through witnessing to others. She is already experiencing this now as she gives the “I read the Word” bookmarks to every costumer at the bookshop. Those who already read the Bible, she encourages to become “Sowers of the Word”. She gets a very good response and a lot of people consider reading the Bible regularly for the first time.
Due to its purposeful simplicity, the 30-day reading challenge is applicable in different Christian settings. So, beside different Catholic ministries it is now also being used by the president of the Christian Adventist Church in Slovenia, Pastor Zmago Godina, and the different congregations throughout Slovenia. Zmago has been a board member of the Bible society and a strong supporter of our efforts for many years. When he first heard about the campaign in our general assembly in March, he gladly “adopted” it and begun sharing the challenge. He sees it as a fresh and exciting approach for inviting people to begin reading the Scripture on a regular basis.
The actor Gregor Čušin
We met with Gregor Čušin, a famous Slovenian actor that is also considered to be a part of the “strategic” group of the Harvesters. Gregor was happy to join the “I read the Word Campaign”. He performs over a 100 Bible-based comedies each year, and he invites the audience to begin reading the Bible. What he was lacking and didn’t even realize it, was a simple specific challenge for the audience. Now he can specifically challenge it at the end his performances to begin to read the Scripture for the next 30 days. Gregor says: “People can now no longer make excuses that they don’t know what to read in the Bible and how to begin – it’s all written on the bookmark”. We are considering producing a special version of the bookmark, with the 30 readings on one side and a personal address from Gregor on the other.