USA (MNN) — Today, there are about 2,600 language groups that have no written Scripture. These individuals are oral learners. They rely on story-telling not only to learn, but to communicate. Outreach professionals call this orality.
Jerry Wiles with Living Water International is part of the orality movement. “It has to do with the people who can’t, don’t, or won’t read, or prefer to learn by means other than written instruction or print-based media. We know that about 70% of the world’s population, or about 5.7 billion people, would be considered oral learners.”
According to Wiles, while 1st World nations learn through print media, “Behavior change happens better through oral methods than highly-literate western style approach.”
That’s why Living Water International is conducting Orality Training around the world, teaching Christians how to use oral teaching to introduce people to Christ. “Churches, mission leaders, and ministry leaders in the United States get interested initially because they’re sending people on mission trips, and they want people to be effective there.”
But then these leaders get really excited. “Once they go through the training, they realize that it’s universal in its application. So, it will work in our churches right here in the United States, just like it works in other parts of the world.”
Six training conferences are planned in different parts of the United States beginning in June. These training sessions are just a basic introduction to orality education. “We often know so much that we don’t apply. So we turn that around. We apply a little and practice a lot, and implement immediately.”
The results are phenomenal, says Wiles. One such group in in West Africa received the training two years ago. Since then, “Collectively those 15 people had seen 791 people come to know the Lord.” Wiles says it’s become a rapidly reproducing church planting movement because these stories are effectively being shared person to person throughout the community.
How does it work? “People learn the [Bible] stories and a set of questions; they go out and tell the stories. It’s a more natural, spontaneous way, rather than passing out literature and using some western propositional presentation.”
Wiles says orality coupled with the Holy Spirit results in many are giving their hearts to Christ.
If you’d like to see if there is an orality training session near you, click here: http://www.water.cc/orality.