With the intent to touch hearts and encourage positive transformation in people’s lives, the Philippine Bible Society celebrated the annual National Bible Week by bringing God’s Word to different communities all over the country. Several events communicating a strong Scripture advocacy were conducted in varying locations on January 23-29 with the theme, “The Bible: Our Hope for the Community’s Progress.”
God has faithfully brought people to the events held to make sure that the Bible is heard and celebrated. Activities included public Bible reading, Bible parade, Bible quizzes, poster making contests, concerts, fun runs, and other engagements. These were conducted in the cities of Caloocan, Las Piñas, Makati, Malabon, Mandaluyong, Manila, Marikina, Muntinlupa, Navotas, Parañaque, Pasay, Pasig, San Juan, Taguig, Quezon, Valenzuela, and the Municipality of Pateros.
The week-long public Bible reading spearheaded by PBS dubbed “We-Proclaim” gathered over 600 individuals from different walks of life. The entire New Testament and the Book of Psalms were completely read with almost a hundred policemen from the Manila Police District joining in during the culminating activity. Other readers were from Araullo Medical Center Manila, the United Methodist Church, and Adamson University. One of the volunteer participants even shared her deep encouragement for joining the event coming from a previous illness.
“I was blind, but now I see. I had a brain tumor, but after undergoing an operation, the tumor was removed and now I can see clearly. I decided to join the Bible reading as a way of thanking the Lord for all His goodness,” says Genet Nicanor.
With the great need to engage young people with God’s Word, PBS also initiated a Bible distribution event for the high school students of Emilio Aguinaldo College – Affordable Private Education Center. This initiative was anchored in the conviction that these young people are the future torchbearers of God’s cause and immensely valuable in shaping society. Opportunities to speak about the importance of God’s Word in everyday life and conduct more Bible distributions were likewise facilitated for the Manila Police District and in several municipal offices in Metro Manila.
These and other events were successfully conducted by God’s grace and with the help of our partners from the Episcopal Commission on the Biblical Apostolate of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, Philippine Council of Evangelical Churches, and National Council of Churches in the Philippines, as well as independent Christian churches, local government units, ministerial fellowships, schools, organizations, communities, families, and individuals. This celebration provided another good avenue to show solidarity in honor of the Bible.
More cities and municipalities from the provinces also simultaneously joined the celebration including Bataan, Benguet, Bukidnon, Camarines Norte, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Isabela, Batangas, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, Rizal, Zambales, Albay, Palawan, Pampanga, Pangasinan, Capiz, La Union, Cebu, Dumaguete, Bohol, Olongapo, Leyte, Southern Leyte, Nueva Ecija, Nueva Vizcaya, Surigao del Sur, Misamis Oriental, Lanao de Norte, Lanao del Sur, South Cotabato, and Zamboanga del Sur.
This celebration is conducted every year, backed by Presidential Proclamations 44, 2242, and 1067, issued by former presidents Ferdinand Marcos, Corazon Aquino, and Fidel Ramos, respectively. The said decrees recognize the Bible as a good guide to moral living that is essential to nation building. Last January 5, incumbent President Rodrigo Duterte issued Presidential Proclamation 124 officially declaring January as National Bible Month, culminating with the celebration of National Bible Week on the last week of the month.
Some photos from the NBW celebration: