News: September 2017

So much happening that the August GoTell update didn’t. And here it is well into September. Time for some catch-up…

Digital Shepherding: Theocom17

In late July, Tom attended a conference called “Theocom17: A Gathering of Theologians on Digital Communications” at Santa Clara University in Santa Clara, California. Theocom17 is the sixth annual gathering of about 25 mostly Roman Catholic scholars from around the world who focus on a topic related to Christian communication. This year the topic is “Digital Shepherding: Pastoral Theology and Ministry in a Digital Age.”

Tom at the Grace UMC, Dayton organ July 16, 2017 by Jim Vance

On the first day of the conference Tom made a presentation about the interface of ancient (oral storytelling) and contemporary (digital storytelling) modes of communication to convey the Word of God. It included a good deal of video–many thanks for GoTell Board member Jim Vance who helped make that happen.

The photo of Tom was taken the Sunday before his trip to San Jose after playing the organ for the worship service at Grace United Methodist Church (Dayton, Ohio). Photo by Jim Vance–Thanks again, Jim!

One way Tom helps people understand the difference between biblical stories told out loud vs. read in silence is by comparing them to music heard vs. reading a musical score. That metaphor is used in this excerpt about embodiment of the Word from his presentation at Theocom. Click here to download the PDF.

If You Say So

Tom’s conviction about the importance of communicating the Gospel in the dominant media of the day led to the establishment of “Lumicon Digital Productions” in 2000 with Jason Moore, Len Wilson, and myself. Lumicon was based at UMR Communications in Dallas, Texas. For four years, developing Lumicon was the main project of GoTell Communications.

“If You Say So” was one of the first “Lumiclips” produced by Jason and Len for Lumicon. It is still one of my favorite examples of telling the biblical story through digital media, though there are some great ones being produced by various members of the Network of Biblical Storytellers.

In “If You Say So” Tom tells Luke’s story of Jesus calling his first disciples. The fish that appear late in the video were in a state park lake outside Dallas where Tom and I lived in an RV when we first moved to Texas. I expect that is one reason I like this video so well. Click here to view “If You Say So”

Amelia addressing the All In Community during West Ohio Annual Conference UMC 2017

COW @ All In Community

In early June I was the speaker for an “All In Community” event at the West Ohio Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. All In Community is West Ohio’s modern day, biblical response to mass incarceration. Its purpose is to equip local churches in our Conference to become communities of support for families and individuals impacted by incarceration.

I spoke about biblical storytelling as a rich resource for the spiritual empowerment of men and women who are incarcerated. My presentation focused on Circle of the Word. I shared from my book, A Breath of Fresh Air: Biblical Storytelling with Prisoners.

Breath of Fresh Air on display at “Bishop Selections” table (the black book on the corner)

Serendipitously, Bishop Palmer had read my book and liked it so well he included it with the conference keynote speaker’s books on the “Bishop’s Selections” table in the bookstore. In the photo, it’s the black book stacked on the front corner.


Articles written by Amelia Boomershine