Bringing the Scriptures to Everyone with “Bible de la rue”

Lhe Bible gives me everything: it is the explanation of life. What can or cannot be done? Where do we come from? Where are we going ? » Elisabeth Dillenschneider, 66, of no fixed address, finds in the Scriptures a lot of comfort and moral support. “Once again, I have to leave the accommodation that was granted to me. I only have my Bible with me.” she sighs. Since 2015, this woman with long gray hair, weakened over the years by hard knocks, has been going to the Bible study in the Gospel Mission among the homeless.

Pastor Gilles Boucomont, of the Evangelical Mission among the Homeless, one of the initiators of the project.

• Alice Papin for Life

protect it, take care of it

Located a stone’s throw from the Belleville district, at 22 rue Sainte-Marthe, in Paris (Xe), this Protestant work, open for more than 50 years, offers various services to the homeless: breakfasts, hairdressing, medical care, postal domiciliation, etc. It is within this place of unconditional welcome that the idea of ​​a “Bible of the street” germinated for homeless people in the spring of 2021.

“We were tired of handing out cheap copies to the homeless which became, after two days of rain, old sponges”, says Pastor Gilles Boucomont, president of the Evangelical Mission among the homeless. “We wanted to give them a Bible that they would want to keep with them and take care of. »

Quickly, the French Biblical Alliance (ABF), an interdenominational organization whose mission is to make the Holy Book accessible to as many people as possible, joined the project as well as several Protestant organizations close to street people in France and Switzerland: Armée du hi, Agape street, etc.

To enter easily into the text, the translation chosen is that of the Word of life, endowed with a simple vocabulary and short sentences. “Some people with sight problems, the bible will also have increased characters”, adds Sara Le Levier, editorial director of Bibli’O editions, who coordinates the project. You will also find in the book a reading plan, additional texts, in particular on baptism, thematic links and an introduction to “Jesus, king of the homeless”.

Nicolas Fouquet, of the French Biblical Agency, at the origin of the project.

• Alice Papin for Life

“Like the nomads, Jesus went over hill and dale and did not necessarily have a place to rest each night”, says Sara Le Levier. On the practical side, this new Bible will be adapted to living conditions on the street: waterproof cover to protect it from the weather and store important documents in it, a QR code to refer to useful resources such as Bibles in audio version, in different languages.

A participatory kitty

The project is costed at 150,000 €, and a participatory kitty has already made it possible to raise a fifth of this budget, or 30,000 € and thus to finance 2,000 copies. In January 2023, a total of 10,000 street Bibles are expected to be printed. ” As it is a beautiful object, we want to achieve a targeted distribution. Each partner will meet the users to give them this treasure in their own hands.”explains Nicolas Fouquet, project manager at the French Bible Alliance.

More to get more information and participate in the pot: French Bible Alliance /Bibli’O, 6 rue Lhomond, Paris (Ve). Such. : 09 72 56 15 30.

Bringing the Scriptures to Everyone with “Bible de la rue”