False Starts and Good Beginnings

About ten years ago a group of people belonging to a Charismatic prayer group asked me to conduct a Weekly Bible class for them.  I then readily agreed and we began by studying the Book of Acts in the Bible. This Bible class was conducted in a class room for about fifteen or twenty people at a Retreat Centre known as the ‘Nava Spoorthi Kendra ‘in Bangalore. However as time went on some who were interested in learning about the Bible joined this group, and many who had initially forced me to start the Bible class, gradually fell away. Many more have joined the Bible class, but from the original group only two members have remained in our class till now.  And during these past years we studied various books in the Bible and things were going on well.  

A Pandemic Setback

But then came the glorious Covid 19 and pushed us all in doors. Hence we had to temporarily stop our weekly Bible classes and we thought that this situation would perhaps last just a couple of months more. But the pandemic began to rage all the more in different places.  And after a period of seven or eight months many among our group became rather restless and wanted to connect with one another at least on the Zoom. So classes on Zoom came into vogue in educational institutions, and slowly the members of our own Bible class also asked if we could resume our Bible classes via Zoom. And just at that time a student from our Bible class came forward and said that she is willing to pay for the extra time we would use on Zoom, and let us begin our classes again. And with that generous offer and encouragement we began our Bible classes once again via Zoom, after a lapse of seven months because of covid 19.

Technology to the Rescue

So we resumed our Bible class once again on the Zoom and the usual members who would come for the Bible class were very happy to see and meet one another virtually on Zoom for the class. We now had this class at the Redemptorist Media centre, because they had the proper equipment needed for an online class for a little more than an hour and we asked for their facilities. They readily agreed. But for the very next class the Director of the Media Centre asked whether we could extend this same class via the Redemptorist Media Centre to a larger audience free of cost? We were happy with the suggestion. An announcement at the daily Online Mass which is being relayed from the Media Centre saying that we are conducting a Bible class via Zoom,  once a week and if anyone is interested then they would need to  register with us first for this Bible Class. We immediately got a little more than a hundred registrations, and with that we stopped admitting any more new members into the class. And since then we have had this Bible class going via Zoom for the past ten or twelve weeks.

This time we started studying the book of Genesis, the very first book in the Bible and so we also did a little bit of study on inspiration and the growth process in the writing of the Bible. Then we just began studying in order various chapters from the book of Genesis.  I must say every week we had around sixty five to seventy people, who have attended this Bible class via Zoom,  for the past ten or twelve weeks and we have also received good appreciation from the members of the Bible class. That indeed has been  very encouraging for us , who as a small team of volunteers not only help to set up the class here at the Media Centre, but also get the notes of each class put in proper order and then email them to all the students of the Bible class. That is quite a bit of work every week for these volunteers but they do it with joy for the love of the Word of God. If you wish to block a seat for the next round of Bible classes contact us at info@rmcbangalore.com

Thanks to the Director and to his team of helpers,  at the Redemptorist Media Centre in Bangalore who have been so very kind and understanding in helping us to conduct these weekly Bible classes via zoom. May the Lord’s abundant blessings be with all of you. Wishing all the patrons of RMC and especially the students of our Bible class a merry Christmas until we meet again.

Authored by Fr. Xavier Sanjivi, C.Ss.R.

Fr. Sanjivi is a former Provincial of the Bangalore Province of Redemptorists, a former Rector of St. Alphonsus College of Theology and he has obtained a diploma in theology from the University of Toronto, Canada.