African Man Moved to Tears After Hearing Passion Story

Last week, a team returned from their School of Storying trip in Africa. They shared so many incredible stories. Here is just one of them, shared by one of our interns.

African Man Moved to Tears After Hearing Passion Story - StoryRunners


“Stop! What’s that?” Our non-Christian translator, *”E”, held up his hand. His face was pale, as we sat under the mango tree outside our training room translating stories from the Passion Week. We all listened. We heard one of our trainers calling one of our participants, but to our translator, he heard, “He is dead! He is dead!” God was clearly touching this man’s heart. We continued working through the stories. After each story, he’d say, “Wow, these stories are getting sadder and sadder! Last week in the stories, Jesus was doing miracles and healing people, and everything was happy. But now they are so sad.”

E is a very kind and gentle, smiling person, but we noticed that he was unusually somber today. It was very apparent to us that the stories were affecting him. E was beginning to see Jesus in a different light from what he was used to. Before this School of Storying he viewed Jesus as the ‘Christian God’. But he did not know or understand who Jesus really was. We continued playing the stories for him, sentence by sentence. We noticed that with every sentence, he was pondering the real meaning and weight of what was being said, rather than just translating them. When we got to the crucifixion story, he listened to the line, “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?” At that point, tears began to fall down his face. He started shaking his head.

“Jesus was at the point of desperation,” he whispered. “I understand.” He excused himself and went away for a few minutes, washing his face and composing himself. But he was still shaken when he returned. When we reached Jesus’ resurrection, the tears flowed again, and once again, he had to excuse himself for a few minutes. At the end of our translation session, he told us, “In the beginning I didn’t realize where this was going. But now I realize it is about Jesus’ life. And beyond all this he rose from the dead and went to heaven promising his Spirit to his followers. When people hear these stories, they should believe, because Jesus proved over and over again that He is the Son of God.”

*Name changed and face has been blurred for security reasons.

African Man Moved to Tears After Hearing Passion Story

Experiencing God Among the Unreached

StoryRunners logo - A good story in the making
By 2025, we will equip local followers of Christ to produce and use oral Bible stories in 500 languages to launch communities of multiplying disciples among oral
“Tall, African bush almost towered above us. I looked around and all I could see was grass-carpeted vast land dotted with flat-topped trees. We had covered quite a distance already since we started our journey. We were on our way to the church our guide has set up.” 
Experiencing God Among the Unreached - StoryRunners November 2017 Newsletter - Road to Nowhere
The road that seemed to lead to nowhere
“He kept saying we were nearly there but it seemed like we were in the middle of nowhere. Or so I thought. Suddenly, we heard voices, faint at first.” Then we realized they were singing, in a language I could not understand. And then we saw them – one, two, three people. No, there were more than 20, 30, actually around 50 people gathered under a big tree.”
Experiencing God Among the Unreached - StoryRunners November 2017 Newsletter - Beautiful worship
Beautiful singing filled the air as this group worshiped
“We quietly joined the group as we saw they were in deep worship. I was quickly swept into the sweet melody that was filling the air. I did not know what they were singing but I knew it was beautiful. God’s presence among the people was almost tangible. I soaked it all in. I was in awe. I looked at the people’s faces and they were so happy. As if everyone was so in love with Jesus. It felt like I was floating in the air. I could not shake off the feeling of awe. When we left a few hours later, I blurted out to my team, “What had just happened?” I’ve never felt like that before. That was the best experience of my life!” Michael, one of the StoryRunners new interns, shared after returning from his recent trip to Africa.
Experiencing God Among the Unreached - StoryRunners November 2017 Newsletter - Enjoying church
Enjoying church with an unreached people group
 As it turned out the group that Michael was referring to was only a few months old. It started as an oral Bible study group with 11 people but had quickly grown to 65 within months. Before the group was formed, a man in the village from a different religious background had purchased prayer mats to encourage people to do their prayers. But when the pastor started telling Bible stories in the village, everyone liked the stories so much that, eventually, all the people who belonged to the local place of worship started coming to the Story Fellowship Group. The same man who bought the prayer mats was the very first one to give his life to Christ. He is just one of the many changed lives Michael witnessed across Africa during his short visit there.

Would you like to spend a year helping unreached language groups hear the gospel for the first time while you travel the world? Like Michael, does your heart skip a beat when you hear people worship God in a language different from your own? If so, consider interning with us. Visit for info.


Pressed on every side but not crushed

As a result of his oral Bible storying ministry, *Brother T, one of our participants at our School of Storying in Manila last May, had already started two house churches on an island in southern Philippines. Using sports as a platform to share the gospel, the elementary school students that he previously discipled had grown. They too had started discipling others, starting second-generation oral Bible story groups.
Experiencing God Among the Unreached - StoryRunners November 2017 Newsletter - Acting Out
Acting out a story
Brother T’s ministries had not been devoid of oppositions though. He had already received numerous death threats as he operates in a non-Christian dominated area of the country. Yet Brother T remains steadfast and has been instrumental in a daily screening of a Christian film on TV for a whole month. Pray for Brother T and the amazing work God is doing on this remote island in the Philippines.
*Name changed and faces were blurred for security reasons.


Orlando Intro to School of Storying (sidebar)

Learn how you could use storying in your personal ministry! Join us at the next Orlando Intro to School of Storying from March 11-16, 2018. Visit for details.


Advent Series

Bring our five-part Advent Bible stories into your celebration. Hear stories from the prophecies of Isaiah to the birth of Christ at Starting Sunday, November 26, 2017.



  • For God’s amazing work among the unreached around the world.
  • For Brother T’s ministry in southern Philippines, for the School of Storying currently happening in Manila.


  • For God to continue to open partnership opportunities for us around the globe.
  • For Brother T’s protection and the people he ministers to; for the human trafficking victims our missionaries in Manila are reaching out to.


StoryRunners partners with people like you who fund our School of Storying projects and our day-to-day operations. If you are encouraged about how God is using StoryRunners, ask Him if He wants YOU to become a monthly giving partner or to make a special gift.
You can make a difference for people who have never had God’s word in their own language. To give towards a specific School of Storying project, contact Pam Lilly.

SOS Participants Overjoyed After Receiving Audio Players

SOS Participants Overjoyed After Receiving Audio Players - #GivingTuesday - #GivingStoryDay
In May this year, our participants at the Tagalog School of Storying were so excited to receive solar powered MP3 audio players to remind them of the stories they developed. To date, at least 12 new story groups had been started across the Philippines by the same participants. Two house churches had also been established on an island in southern Philippines, in a non-Christian dominated region of the country.
SOS Participants Overjoyed After Receiving Audio Players - #GivingTuesday - #GivingStoryDay - MP3 Audio Players
These Tagalog School of Storying (SOS) participants in the Philippines were overjoyed after receiving their solar powered MP3 audio players early this year.
The day has finally come! Today is #GivingTuesdayNovember 28! Will you prayerfully consider giving to StoryRunners to help equip local storytellers so that more storytellers around the world can be trained? For a gift of only $25 you can help provide a local storyteller with an audio player containing StoryRunners’ 42 oral Bible stories from Creation to the Return of Christ.
You can give now by visiting our Donate page. Or visit our #GivingTuesday page to learn more how you can help StoryRunners on this special day.


SOS Participants Overjoyed After Receiving Audio Players - #GivingTuesday - #GivingStoryDay - #UNselfie
One small way you can make a difference this #GivingTuesday is by taking an #UNselfie and promoting your favorite cause or nonprofit. It is an ‘unselfie’ because it is not about you but about the cause or nonprofit you’re supporting. Download our #UNselfie GivingStoryDay template, write down your favorite cause on the white space provided and share on your social media accounts.
Be sure to tag #GivingTuesday#GivingStoryDay@StoryRunners on FacebookInstagram and Twitter. Millions will be participating so this is a fantastic opportunity to provide exposure to the cause or nonprofit you love!
Show that you care. Do something extraordinary. Take an #UNselfie .
As promised, in celebration of #GivingTuesday,  #GivingStoryDay, we are giving you the first installment of our five-part Advent series to help you prepare to celebrate the coming of our Lord Jesus. In this video, although not traditionally part of the Advent series, you will hear some of the prophecies about the coming Messiah. It highlights the anticipation of God’s people for the arrival of the promised King, the Savior of the world. May your heart also be filled with longing as you watch the video. And on behalf of your StoryRunners family, HappyThanksgiving!
Don’t want to miss a single Advent storySign up!
To find out more about #GivingTuesday, please watch the video below.


StoryRunners logo - A good story in the making

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SOS Participants Overjoyed After Receiving Audio Players