Bible 2020 officially launched in Gisborne

Bible 2020, a truly global Bible reading movement was launched as the sun rose above the horizon on the first day of 2020.

Stephen and Zhane reviewing the Bible 2020 app as the sun rises on the first day of the campaign.

In front of a crowd gathered at Okitu Beach in Gisborne, Mr Zhane Tahau Whelau read the first official Bible 2020 reading in te Reo. The reading, taken from John 1:1-5 is the same reading sent to mobile phones across the world on the first day of the campaign.

Fiona McDonald of the Bible Society of Scotland, who originally designed the campaign to unite Scottish Christians through reading the Scriptures, was present at the launch. “It was a privilege to be at the beginning of a significant movement where globally God’s Church is uniting to speak aloud the Bible across the earth,” she said.

At Okitu, readings were done in multiple languages including te Reo Maori and Bislama (Vanuatu). After the special event, a meal of BBQ bacon and eggs was served to celebrate.

“When the disciples had a BBQ on the beach with Jesus, God was doing something new. They were at the beginning of what would become God’s Church,” Fiona commented. “In the same way, we don’t know what God will do through Bible 2020. It is going to be exciting to see it unfold in the coming months.”

Some of the team launching Bible 2020 at Oihi.

At the same time as the launch was happening in Gisborne, Bible Society staff and family members were also doing the daily reading at Marsden Cross at Oihi, where the first sermon was preached on New Zealand soil in 1814. Readings there were done in te Reo, English, Samoan and Afrikaans.

Bible Society New Zealand’s Stephen Opie said to those gathered that Bible 2020 presents a unique opportunity to unite Christians across the world through the Bible. With more than 80 countries now involved, the campaign is fast evolving into a true global movement.

You can download the Bible 2020 app from the Google Play and Apple app stores.