1. What powerful stories have you heard in your congregation? Who did the telling? What was the setting? What made the story powerful? How did it influence the teller or the listeners? Was it important that the teller was physically present and not recorded on a video clip?
2. How vulnerable do you feel when you tell a personal story? What makes it easy or difficult to tell a story about your experience? How do you decide which details to include? When does it take patience to listen to other people’s stories? What makes a good listener? Under what circumstances do other people’s stories change your life?
3. Bruce Hiebert writes, “If we tell our stories to each other, we produce community.” Do you find his arguments convincing? Can you think of a community response to a story that reshaped the community? Who determines how a community responds to a story? When a story becomes part of the social memory of the congregation, how accurate do the details of the story remain?
4. When we tell the stories of the Bible extemporaneously, or through film or drama, we often edit them. Under what conditions can that be helpful or harmful? Do Bible-inspired stories such as VeggieTales increase or decrease our knowledge of the Bible? What role does the broader denomination play in keeping us engaged with the stories of Scripture?