Building Faith and Knowledge: Inside Ontario’s Bible Bowl Competition
Posted: August 15th, 2023
On July 8th on a warm Sabbath afternoon, something special happened in Ontario. Adults and young people from Apple Creek, Woodbridge, Central Toronto, Brampton, Scarborough, Faith Filipino, and Emanuel Adventist churches gathered together to participate in an exciting event called Bible Bowl. Similar to the famous game show Jeopardy, Bible Bowl puts participants' knowledge of different books of the Bible to the test. The competition was friendly and filled with good-natured camaraderie, bringing churches closer in fellowship.
Woodbridge church, took part in the competition for the first time. Talking to some of the participants, it was clear that they thoroughly enjoyed the experience, especially the excitement of "buzzing in" to answer the challenging questions. Elder Daily, representing Woodbridge church, expressed his joy in seeing the young people actively participating, and was pleased with their first effort. He stated that he was “confident they will be even more prepared for the next year's event.”
Preparing for Bible Bowl requires teams to invest numerous hours studying various books of the Bible. As participants grow older, the requirements increase, with 6-year-olds needing to know two books and adults being responsible for seven books. Some teams even use creative techniques to remember Bible stories and grasp the intricate details of different passages. Other churches engage their entire congregation through fun Adventist Youth (AY) activities to show support for their competing teams.
Bible Bowl has been an integral part of Ontario since the early 90s. Currently, Ontario is the only Conference in Canada actively participating in this event. Pastor John Scott, the Director of Youth and Young Adults, shared his enthusiasm, stating that Bible Bowl has been flourishing and has the potential to spread its reach and blessings to other Conferences.
Watching the teams play is awe-inspiring, witnessing their profound Biblical knowledge and attention to detail. The excitement builds as teams quickly buzz in, striving to be the first to answer, while coaches discuss strategies and tactics on the sidelines.
Donavan Gibson, a longtime coordinator of Bible Bowl, shared an incredible insight: "All the young people I have tracked over the years who have participated in Bible Bowl have excelled academically, with two even becoming pastors." Such success stories emphasize the positive impact Bible Bowl can have on participants' lives. This year, the teams from each division with the highest scores will represent Ontario and Canada at the Nationals in Orlando, Florida later this year.
If your church wants to start a Bible Bowl club, it's a simple three-step process. First, designate a coach who will guide and practice with the team. Second, obtain a list of books to be studied for the upcoming years (contact the Conference Youth Ministry department for assistance). Finally, get ready to participate! Bible Bowl can also be a powerful evangelistic tool, as each team can include non-church members who can actively engage in the competition.
The spirit of unity and knowledge shared during Bible Bowl fosters an exciting atmosphere of learning, fellowship, and friendly competition among churches in Ontario. This event not only strengthens the participants' understanding of the Bible but also cultivates academic excellence and leadership skills. So, gather your team, study the scriptures, and embark on this thrilling adventure called Bible Bowl!
Teams heading to Florida