Bringing to life stories from the Bible

Rev Trevor Filtness
Rev Trevor Filtness
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Rev Trevor Filtness, vicar of St John’s Church, Rowlands Castle, talks about their Open the Book project

PICTURE the scene: a three-metre high burly giant lines up for battle opposite a small insignificant boy – who is going to win?

Well done if you said the small boy!

Some of you might recognise that scenario as the story of David and Goliath, one of the most well-known stories from the Old Testament in the Bible, the time before Jesus came to earth.

We retold that story at St John’s Primary School in the village using drama as part of our Open the Book assembly project, which we run with other churches in the village.

We had someone dressed up as the towering giant, Goliath and one of the children dressed up as David to face him.

A huge cheer went up when David won!

Open the Book is all about bringing the stories from the Bible to life for pupils.

Using drama, mime, props, costume – and even the children and staff themselves – we can present Bible stories in ways that are lively, engaging, informative and great fun for everyone, staff and pupils alike.

We go to the school every fortnight on a Friday morning.

We tell the story, sing an action song and then I or the team leader for the day say a few words to help us all to think about what the story tells us about Jesus and our faith.

The headteacher then ties this message into everyday school life.

We finish with prayers which are led by Year 5 or 6 pupils and then say the Lord’s Prayer together – the prayer that Jesus taught us.

The children really love to join in and they take huge interest in the stories, 
especially when they see their friends acting out the drama.

We are massively encouraged by how much detail the children remember about these stories of Christian faith and their meaning in today’s world.

Being a part of the Open the Book team is good fun and is a great way of sharing all the wonder and wisdom that the Bible has to offer.

For more information about Open the Book

n St John’s Church, 120 Redhill Road, Rowlands Castle PO9 6DF

Contact the vicar: Trevor Filtness on (023) 9241 0111 or e-mail