CHICAGO, IL (October 9, 2012) – A comprehensive Bible study curriculum, newly released by the Evangelical Covenant Church, is based on materials written in Spanish by Margie Swenson, co-director of missionary personnel and former missionary for Covenant World Mission, and used throughout the world. The new materials, Adventures with God, are based on Swenson’s El Pacto con Dios (The Covenant with God).
“It’s stunning to me that so many churches from other denominations around the world started using the materials,” says Swenson. “It’s amazing. We still hear about new churches that have found the material.”
El Pacto con Dios was developed after students attending seminary in Medellín, Colombia, were asked what was the biggest need in their churches. “To a person, they said they needed curriculum that was originally written in Spanish,” says Swenson.
Most of the curriculum being used by Spanish-speaking churches was translated from English, and a comprehensive suite of materials was not available. Teachers had to piece their curriculum together from multiple publishers. “All were antiquated and geared toward North American children,” Swenson says.
Swenson took the idea for developing the material to the Confraternity of Hispanic Covenant Churches, which gave its enthusiastic approval. At the time, she didn’t know the project would take more than 10 years to complete. Nor did she envision that responding to a lack of Spanish-language materials would lead to new curriculum for English-speakers in the Covenant.
El Pacto con Dios is written for children ages three to 14. Educators from the Evangelical Covenant Churches of Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, and the United States developed the material. Hillcrest Covenant Church in Prairie Village, Kansas, paid the bulk of expenses to bring the educators together for multiple sessions.
The curriculum teaches biblical truths using Bible stories as the base. The material also is illustrated with original artwork. The learning objectives involve the mind, heart, and life, Swenson says.
All lessons follow the same format, but the curriculum is not one-size-fits-all. An accompanying training manual for teachers offers educators advice on how to adapt the material for different learning styles.
Swenson says developers also wanted to make sure anyone had access. “The goal was to be complete, inexpensive, biblical, and available,” Swenson says. El Pacto con Dios can be downloaded for free.
Adventures with God also is available for free download. Local users also can post their own adaptations on the curriculum website.