Bible Society and Open the Book have joined forces.

Bible Society was established in 1804 to encourage the wider 'circulation and use' of the Scriptures. Open the Book began in Bedford in 1999. It exists to enable every child to hear the story of the Bible at school in their primary years. It equips 8,500 volunteers serving 1,500 schools to present a regular programme of Bible storytelling in collective worship assemblies.

The move enables Open the Book to sustain and expand its activity.

Commenting on the development, Bible Society Group Chief Executive, James Catford said, 'Bible Society is delighted to be reaching into primary schools with such a successful and expanding programme. Since its launch, Bible Society has been very supportive of Open the Book in a number of practical and financial ways. We are delighted by the way in which its work has expanded so rapidly.

'The project has played an enormously significant role in the lives of children and I have no doubt that the stories of the Bible continue to live on in their lives as adults. We look forward to growing the mission of Open the Book as part of Bible Society's wider mission to offer the Bible to the world.'

Open the Book Chairman of Trustees, Peter LeRoy, said, 'Open the Book has been delighted to discover such a sense of common purpose with Bible Society. Our mission and vision are so closely aligned. It was Bible Society’s ‘The Open Book’ Milennium initiative that helped to inspire the establishment of Open the Book nearly 15 years ago. Open the Book will greatly benefit from Bible Society’s wide range of expertise, facilities, resources, respected national profile and cross-denominational network.'

The merger of Open the Book and Bible Society took effect on 1 September 2013.

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