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Virginia Public School Teacher: Don't Be Afraid to Donate a Bible to Your Local School

11-15-2019
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Girl Reading Action Storybook Bible

A Virginia public school teacher is on a mission to place "Action Bibles" in school libraries across the country. 

So what exactly are "Action Bibles"? And maybe more importantly, is what that teacher wants to do with them even legal?

"'But God did a miracle. He protected Daniel's friends from the fire,'" teacher Brianna Jimenez is reading The Action Storybook Bible to students at an after-school program in Richmond, Va.

"'Not one of them was burned,'" she continued. "So that was like worse than being in a fireplace."     
         
The Action Storybook Bible contains Bible stories and is designed like a graphic novel. The Creation story is the favorite of fourth-grader Kimberly Rodriguez. 

"Because it shows how God made things by just like, he just spoke, and then they appeared," she told CBN News. "And also because it tells who were the first people on earth when he made the days of Creation."

Even though he's still young, third-grader, Didier Madrid, believes reading the Bible has changed his life for the good.

"I used to like be bad all the time with my friends when I was in kindergarten, not first grade," Madrid shared with CBN News. "I used to like say a lot of bad words and stuff with my friends."

"We used to do bad stuff like break into people's houses and stuff," he explained. "And then after like I started reading the Bible, I didn't do that no more."

Public school teacher Hannah Sailsbury says God put it on her heart to donate The Action Storybook Bible to school libraries. Her mission also includes getting the Bible in classrooms and after-school programs.

"I started to prayer walk around our school, and as I would pass every window in our school, I would pray for my co-workers by name," Sailsbury recalled to CBN News. "And I would pray for the students that entered the building."

"And there was one particular day that I prayed that Jesus' name would be mentioned in the classrooms and hallways of our school," she continued. "And little did I know that that prayer got answered in bigger ways than I could have imagined!"

One bigger way came in April when Sailsbury launched the non-profit organization, Bibles in Schools.

"And God really opened my eyes to realize if we have this old Bible in our school, how come we don't have a more engaging Bible that's fun, that has pictures in it?" she asked in a video on her website. 

The movement has now spread to 18 counties in Virginia and in seven other states. Since people started donating the Bibles, Sailsbury says around 125 students have checked them out from their school libraries.

You might be asking yourself, "Is a Bible even allowed on the shelves of a public school library?" Or "Am I even allowed to donate a Bible to a public school?" On her website, Sailsbury urges you to know your rights and to use them.

"Anybody can donate anything to their library at school," she explained. "If they take other donations, then they have to accept the Bible donation, but the librarian does not have to put it on their shelf."

"So that's where prayer really comes in because prayer is how this movement all started," she told CBN News.

"As teachers if you have other literature on your school shelves, you can have the Bible on your shelf," Sailsbury noted.

Art teacher Chelsea Joyner believes God woke her up early one morning, and planted the idea to put a Bible in her classroom.

"Just 3 am. I can't even explain it, like it just, 'You need to put one of these on your book shelf,'" she shared with CBN News. "And I was like, 'OK. Let's do it.'"

The Action Bible is also available in versions for middle and high school, which means first-grader Levi Tolson will be able to stay in the Word through graduation.

"Because I like to learn about God," he responded to a question about why he likes The Action Storybook Bible. "'Cause he's the best and good."

"I like the part like he died on the cross and take our sin and come back alive," the first-grader shared.

Sailsbury says people at home can get involved in three ways: by praying, contributing financially to "Bibles in Schools", so her organization can purchase the Bibles, and by actually donating the Bible to a local school.

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