Books! Books are everywhere, and you can buy a good one today and have change left from a $10 bill - but it hasn't always been that way. For untold thousands of year, people created, learned, transformed and passed along stories that carried the wisdom and imagination of all of human culture. We are creatures of narrative.
Stories! Stories are a treasure beyond price, and when a story is told – by heart – teller and listeners share a living experience of voice and place - and every telling is one-of-a-kind.
Pamela has been called a spellbinding storyteller. She's told stories at open-mic night at a cafe - at the hospital bedside of a sick friend - at a statewide women's gathering - by candlelight, at the Great Vigil of Easter - at parties and wedding receptions - in living rooms and sanctuaries and Sunday school rooms and workshop sites - at a town gazebo on a lovely July day...
These short programs can be used to begin a meeting, as an after-dinner program, or anywhere you'd use a meditation of fifteen to minutes.
- The Beautiful Peep-Toe Gray Suede Pumps
- The Voyage of Saint Brendan
- The Sower and the Seeds
- The Wind of Freedom - Paul and Silas in Jail
- Waiting for the Bridegroom
- In the Beginning
- ...and many more!
These programs last about an hour. Each one is an experience of storytelling, guided reflection and shared song. Journeying together, participants visit some familiar spots, see some new sights, and find some surprises.
In the Mud With God
Good dirt, abundant water - these are vital resources for growing food, starting a family, making a culture. Mud is holy! We'll get in the mud as God creates (Genesis) and renews (Psalms) and as Jesus brings healing (John). Pamela's approach to these stories has been shaped by the scholarship of Marti Steussy and Walter Brueggemann.
In the Vineyard With Jesus
The sun, the twining vines, the winey, tingling smell of the ripe grapes - to look on God's abundance and sense Jesus' intensity, we'll hear vineyard stories from Isaiah, Matthew, Mark and John. Pamela's approach to these stories has been shaped by the scholarship of William Herzog, Richard Swanson, Warren Carter and Ched Myers.
Beauty Past Change
Water, wind, light, birds, beasts, creeping things - we live and walk in a creation that constantly renews itself and transforms itself, the gift of a transforming and renewing God. Hear stories of God's creation and God's power to restore and renew. (Genesis, Psalms, Isaiah) Pamela's approach to these stories has been shaped by the scholarship of Ellen Davis and Walter Brueggemann and by the poetry of Wendell Berry and Gerard Manley Hopkins.
These programs last about an hour. Each one can be used whole for an evening event, study afternoon or quiet day, or broken up to be told and talked over for several sessions.
Ahab - The Worst King Israel Ever Had
Willfulness, greed, hypocrisy, the headlong rush into war - it's all there in the stories of Ahab told in the first book of Kings. - This program from 1 Kings was originally designed to fill in the story of Mendelssohn's Elijah oratorio, but it's also a fine exercise in examing the ethics of leadership. Pamela's approach to Ahab's stories is informed by scholarship by Walter Brueggemann, Jerome Walsh, and W. D. Berard.
When We Were First Called Christians
Join Peter and Cornelius, Paul and Barnabas, James, Judas and Silas in the Book of Acts for the moving story of how the word about Jesus was opened to the world. Pamela's approach to these stories is informed by the scholarship of Horst Balz and Richard W. Swanson.
Comments From Listeners
I learned so much!
You did certain things that worked so well to help us really see what you were describing.
. . . expressive and articulate . .
It's a profound thing the power of storytelling . . . the way it goes right to the heart.
What a journey you took us on!
The birds, the animals, and especially the stars in the firmament will be remembered for a very long time.
You have spurred my interest and I would like to read them again and think about them as you told them.
Powerful, yet personable . . .
Your combination of gesture and word and humor made those events come
alive and created connections . . . and gave deeper meaning to things I . . .
understood only intellectually.
Email:narthex (at) baba-yaga.org
Web site: baba-yaga.org
(Because Pamela is often on the road, phone messages can take a while to reach her. If you don't hear from her, please try e-mail or call again. She's not ignoring you!)
Pamela Grenfell Smith
3680 East Tamarron Drive
Bloomington, Indiana 47408
I donate my storytelling income to organizations that support the Millenium Development Goals - I'm comfortable doing this as a special offering if that is appropriate. I'd still appreciate some help with my transportation expenses, if your organization is able to help. Apart from that - let's see what we can raise together for the
MDGs! ~ Pamela