What is the purpose of this blog?
To provide parables for those who are involved in teaching others about the Christian faith.
What is a parable?
A parable is a short story that teaches an important lesson or value about our faith. Parables usually take the form of a short story. They can also be poems, skits, jokes, or comic strips. I consider any short fictional work that points to a higher truth, a parable.
Why should we teach in parables?
This is the way Jesus taught. Jesus told people stories that opened their eyes to the reality of God and his kingdom! Parables engage the imagination and invite the reader to place themselves inside the story. They also endure much longer in the memory than straightforward teaching. A parable is a well one can return to over and over again and find something new and exciting. The power of story to transform has been discovered in every culture throughout human history!
Did you write these parables?
No. I have invented some of my own over the years and they will be categorized as such. Some of these parables are created in our time and some of them belong to the ages. Where I have used another writer’s wording, I will do my best to attribute the source. My aim is not to claim others’ work as my own but to create a space where teachers and ministers can come and find inspiration to communicate God’s truth as Jesus communicated it. My posts will first present the parable, then my own short reflection in italics. The reflections are all my own work and serve to help the reader gain insight into the parable.
What kinds of parables are on this site?
I have divided the parables into 6 basic categories that should help you find the kind of parable you are looking for:
Traditional Parables are parables that come from Christian and Jewish traditional sources. These can be oral tales or tales by ancient writers seeking to teach the faith to others. Midrash and legends of the saints are good examples of traditional parables.
World Parables are parables gathered from the worlds many other cultures and religions that can still speak into how we live as disciples of Jesus. I do my best to stay true to how people originally understood the parable but also show these parables can help us be better Christians.
Literary Parables are parables that are the sole invention of a known author for which we have the author’s original wording. These can come in the form of very short stories, excerpts from longer works that function on their own or even poems. Sometimes I may give a note setting up the context of a passage in bracketed italics.
Modern Parables are parables that have originated in the last 100 years but for whom the original author is not known. I do my best to track these back to their original source but if I’m unable to, I conclude that these belong to our modern oral tradition. A great example is jokes and anecdotes that tend to pop up in sermons because of their usefulness.
Personal Parables are parables that I myself have written. It may be totally from my imagination or something I’ve observed in nature or an anecdote from my personal life but if I did the work to turn it into a parable. It is found here.
Multimedia Parables are parables that are experienced through media other than pure text. Comic strips, music, and videos are good examples.
I have a great parable I’d love to share!
Fantastic! Please email it to me with your name and a link to your website/blog/twitter and I may share it and attribute you as the source. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org