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Digging Deeper

The Life Transforming Power of Story

“Ivan Illich was once asked, ‘What is the most revolutionary way to change society: is it violent revolution or gradual reform.’ He gave a careful answer: ‘Neither. If you want to change society then
you must tell an alternative story,’ he concluded.”
(Tim Costello quoted in Organic Church, 123)

Story is central to our lives. We live in a “story” that we call life - it has a beginning, a middle and an end. We tell stories along the way as our lives unfold in order to make sense of things. In the modern era, story as a means of passing on our faith and values was replaced largely by “information transfer.” This has proved disastrous. Information alone can never captivate or transform the human heart and mind. Story, however, has the power to transform. In our times, many are returning to the use of story as means to “contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints” (Jude 3). This post will explore some key ideas and key resources related to understanding and using story as a means to think about and talk about our faith.