Thousands of visitors visited the exhibition daily, especially from the neighboring Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It was an unprecedented sight, seeing young and old locals and expats, thousands of students, teachers, and a countless number of families visit the stalls and participate in the book signing events and many other interactive workshops held at the Bahrain National Museum, the venue of the Book Fair.
The BSG Corner
It is true that the process was an arduous one and that the Bahrain Ministry of Culture gave its final approval only two weeks before the start of the Book Fair. However, the BSG, with the support of the French Bible Society and British and Foreign Bible Societies, was able to display an exhibition on ‘How the Bible Came to Us’, an interactive, huge computer screen about the ‘Global Impact of the Bible’, and a display of 200 different translations of the Bible.
Interestingly enough, the ‘next door’ stall was a popular Syrian publisher of the Holy Qoran. That is how strategic was the space allocated to the BSG. Probably, this contributed to the fact that almost 90% of the BSG corner visitors was Muslims who had a lot of the questions about the Bible. Some had never seen a Bible and wanted to leaf through the colorful publications. An overwhelming majority of visitors were inquisitive and had many questions. The BSG representatives answered their queries fully and left the rest to the Holy Spirit.
Feedback from our Visitors
Ali, from Saudi Arabia, bought a Bible in Arabic and said, “It is a good opportunity for me to have a Bible. I was looking for one for a long time and finally got it.”
Saoud, an Imam at a mosque: “First, I was surprised and astonished to see a corner full of Bibles in different languages in Bahrain. I am so happy I finally got to see the Bible for mainly two reasons: to have the Bible in Arabic and also to find answers to my questions about the Christian faith. God be with you. I hope to see you again at the next exhibition.” Mohammad, a Kuwaiti visiting Bahrain, who bought a Bible in Arabic: “I am so glad to visit your corner and see such a big variety of Bibles. It is a great step by the Bahraini government. I hope to see you at such an event in Kuwait.”
Mona, a Bahraini: “It is a very good surprise. I have many Christian friends from different nationalities. They are very honest, loving, and joyful people. I was looking for their book to know the secret of their peace, joy, and honesty. Thank you for being here.” She bought a copy of the NKJV of the Bible.
Pastor Anil from the Full Gospel Telugu Church: “Your exhibition is great and attractive. The Bible can be seen clearly among these very big quantities of secular books. It is a great privilege to participate as a Christian organization in such a great exhibition in a Muslim country like Bahrain. Our God is good. He opened the door for His Word to be seen by thousands of people. I know it is God's plan and sincere efforts of the BSG. May God bless this great step.”
Bahraini young lady: “It is good to see the Quran side by side with the Bible. This is an amazing thing. It means a lot to me seeing both the Bible and the Qoran next to each other in our country. This is a great testimony to our visitors about coexistence.”
Mubarak, a Bahraini researcher studying different religions looking for the Truth, as he said, shared this: “I am so happy for the presence of the Bible Society in this Book fair. It is a very good chance for me to see the different versions and translations of the Bible. Really, I met all my needs here as a researcher". He bought a copy of the KJV Bible and the VanDyke translation of the Arabic Bible.
Another researcher, an Iraqi working in the Ministry of Religious Affairs in Iraq: “I Am looking for a commentary on the Bible and a good Arabic translation. I am so fortunate to find my need here at this exhibition. I feel so fortunate.”
Mohammad, a Bahraini lawyer: "I came directly to your corner when I saw the Bibles. It attracted me because I wanted to have a Bible for a long time. I want to know about Christianity, about Jesus the prophet of Christians, and why Christians believe that he is God." Mohammad asked many questions and left happy with a copy of the Bible in Arabic.
Dr. Mohammad, a senior Saudi advisor and a former consul: “I know that you Christians are open minded people, and you have the patience to answer my questions.” He stayed and asked many questions about the difference between the Old Testament and New Testament, how the
The BSG in the Bahraini Media
The BSG is grateful for this unique opportunity and looks forward to participating in many more such pres-tigious events in the Gulf. Please, pray for those who got a copy of the Bible in their language. Pray for wisdom and the guidance of the Holy Spirit for the staff of the BSG.
The Bible Society in the Gulf is committed to making the Bible available to Christian communities in the Arabian Gulf coun-tries it serves. The Christian communities in the Gulf come from a wide variety of countries, of different ethnic and culture groups, speaking many different languages. As well as publishing, distributing the Bible in 60 languages, and organizing Bible Engagement seminars, the BSG partners with the Churches and helps people to read and understand the Bible.