Ecumenical News International

Record number of Bibles distributed worldwide

June 06, 2016

Stuttgart (epd). Last year over 34 million Bibles were distributed, which is a record. The German Bible Society announced this on 3 June in Stuttgart. The total number of 34.4 million copies means a growth of half a million. By contrast, the total number of biblical publications printed fell from 428.1 to 418.7 million. Besides entire Bibles, they include editions of e.g. the New Testament or individual gospels.

Many Christians in poorer countries cannot afford a Bible of their own without support, said Horst Scheurenbrand of the German Bible Society. The growing number of Bibles distributed therefore indicated a high readiness to donate, he said. Donors supported Bible dissemination programmes e.g. for the growing congregations in China.

Countries affected by war, violence and refugee flows

According to the World Bible Society, the distribution figures in Europe and the Middle East were highest in the countries most affected by war, violence and refugee flows. For example, last year, Bible societies distributed 142,000 Bibles in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey. That was one and a half times more than in 2014. These five countries had also seen a demand for smaller publications such as calendars and brochures, as they were easier to transport than whole books.
The Brazilian Bible Society again distributed the most Bibles in 2015 (7.62 million). China, at 4.5 million Bibles, remained in second place worldwide.



extended search