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Last Updated: Friday, 19 September, 2003, 16:15 GMT 17:15 UK
Pupils go back to Biblical future
Bethany
The aim is to bring religious teaching to life
Hundreds of school pupils in west Wales are taking virtual reality tours back in time to witness key events from the Bible.

Thanks to a hi-tech theme park-style exhibition making its first visit to Wales they are transported to Sinai at the time of Moses, catch up with John the Baptist at the river Jordan and Jesus and his disciples at Galilee.

Six churches in Llanelli have clubbed together to cover the cost of hosting the Emmaus roadshow and during its stay 23 primary schools are booked in, as well as adults in the evenings.

Bill Chapman, a visit organiser, said it was a way of bringing the Bible to life and making religious teaching more exciting.

The children really enjoy it and do not expect so much when they arrive
Pastor Geoff Tucker

"It's been set up here for four weeks and has been brought together by churches in Llanelli working in conjunction with each other," he said.

"Last Christmas we did a Christmas dinner for the headteachers in the community just to thank them for the work they do.

"We told them about the roadshow and it filtered back that it was something they thought was a good idea."

The inside of one of the two huge trailers parked in the grounds of Morfa Junior School is kitted out like an 18-seat aircraft cabin.

Once safely seated the youngsters are shown an "in-flight" video of the story of Jonah as the plane takes off in London and lands in Israel more than 2,000 years ago.

They then cross to the second trailer and jump into jeeps.

Emmaus Road Show
Youngsters 'fly' to the Israel of Jesus' time in a virtual aircraft

Looking out of the window, they see scenes of the varied terrain and buildings as a narrator dramatises the story of the first Easter.

There are also interactive computer quizzes and models.

The exhibition has been created by the non-denominational Christian charity Bible Scene.

It was established in 1975 with the aim of producing teaching materials and exhibitions.

Initially tours involved 35mm slides but it has kept pace with technology to try to capture young imaginations.

Tours are conducted by Pastor Geoff Tucker, who said: "The children really enjoy it and do not expect so much when they arrive.

"You've really got to see it to appreciate it and we are very happy with the take-up."


SEE ALSO:
Church turns to web shopping
01 Sep 03  |  South East Wales


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