News from Sweden

Bibliodrama News from Sweden Sept 2012

In Sweden, Bibliodrama is a relatively young movement. Thanks to the enthusiastic and hard work of Lotta Geisler and Lars-Gunnar Skogar, three basic training courses for Bibliodrama leaders were given between 2005 and 2010 at the Education Centre Lidingö, Stockholm. This institution, belonging to the Swedish Covenant Church, has played a very important role in the development of Bibliodrama in Sweden. The courses have raised the total number of active Bibliodrama leaders to around 50 persons. This encouraged some of the active leaders to found the Bibliodrama Society in Sweden in December 1210. It started off with 26 members and has now grown to over 50 members. We hope to be able to recruit even more members in the near future. Meanwhile, the basic training and further education programmes for Bibliodrama leaders continue at Education Centre Lidingö. The present chairperson of the Bibliodrama Society is Jonas Gräslund, minister in Ekerö parish, Stockholm.

Ecumenical Approach
Due to active and devoted members, we are happy to say that the Bibliodrama Society in Sweden has already taken many steps forward. Many of our members work as pedagogs, deacons or ministers in local parishes and have developed Bibliodrama as a means of religious education in their parish work. Since the major part of our members belong to Church of Sweden or the Swedish Covenant Church, the ecumenical approach is very important. Our aim has been to find support and cooperation with those two churches through contacts at national, diocesan and parish levels. Also, cooperation with Education Centre Lidingö is of utmost importance to the Bibliodrama movement and the Bibliodrama Society in Sweden.

Cooperation with Church Related Study Organisations
A very significant step has been to create working agreements with the two church related study organisations in Sweden, Bilda and Sensus. As a result, quite a few interesting projects are now being planned and we hope to find the resources to carry them through.

Interreligious Bibliodrama 2013
Inspired by workshops during the European Bibliodrama Congress in London 2011, we are investigating the possibility to arrange an Interreligious Bibliodrama Workshop in 2013. Our partner in this project is the Centre for Religious Dialogue in the diocese of  Stockholm. Encounters and talks during the Congress in Hannover have given more inspiration. This is one area, where we can certainly learn from each other within the European Bibliodrama Network.

Bibliodrama on Biblical Sites 2013
In October 2013, we are inviting our members and other persons with experience of Bibliodrama to a Pilgrimage to Israel and Palestine. Some of the holy places and sites of the biblical narratives will be visited with the intention to do Bibliodrama “on site”. This approach has already been tried very successfully by the study organisation Bilda with support from their study centre in Jerusalem. Besides doing Bibliodrama “on site”, the aim is to learn more about the ongoing conflict and to see how that affects the experiences of the chosen texts.

Bibliodrama On-line 2013
During 2013, we will also take on the experiment to do Bibliodrama on-line. We want to find out how the “encounter” will be influenced, when it takes place via Skype and what methods that could be used to explore the text without physical contact or common bodywork. Sweden is a tall country and it takes time and money to travel – perhaps Bibliodrama on-line could be a means for leaders to maintain their competence and stay in contact with each other?

West and North in 2014
Three events are planned for 2014. Due to a rising interest in Bibliolog, we hope to arrange a conference on Bibliolog with invited Bibliolog trainers in the western part of Sweden. In the north, Umeå will be the Cultural Capital of Europe in 2014. To celebrate this, there are plans to experience the Midnight Sun in Umeå during a joint Pilgrimage-Bibliodrama venture .

East ‒ EBN Congress in Åland, 2014
Further on in 2014, Sweden hopes to be able to arrange the European Bibliodrama Congress together with our Bibliodrama friends in Finland. As a kind of compromise, the congress will take place on the small island of Åland, located in the Baltic between the two countries. On behalf of the Bibliodrama Society in Sweden, Lars-Gunnar Skogar will be the responsible organizer.

Providing Swedish Literature on Bibliodrama 2012 -2015
Unlike Germany, we have very little literature about Bibliodrama in our own language. A first anthology about Bibliodrama was published in 2003, which has been very useful in the basic training programmes. A first step to introduce more Bibliodrama literature has now been taken by Education Centre Lidingö by translating into Swedish the newly revised edition of Bibliodrama als Prozess. Thanks to the generosity of the German editors and the hard work of the translators, the Release Seminar will take place at Education Centre Lidingö on 22nd November 2012. We are looking forward to having one the pioneers of Bibliodrama, Else Natalie Warns, as the guest of honour. The next step to provide more literature is under way – a new anthology based on Bibliodrama practices in Sweden, that we hope to be able to finish in 2015.

Exchange with Europe is Essential
If you happen to understand Swedish and want to know more about Bibliodrama in Sweden, please visit our website Building the website has also been part of the ongoing work of the Bibliodrama Society in Sweden during the last three years. For example, we are very grateful to the TEXTRAUM and Else Natalie Warns for letting us use the Bibliodrama silhouettes as illustration on the website. For the Swedish Bibliodrama movement, the exchange with bibliodramatists in other parts of Europe is absolutely essential to our own growth and development. See you in Prague next year!

Birgitta Walldén
Certified Psychodramatist, Bibliodramatist
Member of the Bibliodrama Society in Sweden


The article was published in the Textraum in the autumn of 2012.

We are happy to say that all the projects mentioned in this article were realized at the end of 2014.