Steadfast through the storm

More than 32 million Bibles distributed in second pandemic year

Worldwide Bible distribution topped 32.6 million in 2021, showing the extraordinary commitment of Bible Societies to provide the hope of God’s Word amid a global pandemic. 

Despite staffing challenges, supply chain disruptions and ongoing lockdowns, Bible Societies persevered to meet the huge demand for Scripture.  

When the pandemic hit, restrictions meant that Bible ministry in around 90 nations were at risk. But supporters around the world responded generously, enabling Bible Societies to keep their doors open and continue providing Scripture to people in need. As a result, Bible Societies in some of the world’s poorest countries were able to double or even triple their Scripture distribution in 2021. 

5.1 million New Testaments were distributed globally in 2021. More than half were distributed in Asia, while Central and South America accounted for a third of New Testaments, thanks to focussed distribution campaigns. 

“Every single Bible in someone’s hands has the potential to change a life.”

In total, 169.8 million Scripture items were provided during 2021. Michael Perreau, UBS Director General, said, “Just as our hope in Christ is an anchor for the soul, so Bible Societies were steadfast through the storm of the global pandemic. Across the world, our people persevered throughout 2021, doing everything possible to provide God’s Word and meet the huge demand for Scripture.” He added, “Every single Bible in someone’s hands has the potential to change a life. My prayer is that through His Word, God will touch hearts, bring hope, and strengthen faith.”

The above figures are compiled from annual Scripture distribution numbers reported by Bible Societies around the world, and include local distribution and exports of Scripture material, as well as internet downloads. The United Bible Societies Fellowship continues to be one of the largest translators and distributors of Scripture on the planet; around 70% of the world’s full Bible translations have been provided by Bible Societies.

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