Beyond Literate Western Contexts:

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Honor & Shame and Assessment of Orality Preference



"Indigenous languages and oral cultures are precious people groups who are indelibly linked to their world-views. The oral communication strategy is critical to the Gospel. I highly recommend your attention to Beyond Literate Western Contexts".

-Roy Peterson, President/CEO

American Bible Society

"Beyond Literate Western Contexts is both an exploration of ideas and a feast of biblical understanding of worldviews.  We are profoundly invited to consider how the Holy Scripture is communicated and received".

-Bishop Efraim Tendero, D.D., D.L.

Secretary General/CEO, World Evangelical Alliance


“The book can be an eye opener for academic readers, reflective practitioners and field workers.”

-Dr. Hannes Wiher, professor of missiology in Africa, Asia and Europe

Coordinator of the Network of Evangelical Missiologists for French-speaking Europe

Author, Shame and Guilt: A Key to Cross-Cultural Ministry


“Academics, trainers and cross-cultural workers will all benefit from the story, reflection and shared learning that make up every chapter. Highly recommended.”

-Dr. Paul Bendor-Samuel, International Director,



“Beyond Literate Western Contexts constructively sheds light on both the splendor of the Gospel and the multiform magnificence of humanity restored in Jesus Christ.”

-Dr. J. Nelson Jennings, Executive Director, OMSC,

Editor, International Bulletin of Mission Research


“It is very important and a great blessing that Beyond Literate Western Contexts makes the papers presented at the ION Consultations available for a greater audience. It is well known that oral learning is important as a mission strategy; however this book shows the importance of orality in a much wider context and is a book of high value.”

-Hjalmar Boe, International Director,

Norwegian Lutheran Mission


"How do we communicate with each other matters, and doubly so when we communicate in a cross-cultural context. The biblical worldview presented and case studies provided are of great value to both organizations and institutions."

-Rev. Dr. Lloyd Kim, Coordinator

Mission To The World


“Don't be intimidated by the long, scholarly title. This book is practical, understandable, and a great encouragement to anyone who wants to share the Good News in a way that will open hearts and change lives.”

-Phil Tuttle, President/CEO,

Walk Thru The Bible


“This insightful book combines and commends two effective communicators of the gospel: (1) orality, which promotes telling stories to bless the illiterate; (2) universal human realities of honor and shame, which can bridge the lost to Jesus and the gospel. Shame came with the sin of Adam and Eve. Sinful humankind has since wrongly coped with shame, including honor-killing of even loved ones. We are called to live by and teach godly honor and shame, e.g., honored by being seated with Christ in the heavenlies, we need not feel shame for having no earthly status symbols.”

-Rev. Dr. Michael Shen

Principal Emeritus, Singapore Bible College


“This rich collection of stimulating essays is an important contribution to missiology. The combination of missiological reflection, biblical interpretation, theological reflection, and case studies will appeal to both practitioners and scholars.  I found it particularly inspiring to read about effective use of inductive oral Bible study, oral Bible schools, and storying-based theological education.   Honor/Shame and Orality are two topics anyone interested in understanding how God is currently at work in the world needs to understand.  This book is an excellent place to begin that learning.”

-Lindsay Olesberg, Senior Associate for Scripture Engagement,

the Lausanne Movement for World Evangelization


“Beyond Literate Western Contents helpfully explores how presenting the gospel through honor and shame lenses in a context of orality and story enhance our understanding of the gospel. Giving a global prespective on how to teach and preach the kingdom message is always of value. This book utilizes the experience of teachers from around the world and gives an important glimpse on how this can and should be done.”

-Dr. Darrell Bock, Executive Director for Cultural Engagement, Howard G. Hendricks Center for Christian Leadership

and Cultural Engagement,

Senior Research Professor of New Testament Studies, Dallas Theological Seminary


“This is a thought provoking reference book for anyone seriously wanting to communicate the gospel effectively, creatively and cross-culturally beyond the literate context.”

-Rev Dr Patrick Fung, General Director,

OMF International


“This is another milestone in the effort of International Orality Network. This is very helpful in exploring how presenting the gospel through honor and shame lenses in a context of orality and story will enhance our understanding of the gospel.”

-Rev. Bauta D. Motty, PhD

Provost, ECWA Theological Seminary, Jos, Nigeria


"I so much appreciate the pioneering work of Chiang and Lovejoy in editing this collection of writings into a book. Beyond Literate Western Contexts continues to shed light on the neglected areas of honor and shame when it comes to disciple making. There is much to learn from its contents when it comes to reaching our oral preference world!"

-J. D. Payne, Ph.D., Pastor of Church Multiplication, The Church at Brook Hills


“I am impressed! Honor and Shame has often been researched and reported on in culture studies and other disciplines. Orality of course is a growing movement and a focus of continuing study. Now comes this unique book, full of subject matter from scholars and practitioners combining these two areas of study. They connect the dots of the Biblical world of honor and shame with the honor and shame cultures of today and tomorrow, treating both the content and the practice of orality related to these topics. Additionally, the chapters on current case studies and approaches to oral assessment are certainly worth our attention. I am honored to be one to recommend this book!”

-Freddy Boswell, Executive Director, SIL


“I highly recommend this book for all involved in theological training at institutional and organizational levels throughout Africa where a high percentage of its inhabitants learn and communicate effectively through oral preferences. Through the diverse new oral learning strategies and models in this book, African scholars and theological institutions are empowered to re-evaluate their learning methodologies and assessment mechanisms which have for decades been widely influenced by Western literate theological training orientations.”

-Rev. Dr. Emmanuel Chemengich, Executive Director

Association of Christian Theological Education in Africa


“Reaching oral learners with the Gospel of Christ is one of the great missiological challenges of our time. This carefully researched and argued book will provide essential help for all those seeking to understand the scale of the challenge, as well as the approaches needed to fruitfully reach the billions who are shaped by such a mindset.”

-Lindsay Brown

International Director, the Lausanne Movement for World Evangelization


“Drawing from the rich experience of practitioners and the scholarly research of academics, Beyond Literate Western Contexts provides valuable insights into the best practices emerging from the orality movement and the critical ministry implications of honor and shame-based cultures.  Anyone with a passion for advancing the Gospel among oral cultures will benefit from this excellent source of stories, case studies, research, and theological insights.”

-Kärin Primuth, President/CEO