Dough, Come All Ye Faithful!

Family activities incorporate Play-Doh to illustrate Scripture readings.

With fewer than two weeks to go before the commencement of Boundless–The Whole World Reading, thousands of Salvationists and friends from 75 of the 126 countries that currently have a Salvation Army presence have visited the special website and downloaded the app. Many more have received printed copies of the booklet that accompanies the Bible-reading challenge and signed up to the supplementary email service.

As much of the world stops to celebrate Christmas, The Whole World Reading offers an opportunity to reflect on the birth of Jesus 2,000 years ago. The first of 52 special children’s activities designed to complement the New Testament Scripture reading invites younger members of the Salvation Army family to portray that first nativity scene using play dough (or Play-Doh), plasticine or modelling clay. It’s a great family activity for the days between Christmas and New Year.

Captains Rachael Castle and Tracey Davies (Australia Southern Territory) devised the Bible-themed activities for children, and both are passionate about sharing the gospel in ways that are relevant in today’s culture, as well as helping families grow in faith together. In the first of the weekly children’s challenges–linked to the first two chapters of Matthew’s Gospel–they write: “Create the characters that are involved in the birth of Jesus. Tell the story to someone in your family.”

Parents and carers are then encouraged to take a photo of the play dough nativity scenes and share them through social media (use the #boundlessbible hashtag on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook). This is a fun way of telling the real Christmas story over the festive period, as well as raising awareness of The Whole World Reading. A selection of the best images will be added to the website ( and app ( over the next few weeks.

No play dough? No problem! Here’s an easy recipe:
2 cups flour
2 cups warm water
1 cup salt
2 tablespoons cooking oil
A few drops of food coloring

Over a low heat, stir the ingredients together in a saucepan. The mixture will slowly begin to thicken. Keep stirring until the mixture loses its stickiness and binds together in the middle of the pan. Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely in a safe place.

Feature by IHQ Communications
International Headquarters

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