Truth & Life Dramatized Audio Bible has a number of top Hollywood actors voicing biblical characters.

Audio Bible enlists Hollywood A-listers

  • February 22, 2014

A Bible for the new age is taking Scripture back to its spoken roots.

The Truth & Life Dramatized Audio Bible app offers audio of the Revised Standard Version Catholic edition of the New Testament narrated by a number of Hollywood heavyweights.

“We’re getting back to the original roots of the Bible by proclaiming it verbally,” said executive producer Michael Stark, referring back to the days before the printing press.

The audio Bible includes text of the Old and New Testaments, but the free version also includes text synced with the audio of the Gospel of Mark, narrated by Blair Underwood. Julia Ormond plays Mother Mary with Neal McDonough as Jesus. The Narrator is the voice of John-Rhys Davies and Kristen Bell plays Mary Magdalene.

The full-audio of the New Testament is available for $19.99 in Canada. The app is available through the Apple App store, Google Play, Kindle Fire and on the web.

This “radio drama” style presentation is 22 hours long with movie-quality sound effects, an original score and more than 75 actors.

“We’re doing everything we can to make this the most comprehensive Catholic tool,” said Stark. “It’s my goal to make this a universal Catholic tool for people of faith and hopefully, this can allow people the opportunity to come back to the Church.”

The challenge in the Church today, he says, is how to effectively use communications media to spread the Gospel message.

The app is “not in your face,” he said. “It’s not over the top. You can feel comfortable and learn at your own pace.”

The Vatican-endorsed app includes a foreword by Pope emeritus Benedict XVI and was co-produced by American EWTN television host Raymond Arroyo.

The app’s text includes embedded links to references that can deepen a reader’s understanding. An index and a comprehensive search tool are included. For example, search “fear” and find it 356 times from Genesis to Revelations, Stark said.

The full app takes up about 1GB of space and once downloaded, the audio is stored in the device, as opposed to being run via a wireless connection to the Internet. But links to external apps that are accessible through Truth & Life, such as the online ministry Word on Fire, require an Internet connection.

Using the app’s playlist option, March 5 will mark the beginning of its Lenten 46-day challenge which will encourage the faithful to read the Gospels about 15 minutes each day (or two chapters), resulting in all four Gospels read during Lent.

When purchasing the app, consumers have the option of simultaneously buying the complete Ignatius Study Bible, upon which they will receive a 25-per-cent discount on the purchase of both items.

Stark says future plans for the app include a Spanish version of the text and hopefully a Spanish audio to accompany it.

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