Marie-Louise Bork Winther is a priest who specializes in hearing disabilities in Benløse Church in Denmark. She uses Dialoogle when she is preparing pupils for confirmation because it helps to make prayers more visual and meaningful to them.
To write and recite a prayer in the church would be quite nerve-racking for most people, especially the younger ones.
Nevertheless, the prayer of the Sunday service in the Benløse Church was written by Marie-Louise Bork Winther´s confirmation class using Dialoogle cards. One of the confirmands even recited it while his friends made the prayer come alive by standing in front of the altar holding up the picture cards.
“It is touching and beautiful and very rewarding for me as a priest – and for the congregation – to hear the pupils give new life to the prayer and experience the pride and the kick they feel by reciting it in church,” Marie-Louise who uses Dialoogle in her confirmation class tells us.
We need to think in new ways and engage in a dialogue with our confirmands and congregations, and for this purpose Dialoogle is a gift.
”Young people are filled with love, worry and gratitude. When I ask the class to choose picture cards that describes what is on their minds and what they would like to include in the church prayer, it becomes clear that it is their family and friends, the earth and its state, and the confirmation celebration and its presents that are the main focuses. By knowing this, their prayer becomes simple, honest, strong and beautiful – and not something they have just learned by heart.”
Right now, Marie-Louise has a confirmation class with 12 deaf, hearing-impaired, and hearing students.
“This means that there are big differences in the group. On top of this, they are typical teenagers: Some are very talkative while others are reluctant to open their mouth. However, when they can rely the picture cards, their insecurities disappear, the hierarchy of the group is put aside and everyone is equal under these new and different terms.”
As a priest who specializes in hearing disabilities, Marie-Louise is used to working in a world where vision plays a big role. She is happy to share her experiences of using images in the confirmation classes and other ecclesiastical purposes with her fellow priests.
“We need to think in new ways and engage in a dialogue with our confirmands and congregations, and for this purpose Dialoogle is a gift. The images are a fantastic approach to learning to express yourself, not just for those who find it difficult, but also those who find it easy – and those who are just very visual people.They give you confidence and stimulate dialogue. I would not think of using some random pictures torn out from a magazine. The quality of the Dialoogle cards signals seriousness. And since the cards can be used in many ways, e.g. conversations, classes, prayers, sermons, etc., it is a very clever tool with great deal of visual aesthetics,” she says.