She sounds like everyone’s favourite grandma. Her voice is warm as she tells stories from the Bible in language that children can understand. Her British accent turns into a dozen different accents from all over the islands as she speaks for one Bible character, and then another. Her name? Mrs. G.
Well, actually Kitty Anna Griffiths. Mrs. G started her ministry in 1973, recording children’s stories and broadcasting them on the radio. Her books, with whimsical illustrations by "Willy", shared the same stories. The ministry, still going strong today, is run out of Toronto, Ontario.
I met her on at least one occasion. Between the English accent and fancy hats she might make you think of the Queen – perhaps Mrs. G is the queen of storytelling.
You may wonder what’s so interesting about someone telling Bible stories, without a 300 person professional cast and the backing of a major Christian label. But there’s a lot more to Mrs. G than meets the eye.
Not just another story teller, Mrs. G has done her homework. For one thing, she has a doctorate in literature from Biola University. She has also done impressive historical research, and has visited Israel six times (three times as a special guest of the Israeli government!) to learn about the locations where the people lived. She even travelled to Greece and Rome to work on her series on Acts.
This background knowledge shows up in the rich and accurate details in the stories. The stories don’t just hit highlights, either – Mrs. G starts at Adam and Eve and works her way through the Bible, telling both the "nice and nasty" stories in a way that children can relate to (how about a story about the cities of refuge? Or Job (one of my favourites)? Or Jephthath?) . The quality of her stories and biblical insight are enough for adults to enjoy as well!
The stories have gone beyond Bible stories – she tells other stories sharing Bible truths, and of all things she did a series on the Dead Sea Scrolls!
As the years went on, the stories became even better with fuller orchestral music and richer sound effects. The stories on now produced on CD. They have been translated into about 20 languages so far, such as Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, and Tamil. (Incidentally, the Spanish recordings are no longer available, but there are 4 Spanish books that are in print)
I was curious to hear what was new with the ministry, so this week I called the office. Dr. and Mrs. Griffiths were both working in the office, and I was transferred to her husband. Dr. Gerald Griffiths was a pastor for many years in Toronto.
He told me that they are busier than ever there. They have no way to know how many stations around the world are now broadcasting the radio show, but there are many. When he heard I was calling from Mexico, he graciously offered to send me the 4 Spanish books (which I’m looking forward to reading).
You can catch A Visit with Mrs. G online at various times on Saturdays and Sundays. For the next broadcast time, check out the handy radiotime website.
Better yet, you can order the stories from their office ("the Granary"). I believe they also have a club where you can get a recording each month. They will send you a catalogue if you request one. Hannah and Nathanael have been enjoying listening to Mrs. G lately – maybe your kids will too! Here’s how you can contact them:
P.O. Box 150
(You can find some of the books used at amazon.com (here’s what’s currently available), but for the recordings (and most of the books) your best bet is the ministry itself)