|This article relies too much on references to primary sources. (April 2012)|
Cover of the April 2010 issue.
|Editors||Mark Galli, Andy Crouch|
|Former editors||David Neff, Terry C. Muck and George K. Brushaber|
|Company||Christianity Today International|
|Based in||Carol Stream, Illinois|
Christianity Today magazine is an evangelical Christian periodical that was founded in 1956 and is based in Carol Stream, Illinois. It is the flagship publication of its parent organization by the same name, a nonprofit global media ministry. The magazine delivers commentary from a biblical perspective, covering the spectrum of choices and perceived challenges facing Christians today.
Christianity Today magazine has a print circulation of 130,000 and readership of 260,000, as well as a website at ChristianityToday.com. The founder, Billy Graham, stated that he wanted to "plant the evangelical flag in the middle-of-the-road, taking the conservative theological position but a definite liberal approach to social problems". Graham started the magazine as counterpoint to The Christian Century, the predominant independent periodical of mainline Protestantism, and as a way to bring the evangelical Christian community together.
Christianity Today is considered a leading voice of the evangelical movement with its coverage of the global church. Every monthly print issue and daily website updates include interviews, feature articles, essays, and commentary from leading Christian thinkers, and theological analysis on current issues, trends, people and news events that impact people of faith.
The first issue of Christianity Today was mailed October 15, 1956, and the opening editorial, Why 'Christianity Today'?, stated "Christianity Today has its origin in a deep-felt desire to express historical Christianity to the present generation. Neglected, slighted, misrepresented—evangelical Christianity needs a clear voice, to speak with conviction and love, and to state its true position and its relevance to the world crisis. A generation has grown up unaware of the basic truths of the Christian faith taught in the Scriptures and expressed in the creeds of the historic evangelical churches."
Its first editor was Carl F. H. Henry. Notable contributors in its first two decades included contributions from F. F. Bruce, Edward John Carnell, Frank Gaebelein, Walter Martin, John Warwick Montgomery, and Harold Lindsell. Lindsell succeeded Henry as editor and during his editorial administration much attention centered on debates about biblical inerrancy. Later editorial leadership came from Kenneth Kantzer, Terry Muck, and David Neff. The current editor is Mark Galli, who works in a dyad with the executive editor, Andy Crouch, to lead the enterprise, which now includes print, online, and various ancillary products. Katelyn Beaty is managing editor of the print edition, and Ted Olsen is managing editor of news and online journalism. Contents of print and online include feature stories, news ranging from cultural issues from a Christian viewpoint to the global church, opinion, reviews, and investigative reporting.
About the Ministry
The magazine's mission statement is "creating Christian content that changes the people who change the world." Its presence on the Internet began in October 1994 when it became one of the top 10 content providers on all of AOL. Then, in 1996, their website was launched. It was originally named ChristianityOnline.com before becoming ChristianityToday.com. Today ChristianityToday.com serves as the web home for Christianity Today magazine.
At the ministry's web home, ChristianityToday.org, all other brands for Christian thought leaders and church leaders are featured, including publications like the intellectual Christian review, Books & Culture, and the publication for pastors and church leaders, Leadership Journal. Additional web resources include Today's Christian Woman and Preaching Today.
All Christianity Today brands together reach more than 2.5 million people every month when print and digital views are combined, plus more than 5 million pageviews per month on the Internet. The ministry offers access, both premium and free, to over 100,000 articles and other content on their various websites.
Christianity Today has faced scrutiny over a number of issues in the recent years. Some Christians claim Christianity Today has "turned to promoting mysticism, contemplative prayer and other New Age, anti-Christian practices." One of the magazine's senior editors, Mark Galli, was accused of "corrupting the faith," after writing an article titled "Divine Drama Queen," which presented his editorial opinion regarding the Biblical God. Ted Olsen, another of the publication's editors, co-wrote an article with Ken Smith, who was found to have previously been involved with a company using software that had been “distributed in conjunction with child pornography."
Two international editions of Leadership Journal were launched in 2012: an African edition in September (English), and a Portuguese edition in October.
Books & Culture
Books & Culture is published six times a year and is a book review and intellectual journal modeled after the New York Review of Books and New York Times Book Review. According to its advertising page, the magazine's circulation is 11,000 and its readership is 20,000. It is edited by John Wilson, and notable recent contributors include Mark Noll, Lauren Winner, Alan Jacobs, Jean Bethke Elshtain, and Miroslav Volf.
Christian History was a journal of the history of Christianity, first issued in January 1982 by the Christian History Institute. Each issue had multiple articles covering a single theme. Initially published annually, it became a quarterly publication. Christianity Today took over ownership of the magazine beginning with issue number 22 in 1989, it was later discontinued after the publishing of issue 99 in 2008. In 2011 the Christian History Institute resumed quarterly publication of the magazine.
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- Christian Smith, Michael Emerson, "American Evangelicalism: Embattled and Thriving". University of Chicago Press: 1998, p. 12.
- About Christianity Today, ChristianityToday.org
- Why 'Christianity Today'?, ChristianityToday.org
- Envisioning 'Christianity Today', ChristianityToday.org
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- Board, Stephen, "Moving the World With Magazines: A Survey of Evangelical Periodicals," in American Evangelicals and the Mass Media, edited by Quentin J. Schultze, Zondervan, Grand Rapids, 1990, pp. 119–142.
- Marsden, George M., Reforming Fundamentalism, William B. Eerdmans, Grand Rapids, 1987.