Welcome aboard! You’re on the little engine that could. But you’re not merely a passenger. We wouldn’t make it over that mountain without you. For over 124 years, Word&Way has been informing and inspiring Baptists. But we’re also making a difference as seen by even the big engines borrowing from us.
Let me offer a few examples just from this year:
• Christianity Today cited our reporting about Baptists in Lebanon after the massive Aug. 4 blast in Beirut.
• Kansas City Star reprinted an excerpt from one of my online editorials on truth in the election season.
• Baptist News Global republished multiple of our articles.
• Baptist Standard reported on some of my research efforts with Buckner International.
• Missouri Governor Mike Parson changed his coronavirus policies toward churches in April after questioning by us, which we believe helped protect a good church-state balance and save lives.
• Religion News Service quoted me about parenting during the coronavirus.
• The North American Baptist Fellowship adopted a statement on racial injustices I primarily wrote, which was then translated and republished by Baptists in France, Germany, and elsewhere.
Word&Way is having an outsized impact. We are the little engine that could. And when I say “we,” that includes you. Word&Way wouldn’t exist without the faithful support of our readers and donors.
That means there are many stories that wouldn’t exist without you. For instance, no one offered more coverage of more types of Baptists around the world responding to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. No one offered more coverage — or broke more stories — on the controversy over theology and power at Southwest Baptist University. And that’s just to name a couple areas we’ve focused on this year. With our magazine, podcast, and website, we bring you news about a wide variety of Baptists across the denominational, ethnic, national, and ideological lines that too often divide us.
Additionally, people aren’t just quoting our work. We won 27 awards this year, beating our personal best of last year’s 21 (and well ahead of the previous high of nine). Awards went to five different Word&Way team members for overall publication, design, editorial writing, podcast, news writing, photography, feature writing, website redesign, and more. For some of those awards we even beat out large, national publications. This shows we are achieving our goal of bringing you quality content you can trust.
And together we’re not just sharing these quality stories, we’re also making a difference for the cause of global Baptist journalism. One percent of all you give to Word&Way — including from donations and subscriptions — goes to support our partners leading Baptist news publications in much more difficult contexts.
We’ve had the joy of partnering with Baptists in eastern Cuba and in Venezuela. We’ve shared stories and communication strategies with each other, and you have helped provide funding for their ministries. Like helping purchase a printer for El Mensajero in Cuba and helping sponsor a journalism training seminar led by Luminar Bautista in Venezuela. You made that happen.
But this has been a difficult year. Coronavirus not only killed many in our society, it also disrupted our way of life by canceling events, messing up our worship services, and hurting our economy. Through it, Word&Way continues to demonstrate why we are needed. In times like this, we need a source of information we can trust. In times like this, we need a publication that helps us mourn the bad, celebrate the good, and find ways to minister no matter what we face.
So, I’m confident that you still need us. But I know beyond a doubt that we still need you. I hope you’ll continue partnering with us and help us end this odd and difficult year on a strong financial note. You can give online. Or, you can mail your gift to: P.O. Box 405, Congers, NY 10920.
Whatever you give helps this little engine keep climbing those big mountains. And next year, we’ll together celebrate 125 year. To God be the glory!
Brian Kaylor is editor & president of Word&Way.