NEWS FEATURE: Christian devotional books are big sellers

c. 1997 Religion News Service UNDATED _ Take a peek at your local bookstore shelves and you’ll see that devotion is in. Devotion to God, that is. A range of Christian devotional literature _ from tiny gift books to hefty specialized Bibles _ is reaching just about every audience imaginable. From dabblers to the devout, there’s a volume out there for anyone interested in spending a few moments each day in prayerful or meditative thought.

COMMENTARY: Some evangelicals are getting back to basics

c. 1997 Religion News Service (Dale Hanson Bourke is publisher of RNS and author of”Turn Toward the Wind.”) ATLANTA _ For years, Catholics and mainline Protestants have watched with fascination _ and frustration _ as evangelical Christians have grown in number and influence while their own congregations have dwindled. The growth of the evangelical movement comes partly from its relative youth and its ability to combine various strains of conservative theology under one umbrella. But the growth also can be attributed to the movement’s flourishing commercial side: A plethora of Christian radio stations, magazines, national TV shows, and bookstores support a multimillion-dollar business in books, music, Bibles, films and gifts. No where is this side of evangelicalism more showcased than at the annual International CBA convention, which opened last weekend in Atlanta and concludes Thursday (July 17).

Lucado wins second Christian Book of the Year award

c. 1997 Religion News Service UNDATED _ Max Lucado’s”In the Grip of Grace”has won the Gold Medallion Christian Book of the Year Award. The award was jointly presented Saturday (July 12) by the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association and the Christian Booksellers Association at the annual Gold Medallion Book Awards banquet in Atlanta. The event was held on the eve of CBA’s international convention, which concludes on Thursday (July 17). In 1995, Lucado’s”When God Whispers Your Name”was named the Christian Book of the Year.

RNS Daily Digest

c. 1997 Religion News Service Baptist World Alliance officials schedule racism conference (RNS) Baptist World Alliance officials scheduled an international conference on racism and called for prayer for global evangelism at their recent general council meeting. The council approved an International Conference on Racism and Ethnic Conflict, scheduled for January 1998 in Atlanta, and timed to coincide with the birthday of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., the slain civil rights leader and Baptist minister.”We as Baptists must be in the forefront of reconciliation,”said Denton Lotz, general secretary of BWA.”That is part of our tradition as Baptists.” More than 500 delegates gathered for the meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia, reported Baptist Press, the official news service of the Southern Baptist Convention. Nilson do Amaral Fanini, BWA president, re-emphasized his”World Prayer 2000″initiative, which calls for Baptists to pray for world evangelization and personal revival.”We need prayer power more than any other power,”Fanini said.