Conventional Thinking: Standing on the shoulders of giants
On May 15, the Baptist Messenger officially turns 100. In this special 100th anniversary issue, you will see that leaders from across the country have offered words of affirmation, for which we are grateful. We also would love to receive emails, calls, letters, website posts (at baptistmessenger.com), or any words from you, as well.
As a prelude to this historic milestone, the editors and staff embarked on a series called “10 decades in 10 weeks,” that concluded in the previous edition.
We hope you enjoyed as much as we did seeing the samples and highlights of the Messenger and the times in which it reported the news. As fascinating as we hope it was to read, it was even more interesting to do the research.
I want to thank the Baptist Messenger staff, and associate editor Dana Williamson in particular, for the many hours of work on that project.
Since its promising beginnings in 1912 to today, a technological and communications revolution has occurred that may equal the days of Johannes Guttenberg. The Messenger grew and grew in decades that saw a complete transformation of the way we obtain information, with the rise of television, radio and everything connected with the Internet.
Today, tools in our hands affect the very way we communicate. Who could have imagined that texting would be a socially acceptable way of communicating, or that “twitter” and “pinterest” would be words used every day?
Too often a tempting response to phenomenon like this is to say “out with the old, in with the new.” In the process, many time-honored forms of communication, such as printed books or writing letters are thrown by the wayside. At the Messenger, while riding the waves of the communications trends, we resist the tendency to throw the baby out with the bathwater.
To that end, in the next issue of the Baptist Messenger, we intend to unveil a new and improved look and some additional features that our research tells us will appeal to a wide demographic. At the same time, we will leave in place all of the content, articles, crossword puzzles, classified ads, features and more we have all come to love and count on.
Our team is also working on a Baptist Messenger-specific Facebook page wherein readers can connect with our staff in more personal ways. There we will also make it convenient for you to share articles and content online with your friends.
After all, we look at our community of readers as a big family. Each of us brings a unique perspective, testimony and background, but our shared values and commitment to the Savior bind us together.
This issue does not mean the fun is over. There are a number of events and plans in store to continue the commemoration of this Centennial year. One event is set for June 3, at 6 p.m. at Broken Arrow, Arrow Heights. You are invited to attend this free event, wherein you will meet others in the Messenger family and hear from everyone’s favorite columnist, Walker Moore!
All of these festivities bring to mind a quotation from Sir Isaac Newton, who in a letter to Robert Hooke, was reported to have said, “If I have seen further it is by standing on ye shoulders of Giants.”
If we at the Messenger are now in a good position to leap into the next 100 years, it is because of the grace of God and the people He used throughout the first 10 decades. It is also because of you, our readers. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for reading the Baptist Messenger. Thank you for celebrating 100 years with us, as with hope, we look to the future.