The Protestant press

Christianity Today — Conservative evangelical ideas and news in a smart, thoughtful magazine — the New Yorker of evangelical publishing.

Christian Today is an ecumenical, evangelical online daily with a global reach.

World — Very conservative evangelical ideas and news in an angry, fierce magazine with a hard-to-believe veneer of sweetness — the Mike Tyson of evangelical publishing. An excellent look into the mindset of many evangelicals within the Bush administration.

Relevant — Conservative evangelical ideas, news, and pop stars from a hipster perspective. Geared toward young “Xians,” Relevant‘s decoding of Christian theology in music and movies makes it of interest to nonbelievers as well.

Antithesis bills itself as “a magazine of the emerging Christian counterculture.” In fact, you’ll find a lot of familiar conservative evangelical voices here, but their work is so beautifully presented that Antithesis is worth visiting just for appearances. Much like Relevant (see above),Antithesis seems made for young, hipster evangelicals; but this tough magazine never insults their intelligence with puff pieces about Bono. Currently, only back issues are available, but it promises to reopen sometime in 2005.

The Mars Hill Review is what Relevant and Antithesis wish they were, if that could make money.

Sojourners — Liberal evangelical ideas and news. An excellent source for evangelical Christian stories outside the mainstream, and for evangelical perspectives on questions of social justice overlooked by conservative Christians.

First Things is a scathingly intelligent magazine of conservative Christian ideas and theology, with an eye on current events. Edited with an iron fist by Richard John Neuhaus, whose column “The Public Square” is a highlight for readers with strong constitutions.

Touchstone is First Things, the next generation —conservative doctrine, sharp intellect, much enamored of C.S. Lewis. Only a few articles a month appear online, but the editors — a Protestant, a Catholic, and an Orthodox believer — maintain an excellent daily commentary, “Mere Comments.”

Charisma News Service is the best part of Charisma magazine’s extensive website. The magazine itself, a biggie in the evangelical world, tends toward knee-jerk sanctimony, but it’s worth looking at to keep tabs on what matters to mainstream evangelical Christians, especially those who might find Christianity Today too intellectual.

Now four years out of date, The Christian Century, a theologically liberal magazine of mainline Protestant Christianity, continues to publish at least one provocative essay an issue, often more. Don’t expect a lot of surprises, but check in for good thinking on the news of the day from contributors such as Thomas Lynch, Martin E. Marty, and Mark Oppenheimer.

Anglicans Online is a Revealer favorite, and not just because it’s a kind voice in what has increasingly become a shrill, angry denomination. Anglicans Online is intellectual and populist, liberal and alert to the virtues of conservative thought, plugged into the world and wholly dedicated to chronicling the life and times of “God’s frozen people.”

Books & Culture is a publication of Christianity Today (see above), and if that magazine is evangelicaldom’s New Yorker, this is its New York Review of Books (CT and Books & Culture are both published in suburban Illinois). Must be read with a sharp eye for unspoken assumptions, but Books & Culture nonetheless publishes some of the best book and movie reviews around.

Ship of Fools is a hilarious Anglican magazine, and that’s not an oxymoron or an insult.

The Church Report delivers church business news for the conservative crowd that includes “straight talk” from Dr. Phil McGraw, of TV fame.

The Church Times: a top-notch Anglican weekly newspaper from the UK, founded in 1863.

The Catholic press
The National Catholic Reporter is edited by laypeople, uncommonly well-reported, and imaginative in the subjects it covers. Politically liberal, it offers needed nuance to he-said/she-said tone of much Catholic public discussion.

Commonweal is another lay-edited, generally liberal magazine with a focus on politics, ethics, and culture.

The Tablet is yet another lay-edited, liberal Catholic magazine. It dates back to 1840, but since the 1960s it has been taking its cues from Vatican II, and its features reflect that encyclical’s populist-intellectual, humanistic tone.

Crisis is, in its own terms, so “traditional” that the “crisis” of its title refers to modernity, not the current condition of the Church — which Crisis, the magazine thinks is good and getting better.

Eureka Street is an Australian monthly of current affairs, arts, and theology published by Jesuits, but it’s broad enough to have won a readership far beyond the Catholic church, and Australia.

The New Pantagruel is a new journal that plans to proceed with a “mirthful temperament towards all that is humane and with frightful anger directed against the forces that would squash such things.” That doesn’t make it Catholic, and neither does its mixed editorial board, but there’s something about this new journal that aligns it with the most provocative of Catholic ideas. Its forum is a great place to tap into cutting edge debates amongs young Christian intellectuals.

First Things, listed above under “Protestant periodicals,” contains enough great Catholic writing to merit a double listing.

U.S. Catholic isn’t so much liberal as concerned with social justice in the traditional Catholic sense. Published by the order of Claretians

Catholic News Service — the official story.

Personal Jesus
Ambivablog is the swing state of the religious and political blogosphere.

Bene Diction is one of many excellent Canadian protestant and Catholic blogs. Must be something in the maple syrup.

Blogs4God bills itself as a “semi-definitive” guide to mostly protestant blogs. Hardly — there are just too damn many to count. But this is a good place to start.

ChurchGal, an anti-GOP “corporate wench,” feminist and Christian offers a semi-regular collection of thoughts on why these “feminist Christian” is not an oxymoron.

The Disseminary’s motto is “Wisdom wants to be free.” And here, it is — this is a portal to several terrific sites with heavy God thinking.

Except For These Chains promises “religion, politics, philosophy… and good dinner-table conversation,” and it usually delivers, seasoned with an old school, firm-minded, liberal Christian perspective.

Faith Forward: “Progressive Christianity and Progressive Politics” from Pastor Dan, of Daily Kos’s Religion News Roundup.

Feminary: A socially liberal, theologically conservative, inclusive tolerant feminist Episcopalian goes to one of the world’s top evangelical seminaries.

God of Small Things: Bob Smietana discusses “religion stories that fly beneath the radar — small stories about God, Faith, Life, Death, and whatever comes in between.”

Holy Weblog! “The good, the bad and the quirky” in religion news.

Jesus Politics is a thorough anthology of readings, with some commentary, related to the political influence of Christianity from the Christian Right to the Jesus Left.

Open Source Theology is a collaborative blog aimed at developing a theology for the postmodern world.

Philocrites tells it like it is, Unitarian-style.

Progressive Theology is a militant Christian Left blog with daily scripture readings and frequent essays on current affairs.

Relapsed Catholic is a fierce godblog without mercy for liberals or unbelievers, by a Canadian journalist and poet with a sharp eye for the absurd and compelling.

The Village Gate, formerly The Right Christians (who are not the Christian Right).

The Tough Guys: Before and after photos.

Thunderstruck is one man’s weirdly thorough blog of Christian pop culture in the mainstream press.

Vurch — “post a prayer, read a prayer.” A direct line into the spiritual concerns of its participants.

Apostates
Baptists: Baptist Watch
Jehovah’s Witnesses: Watcher of the Watchtower
Seventh-Day Adventists: The Lookout
ExChristian — true tales of apostasy.
ExTian Stories
Losing My Religion is a self-described resource for those leaving the Christian faith.

Blogroll The Revealer