Christian Retailing

Biblica and Zondervan celebrate 50 years of the NIV PDF Print E-mail
Written by Leslie Petersen   
Monday, 26 January 2015 10:57 AM EST

50th-anniversary-logoJanuary 2015 marks the beginning of a yearlong campaign to celebrate the 50-year anniversary of the commissioning of the New International Version (NIV). In its 50 years, the NIV has become the world’s most-read modern-English Bible translation, with over 450 million copies distributed worldwide.

To commemorate the 50th anniversary, Biblica and Zondervan will celebrate by releasing videos and articles that tell the historical story of the translation. The campaign is supported by four main themes: Made to Read, Made to Study, Made to Share and Made for You. 

“Made to Read” is the first theme that will launch the first quarter of 2015. “Made to Read” will highlight the historical milestones that led to the commissioning of the Committee on Bible Translation (CBT). This committee’s original establishment recognized the need and laid the foundation for an accurate Bible translation in contemporary language.

In 1955, the original vision for the NIV was cast by Christian businessman Howard Long. After a failed attempt to share the gospel using the King James Version, Long began his search for a Bible that was both readable in contemporary language and reliable to the original texts.

Ten years later, a cross-denominational group of evangelical scholars was assembled to work toward one mission: to create a contemporary English translation of the Bible. The formation of this group of 15 scholars, representing a broad spectrum of Christian denominations, marked one of the most significant events in the history of the English Bible.

After more than a decade of painstaking translation work, the complete text of the NIV was published in 1978, enabling Christians to read the entire Word of God in contemporary English while also remaining faithful to the original texts. In less than 10 years the NIV became the world’s best-selling modern-English Bible translation, an honor it still maintains today.

“Our prayer for this anniversary campaign is to capture the attention of Bible readers, pastors and Bible teachers with the history of the NIV, to introduce the committee of distinguished scholars that continue to work on the translation; and to share the impact the NIV is having all over the world,” said John Kramp, SVP and Bible publisher for HarperCollins Christian Publishing.  “The first theme of the campaign—Made to Read—provides historical context into the need for a contemporary English translation of the Bible. Today we, along with the CBT and Biblica, celebrate a translation that is true to God’s Word and has changed how people read, experience and live out the Bible.”

The Made to Read campaign video can be viewed at, along with several stories related to the theme under the “50th Anniversary” tab. Free resources, including reading plans, Scripture memes and Bible samplers, are also available on the site, as well as a guide to assist readers in finding their best Bible match.

In addition, Biblica, Zondervan and Tecarta have launched a free NIV 50th Anniversary mobile app available on IOS and Android that provides free access to the NIV for the 2015 calendar year. In addition to providing the NIV text, the mobile app includes additional quarterly anniversary content and many study and devotional Bibles made available for a trial period.  

For additional information on the NIV 50th Anniversary, please visit 

RBC Ministries rebrands to become Our Daily Bread PDF Print E-mail
Written by Shawn A. Akers   
Monday, 26 January 2015 09:33 AM EST

Our-Daily-Bread-logoWorldwide, Our Daily Bread is recognized as a household phrase. It only stands to reason that RBC Ministries has now adopted the name of its flagship publication.

RBC, which publishes the daily devotionals, announced recently that it is changing its name to Our Daily Bread Ministries. President Rick DeHaan said the change was made due primarily to low public awareness of the RBC name.

“Today, many people don’t know who RBC Ministries is or what we represent,” DeHaan said. “However, once we mention that we are the publishers of our devotional, Our Daily Bread, most people will recognize us. We made this decision based on research that showed that changing our name will help us connect with people more easily. It would also allow us to use the strength of Our Daily Bread name to introduce more of resources to introduce the wisdom of God’s Word with people from every nation.

DeHaan says that although the name has changed, the minstry’s focus remains the same.

“We’re still reaching out to people all over the world with the message of God’s love, whether it’s through a radio or television broadcast, a DVD, podcast, a video, social media, a book, a website or a mobile app,” he said. “Nothing matters more to us than helping people grow their relationship with God in understanding his Word.

The company’s new logo will also be shared by all of the ministry’s efforts, including Our Daily Journey, Discovery Series, Discover the Word audio, Day of Discovery video, Discovery House Publishers, and Christian University GlobalNet.

As part of the name change initiative, Our Daily Bread Ministries will also re-launch more than 20 ministry websites, produce new video-based devotionals, improve mobile apps, and expand e-book offerings.”

Rainer title lauded with 2014 award PDF Print E-mail
Written by Dave Schroeder   
Monday, 26 January 2015 09:09 AM EST

autopsy-of-deceased-churchB&H Publishing Group has announced that Autopsy of a Deceased Church by Thom Rainer was honored for the 2014 Leadership Journal Book Awards. This follows Rainer’s 2013 award for the No. 1 CBA best-selling I Am a Church Member.

Each year, Leadership Journal selects excellent Christian leadership books for their annual Book Awards. Their editorial team selected the books that they believe are worth a leader’s valuable time. Leadership Journal’s hope is to showcase books that help leaders develop their gifts to further the ministry God has entrusted to them. You can read about the full list on their website

Published in May 2014, Thom Rainer’s Autopsy of a Deceased Church (B&H) has started a conversation about the reasons churches die and how to prevent it from happening to yours.

“No one wants to see a church die. And yet, far too many churches are dying” Rainer says. “Whether part of vibrant or dying churches, I wrote this book to help church leaders keep their church alive to the glory of God and advance Christ’s kingdom.”

In addition to his duties with LifeWay Christian Resources, one of the largest Christian resource companies in the world, Rainer is also a respected pastor and researcher and has written over 20 books. He coauthored the No. 1 CBA best-sellers I Am a Church Member and Simple Church (both B&H). In July 2015, Rainer will publish I Will: Nine Traits of the Outwardly Focused Christian (B&H).

2015 Absolutely Gospel Music Award nominees announced PDF Print E-mail
Written by AG Publicity   
Friday, 23 January 2015 06:00 PM EST

new-agm-logo3Joseph Habedank and hit songwriter Kenna West each garnered eight nominations, the most among any individuals, to top the list of nominees for the 2015 Absolutely Gospel Music Awards. As in years past, the nominees were chosen by the staff of and select media representatives.

Starting Feb. 1, 2015, fans will have an opportunity to vote for their favorites in a dozen categories.

“It is hard to believe that it is time to be announcing another batch of nominees,” says President/CEO Deon Unthank. “Our awards program has become a highlight in the Southern Gospel industry, and we can’t wait to announce all of the plans we have this year.”

Chris D. Unthank, editor-in-chief of says the list of nominees is a stellar one.

“This is another great listing of artists and individuals who best represented our genre in 2014,” Chris Unthank said. “We aren’t just about nominating the most popular and recognizable names in the industry. Our awards are about the best our music had to offer from a musical and artistic standpoint for the previous year. This year’s nominees don’t change that at all.”

The Absolutely Gospel Music Awards opened a new category this year—the Music Video of the Year—due to the large increase of short-form concept videos being produced in the genre over the last couple of years. Music videos belonging to HIGHROADIII, The Freemans, Brian Free & Assurance, Wilburn & Wilburn, and Jason Crabb were the first to be nominated in this category.

Four artists tied for the most nominations this year. Last year's big winners the Isaacs, along with the Bowling Family, Brian Free & Assurance, and 11th  Hour, landed an impressive seven nominations each this year.

Two artists earned the most individual nominations: new soloist Joseph Habedank and hit songwriter Kenna West, both snagging a staggering eight nominations each. Habedank landed mentions in Breakthrough Artist of the Year and Male Vocalist of the Year in addition to multiple songwriting mentions as well. West landed her fifth consecutive Songwriter of the Year notice and had double Song of the Year nominations (for co-writing “Finish Well” and “Say Amen”).

 For a complete list of nominees, visit

Carpentree awarded licensing for 'Old Fashioned' PDF Print E-mail
Written by Sherry Morris   
Friday, 23 January 2015 03:58 PM EST

old-fashioned-eblastCarpentree, Inc. is releasing four new canvases that support the message of Skoche film’s Old Fashioned. Releasing Valentine’s Day, Old Fashioned, according to writer/director and lead actor Rik Swartzwelder, will bring a question to the forefront.

“In your heart,” he asks, “what do you want to believe about true love?”

Carpentree is pleased to be part of conveying the movie’s positive message through canvas designs. Each item features whimsical figures that moviegoers will connect with on an emotional level and also offers a message or scripture that supports the movie’s goal to help people think about what true love really is. 

“These canvases are perfect gifts for Valentine’s Day and beyond,” says Carpentree National Sales Director Jordan Hobson. “Each item’s scripture and message makes this wall décor uniquely well-suited for weddings, anniversary, or ‘Just because’ gifts, too.”

“Stores wanting to get these products in for Valentine’s Day sales and beyond should contact their IntegriTeam rep today or call us at 1.800.736.2787,” says Carpentree Director of Business Development Bill Fowler. “Because of the short window to get these into the stores before or near the movie’s release, stores should place orders soon.”

All canvases are hand-stretched and printed with 100 year ink in the company’s Tulsa, Oklahoma manufacturing plant.  Each comes with a “Made in the USA” tag.  The price point is $27.50 for a 10x15x1.5 canvas. 

To see the movie trailer, click here.

Carta Jerusalem to partner with Hendrickson Publishers PDF Print E-mail
Written by Meghan Lynch   
Friday, 23 January 2015 03:41 PM EST

Lazy-H-burgCarta Jerusalem, the long-established cartographic firm that holds the world’s largest collection of biblical study materials, is now partnering with Hendrickson Publishers to extend its distribution to stores and retailers in North America, effective March 1.

Carta’s prestigious publications include maps, texts and illustrations depicting history and historical geography of Bible lands and cultures, as well as the turbulent history of Jerusalem and other sacred sites; biblical and later archaeology of the Holy Land; and a variety of related subjects such as the Dead Sea Scrolls and more.

“We are dedicated to honoring faith and tradition, promoting scholarship and keeping up to date on discoveries and research,” said Shay Hausman, president and CEO of Carta Jerusalem. “So we are thrilled to partner with Hendrickson Publishers, who are like-minded in their desire to produce high-quality materials for pastoral and academic communities and make them available to the widest possible public.”

Carta’s products—such as the top-selling Carta Bible Atlas and The Sacred Bridge (Carta’s atlas of the biblical world)—complement Hendrickson’s current academic publishing program, which serves the academic community worldwide with works on the Hebrew Bible and Hebrew language, ancient Near Eastern studies and archaeology, New Testament and Greek language, biblical theology, Judaism, patristics, church history, historical theology, practical theology, and religion and culture.

“We are very excited to be representing Carta Jerusalem to the trade in North America,” said Rick Brown, Publisher at Hendrickson. “This is a high-profile partnership that further strengthens our history of outfitting scholars, students and pastors with the appropriate tools to study the Bible.”

 Stores and retailers interested in carrying Carta Jerusalem products can now contact Hendrickson Publishers’ customer service team at 1-800-358-3111 and

Tyndale House replies to Malarkey heaven story retraction PDF Print E-mail
Written by Shawn A. Akers   
Thursday, 22 January 2015 10:09 AM EST

Alex-Malarkey-recants-heavenly-taleUpon recently learning that the story of Alex Malarkey that inspired the book The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven was fabricated, Tyndale House Publishers immediately put the book and all other ancillary products into out-of-print status.

Malarkey made a public statement on Jan. 14 that he had concocted the made-up tale of when, as a 6-year-old, angels had taken him to the gates of heaven following a horrific auto accident that left him in a coma for two months. Tyndale House published The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven in 2010, and Alex, his father and mother appeared in a Tyndale Entertainment-produced video of the same.

“Earlier this week, Tyndale learned that Alex Malarkey, co-author of The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven, was retracting the story he had told his father and that he recounted in the book they co-authored for publication in 2010,” Tyndale said in a statement issued Jan. 16. “It is because of this new information that we are taking the book out of print.

“For the past couple of years we have known that Beth Malarkey, Kevin’s wife and Alex’s mother, was unhappy with the book and believed it contained inaccuracies. On more than one occasion we asked for a meeting with Kevin, Beth, Alex and their agent to discuss and correct any inaccuracies, but Beth would not agree to such a meeting.” 

Links to the book and associated products were removed from Tyndale’s corporate websites. Tyndale’s distribution outlets were immediately notified of our decision and told that they could return their remaining inventory if they chose to do so.

While it was only in the past week that Alex Malarkey retracted his story, Tyndale said in a release that its editors had tried on multiple occasions to meet with the family to correct any perceived inaccuracies. On several occasions in 2012, Tyndale reached out to Beth Malarkey to schedule a meeting to respond to a list of alleged inaccuracies in the book.

After originally agreeing to a meeting, Mrs. Malarkey sent us an email on May 22, 2012, saying that, out of concern for her son, she no longer wished to meet.

During the past week, numerous blogs and articles have implied that Tyndale House never paid royalties on this book. In its press release, Tyndale House said it “has paid every penny that is due under the terms of the author contract.”

Eerdmans Publishing appoints new marketing director PDF Print E-mail
Written by Ingrid Wolf   
Thursday, 22 January 2015 09:00 AM EST

Rachel-BombergerWm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, an independent family-owned publisher since 1911, announced today that Rachel Bomberger has been named the new director of marketing. In her new role, Bomberger will lead the nine-person team that is responsible for publicity, promotions, advertising and Internet marketing.

Bomberger has held several positions in the Eerdmans marketing department over the last several years: copywriter, Internet marketing manager and editor of the company’s blog, EerdWord. Before coming to Eerdmans, she earned an M.A. in English and gained a broad array of experience in writing, communications and public relations.

“I couldn’t be more excited to step into this position,” said Bomberger. “I look forward to partnering with our dedicated team of marketing professionals to raise awareness of Eerdmans books among readers worldwide.”

Publisher Anita Eerdmans cited several reasons for the promotion.

“We are delighted that Rachel will be taking on this new role,” said Anita Eerdmans, president and publisher of Eerdmans. “Her intelligence and creativity, combined with her hands-on familiarity with our marketing department, make her the perfect choice to lead our marketing efforts.”

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