By Jessica Ingram
If a 100th birthday deserves a major celebration, then a 175th birthday deserves a monumental celebration — and that is just what The Alabama Baptist is getting.
Founded by ambitious businessmen and women in 1843, The Alabama Baptist will be celebrating 175 years of continuous service in February 2018. In the 1800s, Alabama was rapidly growing and along with it the community of Baptist churches. The Alabama Baptist was created to unify the Baptist community and provide a communication channel for Baptists across the state. Today, the weekly publication reaches more than 60,000 families and is the most widely circulated state Baptist paper in the nation as well as among the three top-circulated general interest newspapers in Alabama.
The Alabama Baptist’s celebration is threefold. First, a book — “The Alabama Baptist: Celebrating 175 Years of Informing, Inspiring and Connecting Baptists” — is being published. Second, The Alabama Baptist is hosting a birthday party in conjunction with Judson College in Marion, so the party can take place in the community where the paper was founded. Third, Samford University in Birmingham and the Alabama Baptist Historical Commission are partnering with The Alabama Baptist to sponsor a symposium at Samford that will examine the impact of the paper on journalism, theological controversy, life in Alabama and the need for the paper’s continued ministry.
Any organization that continues serving and growing after 175 years deserves recognition, said Editor Bob Terry. Not only is this a moment of celebration for the many people who have contributed to The Alabama Baptist throughout the years, but it is a celebration for Baptists, Christians and Alabamians alike who are interested in the history of the state and how a newspaper, despite struggles and setbacks, has kept its Christian beliefs in the forefront of everything it has done for almost two centuries.
Please join us in celebrating this occasion and let the festivities begin!
Editor’s Note: Jessica Ingram is currently serving as an editorial and marketing intern for The Alabama Baptist.