After Thought: Making an impact on Kentucky Baptist life

By Todd Deaton

Published: May 15, 2018

The Western Recorder is celebrating 193 years of Baptist publications serving Kentucky in 2018, though the newspaper was not renamed the Western Recorder until 1851. In 2019, the Western Recorder will mark 100 years as the Kentucky Baptist Convention's official news journal, and we are looking forward to emerging opportunities as we begin a second century of service together.

For nearly 200 years now, the Western Recorder has been a vital record of Kentucky Baptist theology, polity, practice, history, and cooperative ministry. The state Baptist news publication is a crucial element of how we live and work together as Kentucky Baptists.

Dr. Todd Deaton

Kentucky Baptists who receive the state Baptist newspaper are genuinely interested in their church and denomination. They deem the news its pages contain important enough to subscribe to the publication, and they enjoy reading it regularly. Or, their church feels that keeping members informed about missions opportunities and the ministry of the Kentucky Baptist Convention and its churches is important enough to provide the newspaper to them.

For the most part, we'd have to say our readers are faithful, longtime Kentucky Baptists who are very active in their churches—many are our senior saints—and they very likely are strong givers and missions volunteers. Most still prefer a print product that they can hold in their hands and read at their leisure, though some also read articles online.

We understand the growing relevance of providing a strong website to get news out quickly. We now provide a website and digital issues. Yet, our ability to post stories online depends on the vitality of our print product and on those who subscribe. In a real sense, those who subscribe to the Western Recorder help extend the scope of its ministry, even beyond our Kentucky Baptist family.

Lately I'm hearing more often—even among some younger Baptists—of a shift toward reading print publications that seems to be regaining some popularity. This may be because many of us are on cell phones and work computers all day, and there is a growing distrust of "fake" news, biased commentary and negativity that has become so commonplace online.

Here's the main point, though: Western Recorder prints stories with a Kentucky Baptist perspective that no other print publication does, and we're making a significant impact for the Kingdom. The Western Recorder serves as the eyes and ears of Kentucky Baptists, providing local ministry context and telling how what is happening affects churches, ministries and lives across our state. More importantly, we strengthen Kingdom growth in local communities by encouraging disciples to be involved in the missions and ministry of their church, their association, and their state convention.

The Western Recorder is blessed to serve a faithful constituency of thousands of long-time Baptist tithers and volunteers, helping them to understand the significance of their continued support of missions and ministries through the Cooperative Program. We are grateful to the pastors and members of these churches for their continued support our vital ministry through their prayers, gifts to the Cooperative Program, and readership.

Introduce the members of your church to the Western Recorder by providing a bundle of 10, 20 or more copies of the newspaper to be distributed on Sundays. Call us today at (866) 489-3442 to get started.