According to Christianity Today the past year’s top ten religious stories were as follows: [Click the link if you want details about what these stories are about.]
1. Taliban takes Korean short-term mission team hostage, killing two.
2. Atheism tops the bestseller charts.
3. Presidential campaigns start early, with some faith surprises.
4. Ruth Graham dies.
5. Anglican Communion fractures over Scripture, homosexuality.
6. Three Christians tortured and killed in eastern Turkey.
7. Jerry Falwell and D. James Kennedy die. l
8. Francis Beckwith, head of the Evangelical Theological Society, becomes a Catholic.
10. Supreme Court upholds 2003 federal partial-birth abortion ban.
This list strikes me as rather parochial, emphasizing inside the Bible-beltway stories rather than events of genuine spiritual importance. That the Church is still producing martyrs, though, is of great significance. The pro-life victory is important, as is the global reaction against Western theological liberalism.
Would you put other events of the past year in this list? What can we conclude about the state of American and world Christianity if these are top stories?