The answers to these frequently asked questions are as follows: Yes, no and no.
Yes, we do sell advertisements, both in print and online. No, the amount we charge for subscriptions doesn’t cover the cost to produce our content. No, we do not receive money from the PC(USA). (When we say we are an “independent publication,” that is really what we are!)
I have learned a lot about publishing over the past two years (and hopefully some things about editing, too). I have learned that no small magazine (or even many major periodicals) make it financially without donors or philanthropists. The costs, printing, postage, personnel and travel to cover events exceed the revenue from advertising sales and subscriptions. If we don’t have people who value what we do enough to support us with their financial gifts, we can’t do this work. That is the bottom line.
Research bears out a truth many of us likely have suspected: Pastors aren’t very good fundraisers. They don’t like asking for money. Well, I am a pastor. However, I am also an editor and publisher and, more importantly, I believe in the mission of the Presbyterian Outlook. Passionately. As one of my board members put it, “The Presbyterian Outlook is part of the glue that holds our denomination together.” I couldn’t have said it better myself. The Outlook is a vital place for our connectional church to connect over time and space, through letters to the editor, Friday commentaries, conference and meeting coverage and articles that encourage thoughtful conversation.
In a culture that often seems as bereft of theological substance even as it hungers for spiritual meaning, the Outlook provides a place for Presbyterian leaders to learn about a wide range of topics, share ideas and strengthen their ministry and witness.
So, one final question: Will you support us? (I am asking you for money.) We are one of the few remaining independent religious publications on a major denomination in the United States. I believe we still have an important role to play and meaningful work to do. I hope you believe that, too.
Click here to make a donation. Thank you.
Grace and peace,