Journalism Professionals Discuss Integration of Faith and Journalism

July 31, 2012 | 8:17 a.m.

By Greta Sowles '15

Members of Advisers of Christian Collegiate Media participate in group discussion.

Journalism professors and media advisers from the U.S. and Canada met for an Advisers of Christian Collegiate Media (ACCM) retreat at Bethel in June. ACCM is an organization founded on professional media performance standards grounded in the Christian ethic, and seeks to raise a standard of responsible, ethical, professional, and service-oriented journalism. Members seek to honor Jesus Christ and provide and promote truth and balance in media coverage.

Professors from Biola University in California, Wheaton College in Illinois, and Asbury University in Kentucky, among others, attended the 2012 retreat, which was coordinated by Bethel journalism faculty member Phyllis Alsdurf, associate professor of English. Former Bethel University President George Brushaber, who also has served as a senior editor for Christianity Today, was a featured guest speaker. Brushaber challenged the group with questions regarding the status of higher education, stating the importance of building community amidst a broken society. “It is really important to be building a culture of cohesiveness,” he stated.

The group was also intrigued by conversation with Rohan Preston, a theatre critic for the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Preston talked about integrating his Christian faith in the field of journalism, describing the importance of declaring by example and reporting the truth. “Tell the truth,” he said. “It doesn’t have to be used as a weapon.”

The faculty members and advisers in the group agreed that preserving Christian higher education is of utmost importance, especially in today’s challenging financial times.