After the 1967 Presidential Prayer Breakfast, a group of newspaper correspondents and religion writers in Washington, D. C., met for a symposium. They discussed the special duty of laymen whose vocations engage them influentially in the mass media in a time of moral crisis.
Participants were Leland A. Bandy, Washington correspondent of the “Columbia (S. C.) State”; Mrs. Lillian Brooks Brown, TV-radio program coordinator, American University; Louis Cassels, religion editor, United Press International; Miss Ella F. Harllee, president, Educational Communication Association; David E. Kucharsky, associate editor, CHRISTIANITY TODAY; Edmund B. Lambeth, Washington Bureau, Gannett Newspapers; Al Manola, editor, NAHB “Journal of Homebuilding”; Caspar Nannes, religion editor, “Washington Evening Star”; and William Willoughby, Washington correspondent for Religious News Service. Moderating the discussion was Editor Carl F. H. Henry ofCHRISTIANITY TODAY.
Henry: Everyone here presumably has a spiritual commitment and is related to the world of the mass media in a time of moral crisis in world history. A few years ago when I was interviewing Charles Malik, former chairman of the United Nations General Assembly, he said in the course of the interview, “Jesus Christ is the hinge of history.” Now, if we are church-related, and vocationally engaged at frontiers of the mass media, in a time of ethical and spiritual crisis, does some special obligation accrue to us to give visibility to Jesus Christ as the hinge of history? And if so, how? Again, over and above being skillful journalists in respect to all that good journalism implies as a vocation, do we have any responsibility of putting the right questions to our generation, of forcing upon ...1
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