The following items were selected by the CT news staff as the year’s top stories, based on the stories’ impact on the evangelical community.
1. War in the Gulf. The conflict heightened not only interest in the end times, but also concern for peace in the Middle East.
2. Reforms in the USSR and Eastern Europe. Continued restructuring created new opportunities for believers.
3. Denominations address sexuality issues. Traditional standards of personal holiness were reconsidered and, by and large, upheld.
4. Euthanasia. Court cases, a suicide machine, a best-selling how-to suicide book, and a state referendum put the issue high on the public agenda.
5. Religious liberty. Lower-court interpretations of a landmark Supreme Court decision eroded constitutional protections of religious practice, said church/state experts.
6. Operation Rescue in Wichita. The controversial movement once again claimed the national spotlight, fanning the already-hot abortion debate.
7. Southern Baptist moderates. After more than a decade of conservative victories in the Southern Baptist Convention, moderates formed their own fellowship.
8. Protestantism in Latin America. The changing religious landscape in this part of the world was highlighted by major visits from both Pope John Paul II and Billy Graham.
9. Economic recession. Troubled times pinched Christian ministries and denominations, resulting in layoffs and cutbacks.
10. Dead Sea Scrolls. After decades of frustration, scholars finally gained full access to the 2,000-year-old documents.
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