"Only the masses of simple, humble people and their growing spiritual power will be able to convert the atheists."

—Feodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov

In the midst of the media marathon devoted to the death of Princess Diana, one magazine editor confessed that his initial reaction was, "What luck!"

Journalism is biased toward the negative because people tend to talk about what goes wrong. They are much more likely to chatter about Frank Gifford's infidelity than the millions of faithful husbands. When something is right, it doesn't seem like news.

But at CHRISTIANITY TODAY we have been called to report on what God is doing, and that cannot be summed up as "bad news." For all the church's ailments, its all-too-human shortcomings, it is still the body of Christ animated by the Spirit. That means the church is a source for good news.

While we publish a bimonthly column celebrating the good work of active Christians (Church in Action), in this special issue we want to proclaim the good news about the church more boldly and broadly. To remind our readers that God is alive, well, and involved in the world, we have gathered 100 stories of ordinary Christians and Christian groups doing extraordinary things in the name of Jesus and his gospel. These were not difficult stories to locate; we could have reported thousands. They are not the "100 Best." They are simply accounts of the ordinary, good work of the church, which was "created in Christ Jesus for good works" (Eph. 2:10). This is the gospel, and it is what is right with the church.

1. Kit Danley, Barrio "Mom" Kit Danley is walking in the prison yard with Marcus Velasco (not his real name). She is white, 42, and light-haired; he is a 17-year-old Native American with ...

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