As regular readers of Beacon Lights know, 2016 marked the 75th anniversary of the publication of the magazine. We celebrated this milestone by reprinting a number of articles from the magazine’s history, beginning with a goodly number from the 1940s and continuing throughout the decades that followed. From readers’ comments it is evident that this historical look back was well received. Members of the staff spent a lot of time searching the archives for interesting and appropriate articles. They did such a good job that we have a number of leftover articles for which we did not have room in 2016. Now we have a pleasant problem. We have material that deserves publication, but our 75th year is now past. Rather than wasting all this effort and research, we have decided to publish some of this material occasionally throughout 2017. We hope you will enjoy this.
Also, beginning with this issue, we will publish a series of seven articles under the temporary rubric Prayers for the Church Universal. We as Protestant Reformed churches have extensive contact with other Reformed churches and groups throughout the world. They vary widely as to location, character, history, culture, and development in the Reformed faith. They all have needs, as do we. We have asked these various churches and groups to tell us about themselves and to tell us about their needs, which ought on our part to be the subject of prayers for them, as they undoubtedly pray for us. Beacon Lights thanks those who have written these fascinating articles. We hope that you will find them edifying and enjoyable.
In this issue you will also notice a transition in the devotionals rubric. Sarah Mowery and Ben Laning, both from our Loveland, CO congregation have finished their joint authorship of the devotionals based on Psalms, and will now take up a chronological treatment of scripture. I need say no more, since Sarah gives a good explanation in this issue. Beacon Lights thanks both of them for their faithful labors, and encourages our readers to use this material as a guide for their personal and family devotions.
The Beacon Lights staff is also giving consideration to a possible redesign of the magazine. The current design is nearly five years old, and the thought is that perhaps it is time for a fresh appearance.
We are also sponsoring a writing contest, complete with prizes for the best submissions. For the pertinent information, please read the article by Abbie Eriks that appears elsewhere in this issue.
Finally, as the calendar turns to a new year, Beacon Lights takes this opportunity to thank all those who have written for us and who have helped to make the magazine successful.