The Century Wins 10 Associated Church Press Awards in Virtual Ceremony

March 30, 2020

The Christian Century “took home” ten Best of the Church awards for work published during the 2019 year in a virtual awards ceremony from the Associated Church Press (ACP). The group was scheduled to meet in Washington, D.C. at its annual convention March 17-21, 2020 but canceled the event due to COVID-19. Each year, ACP honors faith communicators’ best work published during the previous year with the awards at the closing banquet; this year the awards were announced via video stream.


The Century received seven awards of excellence, the top award, for the following:

  • Magazine cover design--Beating Guns into Tools, which was designed by Century Art director Dan Richardson and illustrated by Adam Niklewicz. This piece was described by judges as a “great active image, with depth, movement, color. Maybe even sound! Very strong cover design and art. Thoughtful treatment of topic.”
  •  Theological reflection (long format)-- Thoroughly sinful by Heidi Haverkamp was described by judges as “what a surprising and delightful reclamation of what would seem to be the most unpromising of Christian teachings--beautifully done!”
  • Poetry-- Junior scholar by Sydney Lea. Judges found this piece to be “a gritty, powerful reflection on the aspirational goals of the academy, Christian faith and the realities of a fallen world.”
  • Personal experience (short form)--At the abortion clinic by Heidi Neumark was labeled as “a compelling piece that offers unique perspective on the pro-choice/pro-life debate. Full of compassion. The kind of piece that changes minds."
  • Biographical profile (long format)-- Thoroughly sinful by Heidi Haverkamp was “beautifully written and engaging,” according to the judges. 
  • Editorial or opinion (newspaper/newsletter/magazine/journal) Unprotected migrants by Matt Gaventa. The judges said this piece was “full of righteous anger and specific details...a first-person call to action for the Love of Christ.”


The Century received honorable mention awards for the following:

  • Feature article (long format, magazine)-- How fair is fair trade? By David Mesenbring, which was described as an "excellent article and solid journalism. This will be a revelation for many people who see the words ‘Fair Trade’ and automatically assume the product is worthy of purchase and support. The opening anecdote makes it immediately clear to the reader that there is more to fair trade labeling than meets the eye."
  • Feature article (long format, magazine): Reckoning with racism By Josina Guess.  The judges observed, “The article's opening anecdote about the racial obtuseness of Cindy Hyde-Smith prepares the reader for the likelihood that efforts to confront Mississippi's virulently racist past are an uphill battle. As the article points out, the state-funded history museum ignores the mass incarceration and police brutality that Bryan Stevenson characterizes as rebooted slavery. At the same time, descriptions of the museums' exhibits made me want to visit.”
  • Poetry: Mary speaks of how it feels when the baby turns By Devon Millar-Duggan is “a beautiful reflection of what Mary's lived experience might have been like while carrying the Christ child,” said the judges.

All articles are available to read at under a slightly different title.