The Good News tabloid empowering grassroots evangelism

By Christian Today |
good news

In the field of creative evangelism, the Good News paper serves as a dynamic force for Christian media, carrying the transformative message of Jesus Christ into communities across the UK. You may well have seen copies at your local church or at collection points in surrounding towns and cities.

At the heart of this evangelical initiative is Andrew Halloway, a dedicated Christian editor whose personal journey of faith, ethical journalism, and commitment infuses every aspect of the publication.

At first glance, Good News resembles every other classic British red top; yet, this one is filled with positive news and powerful real-life Christian testimonials. It all adds up to a brilliantly effective way to get the Gospel message and a calling card straight out onto the streets of modern Britain, including churches, hospitals, and even prisons - reaching people at grassroots, exactly where they are in the world.

A publication for the people

"I'm Yorkshire born and bred, brought up in a Christian family," Andrew Halloway reflects on his early commitment to Christ in Halifax at the age of 14. This commitment became a cornerstone for Andrew's life, shaping his experiences and influencing his path through various Christian denominations, including Baptist, Pentecostal, and Anglican churches.

Andrew's journey was not confined to geographical boundaries but extended across the country through various job roles and diverse church memberships. His editorial training at CWR (Crusade for World Revival) in Surrey under the leadership of the late Every Day With Jesus author Selwyn Hughes marked a pivotal moment in his professional development.

His subsequent roles as editor and publishing manager at CPO (Christian Publishing Outreach), a literature-publishing charity in Worthing, and as an editor and deputy editor at New Life Publishing in Nottingham, all laid the groundwork for what would become a providential connection with the Good News newspaper.

"It was one of those 'God-incidences,'" Halloway remarks. "My previous work contract had just come to an end when the founding editor of Good News rang up and asked if I wanted to take over as editor." Despite financial uncertainties, Halloway, driven by his passion for evangelism, saw Good News as an ideal platform to utilise his skills in spreading the Gospel.

The beginning and evolution of Good News

Good News, first published in 2001, has roots dating back to Challenge newspaper from the 1960s. Halloway assumed the role of editor in 2007, initially committing to about five years. Today, his enduring dedication to Good News illustrates the profound impact of the newspaper.

Andrew identifies two key strengths that make evangelistic newspapers like Good News invaluable in any church's outreach toolkit. "Firstly, Good News helps ordinary Christians to share their faith," he notes. Recognising the challenge many face in initiating conversations about faith, Andrew underscores the simplicity of the newspaper's approach: "If you ask someone, 'Would you like some good news for a change?,' most people say 'yes,' and you can give them a copy."

This approach, rooted in relatable content and jargon-free language, empowers ordinary Christians to engage in meaningful conversations about faith. As Halloway emphasises, "Good News empowers ordinary Christians to witness, and let's face it, the Church in the UK is not going to grow unless ordinary church members are gossiping the gospel."

Secondly, Good News's monthly publication schedule facilitates regular, consistent outreach. Andrew dismisses the effectiveness of "the one-hit outreach" approach, asserting that for most people, hearing the Gospel repeatedly is essential for it to sink in. He encourages churches to distribute copies every month, fostering relationships with non-Christians that bear fruit over time.

Through Outreach UK, a partner organisation, Good News also offers training for church members in personal evangelism and door-to-door work. Andrew Halloway highlights the importance of these initiatives, especially door-to-door visits that have been abandoned by many churches. He notes, "The 'professional' evangelists and pastors that use Good News in door-to-door visiting are surprised by how many people are willing to continue receiving Good News."

Challenges within the Christian church

When asked about the greatest challenge facing the Christian church in the UK, Halloway turns inward. "It's that word 'compromise,'" he cautions. Expressing concern about churches veering from their core mission, he advocates for a steadfast refusal to conform to the world's patterns. "Don't let the world around you squeeze you into its own mould," he quotes from Romans 12:2, underscoring the need for an unwavering commitment to the transformative power of the Gospel.

Halloway's insights are grounded in a keen awareness of the internal dynamics shaping the church. He identifies this subtle drift towards compromise, as some churches, rattled by declining attendance, deviate from sharing the Gospel effectively with their communities.

"Instead," Andrew observes, "leaders may conform to societal norms, diluting the Gospel into an optional self-help project or concentrating solely on social work."

He cautions against losing sight of the core message, stressing that, "Social work, while part of the Gospel, is not the whole Gospel."

Once again, this red top editor draws inspiration from scripture, urging believers to resist conformity and be transformed by the renewing of their minds.

"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is - his good, pleasing and perfect will" Romans 12:2 (NIV).

Equipping a generation of kingdom builders

In the ever-resourceful world of Christian outreach, Good News, under Halloway's guidance, remains a steadfast source of hope. Beyond its pages, it serves as a catalyst for conversations, empowers believers, and fosters relationships that endure.

Originally published by Christian Today