The Confessional Presbyterian 12

The Confessional Presbyterian 12

The Confessional Presbyterian Journal and Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary are pleased to announce a new home for the Journal. As of March 2021, the Seminary has assumed all responsibilities for publishing the Journal while also retaining the services of longtime General Editor Mr. Chris Coldwell and his team of editors for the foreseeable future.

For some years, the editors of the Journal have been discussing plans to ensure the long-term continuity of the Journal. By tethering the Journal to an institution – Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary – the aim is to secure a reliable publishing mechanism that would not only survive changes in editorship, but also sustain the Journal’s production values as a quality print publication true to the purpose of being “A Journal for Discussion of Presbyterian Doctrine & Practice.”

The Journal is currently in its 16th year of publication, with the 17th volume slated to come out later this year. The Seminary is committed to perpetuate the Journal with content derived from a spectrum of confessional Reformed and Presbyterian denominations.

With Mr. Coldwell agreeing to remain on board as General Editor for the foreseeable future, the only noticeable changes will be a slight change in wording in the publication masthead, the addition of a listing of the Seminary’s Board of Trustees and faculty in each new volume of the Journal, a regular advertisement for the Seminary on the inside back cover of the Journal, and the inclusion of the Seminary’s classic sword and book herald on the spine (beginning with the 17th volume).

The cover of the 17th volume of the Journal will feature an original portrait of the great Dutch theologian Herman Bavinck (1854-1921) by artist Mike Mahon in recognition of the centenary of Dr. Bavinck’s death. An editorial co-authored by Mr. Coldwell and Dr. Jonathan L. Master will introduce and detail the new publishing arrangement.

The Seminary’s intention is to broaden the distribution of the Journal without compromising the high quality of content and design achieved by Mr. Coldwell and the other editors over the last two decades. Perpetuating The Confessional Presbyterian Journal accords nicely with the Seminary’s stated mission of equipping preachers, pastors, and churchmen for Christ’s Kingdom among the nations.

“We are delighted to announce this new partnership with The Confessional Presbyterian Journal. From our perspective, this is perfect partnership, since we, like the editors and contributors to the journal, share the aim of fostering the growth of confessional presbyterian doctrine and worship. We take special joy in the fact that Chris Coldwell will stay on in his current role at the journal and work together with our staff. All of us on the faculty of GPTS have admired his editorial work for years, and we look forward to expanding the journal’s reach and ensuring its stability for many years to come.” – Dr. Jonathan L. Master, PhD (President, Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary)

The Confessional Presbyterian Journal has been a self-funded and self-distributed hand to mouth “Little Train that thought it could” for most of its seventeen years. With one year behind, it was always, “I think I can do another year.” About the fifth issue (a huge issue with a full color portrait of Calvin on it, that began the longstanding custom color portrait cover motif), it began to strike me that people may want the Journal to continue longer than I might have the endurance or faculties to “think I can.” The growing body and quality of work, exceedingly nice and generous commendations, eagerness of enough folks to contribute articles and reviews each year to make an issue, and editors willing to work for no remuneration beyond free copies, assured me it was important to find a track for the Journal’s continuance. But two things were nonnegotiable. The Journal was designed specifically to be a high-quality print journal and should continue to have an original print run. At the same time, it was crucial to retain the original Raison d’être and focus as A Journal for Discussion of Presbyterian Doctrine and Practice for the many denominations that truly claim the label of Confessional Presbyterian, while disagreeing on lesser issues. When at the beginning of 2021 GPTS reached out with a plan that checked all these boxes, I knew it was the right fit at the right time. Only by coming under support of some institution could the Journal live beyond one generation of editors, which time draws closer now after seventeen years, as most of us are on that “downward slope of life.” I and the co-editors, most of whom have been associated with the Journal continuously or on and off over its life, look forward to continuing to craft the Journal over the coming years. I am optimistic and happy to see that whatever may happen to us, GPTS is in a position to assure the continuance of The Confessional Presbyterian Journal beyond our tenure. The Little Train has rounded the top of the hill and is ready for new challenges that do not include the question of whether to continue another year. I’m very thankful to GPTS for this exceedingly generous, optimistic, and exciting arrangement.” – Mr. Chris Coldwell (General Editor, The Confessional Presbyterian Journal)


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