The National Association of Evangelicals is a family of denominations, nonprofits, schools, churches and individuals, held together by a set of shared beliefs. As our 75th anniversary approached, the NAE staff considered how to mark this milestone. Should we host a massive event and ask for donations? Should we get a high-profile speaker to keynote? In the end, we opted to celebrate an anniversary like a family would.

We invited representatives of our membership to a family dinner. Over dessert, several NAE leaders shared stories about the connections they made through the NAE, why the NAE was important to them and how the NAE has furthered the good news of Jesus Christ. We gave thanks to God, prayed together and humbly looked forward to what lies ahead.

This Evangelicals magazine issue is a little like a family scrapbook featuring photos and highlights we want to remember. It’s not comprehensive, but it celebrates the faith that brings us together and bold actions NAE leaders took that had big impact, such as welcoming Pentecostals into the fold and partnering with unlikely allies to secure meaningful legislation.

We are grateful that even in the midst of World War II, a group of Christian leaders recognized the need and anticipated the value of such a network. At the time, there was a strong theological pull to liberalism and a reactionary fundamentalist response. The NAE founders sought a thoughtful middle way that brought diverse groups together under a shared faith for God’s glory.

The NAE does not have a perfect history nor has it had a straightforward trajectory, but it does have a story to tell of how God used — and continues to use — a group of imperfect followers to be an Influence for Good. It’s the family story we love to tell.

Articles in this Issue

February 11, 2019

Better Together

George O. Wood

February 20, 2019

Working Across Boundaries

Richard Cizik

February 14, 2019

On NAE’s Future

Heather Gonzales

February 27, 2019

Diamond Anniversary

Leith Anderson