Mark Galli, former editor in chief of Christianity Today, will be the next speaker in BNG’s webinar series, “Conversations That Matter.”
The first webinar, offered Sept. 14, featured a panel of mental health experts talking about how to maintain good mental health during the pandemic.
Galli was scheduled to be the keynote speaker at BNG’s annual dinner event during the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship General Assembly in Atlanta in June, but that event was canceled due to COVID-19.
Now, he will engage in a 90-minute webinar conversation with Mark Wingfield, BNG executive director and publisher, on Thursday, Oct. 8, at 6 p.m. Central Time. The event is free, but advance registration is required.
Galli made national headlines in December 2019 when — during Congressional impeachment proceedings — he wrote an editorial in Christianity Today in favor of removing Donald Trump as president of the United States. That editorial, “Trump Should Be Removed from Office,” sparked shock among those who considered the evangelical publication too conservative and outrage among those who considered the publication too liberal.
In this and other writings, Galli has marked out a middle way amid the so-called culture wars in American evangelicalism and politics.
He recently made headlines again when — now in semi-retirement — he was confirmed into the Roman Catholic faith. Previously he had identified as a Presbyterian, Episcopalian, then Anglican, with a stint attending the Orthodox Church. Nationwide, more Catholics become evangelical Christians than evangelicals become Catholics.
Galli also has a new book out, When Did We Start Forgetting God: The Root of the Evangelical Crisis, and Hope for the Future. In it, he says, he hopes to “turn our attention away from the politics of the moment, the social issues being discussed online, and the debate du jour among Christians. I want us to take a long and hard look at what’s missing in our souls. Only then can our work in the public square bear healthy fruit.”
He served as managing editor and then editor in chief of Christianity Today over a 20-year period. He now produces a weekly newsletter, The Galli Report. He describes his primary interest now as writing about the “worldly spiritual life.” By this, he says, he means “to take the insights of the Christian tradition, among other resources, and show how they can help us think and act and pray more wisely in our daily lives, in the church and in the public square.”
Galli was born and raised in California, earned a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of California at Santa Cruz and a master of divinity degree from Fuller Theological Seminary. He served as a Presbyterian pastor for 10 years, four in Mexico City and six in Sacramento, before becoming a journalist.
Among his other books are Francis of Assisi and His World; Karl Barth: An Introductory Biography for Evangelicals; Jesus Mean and Wild; Beautiful Orthodoxy; and Beyond Bells & Smells: The Wonder and Power of Christian Liturgy.