Crosslight and the communications teams from Synod of Victoria and Tasmania took home three gold awards from the Australasian Religious Press Association on Saturday night in New Zealand.
Synod communications director Penny Mulvey and Crosslight editor Deb Bennett attended the presentation held in Auckland to accept the gold awards for Best Feature Multiple Authors, for Best Review and for Best Social Media Campaign.
“I am immensely pleased by the recognition of what was a real team effort,” Ms Mulvey said.
She said it was good to meet with other communicators from across the denominations and faith traditions.
“The ARPA awards are a showcase of the dedication and talent on display across the whole gamut of church and religious publications,” Ms Mulvey said.
“It was a good opportunity to applaud the fabulous work being done, under in some cases increasingly challenging circumstances.”
The winning feature article, The Future of Faith, was co-authored by Nigel Tapp, David Southwell and Ms Bennett and appeared in the November Crosslight last year.
The judges said the feature, which interviewed former church-goers, church youth group members and social researcher Hugh Mackay, was “well researched, well-crafted and presented in an easily readable style.”
Another Uniting Church publication, Queensland Synod’s Journey, took the silver award in this category for Prison Break, which was about the high rates of imprisonment of the First Peoples.
A review by Emmet O’Cuana, on the video game Dragon Age: Inquisition, was awarded the gold medal. Judges called the review “a highly original piece of work”.
The inaugural gold award for Best Social Media Campaign went to the VicTas communication team’s work on the general synod meeting of 2016.
The judges said that social media guru Tim Lam and team had “developed an engaging and creative social media campaign for 2016 Synod”, which showed how “social media can enhance the experience of Synod”.
The gold award for Best Feature, Single Author went to Uniting Church Synod Western Australia publication, Revive, for Embracing Weirdness as a Disciple of the Way. Revive also picked up a bronze award for Best News Story for an article on medicinal cannabis legislation.
The Synod of NSW and ACT publication Insights won a bronze award for Best Cover Magazine and a silver award for Best Design Magazine.
Journey also won the bronze award for Best New Writer for an article on creationist Ken Ham by Ben Rogers.
The Melbourne Anglican was awarded the Publication of the Year 2017, while the top prize of the night, the 2017 Gutenberg Award went to The Record Magazine and eRecord, produced by the Catholic Archdiocese of Perth.
Leading up to the awards presentation, the Australasian Religious Press Association members gathered from noon on Friday for a conference that included the annual general meeting, keynote speakers and workshops.