Asbury Alum Impacts the World Through Storytelling
April 5, 2018
April 05, 2018
Open your browser, turn on the radio or scan your social media feed: there’s no question we live in an information-saturated society. And yet, says Andy Olsen ’04, the new managing editor at “Christianity Today,” the world needs more stories. Truth-telling-artful stories can cut through the noise, engaging dicult subjects and advancing God’s kingdom with truth and love.
In his new role at “Christianity Today,” Olsen builds on the solid training he received at Asbury. Having worked for a time in the non-prot world — including work for a ministry in Haiti and communications for International Justice Mission — he’s excited to return to journalism, using a new platform to continue telling powerful stories.
“My decision to come to ‘Christianity Today’ came, quite honestly, at a time of increasing political, cultural and social tensions in our country in the past couple of years,” Olsen said. “Stories are more important for our culture than ever. They’re a tool God has given us to interact with difficult and complex subjects, and sometimes, hard truths.”
Olsen knows now that storytelling is his God-given calling, but it wasn’t always so clear. As a student, he benetted from conversations with Asbury’s Center for Career & Calling, as well as the encouragement of professors, as he explored his future.
“Asbury helped navigate me toward the career path that made the most sense,” Olsen said. “I had a professor, Michael Longinow, who truly believed in the power of journalism and storytelling to change the world — and it didn’t take him much time to burn that into our minds as students.”
Asbury’s small class sizes, clear Christian worldview and commitment to excellence shaped Olsen’s life in ways he couldn’t have predicted. In particular, the spiritual roots he developed at Asbury have anchored him in his faith, enabling him to tell stories that cut through the noise.
“It’s easier than ever to decide what is important in the world based on political ideologies or fashionable ideas,” Olsen said. “It’s incumbent on Christians that we are strong enough to be anchored in the gospel, in orthodox Christian truth, so that we’re not blown about by the winds of the day. That is vital for everything I’ve done in my career up until now.”