I’m an unabashed lover of magazines and a subscriber to many. So I’m used to a deluge of renewal notices that proliferate in my mailbox and seem to start right after I’ve subscribed. Like many people, I have the bad habit of ignoring most of them. Sometimes this leads me to miss issues of magazines I really love. (Or worse, magazines that my kids really love—heaven forbid I ever let Cricket or Ranger Rick lapse!) This renewal marketing practice has been standard in the magazine business for eons. As you probably know, we do it at Friends Journal, too. But this is changing.
Beginning in the first quarter of 2018, we will renew our subscribers’ magazine subscriptions as a courtesy rather than sending a series of early renewal reminder notices. We are implementing this change for several reasons. First and foremost, we want to ensure that your access to the print and digital versions of Friends Journal continues uninterrupted. Second, we want to conserve resources. By reducing the number of mailings we send, we will save on paper, printing, and postage. This will not only reduce the climate impact of our correspondence with you, it will allow us to put more of your subscription dollars and donations into producing the high-quality content that you deserve and rely upon. The most important reason has to do with relationship. We consider you to be our blessed, widely distributed, and diverse spiritual community. And we have to trust you. We Friends and seekers share an inclination toward deepening spiritual lives. We care about the stories of emerging Quaker faith and practice. We’re in it together.
So please watch your mailbox for the invoice we send when we renew your subscription as a courtesy. Don’t recycle it without reading! If you like, you can permit us to keep a credit or debit card number securely on file for future renewals. All of us at Friends Journal are grateful for the opportunity to be your magazine. Thanks for walking with us.
One more note. If you’re in the United States, you’ll notice that this issue arrives in your mailbox free of the plastic mailing sleeve we have used for some time. With the hope of ensuring the print magazine’s well-being in the mail in light of this, we’ve increased the weight of the cover. Please let me know what you think of the new look!
Californian Friend Don McCormick has contributed a piece in this issue with a provocative premise: “Can Quakerism Survive?” He’s right to ask, and as we readers unpack this question and sit with the concerns and love implicit in it, we find that we face a challenge together: to create a vision of a Religious Society of Friends that attracts and nourishes more and more of those people who are searching for life’s deeper meaning, hunting for a spiritual home, and determined to listen to that still, small voice that speaks from within us all. Friends Journal’s role in the Quaker ecosystem is to be a platform, a workshop, and a refinery for that vision. I hope you will be an active participant in that process with us for a long time.