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Amazon and the Decline of Christian Bookstores

Christian product distributor Send the Light Distribution (STL) has announced that it will begin to close down its business. The company which has served over 10,000 Christian retailers for 42 years has suffered from the challenges of Amazon and the decline of Christian bookstores. The bankruptcy of Family Christian Stores also hit the distribution company hard.

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Why this story matters to church leaders:

The decline of Christian bookstores can have a powerful impact in cities and small towns who rely on them for ministry resources.

  • Where to Find Resources: Although Amazon is convenient, church leaders should consider ways to support bookstores where they can hold books in their hands and review them at their leisure.
  • A shifting industry: Publishing and bookselling are changing, and the places where church leaders find books will change. How do you determine which books to use at your church?
  • Opportunities and change? While Christian bookstores struggle, are there ways that churches can partner with stores to provide more sustainable retail models that keep stores viable? Should churches do this?

If you have a Christian book store in your town, how does it impact your ministry?

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