FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NASHVILLE, Tenn. November 6, 2019 / The Upper Room
The Upper Room will cease publication of both Pockets and devozine, its devotional magazines for children and youth, due to declining circulation. The January/February 2020 issue will be the last issue for both publications.
Pockets, a colorful publication featuring stories, poems, games, and daily scripture readings, began in 1981 for children ages 6-12 and reached a peak circulation of 108,894. devozine, short for devotional magazine, was first published in 1996 at the request of teens from the Dakotas Annual Conference. At its high mark, nearly 98,000 youth and church youth leaders used each issue of the magazine.
“We celebrate the tremendous impact these two magazines have had on hundreds of thousands—perhaps millions—of children, youth, families, and churches over the years,” says Stephen D. Bryant, publisher of The Upper Room. “Yet, in the decades since, so much has changed in the publishing world, including the proliferation of content on the internet, ebooks, audiobooks, digital magazines, and smartphones with apps in everyone’s hands, including our youngest readers. As a result, paid circulation has declined to the point where The Upper Room realized we must discover new ways to serve the devotional needs and spiritual formation of young people.”
Bryant invites people who are interested in learning about The Upper Room’s forthcoming spiritual life resources for children and youth to subscribe to “Rising Generations,” a bi-monthly resource newsletter.
Looking toward the future, Sandy Miller, the editor of devozine, writes in the last issue: “Saying goodbye to something you value is difficult. But every ending makes room for a new beginning. As the magazine comes to an end, I pray that you will discover new ways to spend time with God. Ask questions. Embrace life. Love well. And continue to tell your story, for it is a whisper of God’s story.”
Lynn Gilliam, the editor of Pockets, writes in the last issue, “We have been incredibly blessed to be part of the lives of so many amazing kids over all these years! We were honored to have the opportunity to help our readers grow in their faith in God and Jesus.”
The Upper Room is grateful for the children and teens who have grown in faith through Pockets and devozine and for the churches and adults who have supported this growth. The Upper Room expresses gratitude for all writers, designers, and contributors who made possible the production of Pockets and devozine.
The Upper Room is a global ministry dedicated to helping people create daily life with God. From its beginnings as a daily devotional guide, The Upper Room has grown to include publications, programs, prayer support, and other resources to help believers of all ages and denominations move to a deeper level of faith and service. The Upper Room is a part of Discipleship Ministries. Visit UpperRoom.org to learn more.
To learn more about The Upper Room’s offerings for children, youth, and young adults, we invite you to sign up for Rising Generations, a bi-monthly e-newsletter designed specifically for people invested in the spiritual lives of young people.
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I join many of those who will pray for you as you seek to discern what you are called to be at this moment. May God grant you the courage to fulfill that calling. May we all open our eyes and see the misery, open our ears and hear the cries of God’s people, and, like God through the Lord Jesus Christ, be incarnate amongst them.”
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