Journalism that Blesses

By Staff Writer and Brad Knickerbocker

Brad Knickerbocker has been a journalist since 1971. As a Staff writer and editor for The Christian Science Monitor, he shares how he sees the positive effect that The Monitor has in the world today.

Have you made a difference, and how can journalism make a positive difference in the world?
I like to think that my work has made a difference now and then. In one specific instance, investigative work I did in Boston led to the prosecution and conviction of a corrupt elected official. My reporting on environmental and national security issues over the years has been recognized as worthwhile and perhaps influential.

I tend to see "making a difference" in terms of The Monitor's role in the world today, a century after Mary Baker Eddy founded it as her last great endeavor. The author of Acts refers to the work of Paul and Barnabas, explaining that "the word of the Lord was published throughout all the region" (13:49). I like to think of that as the work of The Monitor. We're still at the cutting edge of the new developments in daily journalism as it moves from print on paper to the Internet as its primary means of distribution. But the goal remains the same: "To injure no man, but to bless all mankind."

How does the work of The Monitor bless humankind?
It does this by presenting a view of mankind as having the potential to be intelligent and loving – in line with the Ten Commandments and with Jesus' teachings – even when (or maybe, especially when) the evidence seems to be otherwise. In fact, intelligence and love are central to mankind's true nature.

This is not to be confused with "seeing things through rose-colored glasses." Rather, it means being solution-oriented. A regular feature is "People Making a Difference." The Monitor also includes a daily spiritual message. A recent one was titled, "A way forward out of hopelessness and despair," and it included passages from II Kings, Psalms, and Matthew. The consistent goal is to uplift the way we see the world, and thus be able to see our way to resolutions and progress.