I am deeply grateful as I write to you today – to our great Lord and Savior and to you personally – for your prayers and partnership with our ministry at Crossway.
One month ago, we asked for help in a very challenging situation. As you know, devastating storms swept though the Chicago area in mid-April, which resulted in unprecedented flooding in Wheaton, causing major damage throughout Crossway’s headquarters. Our first-floor offices, meeting rooms, computer room, and on-site bookstore were extensively damaged by two feet of floodwater.
We quickly realized that extensive work would be needed, both to recover from the flood and to flood-proof the perimeter of our building and protect against this happening again. But more importantly, the unanticipated costs threatened our ability to maintain several key global ministry initiatives in the coming year.
It has been humbling indeed to see the Lord’s extraordinary provision – through the outpouring of prayer, encouragement, and financial support of the Lord’s people around the world. During the last four weeks, we have received well over 2,000 emails and letters of encouragement, including gifts of support from over thirty nations around the world – from churches, friends in the publishing industry, and thousands of individuals – mostly from people whom I have never met before but who nonetheless graciously responded and faithfully prayed. As I signed the thank-you letters and noted the gift receipts, I was often deeply moved (even at times to tears) by the extraordinary goodness of the Lord and his people.
Initial estimates for recovery and flood-proofing our building focused on waterproofing all of the entry doors, strengthening outer walls, and sealing the foundation perimeter. After several meetings with building engineers and architects, it became clear that more extensive work on the property and perimeter of the building would be necessary. Although the initial repair estimates have nearly tripled, the Lord has clearly provided through your generous help.
Remarkably, as recovery and flood-proofing costs increased, so did the amount of support, corresponding almost exactly to the new cost estimate. Most importantly this means that key ministry projects can be sustained this year – including the means for (1) completion of the Chinese translation of ESV Study Bible notes and features, for publication of the New Testament in Mainland China next year (DV); (2) distribution of an additional 20,000 Chinese-English Bibles in Mainland China (bringing the total now close to 250,000); (3) the completion and strategic distribution of the Gospel Transformation Bible project; and (4) developing the first editions of our Knowing the Bible studies for free digital access worldwide.
All of this is to express my deep gratitude to you. Because of your support, we are emerging from this time of crisis with renewed strength and the means to carry forward the ministry God has entrusted to us – to develop and publish vital, gospel-centered materials; to equip believers; and to share the gospel and the truth of God’s Word with a world that is desperately lost apart from Christ.
With my great appreciation for you,
In Christ our Savior,
Lane T. Dennis, PhD