July 17, 2008
Orlando Sentinel lays off Mark Pinsky
Widely respected religion journalist especially known for his pop culture coverage.
But as of August 1, his byline will be missed by religion reporters around the world. Over his 13 years on the religion beat, first at the Los Angeles Times then at the Sentinel, Pinsky established a reputation for being one of the best reporters on the beat. His beat was broad, but in the hometown of Campus Crusade for Christ, Wycliffe Bible Translators, and Strang Communications, Pinsky developed a particular expertise in evangelical Christianity. He recounted his experience and reporting in a book, A Jew Among Evangelicals, and in a 2005 Columbia Journalism Review article.
Pinsky also established himself as must-read reporter on the nexus of faith and entertainment culture. Westminster John Knox recently published an expanded version of his 2001 The Gospel According to The Simpsons, and in 2004 published his similar book, The Gospel According to Disney.
Last month, Reed Business Information announced that it was laying off another great religion journalist, Publishers Weekly senior religion editor Lynn Garrett, whose coverage of religion publishing was second to none. Regardless of whether we're starting to see a trend of cuts in religion journalism, it's sad to see that two indispensable bylines on religion and culture have been dispensed with.