After receiving harsh criticism for turning down an advertisement for a new, young-adult oriented translation of the Holy Bible, Rolling Stone magazine has decided that it will feature the ad after all in its February issue.
The ad, which is for Today's New International Version (TNIV) -a modern English translation from Zondervan, the nation's leading Bible publishers, featuring updated language and scholarship- was rejected by Rolling Stone two weeks ago for its "spiritual message," on the basis of an unwritten policy the magazine has against accepting ads containing religious material.
"We have addressed the internal miscommunications that led to the previous misstatement of company policy and apologize for any confusion it may have caused," said Lisa Dallos, spokeswoman for Wenner Media, Rolling Stone's parent company.
"We're frankly thrilled that Rolling Stone has decided to accept our ad," said Paul Caminiti, Zondervan's president of Bible publishing.
"We believe that the Bible is relevant for Rolling Stone readers," Caminiti said. "We've always believed they were a cornerstone in our campaign to squarely market to spiritually intrigued 18- to 34-year-old young people, many of whom live outside the embrace of the church."
Other sources Zondervan has tapped for the $1 million campaign include cable channels MTV and VH1, America Online, Modern Bride magazine and the satirical political publication the Onion.
While many secular organizations have decided to embrace the Bible publisher's outreach campaign, Zondervan's fervor at targeting the younger audience has generated its own criticism from the theological sector.
Zondervan's commitment to relate to the specified age group has gone a bit far in the eyes of some Bible scholars, who say the "updated" language in the new translation, which was previewed in 2002's release of the TNIV New Testament, has led to revisions in the Scripture itself.
Zondervan has responded confidently to the challenge and is set to mail the full Bible to 118 critics next month.
All 10 variations of the TNIV, which includes True Identity and Strive -versions for women and men, respectively- will be hitting bookshelves February 1st.
For more information on Zondervan, please visit the publisher's official website at www.zondervan.com