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Elizabeth Sherrill, author of “The Hiding Place” and other influential Christian books, dies at 95

Several influential Christian leaders, including Pat Robertson, Tim Keller and Charles Stanley, have died recently. The family of Elizabeth Sherrill announced that the noted Christian author died last month at age 95.

Most influential Christian writer

Along with her husband, John, she wrote more than 30 books, including “The Hiding Place” with Corrie ten Boom, “God’s Smuggler” with Brother Andrew and “The Cross and the Switchblade” with David Wilkerson. When “Christianity Today” collected a list of the top 50 books that shaped Evangeliacals in the 20th century, the Sherrills were named more frequently than C. S. Lewis, Billy Graham, J. I. Packer, Phillip Yancey, Tim LaHaye, John Piper or James Dobson. They occupied three spots on the list and were the editors behind a fourth.

The Sherrills cofounded Chosen Books, which “dramatically elevated the profile and the impact of Christian publishing,” said Jeff Crosby, president and CEO of the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association. “Elizabeth’s gifts as a manuscript stylist, editor and publisher were enormous,” he said. “She knew how to tell a story with power and with an economy of words, and the books she touched were brought to a mass-market audience.”

She also contributed more than 2,000 articles to the Christian publication “Guideposts.” She was known for her ability to produce captivating stories, making the magazine a cherished platform for personal accounts of faith. Sherrill “found a perfect calling,” according to Rick Hamlin, former executive editor of “Guideposts,” in coaxing stories out of others and then helping them share their highly personal accounts of God at work in their lives.

The couple’s most personal testimony of the power of the Holy Spirit came with the publication of “They Speak with Other Tongues.” The book started as a journalistic investigation of the charismatic movement but became something different when John started speaking in tongues, which he understood to be a supernatural gift from God.

“John and Elizabeth Sherrill may be the most influential Christian authors you know nothing about,” “Christianity Today” reported. “Their specialty: testimonials to the power of God’s Spirit. And, it seems, bestsellers.”

–Dwight Widaman | Metro Voice

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