The first day of the ECPA’s Leadership Summit in Philadelphia concluded with the 2022 Christian Book Awards on May 3, honoring the year’s “best in Christian publishing.” The kick-off events were well-attended, with most saying it was their first industry outing since before the Covid-19 pandemic hit.

Anglican priest Tish Harrison Warren took the night’s top honor, the Christian Book of the Year, for Prayer in the Night (IVP), which explores themes of vulnerability, suffering, and the nature of God, framed around the nighttime prayer of Compline. The book also won in the ECPA’s Christian Living category. Accepting the award on Warren’s behalf, IVP v-p of editorial & associate publisher, trade Cindy Bunch said every word in Prayer in the Night speaks to the current moment, and credited “God’s timing.” Warren is also the author of Liturgy of the Ordinary.

Timothy Keller received the Pinnacle Award in recognition of literary contributions and their impact on society as well as the church. The 71-year-old theologian is the founder of New York City’s Redeemer Presbyterian Church and author to over two dozen books, including most recently, Hope in Times of Fear (Viking). During a pre-recorded acceptance speech video, Keller referenced deep divisions among evangelicals as well as “a time of fracture and warranted, rightful criticism” among the denomination. He then exhorted evangelicals to “seek to build bridges between tribes.”

The evening also included remarks by Latasha Morrison, author of Be the Bridge (WaterBrook) who spoke of the power of books to changes mindsets and guide readers toward becoming the best version of themselves. She referenced Frederick Douglass' journey to literacy as an enslaved child and his work as an abolitionist and toward justice before asking, what if he’d been silenced? “Seek out voices from the fringe,” Morrison told publishers in the room. “Take a deep look, ask yourselves, have I perpetuated broken systems? Have I hindered access to all? Whose voices are missing? Where are the gaps in culture?”

Michelle Ami Reyes was named new author of the year for Becoming All Things: How Small Changes Lead to Lasting Connections Across Cultures (Zondervan Reflective). In it, the Indian American writer, speaker, and activist explores the concept of cultural accommodation in 1 Corinthians 9:19–23.

Max Lucado’s Where’d My Giggle Go, illustrated by Sarah Jennings, won the children’s Christian Book Award. Lucado is the author of over 100 adult nonfiction books, including most recently, You Are Never Alone (Thomas Nelson). His next book with Thomas Nelson, You Were Made for this Moment, is slated for publication on Sept. 28.

Levi Lusko’s Roar Like a Lion: 90 Devotions to a Courageous Faith, illustrated by Catherine Pearson (Tommy Nelson), won the Young People’s Literature Christian Book Award. Lusko, a pastor and radio personality, is also the author of Through the Eyes of a Lion, which delved into the death of his five-year-old daughter, Lenya.

Other 2022 Christian Book Award winners include Jemar Tisby’s How to Fight Racism (Zondervan Reflective) in the faith and culture category; With Fresh Eyes by Karen Wingate (Kregel) in devotion and gift, and When Faith is Forbidden by Todd Nettleton (Moody) in the biography and memoir category.

For a full list of the winners, click here.