Guidelines for Submission of Christian Histories*
Choice of subjects, story length and format

  1. To ensure that DCBAsia does not already have a story on your proposed subject in its line-up, please email DCBAsia ( a one-paragraph summary (about 100 words) of your proposed subject citing the key points in the history of the religious movement, church or Christian community before embarking on your research and writing. The summary should include the founders and key personalities, beliefs and practices, and the impact of the movement. Subjects similar to stories that are already in the DCBAsia website or line-up will not normally be considered unless the proposed article includes significant new material and insights. 
  2. Suggested length: All articles should be between 500 and 3,000 words, excluding notes and bibliography.
  3. Include full bibliographic data wherever possible:
    • Author of book, book title, location, publisher, year of publication
    • Author of chapter within a book, title of the chapter, title of the book, name of the editor of the book, full publication data
    • Author of article in periodical, title of article, periodical name, volume and number of periodical, date of periodical, page numbers of article
  4. Use endnotes and not footnotes in your article. The endnote number should be placed at the end of the sentence or the end of a clause in a sentence, after any punctuation. Please include sources quoted in your endnotes in the Bibliography. 
  5. For proper credit to be given to you as a contributor, please include your name and a short one-line description of your occupation, vocation or relationship to the church, religious movement or Christian community you are writing about. Type your name exactly as you wish it to appear in print one line below the end of the text and before the notes and bibliography.
  6. Authors who are members of Catholic religious societies are requested to include the initials of their society after their name (e.g., Joseph M. Lee, OFM).
  7. The stories must conform as closely as possible to the same style and format for consistency and clarity. In the main, the DCBAsia follows the Chicago Manual of Style on matters of style, and British English spelling and vocabulary.
  8. As we have a very small budget for translation work, we need to receive your stories in English.
  9. Paragraphs should not be indented and you should use one extra space between paragraphs. The text should be left-justified.

Information to be included in the history of a religious movement, church or Christian community

  1. Original founders and key personalities
    • Original founder(s): life story and call (see guidelines for writing a biography)
    • Key personalities and their roles in the origin of the movement/church
    • Significant events that led to the founding of the movement/church
    • Key dates, milestones
    • Writings, sermons, publications
  2. Beliefs and practices
    • Vision and philosophy of the founder(s)
    • Central teaching: main points
    • Sacred places, if any
    • Role and place of the Bible; of ancient church practices; of traditional
    • religion
    • Use of healing and miracles
    • Practices: description, origins, and evolution over time
  3. Organisational structure
    • Who are the leaders? Describe their roles or functions (apostle, deacon, elder, etc.)
    • Is there a hierarchy? How are leaders and successors chosen?
    • How is the church/movement organised? By committees or otherwise?
    • What is the place given to women? To youth?
    • Church polity: is it Episcopal, connexional, congregational, Presbyterian?
    • How have the organisation and structure of the church evolved over time?
  4. Worship and liturgy
    • Describe the worship service or services (if there is more than one during the week)
    • Languages used in worship
    • Liturgical calendar: what important events are celebrated throughout the week, month, year?
    • Creation of music and religious objects, art
    • Vestments and religious clothing
    • How have the worship and liturgy evolved over time?
  5. Impact of the movement/church locally, nationally and regionally
    • Legacy: how has the church/movement impacted society?
    • Describe the influence and growth of the church on the local, national and regional level
    • Is the church related to larger ecclesiastical blocks, such as the WCC or WEA? If so, in what capacity?
  6. Sources of information
    Unpublished: For eyewitness and oral accounts, anecdotes and interviews, give names and the town/city where your sources live and include details of their relationship to the subject.

    Published: Include complete data on author of book, book title, location, publisher, year of publication and other relevant details in the Bibliography.
  7. Other pertinent information

*The sub-section titled "Information to be included in the history of a religious movement, church or Christian community" has been adopted with permission from the Dictionary of African Christian Biography (, with minor adaptations.