knk is deeply ingrained in the religious publishing sector (among others) as our software functionality and professional expertise lends itself easily to mission-based publishers, and so we thought it would be useful, to create a guide for the religious book awards that are available for creators of faith-based books and media in 2022.

Most of the awards that we include are dedicated to Christian publishers, but we have also listed some of the premier awards for the Buddhist, Jewish, and Muslim faiths. Full disclosure: knk are members of the Association of Catholic Publishers (ACP), The Evangelical Christian Publishers Association (ECPA), and the Protestant Church-Owned Publishers Association (PCPA).

Christian Religious Book Awards

AAR Book Awards 

The American Academy of Religion (AAR) is dedicated to the academic study of religion and offers Awards for Excellence in four categories and additionally a Best First Book prize in the History of Religions, and an award for Religion and the Arts. The four categories for Excellence Awards are for Analytical-Descriptive Studies, for Constructive-Reflective Studies, for Historical Studies, and for Textual Studies, including interpretations and translations.


ACP Excellence in Publishing Awards 

Awarded by the Association of Catholic Publishers, First, Second and Third place winners are awarded to publishers and authors of the best Catholic content in fourteen categories. Additionally, the Resource of The Year Award is determined by a separate panel of judges from among the fourteen first-place winners.


Carol Awards 

The American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) provides awards in eleven categories of Christian fiction to authors that are published through most traditional and independent channels. The ACFW’s mission is to inspire writers in the creative process, learn the craft and find the right audience. Their Annual Conference is planned for September 2022 in St Louis.


Christian Book Award® program

The Christian Book Award® program recognizes the highest quality in Christian books and Bibles and is among the oldest and most prestigious awards program in the religious publishing industry. Presented annually to the finest in Christian publishing since 1978, the Christian Book Award® program honors the “best of the year” in 12 categories. The submission period for this award is in September.


Christian Indie Awards 

Sponsored by the Christian Indie Publishing Association (CIPA), this award seeks to promote small presses and independent author. Suitable for self-publishing authors, or those working with small publishers, it’s awarded by Christian retailers and readers in fourteen categories: General Fiction, Historical Fiction, Romance, Bible Study/Theology, Biography/Memoir, Christian Education, Christian Living, Devotional, Relationships/Family, Children 4 through 8, Children 8 through 12, Gift Books (such as coffee table books), Young Adult, and eBooks.


Christian Retailing’s Best Awards 

These award promote the best in the Christian retail world, and include 32 categories for books. Winners are determined by votes from retailers, authors, publishers, volunteers, and literary agents in the Christian products industry. According to their website, products are judged on their ability to “speak to people’s hearts and evoke emotion”, “open people’s minds to new ways of thinking”, and “encourage and affirm Christlike living.”


Christianity Today Book Awards 

Each year, Christianity Today magazine honors books of interest to the Christian community. The main categories include Apologetics/Evangelism, Biblical Studies, Children & Youth, Christian Living/Discipleship, the Church/Pastoral Leadership, Culture and the Arts, Fiction, History/Biography, Missions/The Global Church, Politics and Public Life, Spiritual Formation, and Theology/Ethics. Submissions are evaluated by “a diverse panel of scholars, pastors, and other informed readers”.


The Christy Award® program

Named after Catherine Marshall’s 1967 novel, “Christy”, the Christy Award® is presented each year to promote Christian fiction, in order “to acknowledge the value and impact of the novel of faith in contemporary culture.” Categories include General/Contemporary, Historical, Romance, Suspense/Mystery, Visionary, and First Novel. The Christy Award® was established to acknowledge the value and impact of the novel of faith in contemporary culture. Since that time, the Christys have been a focal point for the writers and publishers in our community, symbolizing the best aspirations and accomplishments of writers who write from a perspective of faith and who create stories with matters of belief at their core.  The deadline for submission is in March each year.


CPA Awards 

The purpose of the Catholic Press Awards is to acknowledge the outstanding work of Publishers and Communication members as they strive to further the mission of the Church. On a daily basis they inform, inspire and educate readers keeping them connected to their faith, and it is those contributions that are recognized through these awards.


Conference on Christianity and Literature

The Conference on Christianity and Literature recognizes literary achievement in the form of awards given for lifetime achievement, best book in the field, the Margaret Patterson Hannay Service Award, and the Lionel Basney Award for the best article published each year in Christianity & Literature.


Non-Christian Religious Book Awards

Buddhist Publishing Culture Award 

After having reviewed 110 books on Buddhism submitted by 34 publishers, the grand jury for the 14th Buddhist Publishing Culture Award – organized by the Central Directorate for Religious Affairs at Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism and hosted by the Buddhist Publishers Association – announced 10 Buddhist Books of the Year and 1 recipient of the Hyangsan Translation Award.


Muslim Bookstagram Awards

Hosted by, the awards celebrate Muslim voices in publishing, from mainstream publishers, Islamic publishers, and self-published authors. The MBRA takes in nominations from other readers and features a panel of Muslimah reviewers from bookstagram.  Winners are announced on MM.


National Jewish Book Awards 

Inau­gu­rat­ed in 1950, the Awards are intend­ed to rec­og­nize authors, and encour­age read­ing, of out­stand­ing Eng­lish-lan­guage books of Jew­ish interest. Awards are pre­sent­ed in over eigh­teen cat­e­gories, and the win­ning authors are cel­e­brat­ed at an annu­al gala in the year fol­low­ing the pub­li­ca­tion of the books under con­sid­er­a­tion.