NORTH TEXAS (CBDSFW.COM) – LifeWay Christian Resources, which operates the LifeWay Christian stores, announced it is closing all 170 brick-and-mortar stores by the end of the year.

The company had said in January that it would close some stores due to fewer customers and sales.

“While we had hoped to keep some stores open, current market projections show this is no longer a viable option,” said acting President and CEO Brad Waggoner in an online news release.

LifeWay, instead, will focus on digital retail as it charts a new course for the year. The Nasvhille, Tennessee-based business has been putting a number of its resources online.

When the stores will shut down will be timed out through the year.

LifeWay operates five stores in DFW including Fort Worth, Hurst, Flower Mound, Plano and Mesquite.

A large crowd gathers at the Hurst LifeWay Christian Bookstore to see Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton in February of 2012 (Stewart McKenzie/CBSDFW)

“LifeWay is fortunate to have a robust publishing, events and church services business. Our retail strategy for the future will be a greater focus on digital channels, which are experiencing strong growth,” said added Waggoner. “LifeWay is moving into a new era with a strategic digital focus that will prepare us for the future and allow us to better serve our customers.”