Campus Crusade for Christ, Inc. has decided upon a name change for the U.S. group only. Apparently they’ve spent about the past two years praying about it, seeking guidance, and paying consultants to do polls and such to find a less off-putting name. They say that some 20% of people who might have been interested in hearing the Gospel, aren’t interested anymore once they hear the name of the organization.
I agree that it could be time to let the ‘crusade’ part go. As they explain, that word does have negative connotations to it. So, in an effort to remove crusade from the name, they are also removing Christ, as that name is off-putting to some as well.
At this moment there are 1, 558 comments on the discussion board, the vast majority against the removal of ‘Christ’ from the name of their organization. I didn’t read one comment against changing the name, just taking Christ out of it.
Here is the comment I left:
Very disappointing and extremely surprising. I read all your statements explaining why you did this; I read all the FAQ’s about it and it sounds like you’re trying awfully hard to justify removing ‘Christ’ from your name, by trying to tell us it will help you be ‘more effective’ in bringing people to Christ. I was involved with CCC as a college undergraduate, and it was a special time for me and helped me stay on my walk with God through a time when many lose their way. I’ve always thought that Campus Crusade for Christ was the real thing, different from so many of the secular churches we see these days.
I understand what is happening, whether you do or not. The world belongs to Satan, and you have taken that first step toward trying to fit into the world. The world will not reward you for this, and I honestly don’t think this will make your ministry more effective. For those 20% who you say were put off by the name of Christ, you will lose the 80% who are hungry and seeking Truth. If the name of Jesus Christ is off-putting to people, then so be it. We already know that this is the case many times. Hiding Him, and trying to “reach more people” by hiding your purpose does not sound right to me. I can’t believe you have actually done this; it is an ‘of-the-world’ decision and I never expected you guys to give in.
May you earnestly seek God’s guidance, so that you might be pleasing to Him, and less concerned about pleasing the world. You can try to rationalize it as much as you want, but this is a misguided and wrong decision.
I proudly proclaim the name of Christ and wear it safely in this country. I think of the man in Iran who will be executed soon for converting to Christianity and preaching Christ to others. He will hang for wearing the name of Jesus. Shame on you for not being willing to wear the name.
UPDATE: I wrote the above this morning; was interrupted before I could post it. Just now, several hours later, I checked back on the comment thread for an updated tally of comments. Much to my surprise the tally now reads “969 comments” instead of the almost 1200 that I last saw a few hours ago. It also appears that staff have begun commenting about all the positives in the name change, and when I replied to one of those comments it went to moderation. Previously there was no moderation.