Gospel Soundcheck

The new logo for Cru, formerly Campus Crusade for Christ

I know this doesn’t have anything to do with Christian music, per se, but it’s such a huge story in the Christian community that I really had to comment. Not Christian music, but definitely Christian culture, and it’s all tied together in the end.

Campus Crusade for Christ, the ministry that reaches out to students on college campuses all around the world, is dropping the word “Christ” from their name. Beginning in 2012, the organization will be known as “Cru”.

In a video to donors, Vonette Bright, who with her husband Bill founded the ministry in 1951, said that Bill always knew they’d have to change the name of the group as they spread worldwide because of the word “crusade”.

“It has nothing to do with political correctness,” Steve Sellers, the vice president for Campus Crusade, told FoxNews. “It has everything to do with how we can be effective at what God has called us to do.”

“Most churches don’t have Christ in their name,” he said. “Hardly any other Christian organization has Christ in their name. People are making an issue out of something that isn’t the intent at all.”

I’m completely on board with dropping the “crusade” from the name. But the new name – Cru – is kind of … I don’t know … blah? And while there is a cross – of sorts – it seems purposely vague.

I am the one who has questioned (often) whether we need the label “Christian music.” But there are bands who wear that label proudly, because their goal is to use music to share Jesus.  It is a label that best describes those bands, and so is  not only necessary but critical to their ministry. Sure, it turns some people off, but the bands I’ve talked to aren’t worried about that. They do what they believe they’re being called to do and let God handle the rest.

Should campus ministries do the same?

I believe Sellers when he says that there isn’t an intent to be politically correct. Even though CCC never hit people over the head with the Bible – they were a welcoming, friendly group on college campuses where students could ask questions, talk openly, and seek answers – that’s why the word “crusade” needed to be dropped.

However, we all know that our actions are often misinterpreted, so regardless the change may focus more attention on what isn’t there than what is. And if you’re invited to a “Cru” meeting and get there only to find out it’s all about Christ, would you feel duped?

 What do you think? Out with the word “crusade” and with the word “Christ”, too? Or is this the way to go in today’s culture?

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