Would Fox News Lie and Play up the ‘Christ’ Card about Campus Crusade for Christ?

Surely not, you say, but surely, I say, they did. First, their story, entitled, Campus Ministry Drops ‘Christ’ From Name.

Of course, that’s not how it appears on the front page of the website:

The tag line to the story reads,

Prominent Christian ministry takes Christ out of its name, saying it was ‘getting in the way’ of mission

The story quotes from the press release, here, which doesn’t exactly line up with the way Fox is promoting it, nor with what their website says,

1. Why is Christ no longer in the name?

Campus Crusade for Christ (Cru) is unswervingly committed to proclaiming the name of Jesus Christ. We are committed to the centrality of the cross, the truth of the Word, the power of the Holy Spirit and the global scope of the Great Commission. We care more about effectively proclaiming the love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ then we do about having the word “Christ” in our name.

Although the words Campus and Crusade served as hindrances, there was never any intentional decision to remove the word “Christ.” Yet as we considered hundreds of name possibilities, our experience confirmed that Cru would provide greater opportunity to connect men and women with the heart of Jesus, and to help them consider the good news of the gospel.

For those who may be concerned we have lost moorings, please rest assured that we are the same organization with over 6 billion exposures to the gospel through the JESUS film, and who on any given day counts up to a million exposures to the gospel via the internet and face-to-face contacts around the world.

As an organization, we exist for the sole purpose of helping individuals experience the transforming grace and forgiveness of the gospel through Jesus Christ.

So, what were the deciding factors? Campus, i.e., lame and Crusade, i.e., politically incorrect. Actually, the term Crusade might offend the Eastern Orthodox, Jews, and others… But, you know… it’s all about the Muslims, ain’t it Fox? It is a road block. When I think of CCfC, I think of backwards, fundies, who aren’t reaching the world of Christ at all.

But, a former member disagrees, and is picked up by Fox:

“It is sad that an organization like Campus Crusade at least appears to have allowed themselves to be taken by the politically correct environment instead of acting counter culturally as Christ’s followers are called to do,” said Richard Hornsby, of Kansas City. “For an institution like Crusade to appear to cave to the same cultural pressure that leads school principals to harass or try to ban Christian groups from meeting on campus is incredibly sad. We expect the ACLU to intimidate small towns and schools by threatening to sue them. We don’t expect long-standing pillars of the Christian community to fold like this.”

I too, Mr. Hornsby, think of the Apostle Paul… who wrote,

 19 Even though I am a free man with no master, I have become a slave to all people to bring many to Christ. 20 When I was with the Jews, I lived like a Jew to bring the Jews to Christ. When I was with those who follow the Jewish law, I too lived under that law. Even though I am not subject to the law, I did this so I could bring to Christ those who are under the law. 21 When I am with the Gentiles who do not follow the Jewish law,[a] I too live apart from that law so I can bring them to Christ. But I do not ignore the law of God; I obey the law of Christ.

22 When I am with those who are weak, I share their weakness, for I want to bring the weak to Christ. Yes, I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some. 23 I do everything to spread the Good News and share in its blessings. (1 Co 9.19-23 NLT)

 

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Post By Joel Watts (10,071 Posts)

Joel L. Watts holds a Masters of Arts from United Theological Seminary with a focus in literary and rhetorical criticism of the New Testament. He is currently a Ph.D. student at the University of the Free State, analyzing Paul’s model of atonement in Galatians. He is the author of Mimetic Criticism of the Gospel of Mark: Introduction and Commentary (Wipf and Stock, 2013), a co-editor and contributor to From Fear to Faith: Stories of Hitting Spiritual Walls (Energion, 2013), and Praying in God's Theater, Meditations on the Book of Revelation (Wipf and Stock, 2014).

Website: → Unsettled Christianity

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8 thoughts on Would Fox News Lie and Play up the ‘Christ’ Card about Campus Crusade for Christ?

  1. I posted this on G+ as well:

    I am not sure I see the reason for your ire Joel. I am no fan of FNN, but that is the story: CCC shortened their name because it has become a hindrance, that included not specifically referencing Christ in it. (BTW this has been true on our campus for at least the last 4 years. In many ways, I think CCC’s website is being a little disingenuous by suggesting that it is only the terms “crusade” and “campus” that are problematic. On every secular campus I have ever been on the “Christ” bit was far more problematic.) This has caused many to get up in arms and complain and Fox is reporting that.

    How exactly are they getting the story wrong?

    • Dr. Brady,

      According to CCfC, the problem wasn’t so much Christ as the other two. Further, they wanted to have a more effective mission – which is not what FNN is reporting (‘got in the way of the mission). Further, I would like to use the words of the staff and leadership versus that of the disgruntled (I guess) former members. Further, the FNN story focused almost solely on Christ, whereas CCfC noted that it was primarily due to the other two words.

      • Joel, as I said, I am perhaps more cynical, while CCC said it was about the other two words I think it is really about all three. I am not saying they are lying, but perhaps being circumspect. As I noted on the G+ chat, from the perspective of non-Christian folks on campus over the last 25 years I know that the Christ reference was as much a turnoff for those folks as anything else.

        That is why I understand CCC wanting to have a “more effective mission” (and isn’t the name “got in the way of the mission” just another way of saying the same thing?). I am completely sympathetic. I just don’t think Fox was doing anything other than any other news organization that might pick up on the story. They are following the conflict…

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