Campus Crusade for Christ is becoming Cru

Dear family, friends, and supporters. You may have heard recently that Campus Crusade for Christ, in the US, is going to be changing our name to Cru (with the tagline “A caring community passionate about connecting people to Jesus Christ.”) in early 2012. This is true. It is something that even Bill Bright talked about us needing to do while Campus Crusade for Christ was becoming a worldwide movement. You can find more information about the name change here www.ccci.org/cru.

 

We are changing the name for a few reasons. One reason is because Crusade, while a perfectly acceptable name 60 years ago, now has negative connotations. Think about it, when we chose that name, evangelists like Billy Graham and others went on Crusades. Protestant Christianity recognized this word as something that meant that we were going to reach the lost, and by the power of Christ, to draw people to him. Now many people aren’t as familiar with this concept. Most people these days really only have one strong lingering memory of the word Crusade. Many on hearing it reflect back on when they learned in school about The Crusades, that barbaric battle waged by the Catholic Church many many years ago in God’s name. On hearing this name, they wonder why we would ever choose a name that has Crusade in it. It is something I have personally encountered a few times, and it acts as a barrier to the very people we want to connect with.

 

Another reason that we are changing the name is because, in the US, we have many ministries that aren’t just for college students. Because these ministries are under the banner (so to speak) of Campus Crusade for Christ however, adults will sometimes shy away from them. Again, it is acting as a barrier to some of the very people we want to reach.

 

Recently however a few media sources (Fox News, Glenn Beck) have criticized Campus Crusade for Christ for this new name, because it no longer has Christ in it. Please remember friends, that there are many great mission organizations in the United States, and most of them don’t have Christ or Jesus in their name. As an organization, we are not hiding our mission; we are and will remain a transparent and openly Christian organization, seeking to take the message of Christ everywhere. Removing campus and crusade from our name has nothing to do with moving away from Jesus, it has everything to do with moving toward those we are trying to reach. The problematic words were Campus and Crusade, and we chose this new name because since the 90’s it has been used as a nickname on many of our campuses. We have noticed during that time that it didn’t carry the negative connotations that our current name has.

 

The way we run our campus ministries as we have been using this name since the 90’s hasn’t changed. We continued to build students up and their faith, and to train them in starting spiritual conversations with fellow students. We train them in evangelism not only so that they can reach fellow students on their campuses but so they can have a more effective personal ministry when they graduate and join the workforce.

 

It is unfortunate that these media sources chose to do a story on us without all the facts, however our mission is the same one that was given to Bill and Vonette Bright 60 years ago, to help fulfill the Great Commission, and to give every person a chance to say YES to Jesus.

 

“Blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” (Jer. 17:7-8)

 

Today as an organization, Campus Crusade for Christ has faced a little heat. However we will not be afraid, because our confidence has been in God Himself from day one. We continue to trust him today. We have been seeking the Lord through the process of choosing this new name, and we are confident that God has led us to this name. We are also confident that he will guide us through some of the choppy waters we’re navigating this week.