LONDON - Communication is important in daily life, especially in this information era. Unfortunately, the use of blasphemy in everyday language has become very common in modern culture, especially among the young people. In challenging people to rethink about the drawbacks of this bad habit, the Saltbox Christian Center has joined forces with Cross Rhythms Radio, Longton Elim Pentecostal Church and North Staffs Youth for Christ to launch a campaign across Staffordshire, Stoke-on-Trent.
“The main aim of this campaign is to challenge people about their use of language. We are aiming to be quite deliberately provocative,” said Lloyd Cooke, director of Saltbox Christian Center. “In today’s society many people are concerned about offending other religions. Indeed, there would be outcry if people began to use Buddha or Mohammed as a swear word.”
To promote the idea that “Blasphemy is not acceptable” to a society where blasphemy has become a common thing, postcards designed with the caption “Jesus not a swear word” have been placed everywhere: on a motorway signs, parking meters, taxi meters, billboards, the backs of buses and even the windows of churches. In addition, a text message has been sent to over a 100,000 homes. With the strong support of the church leaders across Staffordshire, the reaction has proved to be a great success.
“It has been a wake-up call,” Cooke commented. Through this campaign, many people have asked themselves for the first time why they use Christ’s name in vain.
Rev William Slater, Rural Dean of Stoke North, blamed the media for making blasphemy so popular and appearing acceptable, citing Hell’s Kitchen as an example. He was delighted to see the active response to this campaign.
Slater has high expectations for this campaign—that it can go one step further to educate Christians that the name of Jesus is to be respected. “I hope that it’ll raise the profile that Jesus’ name should be loved and honored.”
The idea for the campaign came out of prayer events involving local churches. It is now attracting nationwide and international interest.