Church Staff Split Over ‘Sucks’

March 7, 2007 by

Oh, LarkNews, a site after my own heart. You know our pain and you let us chuckle together: Staff Split Over ‘Sucks’

(link via Mike Atkinson)

Post By:

Kevin D. Hendricks

When Kevin isn't busy as the editor of Church Marketing Sucks, he runs his own writing and editing company, Monkey Outta Nowhere. Kevin has been blogging since 1998, runs the hyperlocal site West St. Paul Reader, and has published several books, including 137 Books in One Year: How to Fall in Love With Reading, The Stephanies and all of our church communication books.
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11 Responses to “Church Staff Split Over ‘Sucks’”

  • nathan
    March 7, 2007

    legalism sucks.
    i mean, legalism stinks.
    (if it stinks like bad gas, does that mean we can’t use stinks either?)

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  • Jason
    March 8, 2007

    at least they’re focusing on the important things.

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  • Joseph
    March 9, 2007

    Church split? been through one of those.
    Church splits suck!

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  • The Aesthetic Elevator
    March 12, 2007

    How old are these offended pastors? One word: Generation-gap.
    I learned in my basic college linguistics class that American English is the most fluid of languages. Meanings and use of words changes more quickly than in most other languages.
    Further, I’m told four letter words we find offensive are innocuous in other languages — just like “bloody” is to Brits and ain’t to us. It’s all about context, just like Paul using the altar to an “unknown” god as an in for the Gospel.

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  • Michael
    March 12, 2007

    This reminds me of an incident i had.
    Several years back I posted as I occasionaly do a sermon on the web site Sermon Central at the time I became almost famous with somewhere in the region of 300 people viewing it in a matter of 2 – 3 weeks.
    I was however forced to take it of and resubmit it with a different title and some editing. Why because it was called “Life Sucks”, and apparently as one of the many complaining emails I got pointed out Sucks has Sexual connotations.
    Imagine that an every day word here in New Zealand (and much of the western world) has sexual connotations, in all honesty I did not know that (call me naive), so I thought with the web masters and the dozen or so people who objected via email for creative and artistic and cultural recognition of the word sucks as meaning really bad. My argument was simple, and I gave examples of words that went the other way, namely – fanny, where i grew up it ain’t what people from America think it is, I pointed out how offensive I found the theme tune to the TV series the Nanny with Fran Drescher glorified a word that much of the world was disgusted by.
    I also pointed out that Tramp in our culture has nothing to do with prostitutes and that i objected to the censorship of Corrie Ten Boon’s book Tramp for the Lord. But alas I was defeated and forced to resubmit (but if you look at the sermon on line you’ll notice the checker at their site missed one offending sucked). the links below if anyone wants a perv….

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  • Scott
    March 13, 2007

    I am a Pastor who likes contemperary. But i feel we take it to far, and where do we draw the line on what is appropiate. I also feel with words like this, we become just a little to much like the world. I suggest that everyone read the message by Jack Hafford. The con of contemperary.

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  • IMAGE Church
    March 13, 2007

    That really sucks!! There I said it and anyone offended over that needs to get out from behind the iron curtain some time. Appropriateness is better for the head pastor to have used with his staff member..

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  • Doug
    March 14, 2007

    Our church just started a new campaign.
    Does this offend? We don’t think so.

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  • Neal
    April 2, 2007

    Words do indeed have meaning and we need to be aware the multiple meanings of words – I have recently been reading about a word’s “semanitc field”. Some words have a good meaning and a bad meaning at the same time. As a father of two teen boys I have worked at limiting their use of words that have this double usage. Sometimes the boys aren’t aware of the “other” meaning, but it’s my job to make them aware so they aren’t unnecessarily offending people. As a pastor I also need to be aware of the double meaning of some words and not use those words that unnecessarily offend people to be hip (for example, a few years ago it was the word ‘sexy”, impying “cool”)or for shock value. There is sufficient “offending” going on in simply trying to faithfully preach God’s Word.

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  • Malcolm Sproull
    April 3, 2007

    I come from a non-church background. I mingle mostly with non-Christians by preference and by a desire that they know Christ. The mission of the organisation CBA where I work is to reach those outside the influence of the church. In so doing (through commercial radio) we have to employ language that is contemporary for New Zealand. 87% of our audience do not regard religion or spirituality as a primary interest in their lives. How then do we convey the gospel? By accepting their language without condemnation but not by replying the same way. The English language in New Zealand is immensely fluid. Listening to the heart behind their words is critical to loving them no matter how fowl-mouthed they may be in classical Christian religous terms. However, we need not be fooled into thinking we must use their prefered terminology in reply nor to convince a congregation that we are “up with the times”. If the word “sucks” offends people whether in or out of a church then choose another word to convey your message. In CBA an approach we employ is to try and put Christ behind the microphone. I figure he spoke with some pretty “hard nuts” (transalation from New Zealandeze = rough characters) in his time but I’m pretty convinced he didn’t come back to them with their own “funky” language just to impress them. In fact his ability to convey love in words that were not the harsh variety that others of the time used may well have been one of his most arresting qualities. Just a thought or two from “downunda”.

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  • Jason Garrison
    April 4, 2007

    I have been blessed to be involved with an international ministry where for the most part we truly take to heart the command to ‘be all things…’
    my comment is this: Dont you think that God has plenty of stuffy, suit wearing, straight-laced ‘holy-rollers’ in His army? I think we might need more people who arent afraid to speak plainly, to get out into the streets and get dirty. we need more real people!

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