It’s a short article from the Orange County Register:
ALISO VIEJO – Members of a local church are saying an ad for their Easter service was deemed too controversial to run because it named Jesus.
Pastor Mike Fabarez said Compass Bible Church tried to pay for an ad to run at a local movie theater for its annual Easter service at UC Irvine’s Bren Center, an event that draws about 5,000 people. The church typically advertises its large events, working with local television, print media and even placing ads on bus stop shelters.
This time, the ad was rejected, something Fabarez said he didn’t expect. A spokeswoman for NCM Media Networks, which handles advertising for many local theaters, said in a statement Compass Bible Church chose not to revise the ad to meet content guidelines.
No image of the ad is provided but the church put it on Youtube. It’s a quick watch and nothing overly controversial, just advertising why they believe the resurrection really happened. The answer to that question can only be found at the event on the day, obviously.
The OC Register is polling readers to find out what they think about the ad and comments run the gamut:
Jesus? That’s the guy who mows and blows my lawn every 2 weeks.
I think the production value of the ad is higher than some of the movies I’ve seen lately.
It’s obnoxious that a theater won’t take money to display the name of Jesus, the central figure of beliefs shared by 2.2 of the 6.8 billion people on the planet, while theaters have no problem charging a total of $540 million worldwide to show a film whose main premise is that Jesus was married and had children whose decedents still live today.
On easter, at our home, we worship a 75$ honey baked ham.
There’s more, of course. And the few comments placed by admitted atheists have gotten the most replies, all of which pull the topic off the ad completely. Nobody can let what an atheist says rest unchallenged. Especially if there’s still a chance to save him…
WICKEDWHITE makes a good point to end with:
Rejection and Banned have two completely different meanings
The church is calling it a “banned commercial” since that’s how they want to present their side of this but theatres should have the right to reject any advertisements they want. I can see why a theatre wouldn’t want to look like it promotes a belief system. Promoting Coke or Pepsi, sure; they’re selling drinks at the concession. They want you to think about buying a drink. They don’t want you to think about buying a religion just before the credits roll on the latest kill-fest to hit the big screen. Jesus died for your sins, now sit there and enjoy some sinning!
This really seems like a waste of time and energy to kick up a fuss over but I expect the service will still see a better turnout because of it. Any press is good press, right?