October 18, 2007

What's in a Name?

What's in a Name?                                                     [Main Story]
capChristian Record” has always been the first part of the name for the Adventist Church’s ministry to the blind. The rest of the name, however, has changed several times throughout the years, and not without some controversy.
The Christian Record Publishing Company was formed by the General Conference in 1899. Its purpose was to produce The Christian Record, a 10-page monthly Braille publication.
By 1919, the last word of the name had been changed, resulting in Christian Record Publishing Association.
In recognition of its broadened activities and increased focus on public fund-raising, the name was changed again in 1927 to Christian Record Benevolent Association. This name persisted for three-and-a-half decades.
In April 1963, wanting to more clearly reflect the organization’s focus on ministry to the blind, the constituency voted to change the name to Christian Record Braille Foundation. The change elicited an unexpected legal challenge from J. and D. Howell of Chicago, who operated Christian Braille Foundation. But Christian Record’s attorney argued that the words “Christian,” “Braille,” and “Foundation” were all common words, and that the only word in the name that might reasonably be contested—“Record”—was not under discussion. His rationale prevailed, and the name stuck—at least for a while.
In 1989, recognizing the fact that the majority of the organization’s publications were produced in audio and large-print formats, the board voted another name change: Christian Record Services.
That name has endured for nearly two decades, but it was recently revised once again. Recognizing that nothing in the three words signified the unique nature of the ministry, the board voted in February 2007 to make a further addition, yielding the current name: Christian Record Services for the Blind.