April 12, 2021
Of the matters that halt the spread of our invitation to Fellowship is the matter of whether or not we are a church. We do not currently have agreement among the leadership as to the definition of this word, nor agreement to some affirmative statements made by the First Presidency that we are NOT a “church” while the word yet appears in the title of the organization, and that by revelation. It is recommended that this matter be clarified to the satisfaction of all whose participation the Fellowship is expecting. See Appendix B.
The word church is derived from the Greek “ecclesias” used in the New Testament, which is the same in intent as the Old Testament word “assembly” and defines a body of believers or communion of saints, and should be understood as “community.” Acknowledging the gentile association of the word with the apostate organizations whose practices of establishing creeds and canons and coercing acceptance through social pressure, which practices are the antithesis of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Kingdom built upon it, does nothing to rectify this confusion. Alexei proposes advancing a correct understanding of the word in order to promote a correct understanding of the scriptures that also make use of it. He disapproves of condoning gentiles or apostates in further subverting, owning and defining this or any words.
In order to promote the Fellowship successfully, we must be able to quickly and easily create for others an accurate understanding of what the Fellowship is and does, and without any confusion or conflicting statements among our leadership or members.
Some people do want a church in a traditional sense, and not a church sometimes or church confused about what it is. Some people do not want a church with rites and worship, but do wish to associate with others over spiritually significant things. Perhaps two entities should be formed to address both needs, with separate entities being friendly with each other and working in harmony.
First Presidency Response
May 4, 2021
The name, the Church of Jesus Christ in Christian Fellowship, was given by revelation (see David II Chapter 1 in the Epistles section of Doctrines of the Saints). Regardless of our feelings on the matter, unless the Lord sees fit to change the name, the First Presidency has no desire to change the name, regardless of our personal thoughts on the matter. The revelation makes clear that this is the name the Lord has given us.
Based on revelations where the Lord calls the Church of Jesus Christ in Christian Fellowship “the Fellowship of Christ,” it has been determined that we will use this name as an abbreviation and to help with the branding issues/concerns mentioned above. This does not mean that the name has changed, but that there is a simplified way of branding and identifying the Fellowship, as prescribed in the revelations from God to His orginazation.