Campus Crusade Fishing for Jewish Students on Facebook
The allure of so many Jewish college students in one place has prompted missionaries to launch a Facebook ad campaign promoting a website called WhatChutzpa.com. The website is vague, attractive, and not apparently a Christian missionary portal. But reading a few lines of any article, you quickly realize that this is not your typical Temple Bulletin.
Many people are confused about the identity of Yeshua (Jesus). Many people have a hard time understanding who he really was. Although it is not always easy, it is possible to investigate him enough to be able to make some conclusions…. You’ve most likely come to this page because you want to know what to do now that you’ve asked Jesus to be your Messiah. First off, let us say, “Welcome to God’s family!”
There are few clues about who authored the site. There is no “about us” section. No link to any other page. While initially seeming like something that Jews for J would dream up, it doesn’t have their fingerprints.
The site does have the fingerprints of Campus Crusade for Christ. As you can see in the pictures below, WhatChuzpa is merely EveryStudent.com repackaged for a Jewish audience. EveryStudent.com is one of Campus Crusades biggest successes of the last 20 years.
The EveryStudent site and an article about six reasons to believe in God:
The WhatChutzpah site’s article is identical, except without the byline:
In fact the more you browse both sites it becomes clear that they are parallel sites, one designed to lure Jews and one for non-Jews on campus.
Mark Gauthier, in his online appeal for donations on the Campus Crusade website, sites EveryStudent as a smashing success at bringing students into the group. He writes:
The reason that most of the above students found everystudent.com is because they saw an ad for it on Google or Facebook (a hugely popular college networking site)….
This [Facebook] strategy is incredibly cost-effective, costing an average of just 25 cents per person who responds and has the opportunity to find out about Jesus. That’s just 25 cents to finally show a young person the answers they’ve been looking for!
Marilyn Adamson, the co-creator of Everystudent.com, must be proud. According to Campus Crusade’s Press Release on February 14, 2007, “In 2006, more than 7 million students visited EveryStudent.com to find ‘a safe place to life, and what it might be like to know God.’”
Many of the “articles” on WhatChutzpah are variations or direct copies of Marilyn Adamson’s writings on other missionary websites. For example, her article about other religions entitled “Connecting with the Divine” on WhatChutzpah, is nearly verbatim the same article she authored on LeaderhipU, a missionary site.
Jewlicious.com reached Marilyn in Florida and asked her about the websites. She is a well meaning Christian who answered a few of our questions honestly. The site Whatchutzpa is not intended to get Jewish students involved with Campus Crusade per say, but “It is the hope that Jewish students may see Jesus as messiah.” When they accept Jesus, all their sins are forgiven, and they get everlasting salvation. WhatChutpa was created for Jewish students, “For their own personal ability to be in a relationship with god.”
WhatChutzpa is for the New York area, and was created by the same people that created Everystudent.com, she confirmed. The creators hope to track visitors to the site and made it semi-invisible, to help weed out random hits and visitors. This targeted approach will help them to communicate directly with students in the same area. In addition, the website organizers are willing to meet with people who visit the site to answer their questions about Jesus directly.
Beyond the Facebook campaign, there are reports of posters at Brooklyn College on flyer boards showing a picture of a guy doing a backflip and the words WHAT CHUTZPA.
Campus Crusade needs to answer a few big questions in the wake of this latest Crusade for Jewish souls, besides the usual, “When are you going to give us a frigging break?”
If your message about Jesus is the truth, why do you need to disguise the site to attract Jews? If Jesus is the truth, why is it permitted to trick Jewish students into visiting a site that tries to convert them to Christianity? Do your local campus chapters of Campus Crusade stand to loose their campus privileges if their national headquarters is engaged in active, covert proselytizing?
Stay tuned — we are sure we have not heard that last of Campus Crusade, their website or their Chutzpah!
—Tip of the yarmulke to Dani Klein who showed us the whatchutzpa website