Frequently Asked Questions
Q - Are we changing our legal name?
No. We will still be incorporated as "The Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches" in the state of Indiana. However, we have registered Charis Fellowship as an Assumed Business Name (DBA = Doing business as) in Indiana and will use that name in all our publications. The new website will be charisfellowship.us.
Q - Has our movement ever changed its name in the past?
Yes. We have been the "New Baptist", "Tunkers", "German Baptist", "Fraternity of German Baptist", "German Baptist Brethren", "Brethren Church", "Grace Group", "National Fellowship of Brethren Churches", and then the "Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches".
Q - Why not just keep the word "Brethren" in our name?
While the word brethren has deep meaning within our group, it presents many challenges as an identifier: it is often misspelled, other brethren groups have a very different theology and methodology, and 80% of our member churches do not use the word "brethren" in their public name.
Q - How did we get to this rebranding point?
Q - Do you expect each church in the Fellowship to rename its church?
No. However, we hope that member churches will include the new name and logo on their website, outdoor signage, and weekly printed program. That resource is available at charisfellowship.us
Q - I thought we were going to use the word "Grace" in the new name? That while 80% of our churches stopped using Brethren in their public name most still use Grace in their name. What happened?
The word "Grace" is in most of our public church names. However, it is also in the name of many churches who are not a part of our fellowship. When we tested a name with "Grace" and asked for feedback from some professional marketers we learned that the word "Grace" is too common in church names to create recognition outside of the fellowship. Charis is the Greek (New Testament) word for Grace and gives us the opportunity to explain the biblical concept of grace.
Q - Will this change require action by delegates at our national conference?
This new DBA was approved by the Fellowship Council this past Summer. Since this is not a change of our actual corporate name and it does not involve any changes to the FGBC constitution or Manual of Procedure the council did not feel that delegate action is required.
Q - What are the goals of a new brand?
To refresh our identity in the language of a new generation. To better connect with our global movement. To maintain our commitment to Biblical Truth, Relationship, and Mission. To move forward to start new churches, train new leaders and to do good in our communities for the sake of the gospel. Watch this
Q - So, who came up with that amazing logo?
Q - What is the "Charis Alliance"?
The Charis Fellowship is just in the United States and Canada. Our global movement is called the Charis Alliance and is made up of fellowships in more than 20 countries. 90% of our churches are outside North America and 95% of our people are outside North America. The Charis Alliance has been formed to better connect these fellowships for encouragement, mission, and perspective. This video does a good job of explaining the Charis Alliance - https://vimeo.com/234318690
Q - Did the Charis Alliance ask us to use the word Charis in our name?
No. However we are not the only member of the Charis Alliance that is using Charis in their name. The French fellowship will become "Charis France". We can see a day where there are many "Charis" fellowships within the Charis Alliance. Check out these graphical resources.
Q - Does this name change signal a move away from our core values and mission?
Absolutely Not! Our fellowship places a high value on Biblical Truth, on Biblical Relationship, and on Biblical Mission. This mission drives us to actively start new churches, develop leaders and do good in our communities for the sake of the Gospel. We are not retreating on this core values and mission. The Charis Fellowship will identify with them even stronger!
Link to this page: http://charisfellowship.us/page/charisfellowship