Can Promoting Easter Church Services Land You On The 5 O'Clock News?

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Church Easter commercial deemed as 'too controversial' rejected by national movie theater chain and pulled from paid ad rotation.

Compass Bible Church - Easter At The Bren

"We were told we could promote our Easter services with bunnies and eggs because the name of Jesus was too offensive for their constituents." - Pastor Mike Fabarez, Senior Pastor, Compass Bible Church

At a time when movie theaters across the country are featuring blockbuster hits promoting murder, drugs, sex, corruption, and the like, is there anything ‘too controversial’ to be shown on the big screen? Compass Bible Church, in Aliso Viejo, California, found out first-hand that indeed, promoting Easter on the big screen proved to be too controversial. The 30-second ad produced by the church features short one-liners about what some conspiracy theorists believe may have happened to Jesus Christ some 2,000 years ago, and ends with ‘find out what we believe about the resurrection at Compass Bible Church’.

It wasn’t the conspiracy theories, or controversy with the actual spot that threw red flags for the theaters, but the fact that religious deity was promoted and the name of Jesus Christ was used. Using completely subjective terms, since there are no official written policies about such usage, the agency for the national theater remarked that their constituents might be offended by such an advertisement.

“We were told we could promote our Easter services with a commercial that featured the date, time and place with some fun bunnies and eggs thrown in”, said Pastor Mike Fabarez, Senior Pastor, Compass Bible Church “But for us, Easter isn’t about springtime fun, it’s the most important day in Christian history, and we won’t water that message down. It’s unfortunate that what our country was founded on has now become ‘too controversial’.”

Compass Bible Church was promoting their Easter At The Bren services, an annual event that hosts over 5,000 attendees at the Bren Center on the campus of UC Irvine, on Easter Sunday, April 24, 2011.

Compass Bible Church Easter video can be viewed at:

About Compass Bible Church
Compass Bible Church, founded in 2005, is located in Aliso Viejo, California. The mission of Compass Bible Church is based on the "Great Commission" of Christ recorded in Matthew 28 where Jesus calls every church, including CBC, to "make disciples." It has greatly impacted the local community with annual outreach events such as Fall Fest and Eggstravaganza, and provides weekly ministry opportunities for people to get deeply involved in knowing, loving, and serving Jesus Christ.


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Linda Kavadoy
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