hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA

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May 17, 2012

Zion Bible College to change its name

There will be no more Zion Bible College at the site of the former Bradford College next year.

No, Zion is not moving out. It's changing its name.

The college will be called Northpoint Bible College starting Jan. 1.

The name change comes as a result of some confusion in relation to the Pentecostal Christian school.

"The term 'Zion' is very misunderstood in religious community among Evangelicals," said Crabtree. "There are a lot of misconceptions where people thought we were some kind of Jewish organization. The term Zionism means different things to different people."

The college decided to scrap the name to avoid any misunderstanding and then looked into new possible names for the school. More than 200 names were considered and suggestions were taken from students, faculty and the college's Board of Trustees.

The school ultimately decided on Northpoint because it had both spiritual and regional ties. Along with it being in the northeastern United States, it has a spiritual dimension, with "north point" being another name for the location of a higher being.

"West Point is known for excellence in military training. Northpoint will be known for excellence in ministry training," reads a press release from the school.

Despite the name change, Crabtree said that there will be no changes to the mission of the school.

"We may change our name, but not our purpose, which is to teach and train students for vocational ministry," he said.

The school is in the early process of the name change. The college has to go through several accreditations, including reviews of the name change, which require approval. Crabtree said it is a "slow process," but is well underway.

As Jan. 1 approaches, there will be contests among the student body to design a new logo for the college and come up with a slogan to accompany the new name.

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