Shakespeare once famously asked, “What’s in a name?” Well, if we’re talking about Toronto-based ice cream chain Sweet Jesus, the answer is apparently blasphemy.
Sweet Jesus was founded in 2015 and has 20 locations, mostly in the Greater Toronto Area. Recently, however, the chain has moved South of the Border, where it has been met with staunch resistance by devout Christians.
One petition, addressed to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, demands Sweet Jesus “remove offensive Antichrist imagery immediately.” Furthermore, it calls on “Christians to take a stand against the Anti-Christ agenda, clearly now in open season against Christianity. If this Ice Cream chain is permitted to keep the mocking and blasphemous name of Sweet Jesus, what is next?” What is next, indeed.
Opposition is not just building in the U.S., either.
“Blasphemy is the order of the day at a Toronto-based chain of ice cream parlours,” reads a Canadian petition titled ‘Toronto-Based Ice Cream Parlours Serve Up Blasphemy’ that has garnered almost 10,000 signatures. “Choosing the name of our Lord for a brand of soft-serve ice cream is totally offensive and revolting.”
The petition seeks an apology from Sweet Jesus founders Andrew Richmond and Amin Todai for attacking God. It also asks the company to “immediately change their name and branding to eliminate every instance of mockery toward our Lord Jesus.” That branding includes ice cream flavours called “Red Rapture,” “Hella Nutella,” and “Sweet Baby Jesus.”
Richmond, meanwhile, says he has no plans to change the name or branding. “After a lot of thought, we have decided that we will not make a change,” he said in a statement. “The best brands come from an honest place. Sweet Jesus is an honest reflection of our experiences and that of our customers and how they react when they try our product.” Can confirm.
Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone trying to enjoy a secular scoop of ice cream during these tough times.