Central Baptist Church removing "Baptist" from their name

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COLLEGE STATION, Tex. (KBTX) - One of the largest churches in Bryan and College Station is changing their name.

Central Baptist Church is dropping "Baptist" from their title. The church has already been moving toward a new name with their sports to school program names. You can already see some of the signs of change at their campus off Boonville Road.

"When I started the ministry 41 years ago, pretty much every Southern Baptist Church was lockstep with each other. Today, we're not," said Central Church Senior Pastor Dr. Chris Osborne.

Osborne says while their signs may change, their beliefs will not.

"We've been known as a Bible church, not as a Bible Church but as a church that preaches the Bible the whole time I've been here. So we just want to make sure nobody thinks we're moving away from that," he said.

Osborne says younger people aren't as interested in denominations. He knows this change may be harder for some.

"I think the younger generation has no trouble. The older probably does," he said.

"The Southern Baptist Convention [as a denomination] is still fine. But, every church is autonomous," he said.

"We’re not like the Methodists, where we’re controlled. Because of that, now we’re all across the spectrum in both faith and practice. And so the theology is different across the spectrum. The practice is different," said Osborne.

Osborne says there are five key things they are committed to.

"Sovereignty of God, freewill of man, Bible's totally true, blood of Jesus is the only redemptive plan you have with a creator. Church is undefeatable according to Jesus. And He's coming back for that church," said Osborne.

"If you can drop Baptist from the name and have more people to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ, then I'm all for that," said Weldon Russell.

Russell has been attending the church for about six years.

"Central's not going to change. I know when I go there on Sunday mornings or during the week that my kids are going to hear the gospel message. They're going to hear truth preached and taught and that's what's important," he said.

Central will still be part of the Southern Baptist Convention. Church staff say they are working with an architect to have their outside signs updated soon.

Central Church tells us Sunday attendance can range from 2,800 to 3,000 people. We have our entire interview with Pastor Chris Osborne in the video section of the story.