Friday, April 23, 2010


Hudson "Hud" Armerding is our "Matthew 9:11" hero! Hudson Taylor Armerding '41 (1918 - December 1, 2009) was President of Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois, from 1965-1982. He was also President of the National Association of Evangelicals from 1970-1972.

He earned an undergraduate degree in history from Wheaton in 1941, where he was a classmate and good friend of Billy Graham (who had transferred in to Wheaton), and received a master's degree in international affairs from Clark University in 1942. In World War II, Dr. Armerding served as a line officer in the Pacific Ocean aboard the heavy cruiser USS Wichita, which participated in 11 naval engagements, including the invasion of Okinawa. After the war, Armerding helped liberate a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp near Nagasaki. In 1948, Dr. Armerding earning a doctorate (PhD) in history at the University of Chicago.

Despite anti-war protests on the Wheaton College campus, Dr. Armerding found ways to bridge the gaps between the status quo and students who were questioning authority. In an attempt to reach the culture, Armerding created a strategy to engage future Wheaton students by running an ad in Playboy magazine. Here is a archived interview of what transpired.

INTERVIEWER: Now you're mentioning the sort...the spiritual battle did you see evidence of that during the '70 or following the '70 revival?
HUD: Well, we...we sensed some of those struggling in the '70 and the following time because the culture even then...well, you may of heard of the films I'm Curious Yellow, I Am Curious Blue when pornography was actually permitted out on the screen and of course the Playboy thing and every thing else. [laughs] I even had people subscribe to Playboy, and we'd get a copy in the office and then of course, have to call them and tell them that it was a mistake and to cancel it. But I'll tell you one further thing that may be a product of all of this. The fellow of the name of Mel Lorentzen and Alva Steffler of the Art Department and I forgot who else (I guess that was it), anyway we formulated an ad and actually ran it in the Chicago issue of Playboy magazine. It was a series of things that...nothing other than just a face of pretty girl and an automobile and a skiing vacation, you know, and a series of lines like this and then the whole idea is: "What is your life, is this all there is to life? If you want to know more." Well we got some responses but never got anything specific out of it but it was our effort to try to penetrate a market totally separate from what we were doing and we got a grant of several thousands dollars from Taylor, the fellow who put out the living Bibles.
HUD: Ken said that he would give us enough money to help buy the ad. Well, again unfortunately there was not immediately anyway any overt thing but it was another effort to see to try to go from the campus and to address the broader area that in some way could be related to all of this, much as it did not have a...a very tangible outcome that we'd hoped for. We took a Glen Ellyn address box and we got several responses. We answered all of them but nothing really came it.

In the spirit of 'Hud' --- we have developed with Shawn Leftwich  a list of 10 new strategies for 2010 to engage the culture - Ok, art department, get crackin!
1. Wheaton College beer coasters at Muldoons
2. Banner ads on FHM's 'Wheaton Hometown Hotties' website featuring photos of Adeline Collins.
3. Uncle Paulie's Strip Club urinal mints - provided by Charles Wadworth (Wheaton Hero #4)
4. Divorce court lobby free wireless with downloadable Terri Watson audio lectures
5. Faux 'sexting' messages with a link to
6. Affliction style Wheaton tshirts to be worn on MTV's "Jersey Shore"
7. YouTube videos with the title "Wheaton's Gone Wild"
8. Ipad multi-touch app titled "I must be in heaven"
9.  Local 7-11 scratch-off cards with "Pascal's Wager"
10. Wheaton facebook app where you can "Wheatonize yourself" complete with tattoos, tan lines, hoodies and bling.

1 comment:

  1. I've just installed iStripper, so I can have the sexiest virtual strippers on my taskbar.