The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America



In the beginning, it was about ministry, not marketing

Janie Tinklenberg was encouraging the 30 members of her Michigan youth group to "think before you act." Ask, "What would Jesus do?" she suggested. She didn't imagine the phenomenon those four words would launch 10 years later.

Today WWJD adorns bracelets, necklaces, T-shirts and mugs. Church leaders use the motto in Bible studies and Sunday school lessons. Luther Seminary, St. Paul, Minn., distributes nylon bracelets bearing its logo and WWJD to visiting youth groups.

The bracelet was born in 1989 in Holland, Mich., where Tinklenberg was a youth leader looking for ways to remind the teens of their commitment to Christ. She and her husband, Glen, discussed the wedding band's significance as a symbol of a couple's covenant. A member of the congregation, who worked in advertising, helped them design a nylon bracelet with the WWJD logo as a similar reminder of one's commitment to Jesus.

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