Jessa Duggar Seewald and her husband, Ben Seewald, chose an unusual first name for their firstborn child. Spurgeon Elliot Seewald’s namesake is Charles Spurgeon, a 19th-century Baptist preacher who had plenty of negative things to say about Catholicism.
According to Yahoo! Parenting, the name Jessa Duggar and her husband chose for their son is as about as rare as you can get — not one baby boy was named Spurgeon in 2014. The moniker was a bit more fashionable over a century ago, reaching its peak of popularity in 1892. However, because so few baby names were recorded back then, there were only 12 documented baby Spurgeons during the name’s biggest year.
— Jessa Seewald (@JessaSeewald) November 12, 2015
In a video announcing the name, Jessa Duggar’s husband, Ben Seewald, explained why he and his wife chose such a mouthful of a moniker for their son. According to the young dad, he and Jessa are huge fans of Charles Spurgeon’s teachings.
“He had a big impact on our lives,” Ben said. “His writings and his sermons and books are still around today, and they just continue to impact many, many people.”
People recently listed a few facts about the man who inspired Jessa and Ben to come up with one of the most talked-about celebrity baby names of 2015. According to the magazine that has been extensively covering Jessa Duggar’s baby news, Charles Haddon Spurgeon earned the nickname “Prince of Preachers” after becoming the pastor of London’s New Park Street Chapel in 1854. He was only 20-years-old at the time, which just so happens to be the current age of Jessa Duggar’s husband. It’s not hard to see why a popular young pastor is one of Ben Seewald’s personal heroes — as the Inquisitr previously reported, Ben is hoping to go to seminary school someday so that he can become a pastor or missionary.
— Zap2it (@Zap2it) November 12, 2015
Just like Jessa Duggar and her famous family members, Charles Spurgeon was a religious celebrity. His sermons were so popular that it’s estimated that over 10,000,000 heard him preach during his lifetime. Many of his sermons and writings can be found online, and in some of them, he fiercely criticizes Catholicism. Historicist.info has compiled a collection of some of Spurgeon’s anti-Catholic quotes, including a portion of a sermon in which he calls Catholicism “rubbish.”
“There came the old ROMAN rubbish, which in the end proved a worse hindrance than all which had preceded it,” Spurgeon said during the sermon. “This Popish rubbish was found in layers – first one doctrinal error, and then another, and then another, and then another, and then another, till at this time the errors of the Church of Rome are as countless as the stars, as black as midnight, and as foul as hell. Her abominations reek in the nostrils of all good men. Her idolatries are the scorn of reason and the abhorrence of faith. The iniquities of her practice, and the enormities of her doctrine, almost surpass belief. Popery is as much the masterpiece of Satan as the gospel is the masterpiece of God.”
Charles Spurgeon’s thoughts on Catholicism might raise a few eyebrows because Jessa Duggar’s husband has made anti-Catholic comments in the past. As the Inquisitr previously reported, Ben Seewald used his Facebook page to express his belief that Catholics are making “deadly errors.” He later deleted his critical words. After a trip to Honduras, Jessa’s husband shared another Facebook thought about Catholics that he later regretted — he complained that the locals were facing “bitter persecution from the Catholics and those in Voodoo.”
Jessa Duggar told People that she and Ben also like the name Spurgeon because it’s “a strong name, with a lot of meaning.” It seems unlikely that Jessa Duggar looked up the NSFW meaning of “spurgeon” on Urban Dictionary. As Gawker points out, the website describes a “spurgeon” as an alcoholic with large genitals who is such a bada** that he makes Chuck Norris shake in his Walker, Texas Ranger boots.
Jessa Duggar is seemingly having a hard time getting used to referring to her little one by the old-fashioned name that she and Ben chose. According to People, Jessa revealed that she and her family members are still calling her baby Quincy, a nickname that Ben came up with before Spurgeon was born. Ben had cracked a joke about how he and Jessa should follow in her parents’ footsteps by giving each of their kids a name that starts with the same letter, and he chose the letter “Q” because it would result in some unusual names. However, he and Jessa proved that you don’t need an odd first letter to dream up a strange baby name.
It’s likely that Jessa Duggar and her husband didn’t name their baby Spurgeon simply because they agreed with Charles Spurgeon’s views on Catholicism, but their baby name could cause a little controversy as Duggar critics learn more about the preacher’s teachings.
[Image via Jessa Duggar Seewald/Instagram]