Jesus Christ announced today that he has legally changed his name to Jesus H. Smith.
The announcement shocked religious leaders and Christians worldwide, while economists question the economic impact of reprinting perhaps billions of Bibles, not to mention the name changes that will follow for countless churches and other religious organizations.
Asked what prompted the move, Smith said, "To be honest, I'd gotten quite fed up with people taking my name in vain. Everywhere you go, it's 'Jesus Christ this' and 'Jesus Christ that' and 'Christ almighty, I'm drunk!' My name has become part of the public domain - it is no longer my own and it no longer holds the resonance it held even 1,000 years ago.'
Sociologist Ingrid Pierzynski noted that the move may be a risky one. "Some could argue that, for instance, while Prince arguably did some of his best work as The Artist Formerly Known as Prince, the name change didn't serve him. He later changed his name to an unpronounceable symbol before finally going back to Prince in 2000. I think we might see the same thing in this case."
"One wonders why He would give up the brand value the name Jesus Christ possesses," said economist Glynn Sax. "And to change it to a common name like Smith? Honestly, is there a more recognizable name than Jesus Christ, other than perhaps 'the Beatles'?"
Smith also noted that the 'H' stands for Harold.
"I'm also considering an image makeover," He said. "I've grown tired of people calling me 'The original hippie' because of the long hair, beard and sandals."