KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI
Josh and Cathy Swanson have a unique family. The couple just gave birth to their eleventh son. When they had their first son 15 years ago they decided to name him Simon Peter. When their second came along he was named Andrew. Then came James, John, Phillip, Bartholomew, Thomas, etc. As the couple had son after son they continued to name them after the twelve disciples without a second thought, that is until number eleven came along.
"Well, as we went down the list we realized we were going to run into a problem if we had more than ten boys" said Josh Swanson. "We, of course, didn't want to name a child after Judas Iscariot. But remember that there was another disciple named Judas, so beyond ten names we weren't sure what to do exactly."
And sure enough when child number eleven came along it was a boy. The couple then came up with a unique idea to solve their problem.
"You know the name Judas has gotten such a bad rap because of Judas Iscariot" said Josh. "I'm sure there were lots of honorable people named Judas in Jesus' day, like the other Judas. So we wanted to find a way to redeem that name."
Drawing from Scripture the Swansons came up with a way to name their eleventh son Judas yet keep him distinct from Judas Iscariot by giving him the name "Judas Not Iscariot."
"We realize this is a little peculiar" said Cathy. "But we believe that people will get used to it over time. We're going to call him Jude for short as going around saying 'Judas Not Iscariot' could get tiring."
When asked if they planned to have another child Josh Swanson replied, "We definitely want to have at least one more child. If it turns out to be a boy we'll probably cast lots to figure out what to name him."