Clergy Attempt to Reach Youths
“McGill University chaplaincy . . . was invaded by a pack of greasy-haired, leather-jacketed punks,” The Gazette of Montreal, Canada, reported. The “punks,” though, were not of the usual sort. They were members of the clergy—university chaplains—and were part of what the paper called “a new wave of theologians working directly with university students seeking spiritual enlightenment.”
The chaplains had dressed up as “punks” for a poster designed to advertise their services on the campus. One of them, a Presbyterian minister named Roberta Clare, explained: “We decided to do a punk poster because we want to get away from that holier-than-thou, judgmental image people often have of us.”
She noted, though, that far more students than in the past are interested in studying religion in school. Many are struggling with profound questions and look to university teachers and chaplains for answers. The paper interviewed one student who was curious about why religion exerts such a powerful influence in the community, why so many religions exist, and why these seem to cause so much strife in the world. He was grappling with the real identity of Jesus Christ as well as with the question of the origin of the universe.
Do these chaplains use the Bible to help the students find God’s answers to such profound questions? Rarely, it seems. These New Wave theologians agreed among themselves not to proselytize, which they view as “sheep-stealing.”
Well-intentioned though they may be, such clerics have strayed far afield from the teaching methods that Christ and his followers used. Early Christians did not worry about “sheep-stealing,” nor did they hold back from teaching the Word of God and helping sincere truth-seekers to understand it. (Luke 24:44, 45; Acts 20:20) After all, accurate knowledge of Jehovah God and his Son, Jesus Christ, is required to attain everlasting life. (John 17:3) God’s will is that all sorts of men should “come to an accurate knowledge of truth” in order to be saved.—1 Timothy 2:3, 4.
The work of Jehovah’s Witnesses includes conducting free home Bible studies with those who wish to have their Bible questions answered. Jehovah’s Witnesses in your community will be pleased to assist you.