Campus Ministry USA returns

Chrissy Miller, News Editor

The Campus Ministry USA, led by Brother Jed Smock, engaged in arguments with students outside of Coleman Hall. Brother Ryan Christian aided Jed in his ministry because Jed’s wife, Cindy was attacked by a student at Illinois State University and her ankle was broken.

Sophomore pre-nursing major Whitney Hill said she generally walks past without engaging in these displays.

“He’s portraying Christianity in a terrible way,” Hill said. “He judging people for how they live and god don’t want you to judge other people, so I don’t know why he’s out here. I don’t know if it’s for attention or not.”

Hill said as a Christian Baptist, it feels like Smock is building up a bad representation of Christians and alienating people who do not know god.

“We’re supposed to be followers of god and be loving,” Hill said. “He’s making it seem like we’re the opposite of that.”

Smocks presence seems to irritate people, Hill noted.

“People don’t want to come out on their way to class and hear somebody scream at them about how they are like whores,” Hill said. “I can see the community feels like they don’t want to be bothered with it. They want to stay away from it as much as possible.”

Freshman music major Hannah Lee Howard said she has heard Smock speak on his beliefs before and decided to stop by for this speech because her friends were watching it.

“I feel like some other people get really upset about it and take it personally,” Howard said. “I don’t take it personally because I think it is funny for some reason.”

Howard said it is important to distinguish between Christian extremists and Christianity.

“In Christianity you’re supposed to love others for who they are and accept them as who they are not call them whores and sluts and pimps,” Howard said. “Forcing your religion on someone that’s being an extremist.”

Brother Ryan Christian, who has been accompanying Brother Jed in his ministry, said he was saved in Sept 2014. He said god led him to the college campuses first, which is where he met Smock and his wife Cindy. A year or so after meeting them, he said he began getting involved in their ministry.

“The bible has got a lot of strong language. The bible is very explicit. It’s kind of derogatory,” Christian said. “As far as using words like ‘whore,’ I just use biblical words. I try to use biblical words and some biblical words are a little bit offensive.”

As for the shouting, Christian said it is an effective way to grab people’s attention.

“The first seed of Christianity was planted while I was leaving a Los Angeles Clipper’s game in California, I’m from Los Angeles,” he said. “Somebody had yelled out their window from afar, ‘Jesus died for you,’ and that was the first time I was convicted, and knowing that because I knew Jesus had died on the cross but it was the first time that it really hit me.”

Chrissy Miller can be reached at 581-2812 and [email protected]