Yes, chapel needs grounding, but keep it online - The Echo News
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Yes, chapel needs grounding, but keep it online

Letter-to-the-editor

I wholeheartedly agreed with most of Professor Richard Smith’s article, which outlined a game plan to give theological grounding to our chapel program and education — except one thing.

He suggested that chapel services should no longer be broadcast and stored online in order to focus “on the spiritual needs and edification of those who are actually at Taylor.” While his argument makes rational sense, no longer posting the videos would be detrimental in several ways.

First, and most importantly, if the university limits the chapel experience to only those physically seated in the room, outside parties could no longer hold the school, or its speakers, accountable for its teaching.

A family would be foolish for refusing to attend church because they figure they can interpret the Bible on their own. Similarly, if Taylor officials were to no longer make chapel videos (or other documentation) publicly available, they would be saying to the wider Christian community: “We got this. We can interpret the Bible and discuss modern trends perfectly by ourselves. We don’t need your input.”

Throughout history, it’s been the outsiders to a group of people that see that group’s problems most clearly. Paul, after hearing reliable accounts or visiting a congregation himself, often told those congregations to cease incorrect or harmful teaching. Taylor should not shut out those willing to rebuke the institution in love.

Second, it would prevent students like me who are spending a semester abroad or off-campus from participating in our thrice-weekly gatherings.

Third, some students in Upland who are sick or can’t make it to chapel choose to watch the videos instead. There are also highly-motivated (or highly-confused) students who sit through chapel but want to listen to the message again to better understand the speaker’s points. The YouTube videos allow them to do so.

— Cassidy Grom, senior

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