On The Church’s Door

As many of you know, last spring an email from an anonymous student was sent out across campus. This email contained a lengthy article that expressed the student’s displeasure with the state of affairs at NCU. Now, while the article had its flaws (i.e. the unnecessary use of profanity, the vilification of staff members, and, let’s be honest, some grammatical errors), it did bring forth some valid criticisms of our school.

The reactions to this email were many and diverse. Some students were offended, others were impressed, but I couldn’t help but wonder why the anonymous student felt the need to express their thoughts and feelings in the manner that they did. My educated guess is that the student was frustrated because their opinion wasn’t being heard. I think they lacked a viable option for expressing their feelings, so they kept everything pent-up, only to have it explode when their emotions were running high. This shouldn’t surprise us. When any of us feel that we have been wronged we desire resolution, but this student felt denied of that. I firmly believe that if the student had had a means of expressing themselves in the public sphere of our school community, then not only could they have received what they so badly needed, but NCU’s students and staff could have been spared the mild chaos that ensued in the wake of the unsettling email.

I’m sure that the anonymous student is not alone in their grievances. All of us will eventually find something about our NCU community that we find lacking or perverse, so it is with positive change in mind that I want to encourage, no, implore every student to express their views here on the Beacon Bolt. The Beacon Bolt is a student publication and as such it is designed to let every member of our community express their ideas, feeling and opinions in a safe and Christ-centered online environment. If you have something on your mind that you would like to be heard, then write down your thoughts and submit them to the Beacon Bolt. You just might find your contribution published.

But, perhaps even as you read this you are beginning to think, “Well, I like the idea, but even if I did write something can I really make a change?” To such skepticism I respond with an emphatic, “Yes!” On the eve of October 31st, 1517, Martin Luther posted The Ninety-Five Theses on the door of the Castle Church of Wittenberg, but, unbeknownst to Luther, this single act would serve as the catalyst for the Protestant Reformation. What we need to remember is that posting something on the church door was the equivalent of writing a blog. It was a means of getting one’s ideas into the public arena, and that’s just what Luther did. When he saw a corrupt system, Luther acted as a whistleblower, taking the Catholic Church to task on its flaws. We all have a similar opportunity to speak up on the Beacon Bolt. We can act as whistleblowers, and by having our voices heard, we will ensure that the powers of our school are checked and balanced.

If Luther’s single act changed the course of Western history, then it is entirely conceivable that by posting your thoughts on the Beacon Bolt (on the church’s door) you can radically transform the state of affairs here at NCU.