Photo by Hannah Simpson
Kweeigan Skelley, left, and John Boruff called for students to repent outside of the UC Sep. 25. While tension mounted, the call to repent ended in a quiet conversation on the UC lawn..
UNCP receives call to repent by evangelist and student
By Hannah Simpson
Around the Town Editor
Tension mounted Sept. 25 when Raleigh evangelist Kerrigan Skelly and student John Boruff called for students to repent for over three hours outside the Chavis University Center.
What ended as a quiet conversation on the UC lawn among Skelly, Boruff and a dozen students, began with Skelly standing on the sidewalk between the UC and the Business Education Building speaking about the sins of homosexuality, drinking, fornication, lust and body tattoos.
Skelly said he travels to North Carolina colleges and universities to preach about repentance on campus.
“The Bible tells us to preach the Gospel so [sinners] will not go to hell,” said Boruff.
Boruff, a senior philosophy and religion major, said he recognized Skelly as an evangelist he heard over YouTube. Boruff, who had been partial to Skelly’s preaching, said he immediately offered his support.
“We are warning people…to not rebel against God,” he said.
Several students were offended by Skelly’s preaching and called campus police, according to Detective Locklear, who responded to the request.
Locklear asked Skelly to move from the sidewalk leading towards the bookstore to the area by Jones Athletic Center entrance to not obstruct the walkway.
Locklear said he was concerned that Skelly may offend students and told Skelly he was not allowed to point at passersby while speaking about the sins of homosexuality.
“By pointing at someone, [it] could cause retaliation,” Locklear said.
“He was really fire and brimstone,” said non-traditional student Bill MacDonald. “He’s citing God forgives everyone, so whether you’re bisexual, homosexual or heterosexual, it shouldn’t matter.”
Skelly said he was not trying to offend students, but many people place unnecessary limits on controversial issues.
“We think homosexuality is a race…[it’s not] like calling a black person the “N” word,” Skelly said.
10% Society President Jamel Porter said he passed the speakers while they were talking and he is aware of their position on gays and lesbians.
“As long as he doesn’t try to enforce it on someone, it’s fine,” Porter said. “I protect his whole right to do that.”
Students gathered by the Tommy Hawk monument to debate with Skelly and Jones over salvation and the popular “once-saved-always-saved” issue.
At one point, an argument erupted over the soldiers in the “war on terror.”
Skelly called those who despise soldiers for participating in the war “wicked and evil.”
Skelly said soldiers are sacrificing their lives for the sake of their countrymen.
MacDonald replied, “No, they’re sacrificing themselves for oil.”
The debate progressed when student Jacob Karpel joined in the debate and attempted to make points concerning differences in Judaism and Christianity.
Karpel was repeatedly shouted over and drowned out by Skelly and Boruff.
At one point, freshman Ben McDiarmid paraded through the crowd of students, lightening the mood by carrying a sign.
McDiarmid’s sign read: will preach for change.
Skelly and Boruff ended their preaching by sitting with a dozen students on the UC lawn and discussing personal religious beliefs.
Skelly said he hopes to come to UNCP and preach once a month.