The speaker at last week’s Perspectives said something absolutely fascinating. It was on history and she was saying how if we don’t learn from history we’re doomed to repeat it. Well, one of the things she talks about is the Student Volunteer Movement, something that raised up missionaries in numbers never seen before or since. It was pretty amazing, actually.
Anyway, what happened is, it kind of died off. Partly because it became too top heavy, too many leaders. But another reason she says is because it lost focus. It moved from being a strictly overseas missions thing to a more general focus, and that killed it.
And, she said, she worries that Urbana is becoming much the same way. She loves Urbana, but she was concerned how this year the focus was less and less on overseas missions. There was much talk about the campus and racial reconciliation and all that, but there was only one main speaker who really talked about overseas missions, and it was brief. And that really concerned her.
I buy that. I don’t know how right she is, since I wasn’t there, but I could see even in ’96 how not everyone was there for a missions conference, and the conference wasn’t all about missions. I think the more they move away from that, the sooner it’s going to die. Of course, I don’t know anything.