On December 2, 2017, at 4 p.m. (CST), students from Oakwood University will dialogue with Seventh-day Adventist Church leaders from the North American Division during a 120-minute livestreamed conversation. During “Is This Thing On?” Dan Jackson, president of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in North America, and Alex Bryant, executive secretary, will answer questions via audience and social media during the program’s second Facebook Live event this year.
The program at the Huntsville, Alabama, university is unscripted; questions will be taken primarily from Facebook and Twitter. Subjects may include the Bible, church policy, Adventist lifestyle, race relations, theology, relationships, and more.
“Racism and social justice is a subject that is a very relevant to young people today,” said Andrew Taylor, Oakwood student and United Student Movement president. “I’m very excited to have an open discussion regarding this important topic with church leaders and college student. It is very important to know how the church will tackle the issue.”
Approximately 1,750 students are enrolled this year at Oakwood, the Adventist Church’s only historically black college/university (HBCU).
Live attendance at this event, occurring just before the official start of the Pastoral Evangelism and Leadership Council (PELC) meetings on campus, is expected to be “standing room only.” The young adult audience featured during the live event will be selected from a group of interested students. Those participating online are encouraged to use #NADNOW.
“We look forward to once again engaging our young adults in meaningful dialogue on issues that are important to them in the life of the Church,” said Bryant, who is an alumnus of Oakwood. “We need to hear their voices as together we look to position the church to meet the challenge of a growing and diverse world.”
“We have a wonderful opportunity to work through issues together," said Jackson. ““We want to dialogue with our young adults in an open and transparent way on the issues important to them. Our church only becomes stronger when we talk to each other, pray with each other, and learn from one another.”
The first Is This Thing On? event held on March 14, 2017, drew more than 23,000 viewers, with hundreds of questions and comments pouring in during the event and directly after.
"What I appreciated most about this event was how thoughtfully and purposefully it was put together to make sure as many people as possible could have their questions answered," said Nicqelle Godfrey, La Sierra University Student Association president (2016-2017) and AIA participant, regarding the March 14 event at Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska. "It was very clear that no question was treated as insignificant, which showed us how much the church earnestly wanted to converse with us all."
— NAD Office of Communication