Christians, ‘get back to your roots’: Marshall
October 22, 2010
Christians, ‘get back to your roots’: Marshall

Persons of the Christian faith are urged to get back to their roots, if they are to rise to the challenges brought on by increasing technology.{{more}}

This is the view of Jo-Ann Marshall, the presenter at the sixth lecture in the Girls’ High School (GHS) centenary lecture series, which took place last Thursday, October 14, at the Frenches House in Kingstown.

She was speaking on the topic: ‘Challenges to Faith and Spirituality in a High Tech World’.

Marshall, a former student of the GHS and current lecturer at the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Community College (SVGCC), listed a number of pointers which she believes would keep Christians grounded in their belief, in a time when the advancements of technology seem to be fast eclipsing religion and make it more difficult for believers to keep the faith.

She said that a Christian needs to first understand how they have arrived at their beliefs, and must be assured that this belief is a rational process that makes sense for the individual and the world.

“Any faith worth keeping must be able to stand up to scrutiny, and if no rational defence can be mounted for it, then it should not be held.”

“If you are shaky on that issue, then everything is going to be a disaster.”

The youngest speaker on the slate of 13 lecturers, 21-year-old Marshall said that a Christian must learn how to filter, or be discriminating.

“There may be a world of negative influences, but there are still spheres under your control, which you can limit your exposure to and that of your children or your loved ones.”

The Biology lecturer at the SVGCC also said that the same technology that can be a distraction to faith and spirituality could be used to evangelize and draw persons to God.

“You may not think of technology as being harnessed for biblical purposes in the traditional sense, but it was technology that allowed most people to have a Bible anyway.”

“Further to that, I believe faith based groups should encourage their members to excel in higher education.”

“When I say educated, I don’t only mean studying theology, but also philosophy, political science, and especially science and technology, because you will always be overwhelmed by that which you don’t understand; and mastery of these fields will place you on more even footing and allow inclusion into some of the more critical debates that might otherwise have been inaccessible.”

The born again Christian said that her work in the field of science has increased her faith in the existence of a higher power.

“I find that the more I delve into science is the more my belief in God grows.

The more I study biochemistry, the more I am amazed at the complexity of living creatures in general and the harder I find it to be all random, or that it is all meaningless.”

“That’s my position.”

“My Christianity is based not only on what I have read in the Bible, but also my own experiences, considering not just biological issues but also philosophical issues,” the petite young woman said.

Marshall’s delivery preceded tributes to two of the school’s past Headmistresses: Sister Philomena Anderson who ran the school from 1973-1975, and Lorna Debique who headed the institution from 1990-1992.

2010 graduate of the school Olivia Haslam was the recipient of the 100th anniversary achievement award for October.

The next lecture in the series takes place on November 18, and will be presented by Dr. Camille Nicholls on the topic: “Women’s health care trends in a modern society.” (JJ)