Manchester University
Oak Leaves

November 16, 2018


Speed Faithing Creates Space to Discuss Religion

Kylie Mitchell


On Thursday Nov. 8, 2018, first-year Makahla Shelby shared her personal experience with religion at Speed Faithing, an event created by the Campus Interfaith Board as a part of Faith Week.

“Everyone was welcome to the event. We do not promote specific religion or worldview, but learn about traditions other than our own. You did not have to be religious to attend,” said Rebekah Houff.

From November 5-9, Campus Interfaith Board invited students to celebrate religion, faith, and worldview diversity on campus through a number of events.

At the Speed Faithing event, students had a one-minute conversation with a partner to answer questions and discuss faith and worldviews. It was an opportunity to learn about fellow students and their beliefs.

There are many diverse opinions and beliefs. “I think religion is a personal thing to everyone,” Shelby said. “How I feel about religion is not going to be the same as everyone else, even if they share the same faith as me.”

Growing up, Shelby was introduced to Christianity. “I grew up Christian and have always lived as a Christian,” she said. “I remember it being in my life for as long as I can remember. My mother always took us to church when my brother and I were younger. I was baptized by the age of eight,” she said.

Religion has played an enormous part in Shelby’s day-to-day affairs and bestows a lot of meaning in her everyday life. “Religion to me is mostly just your values,” she said. “This means loving others as much as God loves you, and helping others the way he has helped me and many other people. Christianity is giving and inviting.”

However, despite the different opinions she encounters, she respects all opinions. “I would never try to push my religion onto anyone,” she said. “If someone does not want to know more, I would not try to make them believe what I believe.”

If more people would like to know, Shelby has no problem providing insight. “If anyone does want to know more about my religious beliefs, I would recommend they try going to church for a Sunday service, reading the Bible or listening to Christianity podcasts,” she said. “There are many opportunities to learn more.”

Her most prominent struggle is how harshly others can criticize people of faith. “There are a lot of stereotypes around Christianity, which I completely understand, but it can be difficult for me,” she said. However, despite some obstacles she has faced, her faith remains unwavering and perfectly intact.