PREACHING AT UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA CHARLOTTE- BROTHER MICAH ARMSTRONG – 10/27, 10/31-11/01

Thursday October 27, 2011-University of North Carolina at Charlotte-Charlotte, North Carolina:  Today was a good day for preaching with weather in the mid 70’s and clear and sunny.  There were some strong winds blowing. The last time I had preached here was almost exactly two years ago.

COMMITMENT TO FREE SPEECH

This campus has a plaque near the Belk Tower which is the designated free speech area that states the school’s commitment to free speech.  There is no advance notice policy on this campus.  You can walk right on and begin preaching.

ANARCHISTS WITHOUT A MESSAGE

As I approached the Belk Tower there were several people there handing out literature and every few moments they would proclaim something with a loud voice but I could not make out what they were saying.  I approached them and they handed me their “illiterature”.  It was then I found out they were promoting the “Occupy Charlotte” movement.  Reading their literature made me very angry but I came to preach the Bible so I said nothing and moved on.

I moved down the Belk Tower which is about 25 yards long and 10 yards wide so that I could be somewhat away from them.  I did not want them trying to interfere since no one was paying them much attention and usually our preaching draws large crowds of people.  This is because we have a message and they do not have a message.  They will then try to start preaching to the crowd that has gathered to listen to us.

I started on one side but the wind was blowing in my face so I moved to the other.  I began preaching at 12:05 PM and almost right away began gathering a small crowd.  I had some hecklers but for the most part the crowd remained civil and continued to keep growing.  For a while the crowd was around 25-40 but gradually grew to around 75-100.  I preached for 2 hours and 55 minutes and was able to preach effectively and answer questions with not too much heckling or interruptions.

ANARCHIST TRIES TO STEAL CROWD

At one point the anarchists seemed to notice the large crowd gathering to listen and ask questions.  Realizing our effectiveness and seeing their own ineffectiveness the anarchist “preacher” began to wax bold and began attempting to preach to the crowd gathering to listen to us.  No one was paying them any attention but this made it more difficult to preach over them.  I moved down about ten yards and just continued on and this solved the problem.

At 2:55 PM I turned the crowd of about 75-85 over to Sister Elizabeth and she did an excellent job of preaching and answering questions until about 4:15 PM.  The crowd grew to about 125-140 while she was preaching.  Some of the bullies came out and tried to yell, heckle and bully her but she stood her ground.

During her preaching time I had some very good conversations with several students who seemed sincere in seeking the truth and had been listening for most of the day to the preaching.

She turned the crowd back over to me around 4:15 PM and I took a seat in the midst of them and answered their questions until 5:00 PM.  By then most of the crowd had left and we made our departure from campus.

Monday October 31, 2011-University of North Carolina at Charlotte-Charlotte, North Carolina:  Today was a cold day if you are from South Florida with highs in the upper 50’s.  It was also overcast when we arrived.  The parking lot seemed fairly empty compared to last Thursday.  I figured many people were skipping class to get ready for Halloween revelry.  Walking to the Belk Tower the campus seemed cold and dead with few students outside.

I began preaching right at 12 noon.  It took a few minutes to get things going but soon I had a nice crowd of 25-40.  One professor sat in and listened.  He remained civil and respectful as he asked several questions.  He estimated the crowd size to be around 100 when I thought it was around 40.  The reason I mention this is I believe my crowd estimates are on the conservative side.

The crowd continued to grow to around 85-110.  For most of the time the crowd was civil and calm.  At times they would become somewhat rowdy but would settle down again.

DISTRACTIONS

Before they crowd grew to 85-110 the workers came out and began weed eating, clipping, and blowing a section of the green landscape by the Belk Tower.   This was very difficult to preach over but the crowd remained and even grew slightly during this time.  After about 30 minutes they left.

At times I had hecklers come along to try to sabotage the meeting.  One young man came walking in front of me, yelling interrupting and saying all sorts of perverse things were ok.  This riled the crowd up, brought about disruption and tried to make things a circus.  I continued to try to focus on preaching as the crowd had been listening so well before this and soon things calmed down and the heckler left.

At 2:00 PM the crowd was around 110 and I needed to take a restroom break.  I called on Sister Elizabeth to cover for me until I returned.  She had not been feeling well.  I returned immediately but she did not see me and continued to preach on Romans 1:18-28 until 2:30 PM.  She kept the crowd size and they were still fairly calm when I took over again at 2:30 PM.

THE DEVIL SHOWS UP

I had a great time of preaching effectively and answering questions while the crowd listened well.  A girl dressed as a vixen/devil stood right behind me while I was preaching trying to distract the crowd.  I ignored her and kept preaching but she remained right behind me.

The Word of God was cutting the crowd to the heart and all their excuses for sinning were being stripped away and they were starting to become rowdy.  This was further agitated by the girl dressed with horns on her head and a tail who kept trying to disrupt the calm atmosphere.  By 3:30 PM they all began to crowd around me.  At this time the crowd size was about 125-140.

As they crowded me I jumped on the Belk Tower and began to preach from there on Jesus as the Savior from sinning (Matthew 1:21).  The crowd swarmed all around me and began firing questions, accusations, etc. all at the same time and giving me no chance to answer.  I tried to answer them and reason with them as best I could.

One blonde male homosexual stripped down to his pink underwear and did all kinds of lewd gestures behind me while I was preaching.

At 3:45 PM I took a restroom break and returned.  I sat down on the Belk Tower and answered the questions of the students until 5:00 PM.  We rejoiced and thanked God for the opportunity we had and how he helped us.

Tuesday November 1, 2011-University of North Carolina at Charlotte-Charlotte, North Carolina:  Today the weather was in the mid to high 60’s and it was clear and sunny.  The best weather day so far and we had built momentum since Thursday so I expecting  a good day.

SURPRISING CHANGE OF EVENTS

I began preaching at the Belk Tower at 12:10 PM and several students were already waiting.  Soon a small crowd developed and kept growing to about 50-60.  Surprisingly as fast as the crowd grew soon it dwindled down to about 20-30 and stayed that way for a good while.  In spite of the small crowd they were civil and attentive and I was able to preach and answer questions effectively.

MANY ADVERSARIES

Gradually the crowd grew to about 50-70 again but I kept getting disruptive hecklers sabotaging the preaching.  These were not the kind of hecklers that were helpful for building the crowd size and maintaining interest in the meeting.  They were the kind who would disrupt when people were listening or someone asked a good question and then the heckler would never quiet down to allow a response.

To make things more difficult the maintenance crew came out again and began more hedging of the bushes around the Belk Tower, weed eating, blowing, etc. and making all kinds of noise.  This made it very difficult to preach over and keep the attention of the crowd.  It seemed the maintenance crew was taking their time and had been sent by administration to disrupt.  The tower bell seemed to be chiming non stop.  To me it sounded like “Hells Bells”.

Somehow a crowd of about 35 remained through all of this but I do not know how well they could hear me.  At 1:45 PM I decided to take a restroom break and returned to preaching around 1:50 PM.  There were still about 25 students gathered on the Belk Tower.

I continued preaching to and answering questions from the small crowd.  I continued to be plagued with disruptive hecklers but thankfully the maintenance crew finally left.  The crowd gradually grew all the way up to about 40.

THE IDEAL HECKLER SHOWS UP

I began to get some good questions and continued ignoring the disruptive hecklers.  Then I got a real good heckler who kept yelling at me and making really unbiblical statements he thought were Biblical.  It was somewhat humorous to me because he was so sure he was right and was totally unbiblical.  It was amazing the way he kept setting himself up.

Since he was a fairly large somewhat angry black male student most of the crowd got quiet and listened to him.  To his credit though he would always get quiet and allow me to respond. The crowd really grew to this point and continued growing to about 200.  I was able to do some very effective preaching at this point while the crowd increased.

THE IDEAL SUPPORTER SHOWS UP

Another interesting thing that happened here was there was another black male student standing behind me and filming all of this who agreed with everything I was preaching.  He would continually comment out loud “that is what the Bible says” and then comment to my wife “they just don’t believe the Bible” and “they need to study like the Bereans.”  This really seemed to take the heckler and the crowd back.  Unfortunately I did not get a chance to talk to this student on a personal level.

Soon the blond homosexual male stripped down again to his pink underwear and several other homosexuals showed up kissing each other, gyrating, etc.  I continued preaching until the crowd swarmed all around me and became too rowdy to preach to.

Around 3:10 PM I stopped preaching and tried to answer the questions of some of the more sincere students who were sitting on the Belk Tower.  Sister Elizabeth and I left around 4:00 PM.

THE ARMSTRONGS

The Armstrongs

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