Campus Ministry USA pastors Jed and Cindy Smock were met with mockery and disrespect from approximately 100 students when they began preaching on the steps of a campus building at Eastern Illinois University. One student grab another and kissed him when the Smock’s began talking about biblical beliefs towards homosexual marriage. Another student traded a Bible for a bag of potato chips. A third student likened the pair of preachers to religious extremist he had seen in Iraq and Afghanistan.
From The Daily Eastern News:
Wearing a tiara and holding signs with phrases like “God hates figs and only figs,” Michael Bilek, a junior biological sciences major, paced behind Cindy Smock as she tried to speak to the students.
Bilek grabbed another male student from the crowd and kissed him on the lips in front of Smock as she tried to tell the students why the Bible does not allow gay marriage.
Student reaction to the two preachers on campus ranged from yelling at them to actively trying to mock their speech.
Emalie Thornton, a freshman secondary education major, ran in front of the Doudna steps, a Bible in her hand, asking those there what they would give for the book.
She ended up getting a bag of potato chips for the Bible, which she quickly gave away.
Scott Otto, a sophomore sociology major, said the two preachers on campus disturbed him.
“As an atheist, I don’t go around telling people what to believe — people come to me with questions,” he said.
Otto said the way Cindy and her husband, Jed Smock, were preaching reminded him of organizations he saw while on tour in Iraq and Afghanistan.
“They’re on the cusp of religious extremists,” he said.
Otto added that he did not think Cindy and Jed would be violent, but instead it was the relentless way they persisted at talking to the students that reminded him of the organizations.