For many years, the newsletters for Open Air Outreach were only published through email. Those newsletters were not posted online. We are now in the process of archiving these old newsletters online so that they are available to the body of Christ at large to read and be encouraged and edified by them.
The contents from this post was an email newsletter sent out on 12/14/2009
Many Sinners At Yale Hear the Gospel!
Dec 14, 2009
This newsletter has no copy-right.
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WE THANK GOD FOR ALL
YOUR PRAYERS AND SUPPORT
We have just completed our fall semester tour and are very encouraged by what we saw. Thousands of students heard the Word and some of them have repented of their sins! We are excited to start our spring tour after the Christmas break is over. We are believing that many more lives are going to be changed and transformed by Jesus Christ.
As a family we are supported entirely by individuals who believe in this ministry. We could not do this without help from the body of Christ. December and January are usually hard months for us financially. We seem to receive less support during December and January than any other time. Please remember us in your prayers and if the Lord puts it on your heart to help support us, we greatly appreciate it.
The Morrell Family
ALABAMA A&M UNIVERSITY
After being told that this campus was private and was falsely arrested, the administration apologized for my arrested and allowed me back on campus. They affirmed that this campus was public and said all I needed was a permit to preach. I got my permit and did some open air preaching in the middle of campus in the Quad.
ENCOURAGING THE CHRISTIANS ON CAMPUS
There is a Christian girl on campus that had seen me the first time I visited. She invited me to be a guest on her radio show which is broadcasted through the internet. I consented and had a great time. I saw her again when I was preaching on the campus during my second visit and she said, “A lot of people were touched by your interview. You’ve encouraged a lot of young Christians on this campus. This is awesome.” The body of Christ greatly needs to be encouraged to be involved in evangelism, especially young converts.
PREACHING REPENTANCE & HOLINESS
As I walked around the quad area with my sandwich board, I waited for a large class change to occur. This never took place. Though at certain times there were more people walking through the area than at other times, there never was a very big class change. But wearing the sandwich board did create enough curiosity in some of the students that they stopped and talked with me. I began to have a nice small crowd of students gathered around asking me questions.
I started off with repentance. John the Baptist preached a “baptism of repentance for the remission of sins”. The first word Jesus publicly preached was “Repent”. I explained to the crowd that we have sinned against God, we deserve the punishment of eternal hell, but God sent His Son to make atonement for our sins. Now if we turn from our sins God will turn from His wrath. Jesus has made salvation available to all and we receive the unmerited gift of forgiveness through simple repentance and faith.
This naturally lead to the question about holiness. Repentance is the beginning of a holy life. When a person’s heart truly renounces sin, when they truly make up their mind to stop sinning, this will naturally lead to an obedient life. Some in the crowds said they were Christians and had some questions. They asked, “Is it really possible to stop sinning?” I explained to them that sin is a choice to violate God’s law and that repentance is a choice to stop breaking God’s law. Our actions are the effects of the will. The key to living a pure and holy life is to have a pure and holy heart. That is what is promised in the new birth. Coming to Jesus Christ is a genuine change of life and character. The result of being born of God, the proof that we have repented, that evidence that we have come to Jesus Christ, is that we now life an obedient life towards God. A Christian is someone who loves God and obeys Him for His glory.
A GNOSTIC VIEW OF SIN & THE FLESH
After I finished my discussion with that small crowd I walked through the quad and stood on a bench in the middle. Some construction workers on campus saw me with my sign and came up to me. These men claimed to be Christians who didn’t like my approach. I had a list of different types of sinners on my sandwich board, warning them about God’s judgment, and one of the professing Christians said, “I am all of those things on that board.” The sign listed “fornicators”, “drunkards”, “pot smokers”, “sodomites”, “hypocrites”, “homosexuals”, “masturbators”, “Darwinists”. I was surprised that a professing Christian would say that he is all of those things. I understand a believer to say that they were people like that, but to say that they still are like that is to say that Jesus Christ hasn’t changed their life.
One of the men said, “If you believe you can live perfect you have a religious spirit.” I never said anything about perfection. His attack against holiness was completely unprovoked. I quickly responded, “If you don’t think you can live perfect you have a spirit of hypocrisy!” He was taken back at my response. He said, “What?” I said, “If you claim to be a Christian, but you live a sinful life, you are a hypocrite.” He went as far as to say, “It is a sin to wake up in the morning because you wake up with a sinful flesh.” He had a Gnostic view of the flesh. He didn’t believe that sin was a choice; he believed sin was a state of the flesh. No wonder he didn’t believe you could be perfect in this life. Many today say that you cannot be free from sin until you die and get a glorified body because they have a Gnostic view of the flesh. I asked him, “Are you a Gnostic?” but he stormed off. People get really upset when you take away their excuse for sin.
His friend stayed and talked with me for a little while more. He said, “But if you could live holy on your own” to which I interrupted and said, “it is not on my own. I am a Christian. It is with Jesus Christ in my life.” Freedom from sin is an essential doctrine of the Christian faith which brings much joy to the heart of those who love God. There is nothing wrong with living a holy life but it is wrong to live a sinful life. The man asked, “You haven’t sinned today?” I said, “No”. He admitted, “That is a good thing. Keep it up.”
CENTRAL CONNECTICUT STATE UNIVERSITY
The northeast seldom has any campus preachers come through. This particular campus is only a few miles from where I was born and grew up. I had never preached on this campus before and was very excited. I checked out the campus a few days in advance and saw that there was a nice amphitheater right in front of the student center which would be perfect for open air preaching.
PROBLEMS WITH THE POLICE
After I began preaching one of the students started to heckle me. He claimed that there was no evidence for God. I began to prove to Him that God exists. Soon a crowd gathered around to watch our interaction. Once the crowd had gathered, it was not longer before the Police arrived.
The Police told me that I needed to check in with the administration. I went to one officer, who sent me to another office, which sent me to another office, and then I went to even one more office. What I was told was that in order for an outside group to come on campus we needed sponsorship from a student group. I objected saying that sponsorship is a private school policy but Central is a public school. I was told that it was “quasi-public” because it is partially funded by tax dollars and partially funded by the tuition of students. Therefore, they said, I needed the approval of the students to preach on campus. I left my card with the administration and called my attorneys.
That night the administration called me back. They had checked out our ministry online and consulted their counsel. They said that they reviewed their school policies and concluded that there was no policy in place that would bar me from preaching on campus. I found out later that they were worried about a lawsuit. I returned to campus the next day and began preaching.
RON JEREMY THE PORN STAR
I read in the student paper and heard from somebody on campus that the previous week had famous porn star, Ron Jeremy, come and speak on campus. He was part of a “Great Debate” on pornography. He defended the porn industry. The campus paper said that he had won the crowd even before saying a word. With the student paper in hand I started open air preaching, rebuking the campus for their wickedness. It was not long before a large crowd had gathered.
In the student union is a “GLBT Center”. They have some offices and lounge on the third floor. Once they heard, or saw, that I was preaching the Bible on campus they came up as a group. I debated one man who said he was a seminary student. He said that the Bible does not teach that homosexuality or even fornication is wrong. I found out that he was the President of the GLBT club the previous year.
A friend of mine said that he heard the administration talking about how they could get rid of me. After preaching for about an hour the administration approached me and informed me that the homosexual club had just reserved the amphitheater. They thought that if they could reserve it that they could get rid of me. I said, “Oh ok. No problem. I’ll just go preach outside of the amphitheater.
I moved outside of the amphitheater and began preaching again. Most of the crowd left when I moved locations but I was able to draw in a crowd again. After preaching for another hour I noticed that the amphitheater was completely. I figured that since nobody was using it, I could preach there again. As soon as I started preaching the homosexuals came up to me in a rage. They said that they had it reserved. I said, “You guys are not even using it.” I began preaching again outside of the amphitheater and attracted another large crowd, but then the homosexual group took out a huge sound system and started blasting their music.
I could not compete with the volume of the music but I didn’t want them to run me off campus either. That would encourage them to do the same the next time I come out. I decided to move to the top of a hill that was behind the amphitheatre where they could still see me. Their music could not be heard very loudly in that location, there was a sidewalk with walking traffic, and I was able to draw in another crowd. Actually the homosexual group decided to leave their area and to come to where I was preaching. Once a large crowd gathered, preached a solid Gospel message, and the homosexual group realized that they could not stop me from preaching, I decided to call it a day. It had been a long day of preaching the Gospel.
MADE THE FRONT PAGE OF THE PAPER
The week before I preached on campus, the student paper had a front page article about Ron Jeremy (the famous porn star). The week I preached on campus, the paper did a front page article about our outreach! I praised God for that!
“Whether they were fascinated, genuinely interested or angered by his arguments, a large crowd of students assembled around a Christian preacher who spoke today for the greater part of the afternoon.” The Recorder (Central Connecticut State University newspaper)
CITY GREEN, WATERBURY CT
RETURNING AFTER SIX YEARS
Six years ago I used to preach in this city green almost every week. There are always a lot of people hanging around, walking through, or waiting for the buses. It is an ideal place for street preaching. Once I started traveling full time preaching on campuses, I had not preached in this location for a long time. I was very excited about returning.
POLICE ARE CONFUSED ABOUT OUR RIGHTS
While I was preaching repentance towards God and faith in Jesus Christ, I heard one woman on her cell phone upset with what was going on. She told the person on the other line, “but I don’t want to hear this!” It sounded to me like she had called the Police and wanted them to do something. An Officer on a bicycle came up to me after I had been preaching for a little while. He said that I could not “yell” in the downtown area. He said that people have the “right” to walk through downtown without hearing somebody yelling. I said, “People do not have the right to silence in public but I do have the right to free speech on public property.” I decided to turn on my video camera to record the dialog. As soon as I turned on the camera the Officer became nervous. He said, “Turn off your video camera.” I said, “Why, are you going to do something illegal?” He then decided to simply tell me to use good judgment in deciding the volume level of my preaching and he rode off.
DRAWING A CROWD ON THE STREET
Preaching on campuses can really spoil a street preacher. That is because it is very easy to draw a crowd on a campus but it is very hard to draw a crowd on the street. Since I am used to preaching to crowds, instead of merely preaching to people walking by, I aimed at drawing a crowd. I decided to preach against prevalent sins of the culture. I railed against gangster rap music and dirty dancing at the club. Preaching against Barak Obama for his support of abortion, homosexuality, and socialism really got attention. I had preached in this green countless times before and had never drawn a crowd like this before, which stayed for so long.
After I had preach for a while, I turned it over to my friend. He and I used to preach together every week six years ago before I hit the road. This was the first time that we were preaching together again. In the past I would do the open air preaching and he would give out tracts. This time he wanted to open air preach. It was his first time! We have seen many people open air preach for their first time this semester! He shared his testimony with the crowd and preached the gospel. The crowd was very receptive to him.
LAWSUIT AGAINST HARTFORD CT
In 2004 I was falsely arrested while preaching in the city square of Hartford. I remember when the Police put me in the back of the Police car and said, “I’ll let you go if you promise not to preach.” I told them, “If you let me go now, I’ll be preaching again in that public square.” They said, “Then you are going to jail.” I said, “Take me to jail then.” When I went to court, the prosecutor didn’t want to touch this case. He dismissed it immediately. I then filed a lawsuit against the Police with The Alliance Defense Fund.
We just recently had a settlement meeting over this case. Though at first it didn’t look like we were going to settle but would have to go to trial, at the last minute they changed their mind and decided to comply with our terms. My attorneys were granted $20,000 in attorney fees, I received $1 in nominal damages, and most of all I was given an injunction or consent order which protects me from the Police in the future. They admitted that I was falsely arrested and that the law was misused in my situation.
DOWNTOWN NEW HAVEN, CT
I have some friends in the area who pass out tracts to the night life of College Students every week. I was blessed to join them for fellowship and an outreach. They passed out a ton of tracts. I was able to do some open air preaching to the Yale University students who were having a sporting event rally in their courtyard. I had heard their sound system from the street and decided to go and see what was going on. When I arrived at the gate, the rally concluded and students started to leave at the gate. It was the perfect time for me to start preaching. As the students were leaving I was able to preach, “God is going to judge your life! Get ready for Judgment Day. Jesus Christ died for you! Repent of your sins!” The Police arrived but did not hassle me. They said that I had picked the perfect spot to preach.
YALE UNIVERSITY, CT
Only once before had I tried to preach at Yale University. This is a private school so you have to preach from the city street. There is a one way city street that runs right next to their courtyard. That is where I have preached in the past but have not been successful in drawing a crowd.
This time I decided to walk around the campus more to see if there was a better spot to preach. I found another city street that was in between a stone courtyard and a grassy courtyard. There is a cafeteria in one of the nearby buildings as well. During the class change a lot of students walk through this area. They cross the street to get from one place to the other. The street itself is only for emergency vehicles so it has very little traffic. That is good because it means the area is not very noisy.
The first day I had preached I was unsuccessful in drawing a crowd. I preached hot and heavy and only two people stopped. They were professing Christians who were not sure about my approach. I had talked with them and that seemed fruitful. One of them said, “Well, even if you did turn off a lot of people today, you got through to me.”
The second day I preached and still was unsuccessful in drawing a crowd. I preached for hours without much of a response. The Police arrived a couple times. They said that whenever I start preaching they get flooded with phone call complaints. They recognized my right to preach on the city street and so they left me alone.
During one of the class changed I was preaching, “God is going to judge your life! God is going to judge you for all of your words. God is going to judge you for all of your thoughts. God is going to judge you for all of your actions.” I looked and saw a group of students walking by and one of the girls was weary a short skirt. I said in general, “God is even going to judge you for the way that you dress!” Immediately the group of students stopped and engaged me. It wasn’t long before a crowd had gathered to watch our interaction.
Soon the Police arrived and I had to leave the crowd to talk with them. After sorting everything out with them again I was free to preach. Unfortunately the crowd had left. That was the only crowd I was able to draw all day. I decided to go home, make some specialized signs, and return for a third day of preaching.
Although the students had pretty much ignored me for two days, on the third day I was able to draw a crowd after preaching about five minutes because of my new sandwich board! The sign said, “Yale Needs To Repent. This Campus Is Full Of Sinners.” “Atheism is Foolish & Evolution is Wrong”, “Obama Is A Hell Bound Sinner” and “Repent” with a list of sinners. I wanted to make sure to get their attention because the Gospel message is so important.
While preaching I refuted both atheism and evolution. I was surprised that none of the students really tried to refute my arguments at all. Even on a regular campus the students will try to defend their beliefs in atheism and evolution. I was expecting the Yale Students to have some rational arguments but was disappointed. I taught the “metaphysical, epistemological, and axiological necessity for God” without any rebuttals. I also gave my logical, scientific, epistemological, and moral arguments against evolution without the students refuting my arguments.
After engaging in apologetics I told my testimony of how Jesus Christ has changed my life. In 2000 I was locked up at the Whalley Avenue Detention Center which was right down the street from the campus. I told the students how I had my neck slit in a knife fight, how I had been convicted by a hell fire preacher when I was in my cell, and how I began to read my bible when I was in Rehab. “If Jesus Christ can change my life, He can change your life! Before I knew Jesus Christ, I sinned every day. But Jesus Christ can make you holy! He can save your soul and change your life.”
I preached the message of the Gospel as plain as possible. In black and white I explained how we have sinned and need forgiveness through Christ. “I have good news and I have some bad news for you students. What do you want to hear first?” The students requested for the bad news first. I said, “The bad news is that you all deserve to burn in hell! You all deserve to go to hell for your sins!” I then went on to explain to them the good news. “The good news is that, as wicked as you are, as wretched as you are, as hell deserving as you are, Jesus Christ has died for you! His atonement is a substitute for our penalty. The blood that was spilt on Calvary is a substitute for the eternal hell that you deserve. Now your penalty of hell can be remitted if you repent!”
MAKING THE YALE NEWS
I read in the “Yale Daily News” that Yale students are known for having “naked parties”. When I mentioned this on campus the students were completely unashamed. They were proud of this!
The same “Yale Daily News” has since published four articles about our outreach on campus! A few weeks ago the “Yale Herald” did an article about our free speech case against New Haven. That makes a total of six articles that Yale media has done on us. That is the most media attention I have yet to receive from any single campus.
I was encouraged by these messages:
“Hello Mr. Morrell. My name is Marilena and I am from Greece… One of my friends goes to Yale and he told me about you and your inspiring speech. I would be very happy if you could add me as your friend. I would like to follow your preaching and guidance. Thank you very much.”
“Mr. Morrell, I can’t express the depth of my admiration for your courage. As a Yalie, I am saddened to see how you were treated, but I am not surprised. God Bless You. Sincerely, John”
One Yale student wrote on facebook, “I %&*#@ couldnt get to class either because there were soooo many people standing around.”
HOME FELLOWSHIP, MA
We had the joy of fellowshipping with some Christian families in Massachusetts. The McDonald family is a Christian family that travels the nation singing beautiful songs in Churches all over. We had a wonderful time of fellowship with them and their friends and they asked me to share my testimony, ministry, and give a message.
It was on my heart to talk about “If A Believer Sins”. I believe that there are many doctrines which people use to comfort themselves in sin instead of simply repenting unto obedience. If we ever find ourselves in sin, we shouldn’t try to comfort ourselves with sin friendly doctrines. We should repent of that sin and seek forgiveness through Jesus Christ. You can find the videos of this sermon in the video section of this newsletter.
OUR FALL & SPRING SEMESTER TOUR
The red is where we have gone already during our fall semester tour.
The blue is where we are going during our spring semester tour.
We are in Connecticut right now and we are going to Florida next.
“You ought to know that the reason I’m back into evangelism is because of your example (YouTube). Yes, the Lord is stirring my heart… but your example has stirred my soul! So… I can blame it on you, right?” Don
“I’d like to thank you for all the work you’ve done. Your youtube ministry has been a real blessing. In the past couple of days I think I’m getting close to viewing every upload.” Ryan
I am in the process of publishing a new book called “The Natural Ability of Man” which is an explanation and defense of the doctrine of free will. I will make a public announcement when the book is available.
HOW YOU CAN HELP SUPPORT THE MORRELL FAMILY
The financial support we receive from the body of Christ makes it possible for us to continue to live and to travel and preach. All support from $5 – $500, either monthly or one-time, makes a huge difference. Will you consider being a monthly supporter, giving as little or as much as you can?
Paypal: Click Here
Jesse & Krista Morrell
P.O. Box 1527
Lindale TX, 75771
Special thanks in advance to our supporters. THE BATTLE IS ON! We couldn’t do it without you!
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