Chapel requirement change benefits students
Students respond to the recent change in chapel credit requirements. | John Uy/THE CHIMES
Spiritual development announced on Aug. 3 that they lowered the chapel requirement from 30 chapels per semester to 20. In addition, students are only required to complete five conference credits per semester. Students were previously required to attend only 15 chapels in person and four conference sessions. Under this new policy students are no longer allowed to complete chapel makeups or apply for reductions and must attend all chapels in person. The change derives from data indicating the majority of students who completed chapel makeups physically attended 20 chapels.
Jenna Kubiak: What are your thoughts on the change in the number of chapel requirements?
Amir Kamel, senior communications major : I think it’s great, it gives us more time to do other things so we’re not overwhelmed with a lot of things like Bible classes and chapels — so now we have more time to have quiet time with God and just see God for yourself on your own, so it’s not just other people feeding you spiritual things but rather you seeking spiritual things for yourself.
Melissa Leon, junior elementary education major : I think it’s really nice — I have three jobs so it’s nice not to juggle jobs, chapels and work. And then I never have to do makeups, which is nice.
JK: Does having a lot of work in your Bible classes affect your chapel attendance due to an overbearing amount of theology?
AK: Yeah, you feel overwhelmed and you’re concentrating even less during chapel, so now you can actually pick and choose your chapels and go to the topics you’re really passionate about and kind of be more focused on the chapels [that] you want to go to instead of just going to fill out chapel credits.
JK: Is it hard to complete chapel requirements since there are not any more reductions?
Julie Doden, junior business major : It’s hard, but I think you can do it. I think reductions were probably rarely used when people actually needed it — it was more just to make our lives easier, but if it’s required, people are going to be able to do it, it’s not like it’s impossible.
JK: How does your schedule affect your chapel attendance?
Eric Diomartich, senior communications major : I’m taking 18 units and playing baseball as well, and I work so it’s really hard to make it to all of them. For the first couple of weeks I’ll probably attend — that way I’m good later on in the semester.
JK: If more night chapels were offered, would it be easier to complete chapel requirements?
Renee Mariant, junior psychology major : That would be easier for me personally, but it depends on the time of night. If it’s after dinner time, that would be great. That’s one of the reasons I like fives because it’s before dinner time so I’m already on campus, but I live in Hart, so that’s a far distance. I’m more selective about which chapels I have to go to when I think about distance and I imagine people from Blackstone have that same mentality, or commuters especially.
JK: Do you think 20 credits is a more manageable number?
RM: I think 20 is more manageable, and I like that they say 20 and then no makeups — I think that’s good because realistically, our generation needs some discipline. I actually think the chapels are a really good way to discipline us in the faith also. Sometimes there’s a minor reluctance of "Oh, I have to go to chapel, I’m so busy," but then once I get there, there’s this ease of “Wow, I get to go to chapel, and I’m forced to work on my faith and be absorbed with good information and forced to not do homework,” and that’s kind of a great feeling.
Jacob Scholl, sophomore psychology major : I think 20 is a good number because it’s not too much where it can be overbearing or stressful, but it’s enough to get everything out of chapel — any less and we’re not getting much out of it.
JK: What is something you really like about chapels?
Amanda Hasegawa, sophomore nursing major: My favorite is the word chapel. I know we have Bible classes, but still just soaking in whatever word, whatever part of the Bible because we can’t ever outlearn God, and also just worshipping together as a community.