Here is the answer to my open letter.
UBF directors don’t speak directly. They speak indirectly via Bible lectures. If you speak up or ask a question about a taboo topic, expect to be mentioned in the next Sunday message. Of course the wording is always subtle enough that an outsider wouldn’t think twice about it.
In the 2013 New Year’s lecture from the UBF General Director, he answers my two questions about what I see are the two biggest problems of UBF.
1. Will the UBF General Director admit that the UBF shepherding has created an environment where many kinds of abuse have happened? The answer is no. In UBF, God only keeps smiling down on UBF shepherds, apparently so pleased with their beautiful ministry. Yes, he admits some (many actually) have left UBF, but he only mentions how thankful all people will be to UBF shepherds. And he has the gall to say such people were “sent” by UBF.
>>> NOTE TO STUDENTS: When a UBF shepherd invites you to a one hour Bible study on campus, that shepherd is expecting you to be grateful to him/her not only for the rest of your life, but for all eternity, according to the 2013 new year lecture:
“What is the inmost heart of God? It is to seek and to save the lost. World mission is God’s heart-beat. Think about God’s sorrow when Christians do little to rescue the perishing people. Think about how God is pleased and comforted when he sees us diligently inviting students and teaching them the gospel. Our one-to-one Bible study is a very powerful tool of evangelism. Therefore most of those who studied in UBF become Christians. When Bible students leave, shepherds are sorrowful. But there are cheers of the angels in heaven on behalf of our shepherds. The Lord will say, “Well done, my faithful servants. You added many members to the family of God.” When we enter the kingdom of God, we will be surprised at so many people coming to us to say “Thank you! Thank you!” Who will they be? They are those who met Christ through UBF Bible studies and all of those who were saved through their ministries. When we serve God’s purpose with a big perspective, we can joyfully serve one-to-one ministry. As we do so, God will raise more disciples who will keep the beauty of our ministries and serve God’s purpose for his whole church.”
2. Will the UBF General Director put an end to the lording-over, absolute authority structure setup in UBF? The answer is no. In UBF, God is so pleased with a military-style leadership. Apparently UBF is the best of the best Christians, fighting like marines.
>>> NOTE TO STUDENTS: UBF is indeed a military-like organization, though it may not appear that way at first. Ask too many questions and you’ll end up with a form of dead-dog training, soldier style. Try going to another church and you’ll be lambasted with taunts of acting like Satan. Reject a marriage by faith arrangement…well I wouldn’t want to find that out:
“In the church, each member has its unique role and position within the whole as God assigned. What is our role as an organization in God’s church? We are Jesus’ disciples who are committed to world campus mission. If we compare the whole church to a military, we are the marines that engage in the battle at the frontlines. We diligently go to campuses to invite students, nourish them with the words of God, and send most of them to local churches, though we don’t like the last part. If we see our ministries from an investment-profit concept, we are not doing a good business. But if we see our ministries from God’s point of view, we are doing a beautiful ministry.”