Liberty University uses haunted walk to evangelize
By Caroline Stimpson, Oct. 28, 2015
Liberty University is using a death-themed walk to inspire people to pursue the life-giving news of the Scriptures.
The walk, called Scaremare, is designed to present people with the question “What happens after I die?” Once visitors pass through the various stages of the walk – including dark woods and an abandoned warehouse – they are presented with the Scriptures, an alternative to the deathly walk.
“They’re trying to lead into that question of ‘People are dying, so where do you think they’re going?’” Liberty University sophomore Holly Smith said.
Smith stated that the Scriptures were shared through an analogy where people with leprosy were compared to sinners. The message preached that people have an incurable disease like lepers, but God can wash them clean in the same way that Jesus healed the ill. Visitors were then asked to bow their heads and accept the Scriptures.
According to the official Scaremare website, the university hopes to accomplish several goals with this event:
- Present visitors with a conversation-starter about the Scriptures
- Expose visitors to the salvation message of Jesus Christ
- Use entertainment as a means of evangelism
The official Scaremare website states that approximately 26,000 people have made decisions for Christ since Scaremare’s establishment.
“I’ve been doing this for years, and I’ve watched a 10-15 percent spiritual return by attendees,” Richard Brown, an assistant professor of Youth Ministries, told The Liberty Champion. “So out of every 1,000 people who come through, we generally see 100 people give their lives to Christ.”
Some of the walk’s images of death were tied directly to Christianity. Vest explained that at the end of the walk, the event was connected to Jesus’s crucifixion.
“As you’re walking through it, you see a bunch of people, including Jesus himself, get killed,” Vest said. “And it makes you really think about life after death.”
Scaremare’s website states that there are trained volunteers at the event who are there to help counsel and guide those who make decisions for Christ. The event also provides a free download that explains the steps to be taken for a new believer.