Dear Young People,
As I was helping to index the Beacon Lights this past summer, I began to think of ways in which we could improve this magazine. The Beacon Lights of the past had varied and interesting articles. The young people of our churches contributed to help make the Beacon Lights, in my opinion, an outstanding magazine, not only for young people, but for everybody.
But what has happened? Our young people seem as if they are not as interested in their magazine as young people in former years were. Certainly, opinions are voiced and the articles are discussed. But why not write an article giving your opinions? For example, there was an article written in a quite recent issue that discouraged popular music. Several young people who had read the article bluntly stated that they disagreed with the stand of the writer. But on the other hand many young people said that, in their opinion it was a well-written article and that they agreed with the writer. But did any of these young people write an article giving an opinion? No. Are they afraid to give their views? Are they lazy? Don’t they care? Are they too busy with other things?
But possibly the young people feel that they don’t have an excellent ability to put their thoughts into words. The result is that the article goes unwritten and the Beacon Lights becomes a magazine for a few contributors rather than all of the young people. How would you solve a problem of this sort? Couldn’t you get help from your parents or ask a friend, possibly a classmate, to help you? 1 am sure that both would be glad to help if they are truly interested.
But another problem might be, What would the young people write about? As already implied, the young people might give opinions on articles. Possibly a literature contest could be arranged by the Federation Board for those interested in literature. Or, perhaps two or more young people could engage in a written debate. In the first issue, the person taking the affirmative side could give his view’s. In the second issue, the debater on the negative side could give his views. Then in the third and fourth issues the negative and the affirmative teams could give the rebuttals. This would not only serve as good reading material but also the reader would begin to get his own ideas and would write an article sharing his ideas or possibly he would like to engage in another debate,
Young people, let’s show some interest in the Beacon Lights. You certainly have your own ideas about the various articles that have been written. This is your magazine, so let’s make it as worthwhile as we can, even if we have to spend an hour of our valued time. It would be an hour well spent. Let’s not limit the Beacon Lights to a few faithful writers. But faithful writers, don’t be discouraged. We need you. If it weren’t for you, we wouldn’t have a Beacon Lights at all.
Our calling as Protestant Reformed young people is to be a light in a dark world. Are we fulfilling our calling by letting the paper and pen just lie in the drawer? Are we helping the cause of the Beacon Lights by procrastinating or taking the “let-somebody- else-do-it” attitude?
Don’t procrastinate any longer. Take that pen and start writing. It’s your privilege as covenant young people.
Yours in Christ, Lois Hoeksema