Within a matter of days, the normally purple and gold covered campus of LSU was surrounded in orange. The classrooms were filled with students wearing orange shirts and the hallways were packed with orange posters. Orange fliers scattered the sidewalks and orange magnets traveled on cars. Even the skies shined a shade of orange as a plane flew over campus carrying a large banner that said, “Do you agree with Adam?” This left many students wondering, who was Adam?
“I Agree With Adam” was a recent campaign promoted on the LSU campus organized by more than 10 campus ministries. The purpose of this movement was to create awareness for two weeks leading up to an event where “Adam” would share his story.
The design of this campaign was to spark a curiosity that would lead to an opportunity for students to share their faith, Adam Roethele said.
Roethele, 21, is an LSU senior with a major in kinesiology. He was the “Adam” many people were wondering about, however, he wants to take the spotlight off of himself and turn it towards the mission of the campaign.
“The campaign really had nothing to do with me. It was all about Jesus Christ,” Roethele said. “My goal was to use my story to clearly communicate what the Bible says that Jesus did for us and what the implications of that were. If there is any joy that I took away from it, it was that fact I was able to clearly identify that the campaign did have nothing to do with me.”
This campaign was fueled by curiosity. Thousands of fliers, banners and magnets were placed all over the campus. Hundreds of shirts were distributed to the people involved with the campaign. Billboards across the city advertised the campaign. This was all done to get people thinking.
Social media was next to take flight. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts were created and each was immediately used to begin spreading awareness about the campaign. All of this created a stir of interest among people.
“The t-shirts made it obvious who was a part of the campaign so if people wanted to know what is was about, people had to ask,” Roethele said. “Facilitating that dialogue was the main purpose of the campaign.”
All of the students involved with the campaign were trained to share their testimony with anyone who asked them about their shirt.
“”It was such an awesome opportunity for me to share my faith,” Joseph Garrett said. “It really encouraged me to be more bold in my faith and it gave me more confidence.”
Garrett, 20, is an LSU junior with a major in horticulture. He is on Refuge leadership at the Chapel on the Campus, which is a program designed to raise up spiritual leaders on the campus of LSU.
“Everyday I had multiple people ask me about my shirt,” Garrett said. “Wearing that shirt opened up conversation that I would probably never have been able to have.”
The weeks of raising awareness led up to the main event on April 3, where “Adam” was revealed. When Adam was exposed, he shared his testimony.
“I got to share what God has done in my life and that in its self is pretty joyous. Sharing my faith with hundreds of college students was awesome,” Roethele said. “I know my story and my testimony, but it was fun to be able to share it to a large group of people and see what different people identified with.”
The campaign was held in the Union Ball Room on the campus of LSU and had hundred of students in attendance.
“It was amazing to walk into that room and see as many students as there were,” Christian Anders, collegiate minister at Istrouma Baptist, said. “The most impressive thing was that for the most part people were silent and tuned in.”
However, the most important part of the campaign has yet to come. The weeks following the initial movement play a huge role in the success to the movement. At the event where “Adam” was revealed, people were able to mark down if they wanted more information about the faith that “Adam” has.
More than 100 students marked down their name, and each of the 10 campus ministries have been praying over the students by name for opportunities to meet with them and discuss what “Adam” believes.
“The follow-up over the next couple weeks is the purpose of the campaign. So if that does not happen then the campaign will not be successful,” Anders said. “The next couple weeks are probably the most important part of the whole thing.”
The students involved will also continue to wear their shirts with anticipation for students and other people to ask them, “Who is Adam?”
“I am going to continue to wear my shirt as often as I can because I know it will give me more chances to tell others about Jesus Christ,” Garrett said. “That is what this life is all about.”
However, with every movement comes opposition. Megan Dunbar, LSU senior who writes for “The Daily Reveille,” published an article just days before the end of the campaign titled, “I disagree with Adam, and you should too.”
“Christianity runs so deep in our culture that it’s institutionalized. Those behind this campaign are mistaken in their belief that thoughtful Christianity deserves more awareness than it already receives,” Dunbar said. “Christian propaganda doesn’t need to permeate our learning hours.”
On the other hand, Adam and those who support the movement see a need for more of an outreach on the campus of LSU extending throughout the nations.
“I see a need for more outreach on the campus of LSU as I do everywhere,” Roethele said. “Just because there might be a bunch of people on campus who identify themselves as Christians, doesn’t mean we should stop talking about it.”
The ministries involved with the campaign were happy with the outcome of the campaign and look forward to the next few weeks to follow up with students.
“We wanted to get college students to talk about their faith in Christ, and create an atmosphere around LSU that produced a curiosity about the gospel so that it would be advantageous for people to share it,” Anders said. “And I think we did that.”
The campaign was short, but it seemed to accomplish the goal at hand. From those who loved the campaign to those who were opposed to the idea, people were talking about Christ, and that was the mission.
“I think it is really cool that we got an opportunity to step out as a group of Christians in these last few weeks,” Roethele said. “It was really humbling to be apart of. I hope it continues.”