BYU Speech Zeroes in On Those Who Feel Marginalized

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Silhouette of man sitting on bench.

Every Tuesday at Brigham Young University, a guest speaker gives a devotional. This week’s guest was psychologist Phillip Rash. He touched on a subject that usually doesn’t get quite as much attention as it deserves. He chose to speak about the people who may have “never felt like they truly belong” at BYU, the Church, or in their community.

About the periphery

Screenshot of BYU devotional speaker.
Phillip Rash speaking at BYU on June 4, 2019.

In treating the subject, Rash spoke about how those who do feel accepted should treat those who may be having a different experience.

“The important things is that we try,” he said. “We acknowledge that there really is a margin and that some people have lived on that margin for a very long time. We acknowledge that history leaves scars. We rid ourselves of prejudice and withhold judgment. We listen with love and understanding and we activate holy empathy by recalling how we too were once strangers in the land of Egypt.”

There’s a lot to be said about this speech. He touches on King Benjamin and his landmark address in The Book of Mormon (this was a bombshell for me). He talks about Christ and how He interacted with those who felt marginalized. And he talks about how to emulate that perfect example. Ultimately, Rash urged listeners to develop “holy empathy” for those people who may experience school, life, or the gospel in a way different from our own.

Unfortunately, the speech has not been uploaded to YouTube yet, so I am unable to embed the video here. But it is available for you to watch on byutv.org. Just follow THIS LINK.

The speech is only about 28 minutes long. It begins at about the 10:15 timestamp, and ends at 33:30.

After you watch it, let us know what you think in the comments!

David Snell is a proud member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He's the Founder of The Sunday Pews, and has experience writing for Mormon Newsroom Pacific, KBYU11, Classical 89 Radio, FamilyShare.com and plenty more. He tries not to take himself too seriously and just wants to brighten your day a bit.