Probably touched by an angel

Asbury University is a small Christian college in Kentucky with a reputation for promoting these weird cultish revival meetings.

What started as a standard chapel service on Feb. 8 quickly ballooned into something much larger than anyone could have anticipated. “The first day we had a very ordinary service, I would call it unremarkable,” university President Dr. Kevin Brown told NBC News. But by nightfall, students began returning to the auditorium, joining the group of those that stuck around after the initial mass. More followed, and more, and more, until the chapel was overflowing with students eager to join their peers in prayer. For the next 12 days, the ever-growing congregation worshipped around the clock, as word of the movement meanwhile spread like wildfire on social media, encouraging thousands of pious hopefuls to trek to Asbury and join what many participants had dubbed a “revival.”

It did go in a direction nobody anticipated. Hallelujah! Praise Jesus!

Someone who attended the “large spiritual revival” at Asbury University on Feb. 18 has measles, the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services announced Friday night.

“Anyone who attended the revival on Feb. 18 may have been exposed to measles,” Dr. Steven Stack, commissioner of the Kentucky Department for Public Health, said in a statement. “Attendees who are unvaccinated are encouraged to quarantine for 21 days and to seek immunization with the measles vaccine, which is safe and effective.”

The Lord works in mysterious ways.


  1. says

    as word of the movement meanwhile spread like wildfire on social media

    I think “wildfire” might be the wrong model for this sort of information cascade.
    Let’s see–what other sort of spread could we compare this to?

  2. StevoR says

    @ ^ feralboy12 : .. Going viral?

    Are the Darwin Awards still a thing..? Of course, the problem is they will have infected other innocent people & not just themselves.

  3. Jazzlet says

    And to add to the joy of the infection measles causes immune amnesia, so anyone who gets measles can get all the diseases they were immune to before their infection, truly I say unto you: the disease that goes on giving.

  4. StevoR says

    @ Matt G : They should have prayed in the way Jesus supposedly actually told them to – in private and secret not making a big show of it for public attention and praise..

    Matthew 6:5 & Matthew 6:6
    ‘Whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites who love to pray while standing in congregations so that people can see them.’When you pray, go into your room and close the door. Do not babble on and on like the Gentiles do.”

    Source :

  5. Matt G says

    StevoR@5- I had to attend an Ash Wednesday service this week, and one of the priests read this. I wonder how many in attendance saw the irony.

  6. wzrd1 says

    God loves dead babies!
    Death. Nearly 1 to 3 of every 1,000 children who become infected with measles will die from respiratory and neurologic complications.

    Subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE) is a very rare, but fatal disease of the central nervous system that results from a measles virus infection acquired earlier in life. SSPE generally develops 7 to 10 years after a person has measles, even though the person seems to have fully recovered from the illness.

    Now you know why those same folks who won’t see anything wrong with this also want guns in schools.
    They’re frequently also the same idiots that loudly proclaim how the dead are now angels. A belief that I believe is reflected in the book of Jim-Bob…

    @Jazzlet, very, very true. But, oddly I’ve yet to review a case of immune amnesia that ended any autoimmune disease. So, there isn’t even an upside to that phenomenon.

  7. numerobis says

    Big gatherings as a spreader of diseases is hardly a religion-exclusive thing. The first COVID superspreader event in Massachusetts was a biotech conference, for example.

  8. Some Old Programmer says

    I had measles as an infant. This was before the vaccine was developed. I’m also profoundly deaf in my right ear (which wasn’t discovered until I was in elementary school, as routine hearing screening wasn’t done–at least where we lived). The measles infection is the likely cause of my hearing loss, so, yeah, lifelong consequences are a possibility.

  9. bcw bcw says

    Anyone who was born before the measles vaccine remembers the kids in school who were deaf, scarred or in the special class because of brain damage from encephalitis because they had measles.

  10. tacitus says

    I am not ashamed to say that I engaged in some trolling of the Christian commenters angry that the college has decided to wind down the “revival” service schedule in view of the expense to the college and the disruption of the students’ studies.

    These armchair critics didn’t take kindly to the suggestion that if they’re so upset and angry about the cessation of the services at they chapel, why don’t they volunteer their own time and money to help the college keep things going, or better yet, start their own branch of the revival in their home town.

    “God will not be stopped!” — unless they’re too busy with work or vacation plans to help, apparently…

  11. vereverum says

    @bcw bcw #12
    Also the kids on crutches & leg braces who weren’t even there the next year.

  12. wzrd1 says

    @vereverum and the premature deaths from things like post-polio syndrome, such as happened with Arthur C. Clarke.
    And SSPE with those who suffered through measles 7 – 20 years previously, which is 100% fatal.

  13. StevoR says

    @9. numerobis : “Big gatherings as a spreader of diseases is hardly a religion-exclusive thing.”

    Er, who here is claiming otherwise exactly?

  14. Erp says

    I did check and Asbury University itself does require the measles vaccination for student (two jabs of the MMR) among others (and highly recommends others including the covid-19 vaccine). Asbury students are probably safe (unless they are in the unlucky small percent for whom the measles vaccine didn’t work). However Kentucky itself seems to have a lot of anti-vaxxers and a lot of non-students were attending

  15. birgerjohansson says

    I read they are working on a cure for the Marburg virus. Quick, let’s help the virus go out in a blaze of glory.
    I was thinking of party conferences among politicians who oppose reasonable health precautions Do you have such politicians in the US? (sark)

  16. Pierce R. Butler says

    birgerjohansson @ # 19: … party conferences among politicians who oppose reasonable health precautions …

    I’d chip in to charter a bus for wingnuts from Asbury U to Washington DC for CPAC 2023!

  17. brightmoon says

    I remember how miserable measles made me when I caught it . I was 5 . I ran to the pediatrician’s office to get my 2 vaccinated against that . It also crippled a much older cousin and I’d always mistakenly thought that she’d caught polio as a child.