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How Can a Young Man of 25 Become the Voice of a Movement?

Stumbling upon a book in his mentor’s luggage, William Wilberforce began to read words which caused him to think about how he was living his life.

At the conclusion of his study, Wilberforce realized there was more to his life than thinking about himself. What could he accomplish if he put others first?

Seeking the advice of John Newton, a slave-trader-turned-abolitionist, Wilberforce wondered whether he could remain a Member of Parliament given his new views of life. Newton encouraged him to stay involved in government, advising that he could do some good there.

Twenty-five years old, this young Member of Parliament became the voice of a movement when he undertook what seemed an impossible cause. Wilberforce wanted Parliament to abolish the slave-trade.

Although he was a very young member of government, Wilberforce believed he could take-on “the establishment.” Do you think a young person could undertake such a huge challenge in the 21st century? Why, or why not?

Can you think of a young person who has taken-on today’s establishment? If so, who is it and what has that person done to change the system?

What are other issues for which young people could champion change? Could you become a champion for change, even if you did not lead the charge? Explain your answer.


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