Interview on December 7, 2021 with Joanna, who is studying kinesiology, outside the Performing Arts building at Oxnard College.
Do you consider yourself religious?
Joanna: Yeah. Having faith and believing that there’s a reason that things happen. Having faith and hope will make it a little bit better.
Does your family go to church?
Joanna: Not at the moment, because of Covid.
Do you think there’s evidence for the existence of God?
Joanna: I don’t think there’s any evidence other than maybe the Bible, but then again, people say that it was written by someone else. I can’t really say if there’s any actual evidence.
Do you believe God created the world?
Joanna: Yeah, I believe God created the world. I don’t believe it was because of the Big Bang theory. I think it all started with Him and the first two humans He made and then after that began evolving.
If someone asked you who Jesus is, what would you say?
Joanna: The Son of God. Basically, He was the one here on the earth to help explain what He’s trying to say in the Bible.
Do you ever try to share your faith?
Joanna: Well, I try to share it, but I don’t try to enforce it on others. I just give them my opinion: “This is what I believe, I understand if you don’t believe it or you don’t want to believe it, I’m not going to force you to believe, but this is what I believe.” You understand or don’t, but it’s fine.
Do you believe in an afterlife?
Joanna: Yes, I do. I believe there’s a heaven and a hell. I believe that being a good person and doing the right thing will get you to heaven. I believe that doing crimes or just not being a very good person can get you to hell. I don’t wish it on anyone to be down there. I would rather you be in heaven than be in hell. I do believe there’s a heaven and a hell and that we’re all going to get there some day, it just depends how you are here on earth.
How do you decide what’s good?
Joanna: I think everyone knows when they’re doing right and wrong. You’re not going to go rob a store and be like, “Oh, that’s good.” I’m pretty sure everyone knows that robbing or even hitting someone or killing someone is not good. Also, being rude to people. You can feel it when you’re doing something wrong, when you’re not being a very good person. Everyone has their own judgment, so you should know when you’re doing something good or bad.
What do you think about abortion, something people are very divided on?
Joanna: I think everyone has their own decision on what to do with their body and if having a baby is not something you want or you can’t have the baby or even if it’s because of your health, at the end of the day it’s the decision of the person who’s going to have the baby.
Do you think that abortion kills somebody?
Joanna: Not really, because at the beginning it’s just a fetus, it’s not really a human yet.
Do you think late abortions are killing somebody?
Joanna: Yeah, I think late abortions is considered killing a baby.
At what point does the fetus turn into a human?
Joanna: I think when you start seeing limbs. Say you go to the first ultrasound and you’re seeing the limbs and the head, I think that’s already considered a human. But when you first find out and you don’t see anything, that’s fine.
What would you say to someone who doubts the existence of a good God because of the evil and suffering in the world?
Joanna: I would say that there are reasons why sometimes tragedies happen and we don’t know why they happen, only He does. But keep having faith and hope. I don’t know why things happen sometimes and you could be like “Well, why do they happen or why do they happen to me?” and sometimes it does have you second guess, but in the end having faith will have you not second guess that that.