BERRIEN SPRINGS, Mich. — In a stunning announcement, Andrews University has revealed that watching Animal Planet now counts for worship credit.
The new rule states that students can earn up to two worship credits per semester by Animal Planet documentaries for at least one hour. They must also write a short reflection on how the program deepened their spiritual understanding of God’s creation.
Many students have taken advantage of the opportunity, with some even creating Animal Planet watch parties in their dorms. “I never thought I’d be able to watch TV on Sabbath and still get credit for worship,” said sophomore psychology major, John Davis. “This is a game-changer.”
The university’s decision has raised eyebrows among some traditionalists who believe that worship should be more focused on attending chapel services. “This is a slippery slope,” said one concerned parent. “Next thing you know, they’ll be giving credit for napping on Sabbath.”
Despite the backlash, the university stands by its decision. “We want to encourage students to learn and appreciate God’s creation in all its forms,” said a university spokesperson. “And if that means watching Animal Planet on Sabbath, then so be it.”
It remains to be seen if other Adventist universities will follow Andrews’ lead and start giving credit for unconventional Sabbath activities, such as binge-watching nature shows on Netflix or playing video games involving animals. But for now, students at Andrews are enjoying their newfound freedom to watch TV on Sabbath without feeling guilty.