Colleges and Evangelicals Collide on Allowing Religious Groups to have Own Standards for Leaders

For 40 years, evangelicals at Bowdoin College have gathered periodically to study the Bible together, to pray and to worship. They are a tiny minority on the liberal arts college campus, but they have been a part of the school’s community, gathering in the chapel, the dining center, the dorms.

After this summer, the Bowdoin Christian Fellowship will no longer be recognized by the college. Already, the college has disabled the electronic key cards of the group’s longtime volunteer advisers.

In a collision between religious freedom and antidiscrimination policies, the student group, and its advisers, have refused to agree to the college’s demand that any student, regardless of his or her religious beliefs, should be able to run for election as a leader of any group, including the Christian association….“It’s absurd,” said Alec Hill, the president of InterVarsity, a national association of evangelical student groups, including the Bowdoin Christian Fellowship. “The genius of American culture is that we allow voluntary, self-identified organizations to form, and that’s what our student groups are.”

Read it all (emphasis mine).


Posted in * Culture-Watch, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Education, Ethics / Moral Theology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Theology, Theology: Scripture, Young Adults

3 comments on “Colleges and Evangelicals Collide on Allowing Religious Groups to have Own Standards for Leaders

  1. Kendall Harmon says:

    Ironic in the extreme that this is happening to the Bowdoin Christian Fellowship, of which I am a former President, in case any blog readers were not aware

  2. sophy0075 says:

    So are you writing to your alma mater to express your puzzlement?

  3. Jim the Puritan says:

    The same thing happened at Williams several years ago, although the Christian Fellowship decided to offer incense to Caesar and promised they would abide by the College non-discrimination requirements:

    Political correctness is absolutely stifling at Williams. I have stopped giving them money.

    It is especially ironic that the Christian presence has largely been extinguished at Williams, since Williams is the site of the Haystack Meeting and the beginning of American missions and the student missionary movement. Its lineal descendants are InterVarsity, the Student Volunteer Movement and SVM2.