Monday, September 3, 2018

Universities in America brazenly insist leadership of Christian fellowships must not be restricted only to Christians!

As far back as 2003, we reported the EU directive banning discrimination in the workplace on the grounds of religious belief or sexual orientation (See CA! Vol 6 No 2). That implies that, technically, Churches were obliged to consider for employment, even into spiritual offices (as long as it is an advertised paid job) atheists, satanists, and the lot. We also reported that similar policy was already been directly applied to Christian fellowships on Campuses in the United States, for example at the University of North Carolina (Vol 6 No 1).
Not surprisingly, the enemy is unrelenting in his pursuit of this shameful brazen attempt to control leadership of Christian organizations on US Campuses, and he roams about looking for soft targets. Of course no Christian fellowship would deny membership to anyone on the basis of their background and even religious convictions. All the Fellowships insist on, no doubt borne out by experience, is that anyone who would aspire to leadership positions should sign some basic statement subscribing to the basic tenets of Christianity. This, satan-driven University authorities insist is “discriminatory” and a violation of  some “basic human rights.” They consequently threaten to de-register those “recalcitrant” fellowships, who would no longer be able to use campus facilities for free for their meetings, nor get official invitations to University events and consultations.
In the latest campaigns in this ongoing battle, the Business Leaders in Christ (BLinC) fellowship of the University of Iowa took the University to court for selectively applying this vile policy on the fellowship last year.  The university apparently hoped it could start with the business-cum-religious organization and get to the others in course of time.  Following the court ruling that the University erred in singling out the BLinC for de-registering, the University decided in July this year to de-register some other 38 religious (mostly Christian) groups as well.   
That only took the battle to another level as one of those Christian fellowships, InterVarsity Graduate Christian Fellowship, took the University of Iowa to court to challenge the so-called “Anti-discriminatory policy” itself.
The Washington-based religious freedom law firm, Becket, is representing InterVarsity. In a statement, Becket attorney Daniel Blomberg asserted that booting religious groups off campus for requiring leaders to uphold the faith is not the way any university will "foster an intellectually diverse environment. “Banning religious groups from having religious leaders just flattens diversity and impoverishes the campus," he added.
In a similar scenario earlier in March, it took only two days after being taken to court for the Wayne State Campus (Detroit, Michigan) to reverse its de-registration of the InterVarsity fellowship on that campus. Commenting on that swift reversal, an official of Becket (which had also represented InterVarsity in that suit), observed that it was "good that Wayne State saw the light after it felt the heat." Similar reversal was recorded at the California State University in 2015

In the suit against Wayne State, Becket had pointed out the hypocrisy of the University in that it allows other student groups to be strict in their choosing of leaders.  The lawsuit read:

"Wayne State — an arm of the Michigan State government — makes the remarkable claim that it violates university policies for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship to choose only Christian leaders rather than Jewish, Muslim, or atheist ones."

"Wayne State rightly allows fraternities to have only male leaders, female athletic clubs to have only female leaders, and African-American clubs to have only African-American leaders. But Wayne State cannot then say it is wrong for a Christian club to have only Christian leaders."

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