Campus ministry chided for ‘discrimination’ among leadership

By January 31, 2012

USA (MNN) — The Gospel has offended enough people that InterVarsity
Christian Fellowship
has been threatened with suspension from another college
campus.

Over this past school year, Vanderbilt University
leadership decided to place on provisional status InterVarsity's Graduate
Christian Fellowship and three other campus Christian groups for non-compliance
with Vanderbilt's anti-discrimination policy.

The anti-discrimination policy, as it currently stands,
would prohibit a Christian organization from using any religious criteria when
selecting leaders. InterVarsity believes such a policy not only flies in the
face of common sense, but is contrary to the spirit of the Freedom of Religion
protections in the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Senior Vice President and Director of
Collegiate Ministries for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA Jim Lundgren has sent a
letter to InterVarsity's Vanderbilt University chapter alumni and others asking
for prayer in support of religious freedom at Vanderbilt.

"We love the university environment, and we welcome
all students and faculty into our chapter activities at Vanderbilt,"
Lundgren said in the letter. "However, it is essential that InterVarsity
student leaders be committed Christians who understand their faith as they seek
to lead their peers. No organization of any kind can survive without leaders
committed to its basic beliefs."

Lundgren is asking for prayers that Vanderbilt will change
its position and allow religious organizations to choose leaders who believe in
the principles and beliefs of those organizations.

A Town Hall meeting will be held on the Vanderbilt campus
on tonight. University officials will explain how the anti-discrimination
policy will be applied to student groups at that time.

For more background on the Vanderbilt situation, click
here
where you can check out statements by Vanderbilt's leadership, a response
from an InterVarsity Campus Staff Member at Vanderbilt, and an open letter to
Vanderbilt Chancellor Nicholas Zeppos from the Foundation for Individual Rights
in Education.

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