Author Topic: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries  (Read 1875 times)

CindiK

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 533
  • Holder of a Roman 1504 degree
    • View Profile
    • CindiK
Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« on: May 02, 2011, 08:08:11 AM »
This thread is regarding a topic brought up in the cafe.

In the Chicago area, there is an association of seminaries that have an agreement that students accepted at one school may take classes at other schools.

The topic discussed is that one of the schools has an admissions policy that excludes homosexuals and applies that exclusion to students of other seminaries cross-registering to that seminary.

When I was rejected, the faculty and staff of the seminary where I was admitted were upset. I am not aware of any action taken.
--
Cindi Knox
http://cindik.com/
google+: https://plus.google.com/109636523046387678613/
twitter: @cindikn

MDiv, 2013, Chicago Theological Seminary
Partner, Hope UCC, Naperville IL

goodstoryteller

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2011, 10:42:10 AM »
Cidi

It might be worth asking some questions and pushing abit

I know the sems in the group are quite a variety.  I don't know much about Northern--thought it was American Babtist--went to the website now and found they were an "evangelical" splinter group in the Am Baptist--

I can understand a denominational seminary not accepting as a full student or transfer student someone who could not be credentialed in their denomination---though sem graduation does not guarantee Ordination.  But when one participates in an inter-seminary program to reject a student who is in good-standing at at another school in the group seems more than odd and discriminatory---seems to go against the idea of the consortium.  I remember back in the late 50's (57-61 when I was at North Park which was part of the group we had students from other sems--Don't recall anyone I knew from NP that participated but it was offered us and the justification was for that exposure  to others---North Park was then far more monolithic in student and faculty than it is now.
We had only one  faculty that had not themselves attended NP but all had their advanced work at other Sems.  At that time NP did not give the MDiv but a BD--though it was four years on top of a Bachelor's degree. 

CindiK

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 533
  • Holder of a Roman 1504 degree
    • View Profile
    • CindiK
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2011, 04:18:37 PM »
It has been about a year since that rejection. Maybe something should have been done then, but I don't know that it would be helpful to do anything about it at this point.
--
Cindi Knox
http://cindik.com/
google+: https://plus.google.com/109636523046387678613/
twitter: @cindikn

MDiv, 2013, Chicago Theological Seminary
Partner, Hope UCC, Naperville IL

Grant

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 404
    • View Profile
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2011, 06:11:25 PM »
Several years ago, I was looking into schools to get a D. Min.  Gordon Cromwell  had a program which looked interesting.  I sent away for further information.  The criteria for admissions said that no one who believes gays should be ordained is eligible for admission.  I didn't apply, as that excludes me.

CindiK

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 533
  • Holder of a Roman 1504 degree
    • View Profile
    • CindiK
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2011, 12:30:23 AM »
I was aware of their admissions policy. I was unaware that they applied it to students cross-registering from other schools.
--
Cindi Knox
http://cindik.com/
google+: https://plus.google.com/109636523046387678613/
twitter: @cindikn

MDiv, 2013, Chicago Theological Seminary
Partner, Hope UCC, Naperville IL

goodstoryteller

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2011, 07:34:08 AM »
Yes, that is what seems so small spirited on their part.  Perhaps the stories of Peter and the Centurion, Lydia and Paul, and the Ethiopian Eunuch are not in their copies of the New Testament. 

God Bless

Karl

CindiK

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 533
  • Holder of a Roman 1504 degree
    • View Profile
    • CindiK
--
Cindi Knox
http://cindik.com/
google+: https://plus.google.com/109636523046387678613/
twitter: @cindikn

MDiv, 2013, Chicago Theological Seminary
Partner, Hope UCC, Naperville IL

Jeff Fairchild

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 425
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2011, 07:12:36 PM »
Cindi,

I think at a minimum Chicago Theological Seminary would in a very clear and express manner let all of its incoming and current students know that at least one of the members of the Association of Chicago Theological Schools expreslly excludes GLBT people from its courses so that the students of CTS understand that not all of them can fully participate in the benefits offered by the ACTS.  Does CTS do this?

CindiK

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 533
  • Holder of a Roman 1504 degree
    • View Profile
    • CindiK
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2011, 07:14:57 PM »
Cindi,

I think at a minimum Chicago Theological Seminary would in a very clear and express manner let all of its incoming and current students know that at least one of the members of the Association of Chicago Theological Schools expreslly excludes GLBT people from its courses so that the students of CTS understand that not all of them can fully participate in the benefits offered by the ACTS.  Does CTS do this?

I have not seen such a notice.
--
Cindi Knox
http://cindik.com/
google+: https://plus.google.com/109636523046387678613/
twitter: @cindikn

MDiv, 2013, Chicago Theological Seminary
Partner, Hope UCC, Naperville IL

Jeff Fairchild

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 425
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2011, 07:29:49 PM »
Perhaps you were the first CTS student to experience the express exclusion from Northern Babtist Seminary, but that would seem unlikely to me because ACTS has been around since 1984.  Anyway, I think an express notice from CTS would at least let students know what is or isn't really being offered by CTS, and shine a light on the situation so that all of the student know that some are excluded from the full range of offerings provided by CTS.

CindiK

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 533
  • Holder of a Roman 1504 degree
    • View Profile
    • CindiK
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2011, 07:44:25 PM »
I believe I am the first GLBT CTS student to attempt to take a class at NBTS and be completely upfront about her sexuality.

CTS students rarely take classes at NBTS - the two seminaries are somewhat distant from each other physically (about 30 miles) and theologically.

Though GLBT students are in higher proportion at CTS than many other seminaries, they are still a minority. So if there were one CTS student taking a class at NBTS every three years, there might be one GLBT CTS student taking a class every ten or twelve years.

The frequency with which GLBT people might take classes at NBTS would likely be even lower, as the students would probably be aware of the more conservative culture at the school.

Finally, GLBT students rarely announce their backgrounds when going to another school. The reason I mentioned it to the professor was because my background has a public presence and I wanted to avoid any kind of "awkward moment" that might disrupt the class.

Our academic dean approved the class substitution (though with concerns about how I would be treated, as well as what they teach on the subject). Our registrar processed the ACTS registration. When I received the rejection e-mail, I was told that the news had circulated among the staff and they were upset by it and considering what to do. So this does indeed seem to be the first time this happened.
--
Cindi Knox
http://cindik.com/
google+: https://plus.google.com/109636523046387678613/
twitter: @cindikn

MDiv, 2013, Chicago Theological Seminary
Partner, Hope UCC, Naperville IL

Jeff Fairchild

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 425
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2011, 07:51:14 PM »
Cindi,

Thanks for the further details and explaination.  While I don't like the outcome, I am glad you were open about who you are when you attempted to sign up for the course at NBTS.  It exposed an issue within ACTS that needed to be exposed.   Perhaps change will come with light being shined on the issue.

goodstoryteller

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #12 on: May 05, 2011, 07:29:54 AM »
You're fairness and understanding are most impressive Cindi

What about sharing this forum thread with your adviser? Often these uncomfortable things get brushed under the rug until someone eventually trips on them.


Karl

 

CindiK

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 533
  • Holder of a Roman 1504 degree
    • View Profile
    • CindiK
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #13 on: May 05, 2011, 11:30:20 PM »
You're fairness and understanding are most impressive Cindi

I guess I don't see myself as fair or understanding here. Perhaps I'm being more pragmatic: I'm not going to get into that class; I found a class elsewhere (Lutheran School of Theology, Chicago) that filled the requirement; I left it to those with more authority than I (faculty and staff at CTS) to deal with the issue; and it's a bit late (a year after the fact) for me to make an issue of it with NBTS.

I'm sure the folks at NBTS would consider me unfair, as I am advocating for them to accept as a student someone who is in flagrant violation of their rules and the Bible.

I don't see myself as particularly understanding, either, as I reject the notion that they can be true to their covenant with the other schools while applying their admission standards to students cross-registering from other schools. (I would imagine, for instance, that CTS might not accept some NBTS students in the MDiv program, but would accept them into classes through ACTS).

What about sharing this forum thread with your adviser? Often these uncomfortable things get brushed under the rug until someone eventually trips on them.

I may bring it up with the registrar, particularly the issue of alerting students to NBTS's policy.
--
Cindi Knox
http://cindik.com/
google+: https://plus.google.com/109636523046387678613/
twitter: @cindikn

MDiv, 2013, Chicago Theological Seminary
Partner, Hope UCC, Naperville IL

goodstoryteller

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Excluding GLBT people from seminaries
« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2011, 11:41:00 AM »
.

I may bring it up with the registrar, particularly the issue of alerting students to NBTS's policy.
[/quote]

That seems like a good action to me.