The following comes from a Sept. 8 posting on Religion News Service.
A well-established international Christian student group is being denied recognition at almost two dozen California college campuses because it requires leaders to adhere to Christian beliefs, effectively closing its leadership ranks to non-Christians and gays.
California State University, which has 23 campuses, is “de-recognizing” local chapters of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, an evangelical Christian group with 860 chapters in the United States. The university system says InterVarsity’s leadership policy conflicts with its state-mandated nondiscrimination policy requiring membership and leadership in all official student groups be open to all.
“For an organization to be recognized, they must sign a general nondiscrimination policy,” said Mike Uhlencamp, director of public affairs for the California State University system. “We have engaged with (InterVarsity) for the better part of a year and informed them they would have to sign a general nondiscrimination statement. They have not.”
InterVarsity, active in the United States since 1947, has been challenged on more than 40 college campuses, but CSU, with 447,000 students, is the largest to ban it so far. Other schools that have challenged InterVarsity include Vanderbilt University, Rollins College and Tufts University.
The challenges stem from a 2010 Supreme Court decision that ruled a public college can refuse to recognize a religious student organization with an “all-comers” policy if its religious beliefs are effectively discriminatory.
InterVarsity policy states membership is open to all, but leaders must affirm its “doctrinal basis,” which declares belief in “the entire trustworthiness” of the Bible. Many Christians who read the Bible literally also argue it prohibits homosexuality….
To read the entire story, click here.
University of Pennsylvania Inter Varsity Christian Fellowship