Will InterVarsity Losing Cal State Standoff Be Tipping Point for Campus Ministries Nationwide?
Despite a year's worth of persuasion and a New York Times article that sparked widespead support this summer, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship has lost campus access in America's largest university system because it requires student leaders to affirm Christian doctrines.
California State University has told the campus ministry that “no exemption can be made” to a new non-discrimination policy that requires leadership positions be open to all students, InterVarsity announced in a monthly prayer letter. Now 23 student chapters are no longer recognized by their universities as official student groups, losing free access to rooms for meetings and student activities fairs for recruiting.
“While we are disappointed, we know God is sovereign,” stated InterVarsity. “He holds the decisions of Cal State and the future of our chapters in his hands. We believe he hears our laments and our requests for intervention.”
The ministry requested prayer for “financial partners to cover the additional costs associated with ministry on campuses where we are no longer able to reserve free meeting space and promote our chapters in the same way we have in the past.” [Video below]
"This could be the tipping point of other university systems moving in this direction, so that's why we are concerned,” InterVarsity president Alec Hill told CT earlier this summer. While only a handful of universities have enacted such policies, Cal State’s 450,000 students on 23 campuses could tip the scales “in the sense of public policy and other university systems moving in this direction,” he said.
While some campuses began the school year with their InterVarsity chapter still recognized, ...