Christian College Staff: Abortion is Someone Else’s Problem and a Threat to “Ministry”
Because of your generous support for our work and your influential relationship with Liberty University, I am sure you will be interested in the note (below) I received from one of our staff. He has long experience working with students in our Genocide Awareness Project and is very diplomatic in the way he promotes our work, especially when he encounters resistance, which he often does. It appears that two unhelpful lessons are being taught to students at Liberty: The first is that it is not appropriate to display abortion photos in public (private showings are approved but not public displays) and that criticizing administration policies at the school, even respectfully, is out of bounds. Both of these erroneous principles are obviously unbiblical.
It may also be helpful for you to be aware that shortly before Rev. Falwell’s death, I met with him on campus to propose that Liberty create an academic major to prepare interested students for professional careers in pro-life ministry. I explained that secular schools worked hard to inspire and equip students for careers in abortion advocacy but that there is no corresponding attempt by any Christian school to professionalize the ranks of pro-life activists, the vast majority of whom are amateur volunteers. We met for more than two hours and he responded enthusiastically. At the conclusion of the meeting he designated one of the administrators who was present to be the point person who would work with a department chairman to form a curriculum committee to begin the process of designing such a major. I was encouraged by his supportive response but it was very clear to me that none of the administrators in the room shared his view. As I feared, I later had great difficulty getting my calls taken or returned and the project died a quick and decisive death.
Christian colleges (and seminaries) are staffed by enormous numbers of administrators who view abortion as someone else’s problem and they see attempts to involve the church in the abortion wars as a threat to ministry. That view is shared by most faculty members and gets thoroughly internalized by students who go on to pastor churches. There are students at Liberty who are sexually active. Some of them are getting pregnant. Some of those who are getting pregnant are killing their children. Some of those who are killing their children would have carried to term had they seen the horror of abortion. Almost none of them will attend our director’s talk on abortion. Almost all of them would see our photos displayed outside the student union building. The decision to suppress the truth about abortion is so common at Christian schools that we began using aircraft to tow abortion photos over their campuses. That is what we had to do to Biola when the school told us that we could only display our signs if we turned them to face a wall behind which passersby would have to go to see them. We can sue public schools which try to ban our pictures but we have to resort to truck billboards and airplane billboards to reach Christian students. This is why so many Christian students abort and who so few Christian students every become seriously involved in pro-life activism. I will pray for your conversations with Matt.
This is a very wide-spread problem. I remember a broadcast of James Dobson’s radio program on which he interviewed six Christian college presidents and he asked them if they had ever seen a pregnant student on their campuses. To a person, they said no. To a person they all believed this was evidence that their students were living chaste lives. James Dobson was incredulous. I am not.
Executive Director, The Center for Bio-Ethical Reform