Gay Students At Evangelical Universities

There was an article published recently by a writer who toured Evangelical Universities to find out if there are gay students there and what is happening around them.  He got an earfull.

There are out gay students at all of them.  They are trying to gain recognition as student groups and offering support to any who might need it.

The article highlighted as aspect of being a gay young person that I had heard about several year ago.  It involved the obvious question, why would someone who is gay choose to attend the most anti gay catagory of university?  When I first heard it, I slapped my forehead and thought, “Of course!”

Some students are attracted toward these schools because they feel guilty about there sexual orientation and think attending one an anti gay school will take away their attraction toward the same sex.  The first person I heard this from was a former student of Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University. 

Officials at these schools do not want to recognize that gay students attend.  They do not provide support and sometimes expell students.  They definitely are resisting allowing gays to form official campus organizations.

The interesting delemma here is that the result of these schools going out of their way to be known as anti-gay institutions is the very reason they find gay students attending.   One would guess that the general student bodies at these schools is becoming more gay tolerant along with the rest of the young people.

One has to guess that changes are coming.

8 Responses

  1. Brad Campbell

    I think many evangelical universities embrace their gay students.

    Take Concordia in Moorhead for example. Students from my hometown here in MN that go there, say there is a thriving gay student population there and Concordia embraces them.

    Universities should embrace all differents kinds of students. College is hard enough just to be able to afford it….

    1. Brad 1:55 All I know about the Concordia (Moorhead, MN) situation is what I hear from gay students themselves. They, so far, have not been allowed to have a university sactioned group. This prevents them from receiving student activity funds like other organizations. They, also, are not allow rooms for their meetings because they are not sanctioned. They meet in the cafeteria areas. To Concordia’s credit, they have not yet expelled any atheist students. They have a list serve on campus with about 60 members.

      1. Paul

        As an out, gay faculty member at Concordia who routinely meets with students from the Student organization SAGA (Straight and Gay Alliance), I think it’s safe to say your information is somewhat outdated. The campus climate for LGBT students has changed for the better in the last 5-10 years (so I hear), and student events organizations have brought several renowned LGBT speakers to campus in my two years at Concordia. Also, the Safe Space committee, while once an ad hoc committee of concerned faculty, is now becoming a vibrant and important part of the LGBT fabric of Concordia. While we are not a formal faculty committee yet, our spring training was attended by about 70 faculty and staff, with full knowledge of the administration. Finally, given the ELCA’s recent social statement, the Lutheran Church (and others) are becoming much more welcoming. Granted, the ELCA attachment may be problematic for some, know that it is a framework, and students, faculty, and staff are asked to have sympathy, not allegiance.

  2. Jon, about the time a young man or woman is heading off to college, he/she is starting to understand those feelings they have are not changing like they thought they would. It is a natural thought progression a child growing up in a conservative environment would look to a fundamentalist college to help them ‘take the gay away’.

    I suspect the highest level of ‘success’ achieved would be the individual living a life of solitude; next highest actually getting married and causing a whole host of problems for some kind soul somewhere down the road.

    Then there’s the possibility they may find brothers-in-arms (all pun intended) and begin the journey to self acceptance and a great life.

    1. Mac 2:16 The sequence of events you summarized fits the exerience of the limited number of gays at such schools I have known, or, known about. They found partners at the schools and realized they had both been victums of false doctrines. They are now living successful and seemingly happy lives as out gays.

  3. Wow. To think Lindgren was teaching Economics at NDSU and also Mayor of Fargo? Fortunately for gays, and Fargo, and NDSU – times have indeed changed.

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