Ok, I'm still sorting through issues on the JBU thing.
If haven't heard, John Brown University, my alma mater, dismissed a student, Michael Guinn, earlier this month for violating the school's community covenant. Normally, this would be of no importance to anyone, but since the he is openly homosexual, it has garnered some media attention around here.
Though some sources are implying that he was targeted and ultimately dismissed due to his "sexuality," the reality is that everyone has to sign a contract when they join, committing to certain behavioral standards (this includes teachers and staff, BTW), and violation is grounds for dismissal.
Here are the articles I've amassed so far. For obvious reasons, the articles run short on details, and ultimately, it seems like there are just a handful of sources--the school newspaper, a writer from NW AR (4 articles), an additional article from a competing NW Ark newspaper, AP (3 articles), and a local TV station, KARK.
JBU's School Newspaper (this one will disappear in a few days, most likely, so read it first.)
Article from Benton County Daily Record. Similar information from NWANews.com and the Siloam Springs Herald Leader (Arkasas Democrat Gazette), all by the same writer. The last article, published Sunday, includes a statement from JBU officials made on Friday.
AP's contributions here, here, and here.
Article from the Springdale Morning News.
This online transcript of a KARK news item (note the local angle as they compare JBU first to Harding, and then to Hendrix).
Finally, here's an editorial from JBU alum Lucas Roebuck.
As my thoughts are still muddy, I refer you to Charlie Sebold's post. Charlie and I might not see eye-to-ey on everything (for instance, it may be a stretch to say that the founder's activity with the Salvation Army has anything to do with what's going on today.), but he asks some good questions, not the least of which is "What is the calling of a Christian college?" and "If they don't require Christians to attend, how can they fulfill that calling?"
I would answer in part by saying that our visit to campus last year was highlighted with a chat with five young men and women that really love the Lord, exactly the kind of thing I had come to expect from the school. I think they are fulfilling that calling, but I wonder just how this episode fits in.
The obvious question, should the school have let him in, is one I'll tackle another day (maybe). My main question at this point is, does the school have a stance on homosexuality, and if so, does it resemble this quote from campus pastor Stan McKinnon in the school newspaper: "I don't condone homosexual activity, but I don't condemn homosexual orientation."
I sent an inquiry into the university this weekend, and hope to hear back from them soon; we have a trip planned about 5 weeks from now to let a prospective student have a look around, and I'd like to know before I go.
Update: Charlie sharpens his thinking, but says his questions remain.
Also, here's the JBU Press Release from Dr. Charles Pollard.