Tuesday, February 23, 2010




Winter 2010

Hope College administrators blocked a campus roundtable’s invitation to pro-gay Oscar-winning screenwriter, Dustin Lance Black. The administration’s objection was to his gay advocacy. It ruled that the theater department could have him speak about his screenwriting without discussing homosexuality. Students on both sides of the issues of homosexuality said they were offended that the administration implied that they were not mature enough to hear Black speak on homosexuality. Hope College is affiliated with the Reformed Church in America and considered “the 4th oldest evangelical college” in the country.

In striking contrast to this recent situation, on January 28, 1983, EC founder Ralph Blair gave an address to the Hope College community at the invitation of the college. His pro-gay speech was entitled: “Hope’s Gays and Gays’ Hopes”.

Social psychologist David G. Myers convened the assembly and the respondents were Hope College faculty members, Allen Verhey and Lars Granberg, and Elton M. Eenigenburg of the adjacent Western Theological Seminary. Eenigenburg agreed with Blair while Verhey and Granberg did not much disagree.

Throughout his weekend on campus, Blair lectured in classes of the college and seminary, spoke at student and faculty luncheons, and led discussions at Hope Church. He also counseled several students. Other supportive faculty members included Hope College chaplain Gerard Van Heest, religion professors Wayne Boulton and Elton Bruins psychology professors Jane R. Dickie and Bob Brown, and seminary professor Stan Rock. Especially encouraging was the warm support of Lester Kuyper, emeritus professor of Old Testament and formerly the president of Western Seminary and New Brunswick Seminary, the theological schools of the Reformed Church in America.


Oh to be back in '83...

Read more of the Winter 2010 Newsletter here:


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