Montreat College in North Carolina is requiring all of its faculty members to oppose same-sex marriage, which became the law of the land in 2015 after a ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court.
To keep their jobs, staff and faculty must agree to the private Christian college's new "Life Covenant" that calls for "chastity among the unmarried and the sanctity of marriage between one man and one woman," reports WLOS.
An unidentified faculty member sent the news station a list of eight faculty/staff members who are not going to sign the covenant, which means they will likely be leaving after the current semester.
Adam Caress, director of communications for Montreat College, insisted the new covenant requirements were not causing most faculty to leave:
People decide to leave employment for many different reasons, and it is not correct to assume that all of those leaving are doing so due to concerns over the core documents. The college is not at liberty to discuss information about individual faculty members, but in general, just two faculty members -- one of our 39 full-time faculty and one of our 142 adjunct faculty -- have informed the college that the core documents included in the faculty handbook are a primary factor in their decision not to return to the college next year.
Corrie Greene, who is employed part time in the college's English department, weighed in with the Citizen-Times:
No. 1, for me, signing anything that has an expectation of 24-hour adherence for me was a red flag because I know myself and I know my own path of faith and that is fluid. And I’m constantly being shown by God areas that I can improve on or change or think more deeply about.
Greene added that it was dangerous to "freeze my faith and testimony in one moment in time."
Faculty member Maggie Ray mentioned the covenant in her resignation letter:
Please be clear that I am not retiring but resigning. That I agree or disagree with parts of the Community Life Covenant is not significant. My deep commitment is to academic and theological freedom to discern God’s will for my life, and to my own sense of personal integrity.
Matt Langston, a part-time worker in the music business department, said that he doesn’t plan to sign the covenant, and expected this would be his last semester.
Evangelist Franklin Graham, who attended the school when it was a Presbyterian junior college, stated his support for the anti-gay clause in a posting on Facebook on May 1:
This now independent Christian school recently required its faculty to sign a statement of faith reaffirming their agreement with historic Biblical truths including God’s definition of marriage as only between a man and woman and the value of human life from conception to death. The overwhelming majority have signed in agreement, with the exception of a very few.
I applaud this Christian school for taking a stand on morality when so many schools are caving in, wanting to be politically correct and not offend anyone. It’s refreshing to see a college do the right thing!