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College Shuts Down Dorm Room Bible Study

  • Religion Today
    Religious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world
  • 2013 Mar 04
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Officials at Florida's Rollins College ordered a group of students to shut down a Bible study they were holding in the privacy of a dorm room -- saying it violated the rules, Todd Starnes reports. The incident occurred in the midst of a campus battle over whether religious groups that require their leaders to follow specific religious beliefs are violating the school's nondiscrimination policy. Four students affiliated with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship were holding an informal Bible study in the common area of a dorm suite when a resident hall assistant entered the room and asked the student leading the study to step outside. "He was told they were no longer allowed inside the dorm -- even with the express consent of the students to do Bible studies," said Greg Jao, InterVarsity's national field director. "They said it was because InterVarsity was no longer a registered student group on campus." InterVarsity was de-recognized as an official campus organization after it refused to comply with the school's nondiscrimination policy. While InterVarsity welcomes all students and faculty, it requires its leaders to be Christians -- something the school maintains is a violation of its policy. A Rollins spokesperson, however, said the incident was simply a miscommunication: "No group is allowed to hold meetings in the common space of residence halls. A fraternity was recently in violation of this as well, and they were asked to meet elsewhere -- so it was not just InterVarsity." The Christian students have taken their concerns to Student Affairs.