Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Is a Christian university possible?

Rod Dreher writes an op-ed in The Dallas Morning News on Baylor University and the possibility of a university maintaining its Christian identity. Dr. Sloan, the president, wants to strenghthen Baylor’s identity as a Christian institution, even as he pushes to make it a nationally ranked research university. Dreher writes: "What Dr. Sloan actually is undertaking is an audacious and much-needed experiment in American higher education and religious life. The tide of 20th-century secularism washed away entirely the religious identities of historically Protestant universities like Harvard, Yale, Duke and Vanderbilt and dramatically eroded the distinct vision of Catholic colleges. That was likely to be Baylor’s future, too. As Dr. Sloan told me, ’If you’re not intentional about your identity, you can’t maintain it. I’ve never seen a school slide into Christian orthodoxy.’"

"Echoing a scholarly Christian conviction as old as St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas, Dr. Sloan refuses to accept the dominant post-Enlightenment view that faith and reason are mutually exclusive. Baylor 2012 is his bold attempt to show how they are complementary and how a religious university can speak to the broader culture from an intellectually sound but morally distinct vantage point. The plan doesn’t impose dogma on scholarly inquiry but tries, in the tradition of Christian humanism, to ask how the knowledge mined in various academic disciplines fits into the broad Christian vision – and vice versa." Very good stuff.

   

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