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Bob Jones University’s Five-Year Strategic Plan with the Specially-Called Summer Faculty Meeting

For the second time in BJU’s 84 years, listen in on a Bob Jones University faculty meeting. This one announces the “five-year strategic plan” that TRACS requires its institutions to widely communicate to its entire organization. It’s long, so settle in.

30 June 2011 BJU Faculty Meeting

UPDATE: I have to say a little more about this. Both Clinton Verley and Ichabod Crank have started conversations too. So you might want to go over there too.

In some ways this meeting is like every other faculty meeting, the anticipation builds. You think you’re actually going to get some actual information, and then you are sorely disappointed and unsatisfied.

But this was different. It was so painfully clear. Obviously Stephen is having trouble with the medication at first. We all feel it. His listeners in the FMA feel it, and we out here feel it too. We’re wholly empathetic.

Then adrenaline takes over and he sounds like himself again. Whew.

And then. It happens. He sounds just like his dad. Yes, Stephen, I know you and your staff are reading this. I know that we who are your peers and those younger than we have trouble understanding this. But the patronizing, condescending, self-righteousness is just like Bob III. And Jr. And Sr. I have the benefit of history to have seen that dynamic with every member of your family. But for the rest of us, I must say: this is not a kinder and gentler BJU. It’s the same one we all know so well.

That’s when you hear the anti-Gospel. The politics. The moralism. The isolation. The sin is “out there.” Not “in here.” Stephen doesn’t even know. He doesn’t know the Good News.

And then Stephen catches himself. The Holy Spirit convicts, maybe. I don’t know. But he is in the middle of talking about how people will be compensated by accomplishments and effort for the “ministry,” and he realizes that he hasn’t really worked for a year and he’s about to not work for another 2.5 months. . . . and he realizes that he is a child of privilege. And . . . his energy plummets.

It all happens right “before” your ears. You can see the whole problem. We can all feel it.

Stephen, my dear friend, I beg of you. You know this as well as anyone: identifying the problem is the beginning of healing. The Problem here is not the economy, not the shrinking remnant, not the “sister institutions” with which you share “the same kingdom.” It’s not social media. It’s not people with assertions and opinions. It’s not the World raging against you.

The sin is not “out there.” Please, please, please, my dear friend. The Sin is “in here.” Get that, and the Rest falls into place.

God bless. I know you don’t see me that way. I know you see me as the threat. I’m not. I’m really not. I see you as more YOU than I think you do. God bless.

Bob Jones University’s Five-Year Strategic Plan with the Specially-Called Summer Faculty Meeting
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80 thoughts on “Bob Jones University’s Five-Year Strategic Plan with the Specially-Called Summer Faculty Meeting

  • July 10, 2011 at 2:24 pm
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    I know you’ve addressed this to BJU/Stephen, and with good reason, but I can’t help thinking of myself here and the church I minister in. It’s very easy to fall into the “out there/in here” fallacy. We need to be honest enough to do exactly what you’re saying here…even those of us well outside the BJU-specific issues.

    Thanks for the reminder, and I hope, for Christ’s sake, that BJU will stop thinking you’re (we’re) the enemy.

  • July 11, 2011 at 4:39 pm
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    Interesting insight. I am assuming that the person that gave this information to you did so with permission as opposed to being secretly recording the meeting. Surely you would not taint your website with information that was obtained incorrectly.

    How long has it been since you left BJU? Isn’t it time to move on? I find it curious that non-fundamentalist ask for tolerance and understanding of alternative views of Christianity all the while attacking fundamentalist or trying to paint them in a bad light.

    • July 11, 2011 at 5:00 pm
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      Way to miss the point, dude. Let’s see how many judgments you have in your six sentences. . . . I count six. And I don’t know where you’re getting that I’m asking for “tolerance” and “understanding” of any “alternative view” of Jesus. That sounds like boilerplate criticism from the extreme right-wing.

      I’m not calling for tolerance of anything. I’m calling for orthodoxy.

      Nor am I painting them in a bad light. I’m just shining the light. That’s all there is to it.

      So you can take the hackneyed responses elsewhere.

      • July 12, 2011 at 7:44 am
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        I do not claim to be a fundamentalist, reformed or Arminian. I tend to fall in the Molinism camp. My point was (and is) publishing material that is obtained secretly for the purpose of “shinging the light” can be viewed by some as unethical. I do find it interesting that rather than address my questions you chose to attack the messenger. Sad.

        • July 12, 2011 at 8:18 am
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          Cute. Now *I* am attacking the messenger. I haven’t attacked you, btw. I did not call your salvation into question. I did not call you bitter or unethical. I did not question your motives. I did not ask you Ryan-esque questions (see below) such as “how long have you been beating your wife?”.

          I refused to answer your question. I set a boundary. I called out your judgments. And I defended myself.

          That is not attacking you.

          • July 12, 2011 at 9:14 am
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            “Way to miss the point, dude”

            “Let’s see how many judgments you have ”

            “I don’t know where you’re getting that I’m asking for “tolerance” and “understanding”

            “That sounds like boilerplate criticism from the extreme right-wing”

            I’ll accept your comment that you were not attacking the messenger but it felt like it.

            Have a good day. BTW – I am anything but extreme right-wing.

          • July 12, 2011 at 10:22 am
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            Not once do any of those attack your person. Not any of them. Not any. Yes, they focus on your words.

  • July 11, 2011 at 6:05 pm
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    Sam, I think it’s obvious Dr. Lewis obtained the meeting from a very demoralized faculty or staff person. There’s a lot of unhappiness at 1700 Wade Hampton Blvd. And, most of that unhappiness is aimed directly at the administration building.

    There’s a big difference in seeking justice by illuminating truth and “moving on.” Plus, “moving on” can mean different things. For some, “moving on” means a clean break with the past. For others, “moving on” means dealing with what happened in the past. For still others, “moving on” means shining a light on the past, so others can be warned not to go there. Which “moving on” would you like Dr. Lewis to do?

    • July 12, 2011 at 7:52 am
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      Dan,

      No doubt the material was obtained from a very demoralized faculty or staff person. I have worked in jobs that were demoralizing, as I am sure most people have. I chose to leave and find employment elsewhere. I did not take internal communications from my employer and distribute them for publication.

      Your point about moving on having different meanings for different people is well stated.

    • July 11, 2011 at 8:29 pm
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      “stolen information”? “my only club”?

      Wow. Boy. You haven’t read here very much, have you? I’ve got more documents than the BJU Archives themselves. All legally obtained. Never fear.

      Sunshine, my dear. Sunshine.

      • July 11, 2011 at 9:02 pm
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        But what about the ethical implications of using such information? Ignore the sunshine and look at the reality of your actions. No, it’s not your only club but IF that is what it becomes, then yes, you will be no one’s hero. Be careful in the direction you are heading.

        • July 11, 2011 at 9:06 pm
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          Thanks for the advice. I’ve got this one.

          • July 11, 2011 at 10:02 pm
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            You still haven’t addressed the ethics of using it (even if someone else took it unofficially). It takes only one instance of ethical impropriety to ruin a cause. How low are you willing to go?

          • July 11, 2011 at 10:08 pm
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            This is the last I will say to you on this issue. I know how low you will go, as you’ve proven recently. You can question my motives. You can question my ethics. That’s your call. I owe you no response. I have not violated my personal integrity or the law. I have not violated my ethical code as a scholar.

            Boundary set. End of discussion.

          • July 11, 2011 at 10:09 pm
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            But Camille, don’t you WANT to be everyone’s here?!? 😀

          • July 11, 2011 at 10:10 pm
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            Or rather, everyone’s hero…

      • July 12, 2011 at 12:51 pm
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        WOW! Kudos to you! And this rewards you in the eyes of the Lord how……?????

        • July 12, 2011 at 12:57 pm
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          Nothing I do changes my position with God. All my good stuff and all my bad stuff is the same. It”s Jesus’ righteousness that’s credited wholly to my account. I am blameless before a holy God.

          So in the eyes of the Lord, my reward is from Jesus.

          Joel, we know each other. Even if it’s just through your wife. The next time I see you with your family, I’ll introduce myself. Maybe we can talk face-to-face then.

          And again, God bless.

      • July 12, 2011 at 1:02 pm
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        “Legally” hmmmmm Smoking is legal, drinking alcohol is legal, prostitution is legal in some states” What a poor and weak argument and such a politician like response. “I owe no response to no one” You should run for office. At least you meet the “ethical” qualifications of today. Christ dealt with quite a few self promoting scholars as well, while He was on earth. Simply….WOW!!!!

        • July 12, 2011 at 1:09 pm
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          I get it, Joel. You don’t approve. That’s fine that you don’t. I’m fine that you don’t. Jesus is fine with me. The law is fine with me. My church is fine with me. My family. And myself.

          And again, God bless you.

  • July 11, 2011 at 6:58 pm
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    I just finished listening to the meeting. I know that I am reading between the lines, but it seemed that the groundword is being laid for changing the the school’s name.

    • July 11, 2011 at 8:33 pm
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      That’s been a talking point for awhile. Doesn’t look like it’s going to happen, but . . . who knows? Maybe you’re right.

    • July 12, 2011 at 7:54 am
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      A rose by any other name …

  • July 11, 2011 at 7:29 pm
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    I have NEVER met a “so called” Christian with such a vindictive, mean spirited and hateful heart and mind! I cannot wait (I hope you’re saved) the Lord’s “reward” for you when He tells you “well done faithful servant”…your work brought how many people to Christ? How many souls were edified? Anyways, I feel sorry for your bitterness and pharisee like attitude. One can hardly even find any BIBLICAL referencing and backing to your so called crusade. Woe to those who are a stumbling block to the Gospel!

    • July 11, 2011 at 8:32 pm
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      God bless, Joel. God bless.

    • July 13, 2011 at 5:57 pm
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      Joel, you apparently have never met Dr. Lewis, since you say you have never met “a “so called” Christian with such a vindictive, mean spirited and hateful heart and mind.” You relish the thought of God’s judgment against one of His children, when the scriptures clearly teach that judgment belongs only to Himself. You ask how many souls were edified? I can answer that. Hundreds. Perhaps thousands have sought healing and comfort at the feet of Christ, where Dr. Lewis points her audience. I know that at least one (and probably more) person who rejected suicide and sought help because of the kindness shown in her gifted writing. That gift comes from the Savior, the Lord Christ. Woe to those who commit the unpardonable sin of calling Christ’s work that of evil. Woe unto you. May God direct you to healing and comfort someday. And God bless those like Dr. Lewis among us.

      • July 13, 2011 at 7:10 pm
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        Correction to my awkward first sentence. Joel, you apparently have never met Dr. Lewis, who is anything but a “so called” Christian with such a vindictive, mean spirited and hateful heart and mind.”

    • July 21, 2011 at 11:40 pm
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      Joel–my soul has been blessed and edified by the lovely and courageous words of Camille Lewis. So that’s one, at least.

  • July 11, 2011 at 8:46 pm
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    @Joel – Have you ever met Camille? Or do you consider reading some posts online as “meeting” someone. Here’s YOUR problem Joel. You think of BJU as a church, and so any illumination of their flaws as an attack on Christianity. BJU is a family run corporation. A corporation that asks for $80,000 in return for a non-acredited degree, without a lot of transparency about the end product it’s customers are getting. It’s NOT A CHURCH. It’s a BUSINESS.

  • July 11, 2011 at 8:50 pm
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    I believe Chick-Fil-A is owned by a Christian man. They’re closed on Sunday anywhere in the world, and my family knows some of the family that owns the company. They do a lot of good things for Christian caused. But if they hand me a frozen sandwich, I’m gonna go complain. When I do, I’m no attacking Christianity, I’m addressing an implied legal contract I entered into when I handed them my money. BJU is dealing with a whole bunch of people who are pissed off about their frozen chicken, not a bunch of heretics who hate God.

    • July 12, 2011 at 8:01 am
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      I do not eat at Chick-Fil-A. Don’t like their food. But I do not openly speak out against them. I just eat somewhere else. I do not agree with everything BJU does. Don’t like their “food” either. But I do not openly speak out against them either – get fed from other ministries.

      How is God’s love to an unsaved world shown by blogs that pointing out things we do not like within the Christian body?

      • July 12, 2011 at 8:15 am
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        Have you *read* the Bible?

        • July 12, 2011 at 9:17 am
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          I am 54 years old. I have read the Bible at least 30 times. What’s your point? But I am more of a “live peacefully with all men” than a “drive the money changers out with a whip” person – but both have their place.

          • July 12, 2011 at 10:24 am
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            My point? because there’s a lot of pretty pointed criticism of Christians in the Bible. Look at Galatians.

  • July 11, 2011 at 8:52 pm
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    *accredited* and *causes*

    I type fast and don’t proof read when I get exposed to inane stupidity. It’s my kryptonite.

  • July 11, 2011 at 8:54 pm
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    Joel, I know I am not the only one Camille’s work has edified. For years, I heard the Jim Berg version of the “gospel,” and I was burdened with the heavy load of trying to work and do, trying to attain my sanctification through focusing on my works (of course, I thought I’d need God’s help in my work, but it was MY work).

    Camille explained the bad theology that lay under his teachings and helped me realize that Jesus had already done the work for both my salvation and sanctification. Now, I can focus on Him. That, my friend is true edification.

    • July 13, 2011 at 10:44 am
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      Well said, Michelle. Camille and Grant have done the same for me.

  • July 11, 2011 at 9:47 pm
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    I love the classic fundy lines – bitter, mean-spirited, vindictive and hateful – even questioning someone’s salvation. What about the BJU employee that is so demoralized they would give this to Dr. Lewis? How bad is it when an employee would do that? That meeting was the beginning of the last gasps of a non-regionally accredited “Christian” “university.” The faculty with regionally accredited doctorates are already leaving. The exodus has started. Folks, Christ exists outside of 1700 Wade Hampton Boulevard.

  • July 11, 2011 at 10:17 pm
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    Well, “Joel.”

    “your work brought how many people to Christ? How many souls were edified?”

    I read Camille’s blog for two years. It was one of the factors that made me push the first domino over and watch the rest fall as our family RAN after the Gospel.

    So yes. She has caused people to come to Jesus. She has edified me with her humbleness as she has been so transparent on her journey through pain and loss, and discovering who God is. So yes. She has edified.

    Grace and Peace.

    • July 12, 2011 at 12:50 pm
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      I know better blog called THE BIBLE. A comfortable, cheap, “updated” and watered down gospel or christianity, will be appealing and “refreshing” to many. I expected this kind of response.

      • July 12, 2011 at 12:54 pm
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        It’s not watered-down to say that we are totally unable to save ourselves except through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. That is the Good News! That is IT!

      • July 12, 2011 at 5:18 pm
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        hahahhahahaha They don’t water down the gospel at BJU, they add to it, which is just as bad.

        • July 13, 2011 at 3:45 pm
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          And that’s why the real Gospel seems and feels so “watered-down” to them. They’ve added so much to it, that the real thing seems too cheap and easy! But Christ Himself said, “My yoke is easy, My burden is light.”

      • July 12, 2011 at 7:53 pm
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        “I wish those who are troubling you would emasculate themselves.”

        -Galatians 5:12

        Joel, the Bible calls for strong language when appropriate. You would need to make the case that Camille’s criticisms are incorrect or not central enough to Christianity to merit rebuke. Otherwise, the “don’t point out issues you have with other Christians” argument is… well, unbiblical.

      • July 13, 2011 at 10:48 am
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        Camille’s work, in my observation, is entirely about the Bible. She wants to see the Bible taught with nothing added, and nothing taken away. There is a comfort to that, because we understand that our righteousness is entirely of Jesus Christ, and not of our own works, either before or after salvation. But there is nothing cheap, updated, or watered down about that. And it is certainly appealing and refreshing to those of us who have been in churches and schools who placed extra religious burdens on us.

      • September 23, 2011 at 3:05 am
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        Joel, I know nothing about you and probably never will. But let me tell you something, attacking a human, made in the image of God Himself is so wrong. Isn’t it James who says that we bless God and curse men? I’m not judging, I’m just telling you what I seem to see, and it is that you are doing just what James said not to do.

        Also, I have never met Camille, but I was around when she first started blogging (or at least had started the blog that I found). Years have come and gone, and every once in a while, I end up on her blog again. It doesn’t matter what I read, I always come away encouraged, and I don’t get encouraged very easily.

        Lastly, Proverbs talks about it being wiser to keep your mouth shut and letting people think you are wise versus opening your mouth and proving that you are a fool. It is not my job to call you a fool. But I will say that you are making yourself to be very unwise in the eyes of others.

        Oh, yes. One more thing. I’m not at BJ anymore. I got kicked out. But I pray for them. I hope they learn better from their past mistakes. Yet, had I a blog when I heard about what happened with the meeting, I, too, would have blogged about it. Especially since I don’t know too many BJ people, past or present, who didn’t know what happened at that meeting.

        I am done here. Forgive me if I am too harsh, but I meant every word I said.

  • July 11, 2011 at 11:35 pm
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    I gotta add my mini-story, Joel! Camille, mostly through her blog, and through other online interactions, has pointed me to the Gospel more than your hateful little diatribe ever could.

    Her life, her testimony, her striving toward orthodoxy and Truth have all led me into a deeper relationship with Christ, since she’s helped light the way, a la Titus 2.

    Our in-person interactions, too, have always left me feeling encouraged.

    Camille definitely leaves things better than she found them. Can you say the same?

    • July 13, 2011 at 3:46 pm
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      I second this!

      • July 24, 2011 at 12:57 pm
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        I’ll third it!

        Camille, I found you to be very compassionate toward Stephen in this.

        p.s.You are a rock star at setting boundaries 😀

  • July 12, 2011 at 11:55 am
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    It still kind of mystifies me that all the empathy I communicated up there is lost. ::scratching head::

    Matches up with this “new Jesus.”

  • July 12, 2011 at 1:10 pm
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    Joel. Here’s the thing! Listen to the Holy Spirit. He might be guiding you back here to make you think. To draw you to the Saviour! Read Romans. Then Galatians.

    Peace. 🙂

  • July 12, 2011 at 6:54 pm
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    Camille, please continue to shine your light. I don’t know you personally (I wish you’d still been at BJU the 5 months I was there!), but your writings remind me deeply of an old high school teacher I had who challenged everything I knew about God and drove me back to Scripture time and time again. It’s obvious to me that your passion is Christ and Him alone – and it seems that just about everything you do is focused on driving yourself and others to look at Him and not their own hang-ups. Thank you.

  • July 12, 2011 at 7:23 pm
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    Dear Apostle Paul,

    Your public criticism makes us feel bad and may cause other people not to like us. Shouldn’t you be evangelizing or something?

    Oh, and shut up.

    Sincerely,

    The Judaizers
    Galatia

  • July 13, 2011 at 3:23 pm
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    Getting into the content of the meeting, was anybody else disturbed by the bad hall leader story? Stephen says that, if they had known, they would have done something about it. But, how can you tell them these things? They refuse to listen to anything about their appointed people. “No doubt the problem is with you.” They set up a “no griping” policy, then tell you years later, you should have told us? I’m getting whiplash just thinking about it.

  • July 13, 2011 at 4:12 pm
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    Defending the Gospel (and setting safe personal boundaries) are only two of the very healthy activities in which Camille is involved. I’m a different (better, happier) person for knowing her. She’s following her passion despite opposition.

  • July 13, 2011 at 4:13 pm
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    @Dan – Can you give me a quick version of the HL story? I haven’t listened to the audio. Maybe I will now. I have a theory that the entire BJU system was based on a plantation mentality. It is inherently two things that we’ve seen in the Jones’ family – Southern and Racist. (I would exclude Stephen from the racist part. I never knew him to be a racist, and don’t think of him as one.) On plantations no one questioned the “master”. No one was allowed any information except what the “master” gave them. Punishment was always harsh. I could draw parallels all day. Any of this sound familiar? IMHO, I think that’s what they’re struggling with now. The breakdown of the whole system is being caused by much more informed people who can get their information on their own. Not through a BJU approved pastor or principal. As to Joel’s “Christian Body” question, I don’t accept the underlying premise of the question. Why is BJU part of the Christian Body? Why do we give it that status? It’s not a church. It’s a for-profit business that charges Christians and non-Christians $80,000 for an education. By the way, in direct violation of the Bible, it also charges interest to those Christians. So why is it looked at as any different than a Jiffy Lube? I know they drape themselves in Christianity and Christian adjectives. It’s been a very good business strategy for a long time. Of course they’ve been careful not to pick a demonination, and they don’t discourage tithing to their corporation, but just because they want to be thought of as some kind of a Christian mother-ship, doesn’t mean that’s how we have to think about them. Show me where BJU is in the Bible? Show me where it says that a Jones always has to be in charge? This is a family business. If you start to look at it that way, their actions are pretty predictable.

  • July 13, 2011 at 4:31 pm
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    The gist of the story was an alumnus wrote and told the school he received a good education there, but had a bad experience with a hall leader and didn’t want his children to have a similar experience, so his children would not be going to BJU.

    Stephen then went on talking about how they need to know these stories so they can do something about them. My contention is they don’t want to know these stories because it will have to make them look at the whole top-down student life system, which, among accreditation, is the biggest problem I have with the place.

    They set a “no griping” policy, then years later tell someone they should have told. Makes no sense to me whatsoever.

  • July 13, 2011 at 4:51 pm
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    I’m listening now. Wow, he is doped up! Nerve damage that requires him to take meds that have him slurring his words? Going to graduation knocked him down for NINE days? Whatever he has, it isn’t minor.

    • July 13, 2011 at 4:55 pm
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      He does sound better in time. At first, it’s really startling. You know. We’re all feeling it with him. . . .

      But yeah.

  • July 13, 2011 at 4:54 pm
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    I’m bothered by the constant “Child” reference when referring to an 18 year old adult that can go die for his/her country, but in the eyes of BJU is a “Child”.

  • July 13, 2011 at 4:56 pm
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    They’re not children. They’re young adult CUSTOMERS. Change the way you view your CLIENTS. They PAY you.

  • July 13, 2011 at 5:05 pm
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    I got news for you Stephen. The “Founder” couldn’t get a lemonade stand started if he were alive today. Looking at him isn’t the answer. I understand your family’s eternal dedication to him, seeing as how he set you all up for life and all, but the reverence for an old racist is unseemly. The only people on campus who ever wanted to see Founder’s Day coming, have always been named Jones.

  • July 13, 2011 at 5:56 pm
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    Listening to him reminds me of why I liked him. He comes across as a very genuine, kind person. He was always that way with me when I had him as a teacher. I honestly wonder what they will do if he gets worse. I hope he heals 100% tomorrow. But how long does a responsible board allow the President of a college to continue on as the President if he physically can’t work? What would BJ be like without a Jones at the helm?

  • July 13, 2011 at 6:27 pm
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    Camille you’re right. He does get better as the meeting goes later. I’m struck by the thought that I’m sure he planned his medical titration to be at his most lucid for this meeting. Knowing that he had to speak for an hour, I’m sure he planned for it. Even so, his speech was slurred at times and he stumbled a lot. That makes me think that on an average day, the meds keep him pretty out of it. I’m trying to think of a condition that involves nerve damage, dizziness, and pain severe enough to require opiates in high doses? Any MD’s read this blog? Seems like a lot of weird symptoms. I really do hope he gets it figured out and completely heals. If not, maybe the Divine push he mentioned a few times, might be a signal to the Jones family. His brother could never run the place, and his health might rule him out. If he chooses to step down, I have a feeling it would bother BJIII infinitely more than it would ever bother Stephen.

  • July 13, 2011 at 8:07 pm
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    Maybe Roxanne could run it!?????!!!!!!

    • July 13, 2011 at 8:57 pm
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      Why not!? That’s a pretty good plan!

      • July 24, 2011 at 5:38 pm
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        Hey Camille! Didn’t Archbishop Desmond Tutu say on Oprah one day, that “Women should take over the world?” So, ladies WHEN do we BEGIN?” I asked that question of my adorable fundamentalist pain in the butt cousin to ask his wife for me. “when do we start?” HE was NOT impressed! Never answered.HA ha! A good christian woman could do a wonderful job of runing BJU, especially if she could ‘terrorize’ all the men with a little female intimidation. But seriously, a woman would have natural inclination for sensitivity and compassion for the staff and students. As long as a ‘son’ is in the saddle, and ‘daddy’s still alive pulling the strings, it can be little more than ‘a two headed approach’ to the leadership there. Every son who has inherited the president’s office, has always had to out up with ‘daddy’ pulling the strings. So no son at the helm since Bob the 2 nd became president, has ever really been fully authorized to make his own decisions re BJU policies or practices. Daddy’s problems have ‘always’ continued to come through to whichever son has been trying to do his job. When Bob 3 rd. passes on, and this son Stephen needs to step down, a non family member leader would be better hope for positive change. But not until after, a lot of bitter political infighting has gone on, and the fur has been flying for a long time. The place could go bankrupt by then. Maybe it Should. Seriously, would’nt it be better that way! The place gives christianity such a bad name. Love the blog! Love the blog moderator.

  • July 14, 2011 at 9:59 am
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    @Ray:
    I have a friend who labels the BJU dorm and rules system as “prolonged adolescence.” I think he nails it. Even fully-grown, married town students are treated like children at times. That’s just twisted.

    I teach high schoolers in a school which emphasizes relational teaching. We travel with kids all the time. I’m pretty sure I entrust my freshmen with more autonomy than BJU ever gave me….including the year I was a hall leader (which was its own unique slavery).

    • July 24, 2011 at 6:05 pm
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      Hey Ray, you know there is a word which describes this demeaning and humiliating practice of treating adults as if they were ‘a child’. It’s called ‘infantalizing.’ Google knows all! It’s actually very UN christian behavior, disrespectful, and a form of rebellion.It is a form of control by intimidation. It’s so disrespectful to treat other adults like a child. People who do that, really have ‘a superior attitude’, and some may have ‘a superiority complex.’ Google explains what that looks like. People with one always seem to have an annoying need to go around correcting people all the time. They are SO judgemental that you can ‘feel’ the negativity around them and coming from them. It’s so annoying. It’s also a very selfish attitude and an act ‘of power’, of wanting to have ‘power over people’ so as to belittle them. Jesus never acted like that. But then, these kinds of people don’t even bother reading the Gospels. Whenever former christian relationships started showing up that kind of behaviour with my former associates and friends,with whom I used to fellowship, as I look back, it was always the ‘beginning of the end of the friendship.’ Because they would not stop their annoying behavior, and get back to real friendship again, which includes acceptance and friendship love, I just had to walk away from them, break the friendship, and move on. Some people have to go so we can grow. Forgiving always, but tolerating demeaning behaviour, NO! I often return to the question: Where or where did the Golden Rule ever go? Because I know how unpleasant it feels to be treated ‘like a child’,( NO ONE gets away with that with me anymore now ) I really try to focus on people when I’m speaking to them, and treat them like a very special person. If I’m chilling out for a while with a judgemental person, I just try to keep my big mouth shut, and wait for a better time to speak positively with them. Other than that, I steer a wide birth around the strongly negative people. I just don’t need my peace and joy disturbed unnecessarily. But most people? I try to treat them as I would want to be treated. And I try to remember how Jesus treated people. Also, I remember the special people Jesus sent across my path for the past many years, who were kind to me. And with God’s Grace, I commit my life to following the kind example they showed me. When we respect other people, really respect them, I believe we give them what our dear lord gives us. Real acceptance along with empowering them to ‘be themselves’ because in our positive, kind, and accepting presence’ they know, they sense that, we are safe people to be around, and they do not need to justify themselves to us in any way. I want to be a person God can trust. What that needs to ‘look like’ in my life, is me being willing to be a person ‘others’ can trust as well. The verticle and the horizontal of the Cross. Being a real christian. I think we’re all learning what that really means. And we are all in the process of becoming better at this. But none of us have arrived. We’re on our journey of learning to be more like the Master, who IS Love.

  • July 14, 2011 at 10:58 am
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    @Ray. You only hit two of three Jones descriptors: Southern, racist, and ELITIST!

  • July 15, 2011 at 11:40 am
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    Yeah, there were several things that were disheartening in that audio. There still seems to be the cult-like attitude of “everyone is spiritually dangerous except us.” If he thinks the hall leader incident is indicative of why we cannot support the school, he is completely missing the mark, and that is unfortunate.

    The problems are internal to BJU and systemic. The culture of tattling, the authority structure with students (and maybe faculty), the crazy rules, the legalism, the elevation and retention of leaders who manipulate and use strong-arm tactics, the lack of SACS accreditation, the twisting and misuse of scripture, etc., etc. The list goes on.

    I agree with the people who have said that we’re not the enemies of BJU. I hope they read these things with open minds and humble spirits. I’d like to be able to support them again. I hope they change drastically. I hope that instead of trying to judge the motivation and heart condition of the person writing, that they instead focus on the content and see if the shoe fits.

    Only time will tell, but they better not delay. There may not be that much time left.

  • July 19, 2011 at 7:41 pm
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    Who ever invented the ‘no talk rule’? Not God! If we don’t talk about things, things get hidden, and the enemy who ALWAYS works in darkness, while using a spirit of intimidation, fear, and false guilt, tries to ‘shut people up!’ People who think they’re obeying God by ‘not talking about’ things that are not right, may be ‘under’ the fear of man. I think Camille is heroic! She refuses to be silenced and shut down by those who presume the right to impose their sanctimonious rules on her FREE SPEECH blog. Cammile and her bloggers enjoy sharing on HER web page. I think it’s the best one on the net! I also think Cammile has earned the purple heart for patience! Mr. sanctimonious is one challenging piece of work! The insight about BJU being somewhat like a PLANTATION culture, was brilliant! And the family firm president’s high and mighty status, really has been for over eighty years, the ‘resident master’ for whom all staff and students have pracically been treated like work and mental slaves. So BJU is somewhat of a planation/family firm, which being so fringe fundy as it has been, has had a master-slave culture built into it from day one. I think the place is somewhat of a religious gulag. BJU, like Pensacola, is A FAMILY FIRM. I think that fact alone is one of its biggest problems. In any family firm, the family rules! They own the place, turf, buildings, and control whatever goes on on campus. They also presume ownership and control of all activities of whomever resides on campus, staff and students It’s a Family Firm. It’s a business. It’s also an outrageously hypocritical caricature of christianity. Whenever I hear someone suggesting that we ‘shouldn’t’ be taking about something, I always get suspicious. One description of a cultic environment is, a place where there are certain things people are ‘not allowed’ to talk about. The no talk rule is a classic symptom of ‘people who have something to hide’. Bringing things ‘out into the light’, helps break their power over our lives, minds, thinking, and free will decisions to choose the right path to live, walk, and talk on, of true honesty, sincerity, and authenticity. I sure hope Stephen gets better. I’m an incurable optimist. God could still reach the BJU family firm president. Look was God did with Saul!

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  • July 29, 2012 at 1:46 pm
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    Hi Camille….Really enjoy your blog. Also go to Blogging Without Apology and some other stuff I have found recently, actually have become addicted to these wonderful musings by you and others. Especially liked the Keswick stuff, now I know what’s wrong with me, lol.What I can’t seem to find out though, is what has happened to Stephen Jones recently? The postings on this blog are about a year old and I can’t find anything recent, can someone point me in the right direction? God Bless, I am definitely blessed by your work.

    • August 2, 2012 at 11:58 am
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      A good place to keep up with the latest is here:

      https://www.facebook.com/TellTheTruthBJU

      Stephen’s been “out of the office” for over a year now. BJU’s Board of Trustees Executive Committee member John Yessa assured local journalists that he’d be back this month at the start of school, but he said that last summer as well about the “August” return date. So none of us is sure.

      He had a bad, bad case of “vertigo.” Very bad. BJUNews is another good place to keep up with the news:

      http://bjunews.com/2012/03/22/bju-posts-update-on-stephen-jones-health/

      Hope that helps.

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