After news emerged that Princeton Theological Seminary intended to honor Tim Keller, pastor of New York City’s Redeemer Presbyterian Church, people were outraged.
How could an institution committed to full inclusion of women and LGBT people in ministry give a prize — and $10,000 — to someone who very publicly wasn’t? Indeed, how could the Presbyterian Church (USA)’s flagship graduate school honor a minister of the Presbyterian Church in America, a denomination founded partly in opposition to the PCUSA’s decision to ordain women?
Then we learned Keller wouldn’t get the prize. Again, people were outraged. How could an institution committed to academic freedom silence Keller? What kind of “Christians” were these, backtracking on honoring a true man of God?
Lost amid these social-media-fueled caricatures was the on-campus reality. Seminary president Craig Barnes constantly heard a refrain: “I wonder if I really belong here.” Initially, it came from women and LGBT students.
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