NASHVILLE (BP) — Though Christian schools have drawn criticism in 2019, some Christian educators say the criticism unwittingly underscores the urgent need for Christ-centered education.
Among attacks against Christian schooling: Second Lady Karen Pence has drawn fire for teaching in an evangelical school; the social media hashtag #ExposeChristianSchools has emerged; and accusations against a group of Catholic school boys proliferated following the March for Life.
“This country was founded on principles found in Scripture, however we are now in a culture in which those foundational principles are being attacked,” said Wesley Scott, executive director of the Southern Baptist Association of Christian Schools (SBACS). “If you can take out the foundation, you can take the fortress. Churches and Christian schools are essential in repairing these foundational blows.”
Christian schools must “find ways to engage an anti-biblical culture with loving and Christ-like compassion while continuing to educate adults, youth and children in the moral and spiritual values found within the Bible,” Scott told Baptist Press via email.
Criticism of Christian schools emerged in mid-January when Karen Pence announced she had been hired to teach art part-time at Immanuel Christian School in northern Virginia. The school requires faculty, students and staff to uphold traditional Christian sexual morality, including prohibitions on homosexual activity and sex outside of a biblical marriage.
In response to Pence’s hiring, media commentators, gay rights activists and others criticized both her and the school. Vice President Mike Pence called it “deeply offensive” to “see major new organizations attacking Christian education.”
The criticism continued in late January when Washington’s Sheridan School, a private K-8 institution, stated it will no longer play sports at Immanuel because “some students did not feel safe entering a school that bans LGBTQ parents, students or even families that support LGBTQ rights,” according to The American Conservative.
Russell Moore, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, told Fox News that Americans should be “grateful” Karen Pence “is involved in her community.” The controversy over her teaching is “representative” of a larger “problem … in American life.”
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Source: Baptist Press