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Montreat College Mandates Staff Sign Document Opposing Gay Marriage, Abortion

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Montreat College, a private North Carolina Christian school, is mandating that its faculty and staff sign a document that opposes same-sex marriage and abortion. One faculty member told NBC News that she and eight of her colleagues have refused to sign it and are leaving the school.

What Happened?

According to reports, Montreat College’s “Community Life Covenant” expects faculty and staff of the school to affirm “the sanctity of marriage between one man and one woman” and the “worth of every human being from conception to death.”

Critics of the measure point to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, which contributed $100,000 to the college’s scholarship fund last month. The fund is headed by Franklin Graham, a Montreat College alumnus and a vocal opponent of same-sex marriage and abortion. However, the association has denied any involvement in the covenant.

School spokesman Adam Caress told The Charlotte Observer in an email that only two faculty members — one of its 39 full-time faculty and one of its 142 adjunct faculty — have cited the school’s “core documents,” including the covenant, as the reason they will not return to the school after this semester.

He also said that Montreat College has spent the last two and a half years “reviewing and revising” those core documents in a “transparent and deliberative process” that included 13 “listening sessions,” where the school heard and responded to the concerns of faculty, staff and alumni.

Corrie Greene, an English teacher at Montreat and the director of its writing center, believes the document does not account for what faculty do and say in the classroom and on campus. Greene is among nine faculty members that will not be returning.

“It says we must affirm and uphold the college’s specific spiritual stances in our full 24 hour/seven-day-a-week personal life,” Greene said. “I can’t let somebody else write my personal testimony. In my faith, Christ is constantly showing me something new.”

A small group of students expressed their concerns about the covenant during a gathering on Wednesday outside the school library. Sophomore Bailey Mathews organized the event and hopes to persuade college President Paul Maurer to “consider this a family and reconsider some things that we can fix our broken family.”

Mathews said she does not plan on returning to Montreat College after the semester.

“I was going to stay and I planned on graduating from here,” she said,” but now, no.”


Montreat College

Montreat College is a private Christian liberal arts college located in the town of Montreat, North Carolina. Montreat College has other campuses for adults and professionals in additional sites in North Carolina. It has a total enrollment of 1,082 students.

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