Letter to the Editor: University a house of learning, not church

In response to Rev. Andrew Weatherford’s opinion piece from Wednesday’s issue titled “University not reflective of ‘Christian’ in name,” I would like to offer just a few points.

Before I am decreed unholy, or a failed “(representative) of what is supposed to be the most prestigious Christian element on our campus,” let me also explain that I am a licensed minister, Brite seminarian and currently on track to become ordained.

First, the word Christian in Texas Christian University is to indicate that it is an institution of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), not a full-out religious institution. It is a school, not a church. There are students who attend who are not of the same system of belief as Weatherford. There are students who are probably not even Christian. The emphasis in TCU is University, with Christian indicating its Disciples roots. In fact, the Disciples pride themselves on disagreement, discernment and deliberation.

Second, the Bible is a book meant to be interpreted. Perhaps this is not where Weatherford stands, and that’s OK. However, I think we would both agree that faith is not something one can prove, or, rather, belief in miracles, creation, or any other Biblical principle requires faith, not fact.

Courses that examine the Bible not as the absolute truth but rather a text used by a religious group of people for the last two thousand years might actually want students to use their brains, not just their souls. Or, if not, perhaps we should also take the U out of TCU. But then it would just be “Texas,” and that wouldn’t bring in students.

Finally, Weatherford should probably lead by example, and not by condemning everyone else for their faults. That is what Jesus did. Even in the revolutionary stance he took, he dined with sinners, and died for sinners. That said, I do not care what Ignatius, bishop of Antioch, thinks of my actions or anyone else’s. I refuse to pay homage to the word Christian, just as I refuse to pay homage to anything but God.

And all this is because the Creator of the Universe loves me enough to send his son to die for my sins. And nothing I do, no matter how profane I am, no matter how often I question, doubt and examine, not even the horrible person I have been, will be and am, can change that.

Arthur Stewart is a graduate student at Brite Divinity School.