This article should be of at least general interest to OBUers (which means, oh, roughly half the members of the Huckabee administration). NY Times writing about Baptist colleges around the country breaking ties with the Baptist convention because of control issues. (I’d have to check, but seems like I remember that OBU prevailed on a similar bit of friction here a few years ago. Help me, readers.)
Georgetown is among a half-dozen colleges and universities whose ties with state Baptist conventions have been severed in the last four years, part of a broad realignment in which more than a dozen Southern Baptist universities, including Wake Forest and Furman, have ended affiliations over the last two decades. Georgetown’s parting was ultimately amicable. But many have been tense, even bitter.
In Georgia and Missouri, disputes over who controls the boards of Baptist colleges led to prolonged litigation. In Tennessee, a clash over whether Belmont University in Nashville could appoint non-Baptists to its board led the Tennessee Baptist Convention to vote in May to remove the entire board. Belmont’s trustees are still running the university, and while negotiations are continuing, the battle for control could end up in court.
“The future of Baptist higher education has rarely been more fragile,’’ R. Kirby Godsey, the former president of Mercer University in Macon, Ga., said in a speech in Atlanta in June.