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Exeter (Evangelical) Christian Union

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William Crawley | 00:17 UK time, Thursday, 11 January 2007

What's going on at Exeter University's "Evangelical" Christian Union? Last week, the CU was claiming its rights were being abused by the University Students' Union. Legal action under the Human Rights Act was being threatened by the evangelical group. For their own reasons, the CU had refused offers of mediation. Now, it emerges that the CU was protesting against a ban that had already been lifted by the Students' Union. Does your head hurt yet?


  • 1.
  • At 02:17 AM on 12 Jan 2007,
  • Sarah Shields wrote:

It looks like this Christian Union were interested in exploiting this situation to look like they were being persecuted. Clearly they were not the subject of persecution. Instead, it was the Christian Union's decision to require students to sign a statement of faith in order to join the union. That's their right, but they shouldn't expect to recieve funds from the Students' Union for an organisation that does not have an open-door policy for ALL students.

  • 2.
  • At 09:39 AM on 12 Jan 2007,
  • Gee Dubyah wrote:

I grow weary of sying it - but increasingly I find myself describing "christians" actions and words as disingenuous. Sadly, this looks like another fine example.

  • 3.
  • At 10:52 AM on 12 Jan 2007,
  • pb wrote:


From what I understand the CU never served a writ on its student guild, so in fact no legal action has been launched against it, stricly speaking.

That would mean the BBC entry above could be potentially libellous I would have thought anyway...

Watch this space...


  • 4.
  • At 10:58 AM on 12 Jan 2007,
  • pb wrote:

sorry, I mean the Ekklesia report could be potentially libellous not the BBC report... as no legal writ has been served on the SU... litigation has not begun... unless you know better...


The Archbishop of Canterbury has said moves against the Christian Unions are wrong.

Dr Rowan Williams said the refusal by some student unions to recognise evangelical Christian groups looked like a "fear of open argument".

Dr Williams said that while the views of evangelicals on the issue of homosexual sex may be "embarrassing" to liberal Christians, traditional values should not be compared to holocaust denial or racial bigotry...

  • 5.
  • At 11:17 PM on 13 Jan 2007,
  • pb wrote:

so Will

The guild lifted the ban without telling the CU.

Therefore the CU were still threatening legal action...

Does your head really hurt or is this all topspin???


  • 6.
  • At 03:27 PM on 19 Apr 2007,
  • Gene wrote:

In asking leaders of the CU to sign a statement of faith, the CU was simply trying to ensure that those running it would be Christians who believe the fundamental truths of the Christianity and adhered to them. Any claims that the Guild reinstated the CU are false.

The Guild claims to have reinstated the ECU at a meeting held in December 2006, but no details about this were made public until the media contacted the Guild when papers were filed at the High Court. No mention of a full reinstatement was made during a one-hour live interview between the Guild President and the CU President on BBC Radio 2's Jeremy Vine programme. No offer of full reinstatement, including the change of name back to Christian Union, or an apology or a reasons why the CU was selected for such discriminatory action has been received to date.

Once legal proceedings have started, they cannot simply be halted for a vast number of reasons. If the Guild were seriously contemplating reinstating the CU, they should have been in a position to bring/say something solid regarding their intentions as the CU cannot reasonably disengage legal services in the hope that something positive will come from yet further discussion.

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