I have been attending General Synods since 1973. This meeting of Synod was an outstanding experience. I attribute this to Moderator William’s work in the background. Longstanding wounds are healing. Brothers who were pulling in different directions are pulling together. I was surprised! I went home encouraged!
Presently, the situation at Erskine is a Turkish bazaar of the kooky. In the words of Patrick McManus, it is “a fine and pleasant misery.” Erskine CFO Greg Haselden is a Roman Catholic who says he is an “evangelical. Roman Catholicism and Protestant evangelicalism are about as compatible as water and fire.
Counting on football for Erskine is an act of desperation. Without blushing, King Kooistra admits he has no other plan. It is like he is in a poker game and desperately trying to save the family farm by going for broke. He is drawing to an inside straight flush. Good luck! The odds for success are “about 1.4 thousandth of a per cent”
Clowns are associated with circuses, birthday parties, and fun. However, a clown wears a mask, and not only does the mask hide the clown’s identity, the mask also hides the clown’s intentions. Recent events in Due West involving Erskine Seminary are similar to a circus parade of clowns.
A petition from the faculty of Erskine Theological Seminary was sent to members of the Erskine board and the General Synod of the ARP Church asking for the separation of the seminary from the college as soon as possible. What would trigger such an action from the seminary faculty? This article continues the unfolding story.
Erskine College & Seminary was founded to educate college and seminary students to the glory of God. It appears the Three Amigos of Due West are attempting to turn Erskine College from a “gospel enterprise” to a sports-entertainment enterprise. Yes, Erskine may grow to 700 students, but at what cost?
The last issue of ARPTalk, “Kooistra’s ‘Hail, Mary,’” must have hit a nerve in Due West. Instead of presenting the case for an Erskine football program and asking the board’s approval (as was anticipated), President Kooistra pulled back. In uncertainty, he said he just wanted to talk about football. Was he indicating that football was not a “Hail, Mary,” but just a forward pass?
When Paul Kooistra was hired as the President of Erskine College & Seminary, he was hired to return Erskine to her roots as a Christian Liberal Arts college with a reputation for academic integrity and excellence. Instead, what do we get? We get football presented as the Messiah for all financial woes! Is this a “Hail, Mary” pass of desperation?
The new year has begun well for Erskine College & Seminary. What does 2016 portend for financial disclosure at Erskine? More of the same? A new page? I do not know!
Congratulations and a tip of the hat are due to President Paul Kooistra of Erskine College & Seminary. He was somehow able to talk the SACS people into removing the sanction of probation on Erskine. He is a magician! What else can he pull out of his hat?
FDR’s once intoned, “Four years ago we were drowning in the waters of a great depression. Today, we are still drowning; but we have learned to breathe under water.” Well, that is the story being told at Erskine — they have learned to breathe under water financially. And as baseball’s philosopher Yogi Berra coined it, “It’s like déjà vu all over again.”