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Updated: New wine – Shawna R. B. Atteberry
May 192008
 

Edit to update: Jessica, a student at Olivet Nazarene University corrected a mistake I had made. The professor was not dismissed:

I’m a current ONU student and I randomly came about your site. To my knowledge, the ONU prof was not dismissed…(unless this is a very new development). He is unable to teach the general education biology class (which is a loss for students because he is well-qualified to teach it) or teach his book. It’s a shame.

Jessica, thank you for letting me know he had not been dismissed, but that his teaching as been curtailed.

I should should have also posted a link to the book: Random Designer: Created from Chaos to Connect with the Creator by Richard G. Colling. It’s an excellent book. I didn’t agree with everything (but then I rarely do), but he makes an excellent case for God using evolution to create the world. I should really do a book review on it. Yes, I know those are famous last words. But I really do need to start putting up book reviews because I am reading some really good books right now.

End of edited update

I have decided to resign my ordination credentials and leave the Church of the Nazarene. I have not agreed with many of the decisions of our General Church in the last few years, and I have been thinking of leaving for the last two and a half years. I’ve decided due to theological and doctrinal differences (along with the GC decisions), that it is time to leave. There is a lot I want to write that I feel like I can’t due to the changes in my own theology. As a friend told me: “May be your new wine can no longer fit into the wineskin of your denomination. It’s time to move on, so that you can continue to grow and do what God has called you to do.” I think he is right.

It has also hit me that I really don’t need to be ordained to do what God has called me to do: write and speak. In fact, I will have more freedom for both without having to worry about credentials, what I need to do to keep them, and what I can and can’t write that people will compain about, saying “is she really a Nazarene?” and think I should be removed from ministry. This is not all paranoia on my part. A professor at Olivet Nazarene University was recently dismissed due to his views on creation and evolution. It was almost a repeat of what happened to one of my favorite college pastors at Southern Nazarene University in the 90s.

I felt a great peace when I had made the decision, and it has been confirmed through three different sources that this was the right decision to make. I will still be writing, and you will see some differences in the things I post, what I talk about, and how I talk about it.

Shawna

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 Posted by at 12:05 pm

  6 Responses to “Updated: New wine”

  1. Shawna,
    Thank you for letting us know. I am a regular reader but rarely comment.

    I felt compelled to comment now because I wanted to say that I really admire your courage; its difficult to follow God’s way in a world that considers women as second class Christians. You are an inspiration to me.
    It must have been difficult decision. Looking forward to your more candid posts.

  2. Shawna,
    Thank you for letting us know. I am a regular reader but rarely comment.
    I felt compelled to comment now because I wanted to say that I really admire your courage; its difficult to follow God’s way in a world that considers women as second class Christians. You are an inspiration to me.
    It must have been difficult decision. Looking forward to your more candid posts.

  3. Hi Shawna,
    I’m a current ONU student and I randomly came about your site. To my knowledge, the ONU prof was not dismissed…(unless this is a very new development). He is unable to teach the general education biology class (which is a loss for students because he is well-qualified to teach it) or teach his book. It’s a shame.

    It’s a bigger shame that local churches in the most conservative region in the Naz church are using their financial power to leverage decisions made at Olivet. The whole situation is messed up.

    That is a whole other topic there, though. 🙂

  4. Deepa, thank you so much for your support and thank you for letting me know you stop by.

    Jessica, I may have heard wrong. Even the Nazarene grapevine gets things wrong. 😉 I’m glad he hasn’t been dismissed, but you are right: the whole thing is a mess. The same thing happened at SNU in 1996 with one of my professors, but he was ousted. Thank you for stopping by and clearing up what happened at ONU.

  5. Shawana, my prayers are with you as you seek a new path forward. May God bless and keep you.

  6. Thank you Sally.

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