Adventist College Fights for Assistance from State Coffers

By Witham, Larry | The Washington Times (Washington, DC), June 23, 1996 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Adventist College Fights for Assistance from State Coffers

Witham, Larry, The Washington Times (Washington, DC)

A Seventh-day Adventist college in Maryland has contested a state decision denying it funding given to Catholic colleges - a case that may set a legal precedent for government neutrality toward religion. The Adventist school, Columbia Union College in Takoma Park, was ruled ineligible for an estimated $800,000 annually for being "pervasively sectarian."

Maryland, which finances at least three Catholic colleges under its Father Sellinger Program for independent education, considers the Catholic entities sufficiently secular and autonomous.

Any independent college may apply for Sellinger funding, administered by the Maryland Higher Education Commission. It granted more than $28 million to 15 schools this year.

In a lawsuit filed June 12 in U.S. District Court, Columbia Union said it has been penalized "solely and expressly because of the content or viewpoint of speech and belief."

The suit was filed by the Center for Individual Rights, a public-interest legal organization that includes religious free expression among its libertarian concerns.

"I think and hope the case will have national application," said R. Hewitt Pate, the Richmond lawyer who filed the suit. "What you have around the country now is religiously based colleges at a disadvantage."

Such schools can't compete with private institutions that get government funding, and if they do seek grants, they are required to water down religious aspects of campus life.

The lawsuit says Columbia Union's rights of free speech, free exercise of religion and equal treatment under the law and guarantees of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act were violated.

That act says government must show a "compelling state interest" to restrict a religious group or person.

"The service our institution renders to society is not essentially religious, it's essentially educational," Columbia Union President Charles Scriven said.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this article

Cited article

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Adventist College Fights for Assistance from State Coffers


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?