Dordt University has joined the list of “conservative” colleges collapsing into compromise. Dordt is a private Christian Reformed school in Sioux Center, Iowa. To many within the Dutch Reformed world, and especially those connected with Christian education, Dordt is seen as a bastion of conservative thought and a bulwark of orthodox conviction. But, as the situation reveals, the administration doesn’t even follow its own handbook on biblical sexual ethics.
We have seen time and time again these last few years how so many formerly “conservative evangelical” institutions, churches, and leaders put on a public façade of biblical fidelity, only to whore themselves out to godless ideologies from the inside. They cover and hide what they’re truly about and silence all critics. Such is the case of Dordt College and its Dean of Students, Robert Taylor, and his wife, Teresa. Teresa Taylor teaches high school English at nearby Gehlin Catholic School.
While Dordt publicly affirms traditional sexual ethics, there has been good reason to question their genuine stance on the issue. Dean of Chapel, Aaron Baart, has been caught liking gay marriage ceremony pictures on Facebook and saying that leading the gay-pride parade “sounds a lot like Jesus.” See here for a further rundown and President Hoekstra’s turning a blind eye to the university crumbling around him.
As heinous as the Aaron Baart situation is, it pales in comparison to what has come to light regarding Dr. Robert Taylor and his wife brazenly disregarding their respective schools’ stances on homosexuality. Not only has Dr. Taylor refused to discipline a lesbian student who is openly engaged to be married to another woman (not a Dordt student), but Dr. Taylor and his wife have taken it a step further and worked to get this lesbian student a student-teaching position in Teresa’s classroom at Gehlen Catholic School.
Though it saddens us have to bring this young college student into this report, it is important that the story be told. The student in question is Annaliese Donstad. Readers can view her comments and see her picture in this article about an open-mic night at which she performed a spoken word poem. Compare that picture to the Facebook profile of “Annaliese Joelle,” who is engaged to Heidi Harkness. See the engagement photos below.
Page 33 of the Dordt Student Handbook clearly prohibits:
“1. Engaging in, promoting, or advocating sexually immoral activity.
2. Engaging in, promoting, or advocating extramarital sexual relations.
3. Engaging in, promoting, or advocating homosexual relations.
Students and/or employees found engaging in prohibited activity will be subject to disciplinary action as outlined in the student conduct code or the faculty and staff handbooks.”
Many questions arise from these facts. Has Dr. Taylor subjected the student to “disciplinary action as outlined in the student conduct code?” Or has Dr. Taylor shielded this student from the conduct code, keeping the matter as secret as possible, even to the point of arranging for her student teaching to be done in his wife’s high school English classroom? Are the parents of Gehlen Catholic students even aware of what is happening at their school?
This story is developing. If you have first-hand knowledge relevant to understanding matters at Dordt University, please direct your information to Talkback@PulpitandPen.org. May the truth be known.