Azusa Pacific Drops Ban on Same-Sex Student Relationships, Again

News & Reporting | 3/19/2019 | Staff
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Azusa Pacific University (APU) has gone back and forth this school year on whether to allow students to date members of the same sex.

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Week - Southern - California - Christian - College

Last week, the Southern California Christian college decided, once again, to remove a ban on “romanticized” same-sex relationships from its code of student conduct.

APU had initially made the same change in the fall, only to reverse the decision when its board of trustees said it had never approved the change.

APU - Institution - Students - Handbook - Commitment

“APU is an open-enrollment institution, which does not require students to be Christian to attend, and the handbook conveys our commitment to treating everyone with Christ-like care and civility,” stated APU provost Mark Stanton. “Our values are unchanged, and the APU community remains unequivocally biblical in our Christian evangelical identity.”

APU, which comes out of a Wesleyan tradition and continues to uphold a traditional view of marriage, does not require its students to be Christian, unlike about a third of fellow members of the Council of Christian Colleges and Universities that require students to sign a statement of faith.

APU - Sex - Marriage - Student - Code

APU prohibits sex outside of marriage, and the student code revisions represent “uniform standards of behavior for all students, applied equally and in a nondiscriminatory fashion,” Stanton said.

The student government and Brave Commons, an LGBT student group, opposed the administration’s restrictions around same-sex relationships and had pushed for more clarity around the type of punishment students in same-sex relationships would face. Brave Commons issued a response Friday saying “the ban removal offers equal treatment of LGBTQ+ students in relationships as their heterosexual peers.”

December - Board - Members - Belief - APU

In December, two board members resigned, due to “a personal belief that APU has drifted from its orthodox principles,” board chairman David Poole told World magazine. Poole released a statement to the APU community saying he disagreed with their characterization.

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