Sarah Pulliam Bailey is reporting at the Washington Post that Southwestern Baptist Seminary president Paige Patterson just fired a Ph.D student from his job in the seminary kitchen and took away his financial aid because he was disloyal to the seminary. (That should probably read “disloyal to Patterson”).
Why did the 31-year old student get fired? Because of this tweet:
I’ve had many friends asking me about this, because they know I am a current student at Southwestern. I believe it is my moral obligation to give a public response. This is the best article I have read, and I agree with it fully. https://t.co/TPfhk3lqzA via @edstetzer
— Nathan Montgomery (@montynem) May 1, 2018
Montgomery’s tweet endorses Wheaton College’s Ed Stetzer‘s Christianity Today piece calling for Patterson’s retirement in the wake of an audio tape in which Patterson suggests that women undergoing physical abuse from their husbands should submit to it. See our post on Stetzer’s article here. (It looks like the old “Christianity Today crowd” is up to their old tricks! 🙂 )
Here is a taste of Bailey’s story:
In the wake of the #MeToo movement, numerous powerful men have come under scrutiny over sexist treatment of women. But Patterson, who has long held a special status within the nation’s largest Protestant denomination for his role in a conservative takeover of the convention going back decades, is known for not backing down from positions.
After his 2000 comments were published on a blog, he stated that while he would never recommend divorce, he has advised abused women to leave their husbands. Though Patterson issued a statement earlier this week with his trustees that did not mention resignation or retirement, two seminary graduates who spoke on the condition of anonymity said the trustees of the seminary, who control Patterson’s future, have been divided over how to handle its controversial president who some say has a pattern of poor behavior.
Patterson, in the interview, referred to the PhD student who was fired. “If you are going to be problematic and you’re indiscreet, you’ll be fired,” he said.
Nathan Montgomery, a PhD student in the philosophy program at the seminary, who recorded the meeting where he was fired, was told that his tweet did not exhibit loyalty to the seminary and that it did not reflect the institutional voice…
In Montgomery’s tweet promoting Stetzer’s blog post, he said he felt like he should say something publicly, but he said he didn’t expect anything to happen.
Patterson said in the interview that Montgomery had “a long history,” but declined to provide specifics. The document that lists reasons for Montgomery’s termination cited just one previous incident, which Montgomery said was a misunderstanding over catering for Patterson’s wife. He said he has never been given any warnings.
Montgomery still hopes to stay at the seminary, where he expects his PhD will take another four years to finish.
Read the entire piece here.
This should not surprise anyone who is familiar with Patterson’s tyrannical and authoritarian rule at Southwestern. This is what tyrants do. They circle the wagons and purge dissent.
“Paige Patterson’s World” is falling apart before his very eyes.