More reporting on Wheaton College’s ousting of Rev. Tim Blackmon

Chapel Wheaton

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Here is a taste of Emily McFarland Miller’s piece at Religion News Service:

CHICAGO (RNS) — The Rev. Tim Blackmon denies the allegations of misconduct that led to his firing from Wheaton College late last month, saying the split was caused by a clash of cultures between his “Dutch upbringing” and the “deeply religious and very Midwestern culture of Wheaton College.”

“Almost all of the challenges that I’ve had at Wheaton have been related to my sense of humor that has been misinterpreted or lost in translation,” Blackmon told Religion News Service.

In particular, he said, the culture at the evangelical Christian school in suburban Chicago does not allow people to easily discuss the subjects of race and sex.

Wheaton announced earlier this month it fired the former chaplain for “inappropriate comments and actions of a racial and sexual nature” he made toward other staff. The school later detailed those allegations after Blackmon released a statement saying he was considering legal action against the school.

Among the allegations: Blackmon reportedly referred to a colleague repeatedly by a racial slur, had “The Idiot’s Guide to Kama Sutra” left on a female colleague’s desk, mocked an online sexual harassment training during a staff meeting by suggesting a female colleague sit in his lap and complete the training for him and made comments to a newlywed female colleague about her sex life.

“They don’t quite call me a sexual predator, but they might as well have,” Blackmon said.

The former chaplain called the firing a disappointing end to five “amazing” years at the school. 

Blackmon was hired in 2015 as the sixth chaplain of Wheaton College — and the school’s first Black chaplain, according to a GoFundMe set up to support him after his firing.

Read the rest here.