Response of Cornelis Venema

I thank Trustee Morren for his response to my article and desire to present his view of Calvin College’s relationship to the Christian Reformed Church. The information he provides about the present com position of Calvin’s Board of Trustees does indeed add to that included in my article, which only briefly commented on Synod 1992’s actions relative to Calvin College.

I fail to see, however, that my brief comments on Synod 1992’s actions dealing with board representation contained any inaccuracies nor statements that were “blatantly false,” as Trustee Morren alleges. In support of this charge, Morren cites my statement that synodicaIly approved policy governing membership on the Calvin Board of Trustees “no longer requires that board members be members of the Christian Reformed Church.” This statement is not false. It is true. In fact. Trustee Morren openly acknowledges its truth when he notes that. under the revised policy adopted by Synod 1992, only 16 of 31 board members need to be members of the Christian Reformed Church. My comment was directed to the change in board policy approved by the 1992 Synod, not the relative numbers of Christian Reformed or non-Christian Reformed members of the board.

The point of my article in calling attention to this far-reaching change in board policy, was quite simple. I wanted to point out that the relationship between Calvin College and the Christian Reformed Church has been significantly altered at a number of points in recent years, though the quota system has remained largely intact. The changes in this relationship, including the removal of the requirement that all board members be Christian Reformed, have been in the direction of removing Calvin College further and further from denominational control and oversight. I see no reason why anyone would want to quarrel with that conclusion.