.- Princeton University has granted official recognition to an evangelical Christian student group after two months of debate. The school's dean of religious life, Thomas Breidenthal, had withheld official status from Princeton Faith and Action, but the university administration recently reversed the decision after an advocacy group intervened on the students’ behalf, reported AgapePress.
Princeton Faith and Action is associated with Christian Union, an off-campus ministry whose request to have a full-time chaplain on campus last year was denied by Breidenthal.
Princeton Faith and Action was only formed in March 2005, after the Christian Union was blocked once again, this time from reserving campus space.
Princeton Faith and Action approached student government to apply for official recognition, but was told that it needed the dean’s approval due to its religious nature.
The dean reportedly refused the new group the opportunity to apply for recognition due to its association to Christian Union. According to students, he also refused to explain why he disapproved of Christian Union.
The president of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, David French, wrote a letter to Princeton president Shirley Tilghman on behalf of the students. He argued against Breidenthal’s seemingly arbitrary refusal and in favor of religious rights on campuses. As a result, the group was granted official status.
According to French, this kind of discrimination based on religion is not uncommon on U.S. campuses.