“These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” -John 16:33
Brotherhood and unity, brotherhood and unity, brotherhood and unity. As a fraternity, we cannot push brotherhood and unity enough. All we do promotes brotherhood and unity. What is most impressive about the brotherhood and unity that BYX offers is the diverse atmosphere in which it functions.
In John 17, Jesus speaks of unity among the body of believers and I believe that the fraternity of BYX demonstrates this unity. We have brothers that are wealthy and brothers that are poor. We have brothers than are athletic and brothers that are musical. We have brothers that wear the trendy clothes, and we have brothers that could care less about clothes. We have brothers of all different races and ethnicities. We have brothers who are extreme extroverts, and we have brothers that are introverts. We have Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Episcopalian, Anglican, Catholic and Bible Church members as part of our brotherhood.
The unity is found only in the common bond of Jesus Christ and is central to why we exist. The fraternity of BYX is extremely unique in that our purpose exists to unite Christian college men around a common bond through the unique college experience of fraternity life. Through the fraternity, the brothers experience the college social scene while continuing to hold fast to their faith. The result of 29 years of BYX has been thousands of young men who have grown in their relationship Christ, formed life long relationships with their brothers, and experienced the college fraternity life to the fullest extent in a God-glorifying way.
We just recently concluded our Spring Board of Directors meetings last week. Central to our board meetings is the reminder of who we are and what our purpose is. It drives the discussions and our future plans. I distributed to the board members a book given to me by Georgia chapter alumnus Chris Chancey. Chris works for Hope International out of Atlanta and his non-profit leaders worked tirelessly to put together this great resource book called “Mission Drift.”
The entire premise of the book is looking at organizations, universities and foundations that strayed from their original purpose and intent. Consider this mission statement from a well-known university to be the prime example, “To be plainly instructed and consider well that the main end of your life and studies is to know God and Jesus Christ.” This university was founded in 1636 and was founded to advance the Christian worldview. This university is Harvard.
A significant step in the secularization of American Universities occurred on April 28, 1905 when Andrew Carnegie set up a charitable foundation called the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. In Carnegie’s Letter of Gift, he made it clear that any religious school requiring students to adhere to a statement of belief or under a religious governance structure would be excluded from the foundations grants. This enormous financial investment forced many universities to consider the dollar value of their religious convictions.
A little closer to home is the removal of Christian organizations from universities under the premise of “religious discrimination.” The book looks at the campus ministry InterVarsity. InterVarsity requires that its student leaders affirm a statement of faith. Some universities are adopting non-discrimination policies that state, “membership and leadership must be open to everyone.” While on the surface, these seems logical to a secular organization, it is simply unrealistic to enforce.
The logic, even to secular organizations, would mean that anyone regardless of talent can be a member of the university football team. The logic would mean that a freshman male student can join a Greek sorority. Organizations are founded for distinct purposes, and I don’t believe the intent of the vast majority of organizations founded is discrimination. Their intent is to fulfill a need on a campus where there are people who have an interest in gathering together for a specific unique purpose.
A policy such as this presents a unique issue to organizations such as InterVarsity whose primary purpose is religious in nature. It essentially leaves you with two options. The first is for the organization to cave to the pressure and accommodate culture to be liked and accepted (Mission Drift). The second option is to stand by your convictions knowing that it can and will likely hurt you. Softening the organizations stance would essentially strip away the organizations reason for existing, but affirming your “Mission” energizes and solidifies the focus.
The Board of Directors of Beta Upsilon Chi understands we are a unique fraternity. We understand that we serve a unique sector of a college campus. We understand that not every university is going to feel compelled to open their campus to a new BYX chapter.
We are deeply committed to our purpose of establishing brotherhood and unity among college men based on the common bond of Jesus Christ. Any compromise on this purpose and we simply fail to fulfill the God-ordained mission He has put before us. We continue to pray and seek the Lord for wisdom and guidance on the future of BYX fully knowing and understanding the promise that Jesus told us in John 16, “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take heart; I have overcome the world.”