Leninist academics block Tengatenga appointment at Dartmouth: The Church of England Newspaper, August 23, 2013 p 6. August 26, 2013Posted by geoconger in Uncategorized.
Tags: Dartmouth College, James Tengatenga
The president of Dartmouth College Philip J. Hanlon has blocked the appointment of the Rt. Rev. James Tengatenga as dean for moral and spiritual life at the American university. While the Malawian bishop and chairman of the Anglican Consultative Council now backs gay marriage, his past support for the church’s traditional teaching made him too controversial for the school.
The 14 Aug 2013 announcement by Pres. Hanlon leaves Dr. Tengatenga without a job and a country. Last month he resigned as Bishop of Southern Malawi upon being appointed dean at the New Hampshire college – and his new found support for gay marriage will make his position untenable in the conservative African nation. Without a job, his American visa will lapse and Dr. Tengatenga will also come under pressure to step down as ACC chairman in light of his commitment to the American cause within the sharply divided Anglican Communion.
Bishop Tengatenga said he was disappointed the university had withdrawn his appointment as Virginia Rice Kelsey Dean of the William Jewett Tucker Foundation at Dartmouth College following protests by gay activists. He told the Episcopal News Service had “chosen to trust bigotry over truth and justice.”
Following his appointment gay activists at Dartmouth began an internet search on the bishop and found news reports in the Church of England Newspaper that detailed Dr. Tengatenga’s support for gays in Malawi and his work fighting corruption, abuse and tyranny in Central Africa. They also found the bishop had affirmed the church’s traditional teaching on marriage and had objected to the 2003 appointment of Gene Robinson as Bishop of New Hampshire.
Confronted with his past statements the bishop said his views had evolved in recent years and he now backed “marriage equality” and saw Bishop Robinson’s appointment as a “blessing” for the church. However gay activists argued the bishop’s new found support for the gay agenda were too little and too late. A professor of African-American studies also suggested that the bishop was an opportunist, changing his views to suit his new employer.
A Zambian priest resident in the US, the Rev. Kapya John Kaoma, told the Boston Globe the bishop’s rejection would have wider repercussions. “This is a big blow, because it leaves African activists on the ground wondering if they can work with Westerners,” Fr. Kaoma said.
“All human rights defenders in Africa are working under very, very hard conditions, and the violence against them is always there. What they have done is exposed Bishop Tengatenga and then dumped him back into Malawi.”
A Dartmouth faculty member told CEN the American “left refused even to recognize [Tengatenga] as one of their own. He unwittingly and in circumstances scarcely imaginable here violated their language code; their own moral pride compelled them to relegate him to the status of outcast, unfit to exercise moral leadership in our community.”
“I don’t think my perception is entirely distorted when I notice a Leninist streak in the American liberal arts left.”