April 29, 2013

Northland Board of Directors Removes Matt Olson

Dr. Matt Olson has announced from his blog that the NIU, 
board of directors has determined that it would be in the best interest of this ministry to move forward with new leadership.”
Dr. Olson will remain until May 11, 2013. For the full announcement by Matt Olson see, Northland Transitions Leadership

This morning Matt Olson announced his departure to the student body.  See, today's live stream chapel video, announcement begins at :20 minutes into the video.

To date no reason given for the termination, with two weeks notice, by way of official announcement from the NIU website. Matt Olson's letter does, however, appear at the NIU site.

Questions:
1) Does this announcement signal that NIU will reverse the trajectory that Matt Olson set it on in favor of its principles and practices as Northland Baptist Bible College?
2) Will the NIU board be able to find someone who will undertake a recovery project if that is the board's intention?
3) Will NIU survive the trajectory that Matt Olson set it upon?

Questions Answered: (5/3/13)

We have been encouraged by the direction NIU is moving to promote unity and pursue relationships with the greater body of Christ…. Our request is that you would continue to make decisions that would best support the healthy direction we have observed over the last several years.” (Daniel Patz & Friends of NIU
The name of a successor, if there is to be one, may no longer determine what the NIU board intends for the future course of Northland.


LM

I encourage all guests to visit The Parsings of a Preacher blog for Brian Ernsberger's article, What Does the Future Hold for NIU?

Related Reading:
NIU Plunges Headlong Into Liberal Entertainment Approach Ministry

NIU Students Perform New "Jesus Loves Me" RAP Video

Is NIU "Unchanged?"

The full transcription from Matt Olson's blog:

Dear Friends, 
It has been a great joy for me to serve at Northland for these past eleven years. On Thursday, April 25, 2013, our board of directors determined it to be in the best interest of this ministry to move forward with new leadership. I accept this as a decision from the Lord as he sovereignly works through the authorities placed in my life. I plan to finish this current academic year through to May 11, 2013, doing everything I can to help the board, faculty, staff, and students, toward a healthy transition. I have a great desire to see Northland do well. I would also like to express a very sincere thanks to the Patz family for allowing Diane and me to be a part of what God is doing here in northeast Wisconsin. We look forward to what God has in the future and our hearts continue to burn for God’s glory and the work of the great commission. 
Your friend and fellow servant, 
Matt Olson

Romans 11:36

38 comments:

  1. Don't know the current make-up of the NIU board, but at one time it consisted of almost all Patz family members. Since this transition was board directed it sort of pokes holes in Don Sailer's recent comments about NIU going back to its original roots. Remains to be seen of course what happens with NIU after a new president is established. Will the new president continue with Dr. Olson's direction or will it move back towards its historical philosophies.

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  2. I would suspect that they are not reversing course. Just watch the chapel message where he announced the resignation. The worship included in the chapel service didn't blossom overnight. However, Dr. Olson may have acted too quickly in announcing major institutional changes without the college board officially sanctioning said positions. In that respect, he may have overstepped his position. That's just speculation though.

    Anyway, since the cat's out of the bag, I believe they will need to accelerate the transition because they are now competing with colleges that have big money. The fundamental base is alienated, so they'll have to aggressively pursue the Liberty / Cedarville clientele lest they become another TTU. Just guessing, based on their location, that they won't avoid TTU's fate. Then there's also the question about the camp in the summer... what churches attend it? How many will still come based on the recent news? Can the camp get a full summer with new churches on short notice? Financially, the organization is in a very tough spot and that could potentially be attributed to Dr. Olson responding to questions before the University was ready to plunge ahead full force. The questions needed answering, however, which fundamentally means that he allowed the transitioning to take place on the campus before they (and possibly the board) were ready to deal with the effects of said transitions.

    I'm a conservative bystander in a fundamentalism, and I have no church position, so I'm leaving my name out of the conversation. It's not pertinent to the observations/speculations I brought up.

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  3. I am excited that Northland may get back to being the school that I respected. Dr. O had such a legacy and worked diligently to make the school what it was. I am so happy that the board at Northland decided to correct course and move back to the center. If they continue this positive direction, I can again encourage young people to attend college at NIU. May God bless all who had the courage to stand and rescue this fine school from a wrong direction.

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    1. John:

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Not wanting to be a wet-blanket here, but my gut feeling is that there will be no course correction. I believe that the remaining NIU board members have all been supportive of the direction Matt Olson steered the college. It may well be that they were unhappy with his implementation of the changes. They obviously had concerns that lead to their terminating his position.


      Lou

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    2. Matt answers the question concerning the possibility of NIU being turned around in his chapel message. While thanking the Patz family he specifically mentions Howard Patz as being "like-minded". I don't know who has what authority and influence in the leadership of NIU but it would be naive to expect a return to what Northland used to be. Practically, to remove the influence of the current direction, one would have to remove the entire faculty. Whose who disagree with the new direction are long gone. Those who remain are at least tolerant of that which shouldn't be tolerated. Though we would rejoice to see a change back to a Biblical position, it doesn't appear that you'll find folks in a position of decision making who have the same view as we do.

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    3. Dan:

      I appreciate your perspective.

      Marty Herron left NIU and according to some who are more familiar with the make-up and persuasion of the NIU board say that Marty was the last among them who would be in favor of a turn-around to Northland's prior principles and practices.

      You wrote, While thanking the Patz family he specifically mentions Howard Patz as being "like-minded". One friend noted that while Matt went out of his way to recognize the Patz family he found it curious that Matt made no mention of Les Ollila.


      LM

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    4. Lou,

      Marty Herron left NIU and went to Harvest Baptist Church in Guam. In the 12-13 years he has been at that ministry, the ministry has gone from a church with solid, fundamental music standards to one that is now more praise and worship centered (under the direction of his son-in-law, Kevin Inafuku). Recently there was a video on facebook of their school choirs singing "Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride" from the Lilo And Stitch Soundtrack that included "choreography"/dancing. I'm fairly confident that you can't even count him among those who would favor a turn-around. While at the helm, Harvest has gone in a far more liberal direction than one could believe. I'm fairly certain his ship sails the same direction as the current NIU ship.

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    5. I knew Marty Herron was in Guam, but I had not heard of this. If it is with Marty as you say, sad.


      LM

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  4. Who knows at this point why the board decided to take action, why now, and the direction they intend NIU to take going forward. Anyway you put it NIU has put themselves in between a rock and a hard place regarding their future.
    Being somewhat familiar with some of the board members I would be shocked if there was true unity amongst the board members regarding NIU's recent developments.
    Again, none of us know anything about the now and the future of NIU.

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    1. Although its difficult to know the future of NIU we do have precedent that gives a good indication of what NIU's future may very well be. In October 2012 I published, What Do Pillsbury, Tennessee Temple & Northland have in Common?

      "NIU president Matt Olson has the pressures of declining enrollment, loss of alumni support and the prospect that NIU could fold as a direct result of the changes he brought in. His legacy will be one of either: taking the school successfully into a new evangelical orbit or having brought the school down to the point of closure. As all of this unfolds Les Ollila stands by silently...."

      "Does Matt Olson believe he can succeed where others have failed? Matt Olson’s hard left turn put NIU on a trajectory to suffer the consequences, which began with losing most of the alumni. Significant numbers of alumni have already seen enough of Matt Olson’s leftward turn to decide they’re not going with him."

      I think we'll know soon enough whether or not NIU survives its shift to the left.

      Thanks for the input.


      LM

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  5. Lou,

    The omission of any reference to Dr. O in Matt's chapel announcement is rather amazing. If you'll allow just a bit more speculation, could it be that the reason Dr. O hasn't said anything is because he felt he couldn't? Could it be that during the years that he was president of Northland that he was resisting others who didn't like the Biblical separatist position, but then, after Matt came in, he found himself in a difficult position? Could it be that he didn't speak out because he would not publicly contradict the president and the board of NIU? Could it be that, at his age and due the many years he has been at Northland and because of his deep love for the institution that he just couldn't bring himself to step away?

    I don't know that this is the kind of reply that you want to post but I do hope to hear of something positive concerning Dr. O. If the above speculation even begins to approach reality, I believe that the majority of fundamentalists that I know would join me in this prayer for Dr. O - "Lord, deal kindly with Thy servant, for he does love Thee".

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    1. All good questions that only Dr. Ollila can and may one day answer. He has retired, but the last I knew of his whereabouts is that he remains at NIU as Chancellor.

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    2. Has Dr. Ollila retired, or has he been retired?

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    3. All I know, and this is with some uncertainty because there has been no formal announcement from Dr. O or NIU, is that Dr. O is retired.


      LM

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  6. Maybe I'll be seen as naive, but as a graduate of an Independent Baptist College similar to NIU, I fail to see how any of Dr. Olson's 7 changes from his April 18th blog post titled "Pursuing Transparency with Change" can defined as "unbiblical". If anyone commenting here can let me know how any of the changes at NIU have been unbiblical, please let me know . . .

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  7. At this juncture, it would be wise and prudent for the board of NIU to make a public statement. They have let Matt Olson announce his departure; gracious on both sides, Matt's written and public statements and the board allowing such. When the power behind an institution remains silent about the problems within it only adds to the unsettledness already felt within the greater community. If they desire to remain viable in some form or fashion they need to truly become "transparent" with what direction they desire the institution to go. Time will tell.

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  8. Perhaps Matt Olson did not mention Doc O's name because he was speaking about the founding family and the board. I graduated from Northland before I ever heard the name Les Ollila (he was not on the scene yet). However, every student in my day knew Paul, Howard, and Harold Patz because they were the founding family. Why must we assume the worst? That being said, I do know Doc O now, and I appreciate all that he has done for Northland throughout the years.

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  9. JM,

    About the 7 changes listed by Dr. Olson, the changes may/may not be as simple as they were stated. Regardless of where you stand on the issue of music or separation the issues I think often overlooked are the communication of the non-changes/actual changes, the timing and implementation of them, the new associations brought into play, the changes often not matching-up with NIU's own handbook, the often lacking communication why the changes were being made, the pictures and videos on the website and then taken down (apparently). The rock band was such a huge departure from NIU's historical teaching and philosophy. Many of those changes, some big and some small happened relatively quickly.

    Beyond the music controversy, you simply can't be one way for over thirty years, make a quick and broad departure away from that and expect everyone to be on board with it. From a strictly organizational management and change implementation perspective I think even NIU's most ardent supporters would have to say at least some things could've been handled better.

    What was NIU then going to be when all of the non-changes stopped changing? What now of NIU and where will it end up?

    In the end it really is a trust and credibility issue and right now NIU is at a watershed moment. As others have said NIU has put itself in a difficult place. They have opened the door to two very different (opposite) constituent groups. No matter which way they end up going there will be people upset. If they go right, the left can say NIU mislead them and now has no credibility. If they go left the right can say the little remaining bit of credibility is now definitely gone. The importance of how NIU manages this keystone moment cannot be overstated. And for that they need our prayer.

    This whole mess wasn't even necessary in the first place. NIU didn't HAVE to change as much as they did never mind how fast they were made. Change per se isn't wrong of course, but the types of changes, the speed of them, and the degree of those changes with a place like NIU matters significantly to its supporters. That can be said with any organization.

    Regarding Dr. Olson's message in NIU's chapel on Monday, he handled it with Biblical class and honor. A very Godly response and that an honest example for us to follow.

    I sincerely hope NIU rights their ship and that they will continue to produce people trained for ministry.


    Martin

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    1. Martin:

      You have given a very helpful response to JM’s legitimate question/concerns. I am grateful to you for it.

      Just a few points I’d like to expand upon, largely by directing readers to previous articles I have published here on NIU.

      You wrote, “…the new associations brought into play, the changes often not matching-up with NIU's own handbook…

      In addition to the changes in the area of music, stated doctrinal positions had been compromised. You alluded to the NIU Handbooks; there is also the NIU Articles of Faith that had been compromised. In the area of doctrine we had Matt Olson’s embrace and praise for a particular CJ Mahaney Sovereign Grace Ministry (SGM) church, which is a part of the modern day Charismatic movement. SGM believes that the miraculous sign gifts are ion operation today and shod be sought by believers. A position, which btw, John Piper also holds.

      The inconsistency problem for Olson and NIU is that in their current Handbooks and Articles of Faith include statements such as,

      We believe God has given spiritual gifts to Christians to serve in and through the local church. Every believer has at least one gift, and the use of the gifts is always for the ultimate purpose of bringing glory to God. Among the gifts listed in the Bible, we believe that sign gifts (miracles, speaking in tongues, interpretation of tongues, prophecy) were temporary in nature and given to the church in its infant state before the completion of the canon of Scripture. Therefore, we reject the modern Charismatic Movement and the confusion it has brought. (Romans 12:6–8 ; I Corinthians 12:1–11 , 13:8 ; Ephesians 4:11–12 )” (Articles of Faith, p. 12.)

      In August 2012 I did a major two part series on the Charismatic question based on one of Matt Olson’s’ personal blog articles. I direct everyone’s attention to Is NIU “Opposed to the Modern Charismatic Movement?”

      You asked, “What was NIU then going to be when all of the non-changes stopped changing? What now of NIU and where will it end up?”

      Well, there is historical precedent for what results can be expected for Northland. When an institution drifts far off the marker of where it once stood, and the result goes beyond Christian ministry into the business place. I addressed this in October 2012 with this article, What Do Pillsbury, Tennessee Temple & Northland Have in Common? The answer is IMO soon to be, “Each Other.”

      Finally, this was very well said, “Regarding Dr. Olson's message in NIU's chapel on Monday, he handled it with Biblical class and honor. A very Godly response and that an honest example for us to follow.”

      All of those who have read or heard his departure remarks can learn a lesson in Christian humility from them.

      Again, I appreciate your thoughtful reply to JM.

      Kind regards,


      LM

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    2. I should add that once it was revealed that NIU had formed its own in-house CCM/Rock band that was the final straw for any alumni, pastors, parents, friends and supporters who were still holding out hope for or giving NIU benefit of the doubt. The video, which I provide in that article, erased any lingering doubt that NIU had essentially become unrecoverable.

      See, The Real "Unchanged" NIU Comes Forward

      That article still gets significant numbers of hits daily, well over 16,000 to date.


      LM

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    3. Even if the "second temple" were to be rebuilt, the old men who saw the glory of the first will weep.

      This should not be a time of gloating, taunting, or merrymaking, but rather of fasting and prayer. NONE of us should be celebrating a ministry ship that has run aground, no matter our persuasion on the issues of recent years.

      We should beg the Lord's clear wisdom and will for ALL affected: Students/alumni, staff families/displaced faculty, president/ADMIN,camp, board, critics and supporters, local churches, and international ministries.

      Dana Everson

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    4. I understand that some are accusing NIU of taking a quick, "hard left" turn, and some of the angst is over accusations of changing quickly and without explanation, but I know of at least one former student who attended NIU about 10 years ago, and when that individual read over Dr. Olson's "7 changes", the comment was made to me that most of those were "not new" and some had started even before that one had attended NIU (at that time NBBC).

      I understand the concern over associating with other denominations, but shouldn't the main focus be on whether NIU still believes the True Gospel? I realize there are other convictions, standards and preferences at play, but it seems to me that the fundamentals of the faith are the True Gospel (Christ Incarnate, Crucified, Resurrected), the Inerrancy of the Word of God, and the Deity of Christ. My Dad has been in Pastoral Ministry for almost 40 years, and as I've grown physically and spiritually (as has he), we've discussed many times the concern that fundamentalists are far too quick to make issues and break off fellowship with those of different preference (or even some convictions) even if they believe, preach and live out the True Gospel.

      I understand separation over false teachers as it applies to the Gospel. I also understand secondary separation with those who refuse to separate from false teachers. But, where do we draw the line to let the Holy Spirit convict and change attitudes and actions, instead of having some pre-determined list of actions that "make a good Christian", after one IS saved?

      In the Scriptures, Christ rebuked and got angry with those taking advantage of the poor and weak, and those preaching a false gospel.

      Shouldn't our lives as Christians focus on looking for areas of unity with true brothers and sisters in Christ, not differences? "Unity" when we all agree on everything isn't unity, it's just agreement. "Unity" is only seen in diversity, when we disagree over some things, but still are unified under the banner of Christ, the only Savior.

      I come from an area of the country that almost has a "Church on every corner", and sadly, the Fundamental Churches - Bible and Baptist, or even other "Conservative" denominations, do far less to minister to the unsaved and dying world than do the Charismatic churches in my area. I'm talking true Gospel Ministry, not just fog and lights . . .

      Again, maybe my comments seem naive, but I've grown up in church, and we've very good at fighting over the issues that don't determine if someone is going to heaven or not, rather than sharing the Gospel so that others may learn the only way to heaven. Sometimes we just need to remember to keep the main thing the main thing.

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    5. JM:

      I appreciate your concern. You wrote, “I understand the concern over associating with other denominations…

      Are you familiar with the Promise Keepers (PK) movement founded in 1990? Your statement reminds me of the most controversial of the seven promises of a Promise Keeper. Promise #6 “A Promise Keeper is committed to reaching beyond any racial and denominational barriers to demonstrate the power of Biblical unity.”

      Different denominations arise and exist primarily because of differing theology. Some/many have drifted far from and/or have rejected biblical truth. PK encouraged cooperative efforts with Roman Catholics. More recently the Manhattan Declaration, which numbers of the star personalities in the so-called “conservative” evangelical camp signed, is the first cousin of PK.

      In regard to NIU- a Charismatic church and its pastor is teaching and practicing an unbiblical theology. Matt Olson/NIU, in contradiction of its published Articles of Faith and Handbooks against the modern Charismatic movement, praised a CJ Mahaney (SGM) Charismatic church and its staff. My point is that NIU, through Matt Olson, crossed doctrinal lines to embrace and praise the Charismatic church ministry. To reiterate, NIU crossed doctrinal barriers, violated its own stated doctrinal positions. The Bible tells us how to respond to those who are in error and will not respond to correction. Rom. 16:17-18; 2 Thess. 3:6, 14-15. These passages are not open to selective interpretation or application. These are mandates found in the Word of God.


      LM

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  10. To David:

    I have received your comment that began with, "According to an anonymous report on Facebook..." I am not comfortable with publishing anonymous and unsubstantiated reports on the fall out at NIU. Thanks for wanting to share that news, but I'll leave that one at FB.



    LM

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  11. Yesterday at SI Dr. Rolland McCune made two very helpful observations about what has transpired at NIU. With over 6,000 reads of this article in the last 48 hours I would like to share with every reader Dr. McCune's wisdom and counsel.

    #1) News About Northland and Others:
    Permit an observation or two from a voice from the "old school" re: some of the recent fortunes in Fundamentalism and the predictable responses.

    When one (generic for "the one and the many") embarks on a noticeable change in the "applications" and not the "policies/philosophy" (IMO a distinction without a real difference) of a Christian institution of whatever sort, reactions soon happen. The usual and immediate result is a division between the old guard and the more progressive individual/group. This occurs early on among alumni and sympathetic community, and is soon followed in the financial community. It also eventually extends to the student body to a degree. Meanwhile the administration assures everyone that "nothing has changed" substantively, we've prayed about, discussed it, and the Lord has consequently led.

    And the final culprit in cyber-land and elsewhere is "bad 'ole narrow-minded, ultra hair-splitting separatist, unloving, unity-destroying" Fundamentalists/ism. Meanwhile the institution founders and often dies.

    This recent scenario at Northland only replicates what has happened in the past decade or two. Other institutions (churches, schools,mission agencies and Fundamentalism itself) are presently in the same contractions. Some may survive by micro-change administration policies, or may do so by reason of age and accumulated financial resources, or may be merged into larger organizations. Others may try and carry on with a much more "slender apparatus" (Spurgeon's phrase). In some cases a new institution may arise with the old faith but new (or greatly used) furniture. Unfortunately, in some instances the old institution will simply collapse and die.

    I've seen and heard it all before, several times; some of them up close and personal. I commend Maranatha Baptist Bible College for staying the course of the founding fathers' vision and convictions. It is worthy of emulation.

    Jeremiah 6:16 is still the consummate dictum, abetted by the old adage that "what we really learn from history is ..." I know that enrollment and its Siamese twin, finances, weigh heavily on Christian organizations, and there is no magical solution. But tampering, or the perception of tampering, with a goodly heritage, is deadly. (By the bye, the traditional "day of prayer" in schools often focused on financial needs. Only by petitioning the grace and mercy of God could their meager shoe-string budgets be met.)

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  12. #2) In Reply to a Question:
    In my mind there should not be a time when practice deviates from principle. I don't see Christian truth in a binary fashion if both doctrine and duty use the same authority; they should be in sync. I do not wish either to parse philosophy, policy and application. It all boils down to doctrine/principle and duty/application. The one is bound up with the other; they speak with one voice. This is because for the Christian and his God, truth is one and personal. God's person and His actions and affirmations are co-extensive; He is both veritable and veracious, authentic and faithful, always true to Himself.

    For mankind this translates or comes across in similar fashion. Doctrinal truth and practical truth should not be bifurcated. Truth in application/practice is determined by biblical/doctrinal truth in propositions. If philosophy changes, so does application, and vice versa--if, of course, one wishes to be biblically consistent and use the same authority for both. So I don't see how there can be "legitimate deviation" in application from a true, biblical philosophy "without improper compromise," i.e., sinning.

    On a personal note, I am not aware of nor have I encountered charges of "changed application" while maintaining "a facade of remaining true to the policies/philosophies of institutions such as I have served." However, I make no claim either to omniscience or infallibility. To paraphrase a bit: "your critics you have with you always."

    My counsel to those who wish to "deviate" in ministry application from agreed-upon biblical, philosophical norms is to change the doctrine/philosophy as best you can in a biblically cosmetic spirit and course of action, and be clear about it. Otherwise withdraw from the position and face the music (i.e., criticism). You are bound to face it if you deviate anyway, so get ahead of the curve and face it honorably and honestly.


    Dr. Rolland McCune, SI (4/30/2013)

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  13. To All: I am receiving comments regarding an anonymous person posting reasons he believes Matt Olson was let go. I am not comfortable posting things here. I think we all would do well to reflect on Dr. Everson's wise counsel.

    Kind Regards,


    LM

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  14. I agree with Dana Everson. He put it very well. No matter where we go from here, we shouldn't glory in their struggles. While I was not a supporter of the changes that were made, I agree with the comments here that Dr. Olson handled things very well in his announcement.

    While many of my conservative friends cheered this announcement and believed it meant that "NIU was returning to the Biblical stance of NBBC", I, unfortunately, do not believe that. I fear they are going to continue on their path, but just with new leadership - try to shove all the negative related to this on Dr. Olson and hope a new face helps them. If that becomes the case, it is very unfair to Dr. Olson. If he led where the board was wanting to go anyway, he shouldn't bear the brunt of the blame when it went down ugly.

    Many things to watch and see, but clearly we need to pray for wisdom and guidance. The biggest travesty of all would be if Satan got the victory and we watched a ministry that was sending out so many pastors and missionaries close down.

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    1. "While many of my conservative friends cheered this announcement and believed it meant that "NIU was returning to the Biblical stance of NBBC", I, unfortunately, do not believe that."

      Neither do I.

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    2. The general consensus on campus has been that the shift was too far for the board to be comfortable with, and their goal will be to return to a healthy balance seen in previous year. How far this goes, nobody knows. Ultimately, wherever they go, there are going to be detractors on either side as everyone clamors to soapbox on their perception of truth. The situation appears to be more dire than perceived externally. This next year will play a pivotal role in determining if Northland survives this situation.

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  15. This is going to be a struggle for them. It will probably get seriously worse if/when it gets better.

    They have a divided student body, a divided constituency, and by evidence gained from various places a likely divided board. They are laying off more employees as well.

    "Dire" is an understatement.

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    1. Correct, this was the intent of my response above. The situation is quite bleak. Perhaps no one knows the severity of the situation in its entirety except the board at this time, but with the additional layoffs the future depicts a minimalistic faculty, and likely minimal catalog offering in the lineup for next year. Perhaps the goal is to condense as much as possible into the smallest package affordable and attempt to restructure and rebuild toward the future. You are spot on that the situation will get worse, and the result of that phase will be paramount to establishing their future. The division among the student body is certainly palpable and with the uncertainty of their current direction, the constituency will be quite hesitant to jump on-board. This all seems to support the likelihood of a minimized course offering under a reduced faculty as they attempt to navigate the rough waters ahead.

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    2. In my way of thinking- NIU has alienated and lost most if its former core constituency. Parents, pastors and friends who once sent students and/or support have moved on. A course correction will be too little and way too late. If NIU opts for a reeling in some of the changes they will frustrate those who have been happy about what NIU has become. I see a no win scenario. I see the real possibility of an ultimate demise of a once fine fundamental Baptist separatist Bible College. And I see it happening in months, not years. Sad!


      LM

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  16. I can't help noticing that some of the names (not all) that I'm seeing supportive of the new, "rules-free" northland were part of an element that, while I was a student there, was known for flaunting the rules. Every thing from curfew violations to even purchasing alcohol. of course, God works in our lives and grows and matures us. We all make mistakes and hopefully learn from them. But sometimes it is hard for me, having known about some of these guys, to believe that there isn't an element of "payback" involved for some because of the "stupid" rules they were supposed to abide by. Is it all about being gospel-centric? or maybe there's some glee involved at being able to transform an institution that actually taught some discipline? after all, it wasn't a secret what the rules were when they were students there. again, it certainly isn't all the names. but there are some that I see in various places on the web.

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    1. "Is it all about being gospel-centric? Or maybe there's some glee involved at being able to transform an institution that actually taught some discipline?"

      IMO, when it's all said and done the transformation of Northland they are gleeful about is going to bury a once fine, balanced Baptist Bible College.


      LM

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  17. Sad. They reinstated Olson and made Daniel chairman of the board. It is over. That boat will never turn around.

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  18. To All:

    Thanks for the many emails and comments submitted. I am aware of the "changes" at NIU.

    This week I am in New York to attend the graduation of one of my sons from the US Navy's Nuclear Power program. My oldest son is a Marine and currently on his second deployment to Afghanistan.

    My wife and I are very proud of our boys.


    LM

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    1. Awesome! So thankful for their service for our country. Enjoy your time with them.

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