Dance Comes For The Evangelicals

I have a cousin who teaches at a Bible College that prohibits dancing. I have a vague memory of discussing this with her about a generation ago. She personally had no problem with dancing, but as a faculty member she committed herself to the prohibition. I don’t know that her school has loosened up on social dancing like Abilene Christian University. New policy:

ACU is committed to creating a strong Christian environment, where students have opportunities for appropriate social interaction as young adults and develop lifelong relationships. Many forms of dance and cultural expression are embraced by our society, some of which are consistent with our Christian mission and values, while others are more likely to distract us from a Christ-centered life. Therefore, in keeping with the Christian mission of the university, only certain dance forms and venues will be considered for approval. Requests for events involving dance may be submitted by officially recognized ACU student organizations and must be approved by Student Life.

Student life veep and dean of students Dr Jean-Noel Thompson:

Like many other sensitive topics we hear discussed within the larger church community, we expect to hear a range of responses.

Very first comment on the blog (link above):

I graduated from ACU and I think this is totally against Church of Christ’s principles. !! I will no longer give any monetary support to the university!

I don’t know if this change will impact much of the moral or party landscape of this or other schools. Dr Thompson is correct in suggesting that many social dance opportunities are wholesome, and entirely in keeping with Christian values. Given the mainstream view that folk dancing is lame, I’m surprised that such dancing isn’t embraced by more evangelical Christians. I’ve always enjoyed various forms of such dancing, and indeed, Texas has a lot of traditional western dance.

Do the hardcore Catholic colleges have prohibitions against dance? And if not, are we likely to find otherwise-orthodox co-eds bumping and grinding on the weekends?

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
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2 Responses to Dance Comes For The Evangelicals

  1. John Donaghy says:

    In some rural villages here in Honduras, especially where there is a strong Lenca indigenous tradition, even the Catholics prohibit dancing! So about a year ago when a Catholic university had a trip to help help one community with their water project, the students had a dance and some of the people danced. I think some considered what they did sinful, as the parish priest hinted to me when we were talking after the event.

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