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Always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience (1 Peter 3:15b-16a ESV)

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10/16/2004

This Week in Church History 

October 16, 1701.

A group of Congregationalist ministers, unhappy with the liberalism at Harvard, decided to found their own school. They founded The Collegiate School so that "Youth may be instructed in the Arts and Sciences who through the blessing of God may be fitted for Publick employment both in Church and Civil State."

The first classes were held in the home of the first rector, Abraham Pierson. The students were expected to live religiously, and pray regularly. The main purpose of the student body was to be to know God in Jesus Christ. And even into the 1800s, the school stayed true to that goal.

The school was renamed in 1745, in honor of the donation of $2,800, and was still purposed to propagate the Protestant religion. The school still carries the name of this donor, though it is no longer following this course. The donor was Elihu Yale.

Schools change. The example of this particular school should serve as a warning to the founders of today's Christian institutions of higher learning. Good intentions of founders do not last long -- it is necessary to put in place mechanisms for accountability, to make sure that the school remains faithful to it's call.

This is true of individuals, as well. Without some sort of accountability, we tend to stray away from our calling. It's easy to do. We all need to be careful that we take precautions so that it doesn't happen to us.


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