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Giving Paige Patterson the Boot Was Messier Than You Thought

The Baptists are at it again:

Southwestern’s dispatch in the annual Book of Reports, which presents information for messengers attending the denomination’s upcoming annual meeting, alleges Patterson misappropriated “confidential donor information” and took seminary property after his 2018 termination over allegations of mishandling sexual abuse.

The report comes three months after the seminary settled a lawsuit against a foundation that shifted millions in funding following Patterson’s departure.

I find this amazing; given the way Patterson was booted (he was out of the country when it happened) if he somehow stole or misappropriated seminary property, it was the seminary who wasn’t paying attention.  At the time I noted the following:

But the way the Board reversed its previous decision and unceremoniously dumped him is unfortunately typical of the way Southern Baptists handle situations like this. In their system you’re either highly favoured or cast into outer darkness, there’s no middle ground…I think much of that has to do with their defective combination of Arminian election and Calvinistic perseverance.  Once you’ve made your decision for Christ and then mess up, the only explanation left is that you weren’t saved to start with.  So how can anything subsequent to that be trusted?  Out with you.

In addition to this, the way the seminary booted Patterson is consistent with current corporate practice.  “Back in the day” you had some time to wrap up your business, clean out your office and leave.  Now it’s standard to change the locks on your office (and your computer) and force you to fight the institution for your own stuff.  The fact that Patterson was in Germany was all the better in the eyes of the seminary.

Had the seminary simply appointed a representative to go through the whole thing with Patterson, it would have been better.  But that’s not the corporate way these days, and it’s not the Baptist way either.


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