Monday, May 11, 2009

NCFCA Response to BJU Protest

As many of you know, several NCFCA affiliates (competitors, alumni, coaches, parents and staff) have been protesting (in writing and by joining a facebook group) the decision by the NCFCA Board to choose Bob Jones University as the location for our 2009 National Championship.

(If you wish to find the many reasons why BJU is an unacceptable location for our organization, please look to previous posts)

The response from the NCFCA has been incredibly disheartening. While Mr. Larimer's response was an expected non-response, the recent action taken by the Regional leadership of Region 8 was nothing less than extremely disappointing. This is the email in full sent to all regional coordinators and their own region.

From: Lisa Kays [] Sent: Friday, May 08, 2009 3:52 PMTo:; Darleen Rossi; Lars Jorgensen ;;;;;; region9@ncfca.orgSubject: Region 8 Update

Fellow region coordinators,

You may already be aware that the National Championship will be held in my region in Greenville , SC. I have been the primary person working with BJU to provide a location.. As you have all experienced, securing a facility for this large a tournament has its challenges.

That was why I was so discouraged to find out that some of our Christian communicators were protesting ANY facility that opens it doors to us. This is the letter my Regional Leadership Team sent to our region concerning the protest and encouraging them to consider how they speak about people and places that allow us to hold tournaments in their facilities.

My region is busily preparing for all your students arrival, hoping to make this a great National Championship.. Hope to see you soon!

Lisa Kays


Region 8,

As you all know our region has the pleasure and responsibility of helping host the NCFCA National Championship this year in SC. I am grateful for your hard work and attitude in wanting this to be our best representation of Region 8 as we serve to get community judges, staff hospitality and communications and do the many small jobs that make a tournament of any size run smoothly. Many of you who will not be attending the National Championship as competitors have asked how you may serve our region and the league during this time. I am blessed to be a part of such a wonderful region.It has come to my attention that there has been a little controversy over the choice of holding Nationals at Bob Jones University . Because our organization does not own a facility, we rely on other organizations to provide facilities to host all of our tournaments.

Our organization depends on the willingness of other organizations--both Christian and secular--to be able to provide this educational opportunity for our affiliates.Our criteria for choosing a facility include the number of rooms available, local support staff, and availability for a full week in early June.

We also require that the hosting facility, whether a secular or Christian university, does not impose their philosophy on our tournament or restrict the way we run our event. At each of the facilities we use, however, we do ask our affiliate families to respect some of our hosts' polices. Many leads for locations that met these criteria have fallen through over the past few months. When we approached Bob Jones University with the possibility of providing a facility for the NCFCA National Championship, they were gracious and accommodating, and they quickly worked with us through the long process of sorting out the details for such a large event. We must remember that facilities are built by organizations, and even Christian organizations have policies that other Christians will disagree with.

This does not mean, however, that it is right to disrespect the organization that is making our event possible. Nationals is an event that places huge demands on the facility that hosts it. Whether we agree with all of their policies or not, Bob Jones University and its staff are willing and excited to share their campus with us, sacrificing both time and money to provide this opportunity for our affiliates. As Christians, and as communicators, we are charged with respecting authority and setting an example in loving one another. As Bob Jones University is willing to bear the cost of hosting our event, we expect all affiliates to communicate respectfully with and about them. We are not asking you to endorse them as a university or to agree with all of their policies, but we are asking you to do three things:

1. Speak respectfully about the university as our hosts, just as you would at a secular university that offered classes you may find offensive. As we are merely hosting our event at their facility, please note their general regulations will not apply to you during the tournament. Every host facility has a few policies they would like us to respect, however, and we should do so.

2. Set an example of how loving Christian communicators speak about and with people they disagree with.

3. If you still have concerns about this facility, please contact us directly. We are always open to concerns from the affiliates and will do our very best to make sure that we act in a way that our affiliates find acceptable. I would ask our region for the following action points:·

If you are a part of any kind of protest group, for any reason, please remove your name from the group.·

Please let me know if you were part of a group. You are not in trouble! But I need to be able to say that I knew about it and you removed yourself from the protest. ·

Pray for Nationals, the Board of Directors, and all the volunteers as we build up to Nationals. If you still do not feel comfortable attending an event held at this university, please contact us immediately so that we can roll down your Championship slot to the next competitor. I am not aware of anyone in our region that has participated in any protest, but if someone has and chooses not to remove their name, I will recommend to the Board of Directors that your National slot be revoked.

Once again, we are always open to input from our affiliates. But we cannot approve public communication that disrespects those who have been gracious enough to host our organization.

Thank you for your prayers and support,

Lisa Kays

Regional Leadership Team

Charlotte Baker

Noelle Gebel

Renee McLean

Sue Nelson

Lisa Kays

Firstly I would like to note, no other region has taken this action. If you are a member of this protest or are considering joining this protest, please understand that if you are not a member of Region 8, this does not and will not effect you. No other regional leadership has taken such action, despite Region 8 tacitly encouraging them to.

Furthermore I am incredibly saddened to see this. This is nothing less than strong arm tactics against a very legitimate and very respectful protest. The arguments that this email poses (not being respectful, protesting "ANY" site) are just simply untrue.

I would like to note that regrettably this strong arming has resulted in some transient success for Region 8. Here are some messages we've received,


I have decided that the nat protest group is not really something I need to be part of. Ultimately, not forgiving BJU is demonstrating the same legalistic behavior that we are accusing them of committing. (Never mind however that one cannot "forgive" an institution and one while must be loving, one does not need to be accepting of sin and legalism) Anyways this is my decision.

I left awhile ago, but my name is still on the list of people who suppor[t] the movement. Could you remove that? Sorry, my coach is terrified that since the other regions are furious with you guys, some people will punish me on the ballot for a protest that im not even part of lol.

Feel free to disscuss with me anytime.


Well as it is my parents and my coach have expressed concern about my participation in this group, it has caused me to look more closely at why I had joined the group and after some more research I would like to be removed from the list


I would encourage you to write to Region 8 leadership and to the NCFCA board, for a few reasons,

To Region 8 Leadership,

1. There are many errors in their emails. This movement is not disrespectful and is not protesting any site.

2. We would ask that there are no moves on the part of Region 8 Leadership to encourage other Regions to take similiar action.

3. To please reconsider disqualifying protesters.

To NCFCA Board,

1. Please consider this protest when reviewing future sites for Nationals.

2. Please do not disqualify anyone over a protest, regardless of what any Regional Director says.

Other Regional Directors:

1. Please do not take actions against their competitors for their convictions.

Emails:, Mrs. Lisa Kays, Region 8 Coordinator.

Regional Emails:

NCFCA Board:

For References:

(Protest Group Email)