£12,485-a-year boarding school cut ties with Christian charity

£12,485-a-year boarding school cut ties with Christian charity after single ‘rambling’ complaint from parent about its orthodox views on marriage

  • Bosses at St Lawrence College in Ramsgate cut ties with Samaritan’s Purse
  • The school, that says it is run on Christian values, began helping the charity’s ‘Operation Christmas Child’ project to get supplies to needy children last year 
  • The charity, founded by Franklin Graham – son of the late US evangelist Billy Graham – recently teamed up with churches to deliver gift shoeboxes to Ukraine
  • But a web page created by an anonymous parent, attacked the views of Graham
  • They said he was ‘homophobic’ and suggested anyone sharing the charity’s beliefs is a ‘danger to children’ – and made a formal complaint to the school 

A boarding school has been condemned for withdrawing support from a Christian charity after receiving a single complaint about its orthodox views on marriage.

Bosses at £12,485-a-year St Lawrence College in Ramsgate, Kent, promptly severed ties with Samaritan’s Purse and told parents it had vetted the charity which clearly states its religious motivations on its website.

Last night, one parent at the 625-pupil school described the move as ‘religious discrimination’ while former Tory Education Minister Sir John Hayes said: ‘It’s deeply disappointing that what must be the extremely fragile and broken management of St Lawrence College should have allowed their resolve to be broken by the militant ramblings of a single Bolshevik parent.’

The school, which declares it is run on Christian values and counts former defence chief General Lord Dannatt among its alumni, began helping the charity’s ‘Operation Christmas Child’ project to get supplies to needy children last year.

Bosses at £12,485-a-year St Lawrence College in Ramsgate (pictured), Kent, promptly severed ties with Samaritan’s Purse and told parents it had vetted the charity which clearly states its religious motivations on its website

In recent weeks, Samaritan’s Purse, founded by Franklin Graham, son of the late US evangelist Billy Graham, has teamed up with 3,200 churches to deliver 660,000 gift-filled shoeboxes to Ukraine.

But a web page created by an anonymous parent, which was later deleted, attacked the views of Franklin Graham as ‘homophobic’ and suggested anyone sharing the charity’s beliefs is a ‘danger to children’.

A parent then made a formal complaint and the school eventually announced it was pulling its backing. In a statement, it said: ‘The College carried out due diligence on Samaritan’s Purse … and believed its values were in line with the College’s Christian ethos.

The school, which declares it is run on Christian values and counts former defence chief General Lord Dannatt (pictured, file photo) among its alumni, began helping the charity’s ‘Operation Christmas Child’ project to get supplies to needy children last year

‘We now accept our research, which was conducted in good faith, did not give sufficient consideration of the wider potential impact that supporting Operation Christmas Child may have on the existing College community, or a proper assessment of the charitable purposes of Samaritan’s Purse. We have therefore decided not to support this charity in future.’

Andrea Williams, Chief Executive of Christian Concern, said: ‘This is another in a long line of cancel culture stories where the pressure of an ideological LBGT lobby has forced people in charge into submission because they are scared to resist.’

Reverend Graham, 67, said: ‘We welcome everyone to fill shoeboxes with gifts for children. It’s disappointing that anyone would take issue with that.’

A College spokesman said the school stood by its statement to parents.

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