The UCCF have quietly updated the following news release UCCF: The Christian Unions – Student – News – UCCF Statement on Women speaking in Christian Unions.
I have added paragraph numbers below, otherwise this is taken from their website on 8/12/12
CUs are at liberty to invite speakers (male or female) who will maintain the unity reflected in the Basis of Faith, but it would be wholly against the spirit and intention of the UCCF Basis of Faith and the advice of UCCF staff if an individual CU devised a policy not to have women speakers for some or all of their events.
The Bristol CU is utterly committed to reflecting the core biblical truth of the fundamental equality of women and men as they resolve this matter. This is a sensitive issue and the recent email exchange has revealed the internal processes of an undergraduate CU trying to think their way clear on a subject that Church denominations around the world have struggled with.
UPDATE – 07/12/12
UCCF should like to stress that the choice of any speaker is made by each individual; student run CU. UCCF does not have preferred speaker lists or undesirable speaker lists. Neither do we take a view on the complementarian/egalitarian debate. UCCF has staff and students in both camps and everywhere in between; we therefore cannot have a policy of ‘No women speakers’ nor a policy of ‘you must have women speakers’.
UCCF continues to support students as they lead CUs in a manner that reflects the unity and purpose of our Basis of Faith.
In particular the following 2 sentences (last of para 1 and last of para 3) seem to directly contradict each other:
it would be wholly against the spirit and intention of the UCCF Basis of Faith and the advice of UCCF staff if an individual CU devised a policy not to have women speakers for some or all of their events.
I understand this to mean that if a CU decides on a policy of no women speakers then they will have only been ablke to do so against the UCCF Basis of Faith and against the advice of UCCF staff. In other words UCCF has a policy that their staff will advise against a policy in a CU of no women speakers.
Yet in the update
we therefore cannot have a policy of ‘No women speakers’ nor a policy of ‘you must have women speakers’.
we see the UCCF now claiming that it cannot have a policy that CU's must have women speakers.
In summary the UCCF now say that have not got a policy that CU's must have women speakers so how can they still say that not having women speakers would go against their Basis of Faith and the advice of their staff?