A Prophet Rattles the Cage at ACC, Keeps His Job, & He Is a Hero 50 Years Later

I got the bulk of my Bible education at ACU twenty years ago.  It was old news then, but I recall that the topic of Dr. Carl Spain and his cage-rattling speech there in February 1960 (back when it was still ACC) came up for discussion numerous times in numerous classes.  Yes, even 38 years later, we were still talking about it.

Then in 2010, a number of bloggers associated with ACU commemorated the speech on their blogs.  That was fifty years after.  Fifty years after Spain rattled the cage, he is remembered as a hero of the faith and of the institution he so severely shamed.

In 1960, ACC still refused to admit black students to the school.  Three years before Dr. King delivered his “I Have A Dream” speech on TV before the whole nation, this white college professor got up in front of his white brothers and sisters at the premier lecture of a lecture series that still draws Christians from all over the world and shamed both the church and the school for not letting blacks attend.

Spain was ahead of his time!

I learned from some of these (almost decade old) blogs that Dr. Spain received death threats after that speech.  (Church people threatening to kill???)  His remarks were so jarring for the church and the school that people became deeply upset and complained bitterly about Spain and his sucker-punch speech withdrawing support for the school and a number of other sanctions.

To their credit, ACC did not fire Spain but kept him on until he retired.  But decades later, they call him a prophet and note that usually prophets don’t get to keep their jobs.

You can download the speech here:

https://digitalcommons.acu.edu/sumlec_audio/5199/

Advertisements

2 comments

  1. Wow! He laid out a lot in that sermon. Found some of the relevant material that got him trouble about 20 minutes in. Also found a PDF version of all the 1960 lectures so I could read it as well.

    https://digitalcommons.acu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1054&context=sumlec_man

    ” … I feel certain Jesus would say: ‘Ye hypocrites! You say you are the only true Christians, and make up the only true church, and have the only Christian schools. Yet, you drive out one of your own preachers [from your school] because the color of his skin is dark!”

    “We fear the mythical character named Jim Crow more than we reverence Jesus Christ. In the name of “discretion” we make un-Christian and un-American rules likesome states do in the name of “State’s Rights.” To complacent Jews who boasted that they alone were acceptable to God, Jesus said: “Outwardly you are like whited sepulchers, but inwardly you are full of dead men’s bones. “Let this be a warning to any people who say they are the only Christians in the world. The surest way to seal the doom of this nation is for the only Christians to be the only ones with un-Christian attitudes.”

    Be blessed for sending this our way. God is with you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Agent X · April 8

      I thought it was long winded, actually, but when he got down to business (finally) there were some good remarks alright.

      Thanx for reading, for caring, for responding!

      So glad to have you here.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s