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Bethany Children’s Health Center Retracts Controversial Employee Pledge…

1:27 PM EDT on July 12, 2023

Right before I left on my 4th of July vacation, I received a tip via the Ogle Mole network about some weird happenings at the Bethany Children’s Health Center – a Christian-based 24-hour care facility dedicated to improving health and preventing injuries of Oklahoma children.

Apparently, the hospital’s Board of Directors crafted a “Statement of Mission, Vision, Faith and Christian Principles of the Organization” that they wanted all employees – from physicians to orderlies and everyone in between – to sign in order to maintain employment with the hospital. 

Even though you don’t apparently have to be a Christian to work at the hospital, the document was steeped deep in Evangelical dogma that reflected the Hospital’s Christian roots.

For example, this is the vision statement:

We aspire to live out Christ’s ministry of healing through expressions of love and mercy.” 

Once again, Bethany Children’s Health Center is a Christian hospital and gets a lot of money from various Christian denominations and organizations, so it's not surprising details like that are included in a mission statement, but forcing people who may not even believe in Christ to pledge to uphold values in him seems a bit authoritarian. 

Then again, that’s the tame part of the document!

Even though the hospital doesn’t provide abortion or gender reassignment procedures, they also included their right-wing Evangelical takes on hot-button culture war topics that, friendly reminder, they wanted all hospital employees to pledge to uphold in order to maintain their employment with the hospital. 

You can check the document out in its entirety below:

That’s nice, I like how they say they value the religious and cultural diversity of their staff, providers and patients, and then a few lines later, ask them all to sign a document pledging to uphold the hospital’s right-wing Evangelical Christian worldview. Those two things don’t contradict each other or anything.

After the authoritarian document requiring people to pledge to uphold unscientific values they may or may not personally uphold made the rounds, it received some pushback from hospital physicians and others who aren’t right-wing evangelical edge lords. 

This is for a variety of reasons, ranging from it’s possible to be a Christian and still believe in a woman’s right to an abortion, and/or believe that transgendered folks are just regular people who should have access to modern gender reassignment surgery and counseling. 

It could also be due to a hospital forcing people to sign a document pledging to uphold values they may not hold is a bit authoritarian and crazy, even by Bethany standards. 

As a result, and somewhat surprisingly, hospital management changed course. 

According to our Moles, the Board retracted the document. Instead, they announced it will be revised and stuffed in the employee handbook. When or if we see the handbook, we’ll be sure to share it with you. 

In the meantime, I guess we should give a salute to the Children’s Hospital physicians and staff who protested the document, and also do a lot of great work for children in need. You’re the real MVPs. 

Stay with The Lost Ogle. We’ll keep you advised. 

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