Home Christian News Rachael Denhollander, Liberty Students to Hold Rally Calling for Abuse Investigation

Rachael Denhollander, Liberty Students to Hold Rally Calling for Abuse Investigation

Denhollander was welcomed to Liberty in 2018, when she taught at a class session at the university’s law school and spoke at the university’s convocation, telling her story and telling students about the need for justice for abuse survivors. Several clips from her testimony at Nassar’s sentencing hearing were also played during that convocation.

“I ask that you hand down a sentence that tells us that what was done to us matters, that we would know we are worth everything,” she told a judge in one of the video clips. “Worth the greatest protection the law can offer, the greatest measure of justice available.”

In Twitter post, Denhollander mentioned her 2018 invitation to speak on campus about how to respond to sexual assault and abuse. “Today, when it is needed, it is no longer wanted. Aching to see a heart change tomorrow,” she tweeted.

On Thursday, organizers sent out an update on social media, saying that — after initially barring Denhollander from campus — university leaders had changed their minds and would allow her on campus to speak at the rally. The social media update also said that Denhollander would meet with Prevo and with Liberty Chancellor Jonathan Falwell.

Liberty’s spokesperson did not immediately return a request for comment on these new developments.

Prior, who taught English at Liberty for two decades before leaving the faculty in 2020, said the rally is an attempt to hold the school’s board accountable for long-delayed reforms. While the Liberty board announced plans for an investigation into the troubled tenure of Falwell Jr., who resigned in 2020, that report has not been made public.

When Falwell Jr. departed, Prior and others hoped that things would change for the better at Liberty. So far, those hopes have not come to pass under Prevo, who was named acting president after Falwell Jr.’s departure.

“I think he has been a disappointment,” said Prior, who is a columnist for RNS. “I am less hopeful than I was a year ago.”

Founded by the late televangelist and religious right preacher Jerry Falwell Sr., Liberty University is one of the largest Christian schools in the United States, with total assets of more than $3 billion.

This article originally appeared here.