The following is a repost from September 7, 2007. I’m reposting it since L’Engle’s books are used in at least one CanRC school.
Well-known author Madeleine L’Engle died yesterday at 88 years of age.
A number of years ago, there was a controversy in the Christian Reformed Church regarding L’Engle. A woman named Claris VanKuiken became alarmed at the use of L’Engle’s books in her local Christian school. She eventually went on to write an expose of L’Engle entitled, “Battle to Destroy Truth: Unveiling a Trail of Deception.” When the matter was brought to the officebearers of her CRC congregation, they would not agree with her and instead declared that L’Engle was an orthodox Christian author. She appealed to Classis Chicago South and was vindicated. The classis stated:
1. L’Engle denies that the atonement, the suffering and death of Jesus Christ was a substitutionary sacrificial payment for the sins of God’s people.
2. L’Engle denies that Jesus’ incarnation is qualitatively unique, uniquely “God with us,” Immanuel.
3. L’Engle denies that there will be a final separation between God and some persons as proclaimed in 2 Thessalonians 1:9 “They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the Majesty of His power….”
4. L’Engle denies the unique authority of the Bible as the final arbiter in all matters of faith and practice.
I remember there were a number of articles in Christian Renewal about this at the time, especially focusing on L’Engle’s connections with New Age mysticism. Unfortunately, though that one CRC classis made that statement, the general perception that L’Engle was a Christian author won the day in the CRC.