Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Information

49 Wm. & Mary L. Rev. 2217 (2007-2008)


On March 6, 2007, the College of William & Mary announced a “compromise” solution to its polite civil war over the historic Wren Chapel. In a joint statement with President Gene Nichol, the Board of Visitors declared that permanent display of the Christian cross within the Chapel would resume. The cross would be moved, however, from its former place at center stage on the Chapel altar. Accompanying the elocated display would be a plaque “explaining the College's Anglican roots.” The compromise further provided that, when needed during certain worship services, the cross could be moved back to the altar. When needed for other worship services, “[o]ther religious symbols... stored in the sacristy when not in use, will also be welcome.” The Board of Visitors observed that, in this way, “the Wren Chapel will continue to play its unique historic and affirming role in the life of the College.” The compromise was unanimously recommended by the William & Mary Committee on Religion in a Public University, and the Board of Visitors “accept[ed]” and “immediately” began to implement it. President Nichol said that he “fully embrace[d] it.” Peace was restored to campus.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.