Wheaton College started the firing process this week for a political science professor who was put on administrative leave last month after stating in a Facebook post that Christians and Muslims worship the same God.
A statement posted Tuesday on the evangelical Christian college's website said the professor, Larycia Hawkins, was given a "notice of recommendation to initiate termination-for-cause proceedings" on Monday.
"This Notice follows the impasse reached by the parties," Wheaton College's statement said. "Following Dr. Hawkins' written response on December 17 to questions regarding her theological convictions, the College requested further theological discussion and clarification. However, as posted previously, Dr. Hawkins declined to participate in further dialogue about the theological implications of her public statements and her December 17 response."
On December 10, Hawkins posted a message on Facebook saying she would wear a Hijab during Advent in solidarity with Muslims.
"I stand in religious solidarity with Muslims because they, like me, a Christian, are people of the book," she wrote. "And as Pope Francis stated last week, we worship the same God."
She was placed on administrative leave December 15 as a result of "theological statements that seem inconsistent with Wheaton College's doctrinal convictions," the college said in a statement.
Hawkins addressed her supporters during a Wednesday morning press conference.
"My legs are shaky and your presence means a great deal," she said. "These people are holding me up... People I know and people I don't know."
Hawkins said she was "flabbergasted" by the college's recommendation to terminate her employment, but added that she has "no hatred in my heart" towards the school.
"A woman on a spiritual journey is who I am, a journey that for me has always pointed to Jesus," Hawkins stated, reported the Daily Herald. "Throughout my years of service at Wheaton College, I have never wavered from my commitment to the Christian doctrines elucidated in this statement of faith."