Things I Think

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107 Responses

  1. AA says:

    #6 I don’t get it either, chemtrails & the like.

  2. Dan from Georgia says:

    10: I love thunderstorms too! Grew up in the plains where thunderstorms were monstrous! Now live in Georgia where some days we can see 2-3 weak thunderstorms a day in the summer.

    6: I don’t get it either. You cannot convince some of these people that they are out to lunch, so to speak! Worse yet, they accuse you of being ignorant and sometimes they even try to convince you that YOU are in cahoots with the conspiracies! #stupidity!

  3. dswoager says:

    I would wonder if there is often an abuse background in those who subscribe to conspiracy theories. If the root of the paranoia was a significant trust broken somewhere along the line. At that point intelligence can just be another tool that one can use to deceive themselves.

  4. Babylon's Dread says:

    As per conspiracy theories
    1. Once in a while a theory proves true such as the existence of the Mafia
    2. All of us can see that evil acts in a way that portends “intelligent intent” … that is to say that the devil is consistently evil

  5. Paige says:

    #5 ” When you add any requirement to receiving the grace of God other than reception, it is no longer grace, but reward. Grace, by it’s very nature, must be undeserved.”

    Amen. Thank you.

    I love thunderstorms too, tho get just a tad scared. 🙂 When I lived in your neck of the woods, I loved the weird colors the sky would take on, and the aromas in the air, right before the lightning would strike… Nothing quite as specular here in Portland.

  6. Babylon's Dread says:

    However,

    I hate conspiracy theories and what they do to people and

    I do not believe them … as a first mode.

    9-11 is the most ridiculous of all
    One mark of conspiracist …
    No amount of evidence counts against their theory.

  7. Em says:

    #8 …Jesus knows our works – the good stuff, but He told John that He has a few things against the churches… loosely copied from KJV:
    Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent…. how many churches have lost their candlesticks – and yet, without illumination, they keep the store going…
    thou hast there them that… eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication…..
    I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols….
    I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead.
    Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God……
    Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. – uh oh 😯
    maybe the remedy is in Michael’s #2 ?

    i must think i’m a preacher today… but wait! there’s more – it’s a pretty good Book and worth a read … IMO

  8. Em says:

    most sane people who live in Colorado don’t love thunderstorms…
    but i used to love watching 2 fronts collide over Kansas – that’s a good place to live to *watch* thunderstorms
    however, driving along the shore of Lake Erie in one once… didn’t remind me of anything, i was scared witless 🙂

    Kansas thunderstorms remind one of the power of God… Colorado – the wrath of God

  9. Em says:

    i really believe in conspiracies, they go on all around us wherever there are ambitious people jockeying for power… the greater the power, the bigger the conspiracy is… ISIS, or IL, is somebodies’ masterpiece… IMNSHO

  10. That Guy Over There says:

    I’ll disagree with your 1st point Michael.

    Brian Brodersen may be hosting the conference, but at best he’s like Lincoln trying to bring together a team of rivals. The days of one man telling CC “this is how it’s gonna be” are over. The fact that a CCA council member sits on GFA’s boards means GFA is gonna have a table.

    IMHO BB has bigger fish to fry. He spent capitol on his (well written) LGTBQ post and it’s follow up.

    I’m personally glad that GFA has a table at the SPC. It’ll be the rank and file that decide this one, and I would bet that the poor soul that’s been dispatched to man the table will have a lot of uncomfortable questions and conversations this week.

    When the rank and file decide to withhold that cash, then GFA will go away. The decision to link CC with GFA was made from the top down. In the post Chuck era, it’ll be made from the bottom up; one way or another.

  11. Xenia says:

    I think very intelligent people are more likely to be sucked into the conspiracy theory subculture because they are smart enough to keep a lot of disparate facts floating in their brains and have the ability to make connections (where maybe none exist).

    Here’s a great quote from the opening paragraph of H.P. Lovecraft’s Call of Cthulhu:

    “The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far. The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little; but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from the deadly light into the peace and safety of a new dark age.”

  12. Tim Brown says:

    Michael,

    What does BB know and is convinced of concerning GFA?

    Tim Brown, Pastor
    Calvary Chapel Fremont

  13. Xenia says:

    4. Neighbors….

    Well, bake them a pie, Michael.

    Seriously, we have some of the wackiest neighbors you’d ever want to compile on a single street and we take them all plates of cookies at Christmas and eggs from the hens and apricots and garden procude, when we have some. We greet them and overlook the pot smoke, loud music, drug deals, barking dogs and hammerings at midnight. In return they love us dearly, guard our house, bring us ethnic specialties at holiday time and try their best to keep the noise level down.

    Localism. Starts on our own streets.

    Good to love the Mexican 2000 miles away but better to love the Mexican next door.

  14. dswoager says:

    I can identify with the sentiment in your number 4. I don’t know either of the families on either side of me particularly well. To complicate matters further, I find it significantly easier to identify with the neighbor that I regularly have brief baseball conversations with, than I do interacting with the guy on the other side who I found out recently is on staff at one of the less reputable mega-churches in the area. That isn’t so much to make an excuse to not know him, he actually seems like a nice enough guy. Just seems like their is less brotherhood in belief, in this case, than in baseball.

  15. Xenia says:

    One neighbor, a habitual drunk, shoots raccoons from the trees with a stainless steel cross bow. Believe me, we want this guy on our side!

  16. Michael says:

    Tim,

    Brodersen doesn’t have to know or be convinced of anything except that there are significant issues surrounding GFA and it is his responsibility as the one in charge of the property and this conference to not allow them to be promoted until such matters are resolved.
    It’s responsible stewardship.
    I’m well aware that he has no control over the movement as a whole, but he has complete control over his actions.

  17. A Friend says:

    “We are all legalists at heart…until we need grace ourselves. ”

    Yes, which is the message and True Belief of Leadership in the so-called “Church”…Max “Grace” for the Pastors who commit abuses…hard cold justice and legalism for the “sheep” who dare challenge them. It’s as consistent as Gravity.

  18. Jim says:

    “Grace, by it’s very nature, must be undeserved.”

    !

  19. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    Regarding conspiracy theories, the whole “New World Order” concept is a fact. Our presidents and world leaders have promoted it. Our dollar bill announces it. The question is, do you believe it is a good thing or a bad thing.

  20. Ms. ODM says:

    If you call everything a ‘conspiracy theory’ – that only proves you’ve been programmed accordingly.

  21. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    When you say exile, do you mean exile in a monastic sense or in a “in this world but not of it” sense?

  22. Ms. ODM says:

    All of my neighbors are Mormons — sweet, friendly, neighborly people. Funny how they bear the fruit of Christianity in their lives, but fall down on the teachings.

  23. Michael says:

    The NT defines us as people living in exile.

  24. Xenia says:

    I think there is a vast conspiracy, headed up by Satan. I am just not smart enough to correlate the facts to put it together in a sensible way. I see subplots, though.

  25. Tim Brown says:

    @16 Michael, how do you know that BB hasn’t weighed the evidence and come to a favorable conclusion? How do you know that he doesn’t have a significant amount of more info than you do and the accusations are resolved in his mind?

  26. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    I don’t believe as Christians we are to live as monks but rather immerse ourself in society as a light preaching the gospel unto all the world.

  27. Michael says:

    Tim,

    Thats the typical Calvary way of defending wolves and obscuring real inquiry.
    Why would BB be privy to information that would clear the record when donors all over the world and journalists are refused the same information?
    Why would information that would shut me up and shut up Warren Throckmorten and the GFA Diaspora being withheld when it would be to everyones advantage to make it known?
    Do you really think that flies with a thinking person?
    When are you guys going to learn that honesty and transparency are no longer optional?

  28. Michael says:

    I’m at the skatepark right now and cant keep up wih the blog…I just wanted to clearly answer Tim’s questions.
    I’m also reading the ESV so I’m probably demon possessed as well… 🙂

  29. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    As far as Calvary goes, I think there are still some good pastors there and fellowships there but hopefully the good ones will not be afraid to stand up to Brian Broderson.

  30. gomergirl says:

    I have to defend the Foil Hat Brigade. Too often, what some will call a conspiracy theory, turns out to be truth. I like to read about them and have a slight fascination. I also am not prone to paranoia, mainly because I hold to the rock of Christ that gives me peace and security. That said, I believe that there are people (and powers) working in the shadows to bring about events that are secret until they come out. People who doubted Hitler before his practices were in the open could have been accused of holding to a conspiracy theory. (you can google more, I won’t take the time here, but look at the big pharma ones and all the CIA ones…. )
    And as with most things, the truth was somewhere in the middle of what was supposed, and the denial.
    And no, I have never been abused or mentally ill. Just saying.

  31. gomergirl says:

    “I believe that there are people (and powers) working in the shadows to bring about events that are secret until they come out.”

    Before I get skewered… I know that sounds dumb. I need to proof read better, but you get my meaning….

  32. Tim Brown says:

    @26 Michael, have you called GFA and asked them about the allegations and accusations? Have you asked them why they don’t go public? Why do you go ad hominem against Calvary Chapel when it’s only me asking the questions? I’m sure many in CC think about this the way you do and GFA is going to have many interesting conversations this week and as someone mentioned above, the rank and file will decide, but why attack BB when you don’t know what he knows?

    Obscuring real inquiry? I am the one you’re obscuring! I ask questions of you and instead of answering, “No, I don’t know what BB knows,” you attack my person. Is it possible that BB knows things you don’t know and has therefore come to a different conclusion than you have? Is it possible that BB has your same reservations and yet believes the way someone mentioned above – that the rank and file will fire away at the GFA reps and GFA will have to response coherently and consistently? Is it possible that if BB had dismissed GFA from the conference that this would have been seen by the rank and file as a dictat from above and seen it as an abuse of BB’s authority as if BB was making a decision about GFA for the whole movement? There are many nuances here that come into play.

    BB is damned if he does dismiss GFA from the conference and damned if he doesn’t.

  33. pstrmike says:

    “BB is damned if he does dismiss GFA from the conference and damned if he doesn’t.”

    Pretty much.

    Welcome to New Evangelicalism of which New Calvary is a only a subset.

    Some very hard questions needs to be asked of GFA and they can’t be answered in a short conversation. As TGOT correctly stated, if the rug is pulled out from GFA, it will be from the bottom up. Some pastors just need to exercised their God-ordained oversight and take action.

    I have to ask the question here.

    Is New Calvary, in it various components and sub-groups serious about accountability and are they willing to demonstrate such by becoming more transparent in handling such delicate but important matters?

  34. OC Dan says:

    Michael,
    You mean the error saturated version esv
    Just kidding

  35. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    Xenia,

    Yes Satan is the master Conspirator, I really believe we are living in the times where Satan is being let loosed for a season to deceive the nations once more.

  36. Michael says:

    Tim,

    First off, I’m not attacking Brodersen, I’m asking him to be accountable in this matter.
    Most of his enemies believe me to be one of his allies and I don’t think that is in error in some ways.
    This is not rocket science.
    If Brodersen has information that would clear GFA do you really think that GFA would keep that a secret with all the controversy swirling around the group?
    Really?
    This is simple to me.
    Allowing them to exhibit on the floor of the annual conference is affirming the group by silence.
    That is wrong and irresponsible.
    I have always been willing to be damned in pursuit of truth and justice and your group has always been willing to damn me when I do so.
    Thank God, this time I’m not alone.

  37. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    Xenia,

    I agree about localized ministry. In our fellowship we don’t send out missionaries overseas nor do we financially support any but rather we immerse ourselves with ministry in our own backyard in Pasadena, ca. We have the mindset that until we cover the whole city of Pasadena with the preaching of the gospel then we have no business going to another country with it. We do door to door ministry as well as street evangelism and laundry mat ministry. Our goal is to win souls for Christ. We really subscribe to taking care of our backyard first before anywhere else.

  38. Michael says:

    pstermike,

    Excellent question.

  39. Tim Brown says:

    @36 Michael, you write:

    First off, I’m not attacking Brodersen, I’m asking him to be accountable in this matter.

    Yes, you are asking him to be accountable according to what you know and act according to your metric of the situation. Is it possible that BB knows something you don’t know and may be applying a different metric? You are saying that if BB doesn’t do as you have determined he should do, he is being wrong and irresponsible – there’s no other responsible way to view this.

  40. Erunner says:

    I feel bad for BB. There are people in CC who are openly saying bad things about him while trying to have him removed from CCCM. His family is suing him. It seems a conference like this might be a way to address and get past this stuff. I’m thinking there’s a lot of awareness among the rank and file concerning the trials BB is passing through. It needs to be addressed and maybe as folks possibly go in different directions the GFA mess can be addressed? Just a thought…

  41. Michael says:

    Tim,

    Once again…do you really believe that if Brodersen knew all the info necessary to clear GFA that he wouldn’t make it public?
    Do you really believe Yohannan would withhold facts that would make Throckmorton and I shut up?
    More importantly, do you seriously believe that Brian Brodersen knows clarifying information that is being withheld from donors?

    This isn’t my metric….this is the metric of any reasonable person who has surveyed all the material and has questions about GFA practices.
    Every time I’ve called one of the good ol boys into question the first defense is that I’m either withholding or not in possession of information that would clear the accused.

    Such declarations do nothing to provide answers to the questions raised, they just give plausible deniability to the accused.

    It also furthers the damnable notion that people shouldn’t be allowed access to all the facts and all the information concerning a matter…no, that is for the elite only.

    Nope.
    No more.
    Not on my watch.

  42. Tim Brown says:

    @41 Michael – you do everything except answer the very simple, excruciatingly simple question: Do you know what BB knows? Are you in possession of the info he has? What informed his decision to allow GFA at the SPC?

    I am not accusing you of withholding information, for I don’t know what you know. Your protestations do nothing to provide an answer to the very simple question I asked: do you know what BB knows?

    I have written nothing about not allowing people to have access to all the facts and info. I am merely asking: Do you know what BB knows? Are you in possession of the info he has?

    To ban GFA from the SPC would do the very thing you protest against – not allowing people access to info.

  43. Michael says:

    What Brodersen knows or does not know is utterly irrelevant.

    What we all know through documents and testimony is that there are huge questions around the culture of GFA and where the money (much of which is acquired through Calvary Chapels) is spent.

    We all can read and examine that evidence.

    That is what is at issue here.

    If Brodersen has documentation and testimony that would clear up all those issues there are many, many people who would love to see it and deserve to see it.

    The “we know better than you do, but we aren’t going to tell you what we know” crap will never fly again.

  44. Michael says:

    My best guess is that Brodersen is mostly uninformed about the matter and was pretty oblivious to the mess until someone told him I was raising hell.

    My job is to inform… 🙂

  45. Tim Brown says:

    Tim: “Michael, do you know what BB knows?”

    Michael: “What BB knows or doesn’t know is totally irrelevant.”

    Tim: “I’ll take that as a ‘No'”.

  46. Michael says:

    Tim,

    I do not know what Brian knows, nor do I understand why it’s relevant for all the reasons given.

    This is a simple matter of right and wrong.

    It’s wrong to provide a platform for an organization this is under this much of a shadow.

    You can blow as much smoke as you want, but my fan will always be bigger.

  47. Michael says:

    I’ve been informed that we will have even more questions upcoming in the next day or so…stay tuned.

  48. Kevin H says:

    Tim,

    I am a donor of GFA and I contacted them with my concerns and ended up speaking on the phone with a GFA rep who is pretty high in the organization. In the conversation, I didn’t push too hard or challenge many of his answers as my intent was more to let them know that I was concerned and I wasn’t trying to get to the bottom of every little detail. Let me tell you however, I came away from the conversation quite unimpressed. I don’t believe I was given straight answers, at least on some matters. In the days afterwards, I learned some of the answers they gave me differed, in an apparent contradictory manner to answers they have given others who have contacted them. Some of their answers also appeared to have been given in a disingenuous fashion when compared with the documented information that is on the GFA Diaspora website.

    As a donor and as a CC attendee, I wouldn’t want GFA represented at the CCSPC until they are willing to give honest, straightforward, and enlightening answers to the many questions being raised. And accompanied by repentance if necessary. And this should be done in a PUBLIC fashion, not in a back room meeting of the club elite. Their issues have become public due to their own inaction and inadequacy in dealing with them when they were initially just private.

  49. Michael says:

    Kevin H,

    That…was well done.

  50. Michael says:

    Tim,

    Would you position be that everyone should just trust the leadership irregardless of the facts at hand?

    Maybe because Skip Heitzig is on the GFA board?

    Like that should carry any water, anywhere…

  51. Reuben says:

    Nothing has changed when it comes to Calvary Chapel. Look at how the defenders come out. They don’t even know what they defend. And that is sad. Unless they do know what they defend. Then that is evil.

    And I can say that. Because Calvary Chapel is toilet paper to me.

  52. Michael says:

    I have to step out again for a bit…I’ll update as I can.

  53. Em says:

    #32 – damned if you do and damned if you don’t? well, the answer should then be, who do you chose to be damned by and act accordingly…. seems pretty clear to me…

    i think i’ve developed a compulsion to comment… will finish reading the comments (better than mine) after i go outside and check to see if that cloud behind the hill is a brush fire starting up… it’ll be a long summer, i hope it will be anyway

  54. Em says:

    FYI – no fire – just a lone white cloud drifting behind the crest, but glad to hear a patrol plane up there… it’s hard to comprehend the mindset of folk who go up in the bone dry hills in hot dry weather and are careless – too off roaders

  55. Tim Brown says:

    Hi, Kevin H – we have given $500 a month to GFA for over 10 years – that’s over $60,000. I am very interested in the conduct of GFA. I have done the same as you and have called and spoken to a “higher up” in the organization a couple of times because my questions became more refined and pointed as I learned what to ask. For me, some credible answers were given, yet I still have some questions.

    What rankles me is a rush to judgment and a cutting off of GFA before the smoke has cleared and the dust has settled. There is a reason GFA hasn’t gone public, yet they will speak with those who call. There are a couple of people who they will no longer speak with because they say that every time they speak with so-and-so, that person twists everything that is said and they no longer believe a couple of people are honest in the reportage.

    If anyone has questions, call. Call 1-800-win-asia. Don’t rush to judgment until you have spoken with the accused party. If you still have questions, that’s great – I do, too. But I am not yet willing to banish them from the garden. My writing on this particular blog piece is not to defend GFA – or even BB – but different people have different info and weight that info differently.

    Tim Brown, Pastor
    Calvary Chapel Fremont

  56. Tim Brown says:

    @50 Michael, that’s ridiculous. I don’t understand your need to demean those who disagree with you. See my response to Keven H in @55.

  57. Em says:

    too off roaders? did she mean two of them? sorry… there are too many off roaders on ATVs as well as in pick-ups

  58. Em says:

    in the times in which we are living fiscal accountability should be a concern to the giver as well as the receiver, i get that… however, i think of Mark 12 – isn’t the lesson there that the widow’s intent was to give to God and was blessed, but the ones in charge of the Treasury were warned of a very dire end?

  59. Kevin H says:

    Tim,

    I’m glad you have taken the initiative to question GFA, also. Apparently, you have been more satisfied with the answers you received than I have.

    The main person that GFA has chosen not to speak with is Warren Throckmorton. Apparently you were given the same story as I. Unfortunately, they gave Throckmorton, himself, a different story saying that he takes up too much of their time and so that is why they don’t communicate with him any longer. So either GFA or Throckmorton is lying. I also have read Throckmorton’s blog off and on over the past couple years. While he is a bulldog when he questions people or organizations, I have also seen him report when people gave him satisfactory answers. So he does not seem to be the type to be out to get his targets at all costs.

    When I questioned GFA about their transferring of large amounts of cash in envelopes during travel, they told me that they stopped the practice when they were made aware that what they were doing may be illegal (which in fact it is). However, they told their staff that they stopped it because the staff was uncomfortable with it and that they had not done anything illegal. This is another strike against GFA’s credibility. Additionally, the timing they gave me for when they stopped this practice differs from what some still current staff members have reported.

    And in my reading of the GFA Diaspora website, I have found GFA’s response (or lack thereof) to be very troubling. Even what GFA communicated to me about this seems to be quite disingenuous when I read all the documentation on the GFA Diaspora website.

    I am not looking to permanently banish GFA. But from my reading online and from my own personal experience, I don’t think GFA is being upfront about things. And again GFA, has only themselves to blame for allowing this become public because of their own choices to not adequately deal with these issues privately when they could have. The bottom line is that they now need to deal with things in a public fashion because there is a lot of suspicious-looking information out there. A “just trust us” response from GFA or a select set of pastors supposedly in the know would be far from a proper response. The same would go for any pastor who chooses to publicly support GFA right now. They better be able to give good reasons for why they do so. And their answers would have to better than anything GFA has given so far.

  60. Michael says:

    This is straight from the CC playbook.

    “There is a reason GFA hasn’t gone public, yet they will speak with those who call.”

    In other words, there is a reason, I know what it is, I’m not telling you, but trust me and don’t listen to those wicked bloggers.

    “There are a couple of people who they will no longer speak with because they say that every time they speak with so-and-so, that person twists everything that is said and they no longer believe a couple of people are honest in the reportage.”

    I’ve been waiting all day for this one. Even though the bloggers have documents, charts, and testimonies, they are twisting what the reader can see in those documents and are dishonest reporters.
    Make sure you slime the messenger and cast doubt on the character of the reporters.

    ” My writing on this particular blog piece is not to defend GFA – or even BB – but different people have different info and weight that info differently.”

    In other words there is information available that will exonerate GFA, but they are purposely withholding that information unless you are in an elite place in the hierarchy.

    Tim would have us believe that there is information available that GFA will not release that would answer the issues but they prefer losing money and reputation by refusing to respond.

    That is a brilliant strategy…

    Most of you weren’t here in the early years, but this is like the movie “Groundhog Day” for me…

  61. A Friend says:

    Keep the heat on. Something is fishy. Kevin H’s testimony is pretty persuasive and he is an honest broker.

  62. Tim Brown says:

    Michael, call GFA yourself. What have you got to lose? Talk to the accused before you become an accuser.

    Kevin H, I don’t know if I’m more satisfied w their answers than you are, I’m just not ready to throw them under the bus.

    Michael and Kevin, you may be correct and GFA will not be able to respond w coherence to the questions posed them. Yet others may not be as far down the road as you are and haven’t arrived where you have arrived. Not being in agreement w you is not drinking the Kool-aid. Michael, you are asking people to trust you that GFA is evil even though you haven’t spoken w GFA and then you demonize me for allegedly saying ‘Trust me.’ At least I’ve listened to both sides – something you have decided isn’t necessary. I am not, repeat, not saying “Trust me.” What I am saying is call GFA at 1.800.win.asia.

    Michael, you misquote me even though my words are in black and white on your blog. I never said that the info from GFA exonerates them. You are making this up to score cheap points. My 55 is black words on white background. I can’t even trust you to give an honest report when the words are right in front of your eyes. No, you don’t have to be an elite to hear from GFA – you just have to call.

  63. Michael says:

    Tim,

    Nobody has suggested throwing anybody under the bus.
    What I have strongly advocated is suspending support until the questions are answered.
    There is a very large difference.

    I have not suggested that anyone is evil, nor have I suggested that anyone trust me.
    I have directed people to the documents, charts, and testimonies that are available.
    That way, the facts are in front of them.

    These are public allegations and need to be answered publicly.

    You have hinted around that you know something that I don’t, that others don’t, and then accuse me of making things up.

    You can’t trust me to make an honest report?
    That has been the claim for years, yet at every turn I’ve been proven to be trustworthy and having done my due dilegence.
    That’s why I have had sources deep in your movement for years.

    As I said earlier, this time I’m not alone and once again I will be vindicated.

  64. Scott says:

    Tim, what questions did you ask that like Kevin, you weren’t “comfortable” with the answers you received? Have you spoken with K.P. yourself? Also, do you believe it’s prudent under the circumstances to continue to donate $500 a month from funds donated to your church while this firestorm is brewing?

  65. Andrew says:

    At this point, I’m not sure I care any more whether K.P. or GFA speaks at a CC conference. To me they both have the same systemic troubling problems and not sure who is worse. Lacking of accountability seems to run rampant in both camps. I guess I would care more if CC would make amends to those that have been hurt or abused in their system but I haven’t really seen much effort on that front. So to me its birds of a feather flock together. No thanks and I’ll stay away from both groups for now. I’m not judging individual CC members or small time pastors but rather the mega system and CCA and some large mega CC pastors that don’t seem to give a crap. It appears to all be built around the Moses Model celebrity pastor CEO form of church government. Not sure what it will take for CC to change but I don’t for one bit expect them to dis-invite KP unless they cleaned up their own act first.

  66. A Friend says:

    Thanks for the livestream link LOL

  67. Kevin H says:

    Andrew,

    The ironic thing is that GFA claims they want to try to make personal amends with each person who has felt hurt. For the most part, they have been frustrated by the GFA Diaspora group because the group won’t give out personal contact info for the most part. However, the GFA Diaspora group isn’t looking primarily for one-on-one personal apologies. The primary thing they want GFA to deal with is the systemic culture of abuse and over-control and deception that the GFA Diaspora group has collectively experienced and been witness to. This is what GFA has either danced around dealing with or has at times flat out told the GFA Diaspora group that they won’t deal any further with it because there is no basis to their claims (despite the testimonies of close to 100 people). The GFA Diaspora group has consistently brought forth a set of defined issues they want to deal with and GFA has seemingly consistently found every reason they can to not deal with them.

  68. Anne says:

    #65 Andrew, exactly 🙁

  69. Andrew says:

    Kevin,

    What you describe at GFA is cult-like. CC is very similar. Cults will always try to keep you in their web of influence until a threshold is reached where they know they can’t control an individual any longer. I am not calling either group a cult but I think they both have cult like characteristics and I am staying away from both. I’m glad you are warning people here.

  70. A Friend says:

    My stomach hurts LOL

  71. Erunner says:

    I have to say I’m liking the message Nate Holdridge is sharing at the conference right now.

  72. Anne says:

    At least there is a paper trail to follow with GFA to see if numbers add up, where funds are going etc. Something the CC movement has been able to avoid with their traditional lack of transparency (yes,I know some are becoming more accountable). Anyone in CC calling GFA on accountability issues that lacks transparency would be more ironic than a pot calling the kettle black.

  73. A Friend says:

    That message on women menstruating was really a blessing.

  74. Xenia says:

    Nate Holdridge is the son of my former CC pastor. I knew him when he was running around the church in his footie jammies. I always liked him.

  75. Xenia says:

    When I was in the process of disengaging from CC, that last year when I was so miserable, I took a lot of my anger out on Nate, who was the youth pastor at that time. After I came to my senses I wrote him a letter of apology and his response was incredibly sweet. I will never forget that about ol’ Nate. I am glad his is prospering.

  76. Xenia says:

    I know Pastor Tim Brown, too. He taught Old Testament History at the CC Bible College extension campus I attended many years ago. I wonder if he remembers my paper comparing Joab and Abner….

  77. Xenia says:

    I remember everything about my old Calvary Chapel with fondness except, alas, the theology.

  78. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    “I remember everything about my old Calvary Chapel with fondness except, alas, the theology.”

    me too.

  79. Babylon's Dread says:

    Alas

  80. conscientious objector says:

    # 69 I am not calling either group a cult but I think they both have cult like characteristics and I am staying away from both.

    Both Calvary Chapel and GFA ARE a Cult! (If it walks like a duck…)

    There, that felt good!

  81. surfer51 says:

    post #6

    “What is it that makes otherwise intelligent people believe conspiracy theories… religious or otherwise that are nothing more than the product of some nuts fevered imagination? More to the point, what makes people cling to these theories even in the face of overwhelming facts that disprove them? I just don’t get it…”

    And commentor #1
    “#6 I don’t get it either, chemtrails & the like.”

    I understand you just walked past the violinist and did not buy a painting …

    Let me explain.

    On a January morning in 2007, a world~class violinist played six Johann Sebastian
    Bach’s most stirring concertos for the solo violin on a three-hundred-year-old Stradivarius worth 3.5 million.

    Two nights before, Joshua Bell had performed a sold-out concert where patrons gladly paid $200.00 for nosebleed seats, but this time the performance was for free.

    Bell ditched his tux with coattails, donned a Washington nationals baseball cap, and played incognito outside the L’Enfant Plaza Metro station.

    Street musicians are not an uncommon sight or sound for Washingtonians.

    The experiment was conceived by Washington Post columnist Gene Weingarten and filmed by hidden camera.

    Of the 1,097 people who passed by, only seven stopped to listen.

    The forty five minute performance ended without applause or acknowledgment.

    Joshua Bell, the Grammy Award winning musician netted $32.17 in tips in his tip jar.

    On an average weekday nearly a million passengers ride Washington’s Metro system, and L’Enfant Plaza is one of the busiest stops.

    A stampede of tourists and government employees hustle and bustle through turnstiles, trying to get where they’re going as quickly as possible.

    But those circumstances don’t discredit or disqualify the question raised by this social experiment:

    If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the greatest musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, on one of the most beautiful instruments ever made, how many similarly sublime moments do we miss on a normal day?

    Last year, in New York city, Banksy, a street artist worth about $20 million set up an art stall.

    He had someone selling his paintings for around $60.00 each.

    It was not surprising that for most of the day the man selling black and white Banksy prints in New York got no takers.

    Coming from a pop-up stall in Central Park, among many others selling cheap tourist souvenirs, they were outrageously expensive at $60 each. Gift shops were selling artists’ posters, greeting cards, mugs and coasters for a fraction of the price.

    A man who had bought two canvases from the stall, proved, by mid-afternoon, to be only the second customer for the prints.

    But this buyer now stands to make a small fortune. The pictures have been authenticated by Banksy; they are going to auction at Bonham’s, in London, and they could fetch thousands.

    Gareth Williams, head of contemporary art at Bonham’s, said the Central Park stall was a coup.

    “The fact that his paintings were original and were being offered at a tiny fraction of their true retail value, raises real questions about the perception of worth and the nature of art as commodity within the marketplace – something that the artist must be acutely aware of.”

    Draw your own conclusions…

    http://www.geoengineeringwatch.org/

  82. That Guy Over There says:

    I suppose that if I’m in a cult, then I either wouldn’t know it or wouldn’t care… 😉

    Broad brush statements about anyone don’t make for conversation, bridge building and understanding.

    For years this blog, it’s frequenters and its author have decried the “top down” leadership structure of Calvary Chapel. Now that decisions are being handled from the bottom up, that’s being lambasted and decried as a travesty.

    FWIW, I’ve come to believe that the GFA thing has teeth. But I’ve had over two months with this. Many CC pastors only found out that there might be something wrong at GFA less than a month ago.

    It’s easy to write off the CC leadership for not acting the way you think they should. It’s easy to assume that someone’s had all the same information, for the same amount of time. It’s easy to assume (as Tim has pointed out) that we have more information than everyone else.

    It’s easy to assume…

    Make your own application

  83. brian says:

    good thoughts, thanks Michael.

  84. Kevin H says:

    TGOT,

    It would be encouraging if a bunch of CC pastors really asked the hard questions of GFA while at the conference. I would be hopeful that the pastors would take the answers they get from GFA and compare it with the information documented by Warren Throckmorton and also at the GFA Diaspora website. And if they get answers that appear to be more spin than substance, that they would ask even harder questions.

    I still stand by my belief that GFA shouldn’t be allowed at the conference. However, if Brian Brodersen is the one who truly makes that decision, it is possible he has only very recently come to learn of the GFA problems and has not had sufficient time to really learn enough to make a knowledgeable decision. I think this scenario is not likely, but possible. I know that when I spoke to the GFA rep more than a month ago, he told me that my CC pastor (who is a prominent CC pastor) had already been informed by GFA themselves of some of the situation. Now of course, GFA would have given him their side of the story, but at least he would have been aware that something was going on. If he was made aware, I would think it would have been likely that other prominent CC pastors were also made aware. Heck, Skip sits on the GFA board and Gayle Erwin is the one who did the supposed investigation into the GFA Diaspora complaints. Some had to have known for some time of the things going on.

  85. Dennis says:

    I notice Pete Nelson is on the schedule for Thursday. Is this the same Pete Nelson from the CC Albuquerque debacle!?!?! That would be quite a smack in the face to Skip Heitzig.

  86. conscientious objector says:

    # 82 Now that decisions are being handled from the bottom up, that’s being lambasted and decried as a travesty.

    Really? from the bottom up? well maybe if your bent over 😉

  87. That Guy Over There says:

    Kevin H,

    Have you talked to your pastor about your conversations with and concerns about GFA?

  88. Michael says:

    Dennis,

    That is the same Pete Nelson.
    I have much joy in seeing him there.

  89. Kevin H says:

    TGOT,

    No, I haven’t spoken to my pastor about GFA. I attend a CC mega-church. I don’t know my pastor. He doesn’t know me, nor probably has any idea who I am. I have never had a conversation of any kind with him. At this point, I have had no real impetus to speak to him about GFA.

  90. Nonnie says:

    I’m praying for the CC pastors and their wives, and for Brian and Cheryl.

    I am also very disturbed by the testimonies I read on the Diaspora site. GFA seems very cult like and the way it treated women is deplorable. I certainly hope that there are strong questions asked and answered at the CC pastors’ conference. The way staff is treated at GFA (according to the Diaspora) is completely against the ethos of any CC ministry that I have ever been involved in.

    Read some of these testimonies. It is terrible. http://www.gfadiaspora.com/

  91. ( |o )====::: says:

    “I notice Pete Nelson is on the schedule for Thursday. Is this the same Pete Nelson from the CC Albuquerque debacle!?!?! That would be quite a smack in the face to Skip Heitzig.”

    or it could be a sign of reconciliation & progress
    …hopeful people are hoping

  92. Michael says:

    G,

    Dennis had it right…

  93. filbertz says:

    I think it’s in CC’s DNA to do things in their own way and ignore or refuse suggestions, demands, or feedback from any source considered ‘outside.’ In fact, calls for action may be counter-productive in that they may do nothing simply because it wasn’t from ‘within.’ Again, I may be completely wrong, but…

    conspiracies provide a cause to be passionate about & a boost to one’s sense of intellectual identity. It’s similar to hyperspirituality, when a person claims superior insight into spiritual matters that defy biblical checks or balances.

    living as an exile requires the fruit of the Spirit. Living as though this is one’s homeland breeds a sense of entitlement & false sense of control.

  94. pstrmike says:

    From the bottom up or top down…………………

    It is an either/or world we live in, things are not always clearly cut and defined, particularly in in transitional times such as these. It is unfortunate that during these times that “being led by the Spirit” can become code speak for “I have no idea what I’m doing and we are taking this a day at a time”. But the later does not breed confidence from the masses.

    Grass roots movements start very chaotically, there is always the tremendous uphill climb of challenging the status quo. When someone points out these errors, the typical default response (as I have read on other blogs) is “what do our leaders think” or “should they make a statement”. Pastors have been called to oversee their own churches and need to hear and respond to the voice of God’s Spirit, because in short, we don’t know what we are doing, and except by the grace of God, never will. There is the need for iconoclastic measures, but they must be held within the spirit of charity and grace. What is prudent in this case to me is obvious, and it puzzles me that the push back has been so strong over things that are not necessarily either defend-able, or in need of someone’s defense.

  95. Michael says:

    pstrmike,

    There are about 4 good articles in that one comment…

  96. conscientious objector says:

    # 84 No, I haven’t spoken to my pastor about GFA. I attend a CC mega-church. I don’t know my pastor. He doesn’t know me, nor probably has any idea who I am. I have never had a conversation of any kind with him

    sad, really sad if this is what church is today… and you call him “pastor”???

  97. Kevin H says:

    I agree it is a sad arrangement in some ways. To be honest, and I have spoken to this before here, it is not my first choice of churches but I attend because of familial reasons. Reasons I won’t go into here. And although I referred to him as “my pastor”, I really don’t think of him that way. It’s just an easy way to refer to him in conversation. I really see him more as being “the head pastor of the church I attend” as opposed to being “my pastor”. There have been other men I have known in past churches who I truly thought of as being “my pastor”. But not the case here. It is sad in that respect.

  98. conscientious objector says:

    Thanks Kevin for your honest response! Nothing personal, it’s just how it is for many in the show-biz, mega church…

    Imagine going to a church for years and never given the opportunity to look deep into the eyes of the “pastor”!?!

  99. A Friend says:

    Well, CC is certainly in decline. That conference is pretty sparse, pretty lackluster.

  100. A Friend says:

    Probably a good thing. Beats the celebrity-driven bullspit.

    That PK panel was pretty alarming. Queer Eye for the CC Guy…yikes!

    Glad I was abused and shunned so I didn’t turn out like that LOL.

  101. Anne says:

    Curious. Why the change of venue from Murrietta to CCCM?

  102. A Friend says:

    Mr. Brodersen-Smith wants to commandeer the power-center and the CC Pastor’s Conference is one of the few ways to do that anymore now that Chuck is taking a dirt nap.

  103. A Friend says:

    I don’t want to give the wrong impression…Brodersen actually seems a decent guy and I like the more subdued conference, it is less glitzy, less celebrity and guys like Guzik are good dudes, so is Sutton and many others….and better to see those types of guys out front.

    I still think, however, when they call guys in CC ‘heroes of the faith’ that that is quite an embellishment…none of the recent past or current CC guys shows any kind of good leadership, they all run for cover and cry “not my responsibility!” when it comes to doing the hard work of ministry including church discipline. Weak weak fake “leadership’ that only leads when it personally benefits them and their Brand.

  104. Antonio Clifton Jr says:

    What I hear from the CC and GFA defenders, is the mentality that permeates CCs, and that is that “we are the parents and you are the children and we know better, we have a higher knowledge and a greater understanding than you have.” This echoes back to Chuck Smith who taught “touch not God’s anointed” applying it to the pastors and leaders in his organization, and that if you had a disagreement with the leadership you should vote with your feet and quietly walk away. Well we know how well that has worked as the problems and the abuse have continued to be perpetrated upon the “children who don’t know better.”

    Michael’s point was, and that Tim Brown never seems to have gotten, is that if there is any evidence or any hidden knowledge that would exonerate the actions of GFA or quell the accusations against it, then it should be presented publicly for all to see, and not “there are things you don’t know, or not privy to, but believe me because I tell you, that this organization is right on,” well I’m sorry but the children have grown up and they will no longer have the wool pulled over their eyes.

  105. conscientious objector says:

    ACJ …well I’m sorry but the children have grown up and they will no longer have the wool pulled over their eyes.

    AMEN!!!

  106. Passing by says:

    Thanks Pete Nelson for your message @ the CCPC. Pray that the pastor’s had ears to hear.

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