August 8, 2014

One small bright spot - when pastors do what is right even though it's hard

[Dislcaimer - I don't endorse Matt Chandler or any of these guys on the board (most of whom I do not know) Matt Chandler has, since this posting, decided to give a sort of blanket endorsement of Ann Voskamp, heretical mystic because she wrote somewhat mystically and touchingly on suicide, meaning, her own thoughts of it. I don't even know what she was trying to say other than "I felt really bad about myself" and something referring to Mother Teresa as an acceptable source for theology.

For another view on the timing of this disciplinary action by Acts 29, see this article:
An Open Letter to the Acts 29 Network

...and frankly after some of the things I've been reading in the last few days I am leaning toward that person's point of  view.  End disclaimer.]

original post: Thank God for these men on the Acts 29 board, who have done what is right though it might be unpopular with many:

Acts 29 Network Removes Co-founder Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill Church From Membership

As the Board of Acts 29, we are grateful to God for the leadership, courage, and generosity of both you and Mars Hill in not only founding the network but also sustaining it through the transition to this board three years ago. The very act of giving away your authority over the network was one of humility and grace, and for that we are grateful.

Over the past three years, our board and network have been the recipients of countless shots and dozens of fires directly linked to you and what we consider ungodly and disqualifying behavior. We have both publicly and internally tried to support and give you the benefit of the doubt, even when multiple pastors in our network confirmed this behavior.

In response, we leaned on the Mars Hill Board of Advisors & Accountability to take the lead in dealing with this matter. But we no longer believe the BoAA is able to execute the plan of reconciliation originally laid out. Ample time has been given for repentance, change, and restitution, with none forthcoming. We now have to take another course of action.

Based on the totality of the circumstances, we are now asking you to please step down from ministry for an extended time and seek help. Consequently, we also feel that we have no alternative but to remove you and Mars Hill from membership in Acts 29. Because you are the founder of Acts 29 and a member, we are naturally associated with you and feel that this association discredits the network and is a major distraction.

We tell you this out of love for you, Mars Hill, Acts 29, and most significantly, the cause of Christ, and we would be irresponsible and deeply unloving not to do so in a clear and unequivocal manner. Again, we want you to know that we are eternally thankful for what you as a man and Mars Hill as a church have meant to our network. However, that cannot dissuade us from action. Instead, it gives added significance and importance to our decision. We hope and pray that you see this decision as the action of men who love you deeply and want you to walk in the light—for your good, the good of your family, and the honor of your Savior.

Shortly after sending this, we will be informing the members of Acts 29, your Board of Advisors and Accountability, and your elders, as well as putting out a public statement on the Acts 29 website. It brings us no joy to move forward in this direction, and we trust that the Lord will be at work in all of this.

In sorrow and with hope,

The Board of the Acts 29 Church Planting Network

Matt Chandler
Darrin Patrick
Steve Timmis
Eric Mason
John Bryson
Bruce Wesley
Leonce Crump