Local Church Discussions  

Go Back   Local Church Discussions > Introductions and Testimonies

Introductions and Testimonies Please tell everybody something about yourself. Tell us a little. Tell us a lot. Its up to you!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-09-2008, 06:20 PM   #1
AndPeter
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Toronto
Posts: 32
Default Testimony of AndPeter (Steve Pritchard) as posted Jan/2008

My moniker is AndPeter to remind me that, even at times of utter failure, the Lord is there for us. My name is Steve Pritchard and I reside in Toronto, Canada. I became serious about the Lord in 1973 when I began to meet with the church in Toronto.

In the summer of 2005 an internal document that I shared with a few brothers that I am in close fellowship with and which I was using to work through in my own mind the scriptural basis and implications of LSM's 'One Publication' policy escaped into the internet ether. In September 2005 a document under the name "The S. California Co-workers" and written by the blended brothers (BBs) was sent out globally and to many saints in Toronto in which this internal document was referred to and called 'a work of darkness' among other things. I emailed Bro Benson and said that from their description it looked like my internal document. The matter was handled after a few back and forths which gave me more understanding about how things really were.

At the same time I went looking for my document on the internet using 'One publication' as a search keyword. I did not find my document but I discovered this Bereans web site (it was very close to the top on google's result page). Reading this site (it took 3 days or so) also gave me a major wake up call as to how things really were. I have learned over time not to simply accept as fact things stated by anybody. When, however, the same fact is confirmed from multiple sources, then it becomes more difficult to disregard the fact (even though we had been taught to disregard, and were instructed to do so by the 'ministry' regarding, those that disagree or have a divergent views).

From that time I began to lurk on this forum and I began to appreciate and be helped by the views of some that had 'come out of her' (the LSM dominated local church). From this I was led to read "Thread of Gold" and the "Hiding History" sites, and in particular, Bro Mallon's letter of resignation to Bro Lee. More awakening.

It became, over time, apparent that a few other brothers and sisters in Toronto were also lurking on this same site. We never pointed people to this site but, eventually, a few began to discuss the site and as we realized they were reading the site. A few months later both my wife and daughter independently discovered the site using more or less the same search string as I had. I am not sure how many but I know a few in Toronto still read the site and some post on it. As you will see from the history I'll outline, as time went on, this became a help to many with what Toronto went through.

In October 2006 the infamous letter of quarantine was issued at Whistler BC. In Toronto we brothers who have been somewhat leading the church were led by the Lord to bring this matter to a number of saints (basically the more experienced saints of the church) and asked them to share their feelings with us, both verbally and in writing. More than 100 responded to this request and based on this and our own consideration before the Lord we rejected the Q letter and asked all saints meeting with us in Toronto to abide by this decision of the brothers, so that the church could go forward harmoniously in oneness without the Q matter becoming a point of contention.

As predicted, this 'rebellion' brought in 'the army' from Anaheim: the BBs sent in countless numbers to persuade the saints that the non pro-LSM elders and coworkers were 'off'. It became obvious to us at this time that there was strong influence from Anaheim over a number of Toronto saints sympathetic to their cause here. Later, emails revealed in court documents irrefutably confirmed this feeling that we had. Basically, in Toronto there had developed a 'church within the church' -- a 'special interest group' which followed the lead and direction of LSM in Anaheim. Soon after the church in Toronto rejected the quarantine, LSM announced their intention to conduct a series of 'perfecting trainings' in the nearby cities of Toronto. This was despite previous invitations over the years where they showed little interest in visiting and ministering Toronto. There is also an interesting co-relation between 'rebellious' churches having valuable property and the willingness by the BBs to fly in to conduct these 'perfecting trainings' (Toronto, Montreal, Detroit, etc). But I digress.

I mention these things because it was in relation to the pressure of these things that I had a feeling to contact by PM some on the Bereans site to pray for the situation in Toronto. We wanted the real Body to pray for Toronto not just the few 'with the LSM program.' The Lord, through this feeling and in an unusual way revealed the identity of one person on Bereans that I had written to. This became a source of encouragement in the ensuing days of labour and turmoil.

In March 2007 the church in Toronto had a feeling to conduct its annual business meeting (earlier than had been our practice in recent years) because, in light of LSM's on-going campaign to influence the saints in Toronto, the situation was becoming more and more discouraging to the saints and many were being unnecessarily hurt. At the business meeting the bylaws were changed by a super majority vote, making it more difficult for Anaheim to take over the church. Some pro-LSM saints objected to the proposed change (we are required to give advance notice of each business meeting's agenda) and tried to stop this business meeting using the Canadian courts. Again we asked for prayers for Toronto using the Bereans site and the Toronto pro-LSM group was unsuccessful and their collusion with Anaheim was exposed (this even involved two of the church elders.) The pro-LSM group nominated their own slate of directors and those that wanted a genuine non-LSM church did likewise. A clear mandate was given to those that wanted the genuine church life. The newly elected Board of directors was seated for a 3-year term, eliminating the possibility of LSM overturning the church leadership in the short term. LSM abruptly terminated their 'perfecting trainings' in the vicinity of Toronto.

At the first post-business meeting gathering the situation was presented to the saints. The believers had expressed their views and the view of a sizeable majority was to continue as a genuine local church, rejecting the idea of being wedded to the LSM-program. The pro-LSM group were exhorted to deny the self, take up their cross and go along with the Church in oneness. Most pro-LSM saints stopped meeting with the church after the March 4th business meeting. At the start of April a "Letter of disassociation" was drafted in Anaheim (I have heard, and consider it reasonable, that Dan Towle was the main draftsman) and adopted by the two leaders of the group that disassociated themselves from us.

This is my main point in getting into this much detail. Since the pro-LSM group left we have returned to a sweet, sweet church life where the meetings are enjoyable and we are once again moving on in our journey with the Lord both individually and corporately. In spite of what Bro Benson may declare about there being 'no sanctification outside of the recovery', I would say emphatically that this is just not so. This is a deception to keep the 'faithful' faithful. I am reminded of the insightful gospel message by Bro Nee using Psalm 14:1 about the fool saying there is no God. Bro Nee asked if this fool had checked out the entire earth, under the earth and heavens before making such a statement. I am confident to declare, there is much sanctification and experience of the Lord to be enjoyed beyond the LSM controlled program. The Lord is just waiting for us to come out of her (it).

In conclusion I wish to explain what triggered me to become an ex-lurker and also to reveal my identity. A few weeks ago Thankful wrote something that caused me to consider whether the time had now come for me to consider posting. Due to time constraints I did not act on it further at that time. Recently Bro Norm posted something in which he revealed that there were 1700 views of his thread. I have fellowshipped with the brothers here several times that my feeling is that there are pockets of saints out there throughout North America and the rest of the world that are looking to the Lord for a way out and that the Bereans site is one way of letting them know that there is life after the LSM controlled LC. Norm's post confirmed this fact. The responses to John Myer's E-book A Future and A Hope also indicate much interest.

Secondly, Roger made the astute observation that the ex-LC saints seemed very concerned with exactly what the Lord wants from us, in particular, regarding the church. I have been wrestling with this very question myself over the past months. I have the feeling that a 'dialogue' on this matter may shed some light on what the church in practicality looks like today. I have seen several meaningful dialogues recently on the Bereans site that have cast light on various situations and bible verse. Hopefully a thread to address this matter will be another.

I will shortly post another thread to kickstart this dialogue.

Finally, my schedule is erratic so I am not sure about the frequency of my posts. But let us see.

Steve Pritchard
January, 2008
AndPeter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2008, 06:53 PM   #2
aron
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Natal Transvaal
Posts: 4,805
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by AndPeter View Post
... I have fellowshipped with the brothers here several times that my feeling is that there are pockets of saints out there throughout North America and the rest of the world that are looking to the Lord for a way out and that [this] site is one way of letting them know that there is life after the LSM controlled LC. Norm's post confirmed this fact. The responses to John Myer's E-book A Future and A Hope also indicate much interest.

Secondly, Roger made the astute observation that the ex-LC saints seemed very concerned with exactly what the Lord wants from us, in particular, regarding the church. I have been wrestling with this very question myself over the past months. I have the feeling that a 'dialogue' on this matter may shed some light on what the church in practicality looks like today.
Dear AndPeter,

Every time I see someone put a post on the forum my heart gives a little 'thump-thump' like Elizabeth did when she saw Mary (Yes, I'm taking poetic liscence there; please bear with me! ).

More than any doctrinal 'truth' I could pursue after, these days I find myself more and more just wanting to go on with the saints. What an encouragement it is that some saints also want to go on with me!

Praise the Lord! Thank you for sharing your testimony here, brother!

aron
aron is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:52 PM.


3.8.9