Local Church Discussions  

Go Back   Local Church Discussions > Various Living Stream Ministry Publications

Thread Tools Display Modes
Prev Previous Post   Next Post Next
Old 03-05-2013, 02:10 PM   #1
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 596
Default Church Repents of Mistreating Pastors

I received this news this morning and also a copy of my letter that I sent to Fuller Seminary at this time last year.

Hi Bro Steve,

Here's a news item regarding reconciliation which may encourage you:

March 4, 2013 Christianity Today, "Gleanings"

Church Repents of "Mistreating" Pastors over Past Three Decades

“An Assemblies of God church in Indiana recently invited four of its former pastors to return so that the congregation could repent of gossip and other mistreatment that drove the leaders away. Peter A. Joudry, current pastor of Madison Assembly of God (MAG), hosted a reconciliation weekend where he and his wife washed the feet of the former pastors, whose tenures at the church date back to 1983.

‘We needed this weekend because of the misdeeds and un-Christlike attitudes that were displayed by our congregation toward these men of God and their families,’ Joudry told Assemblies of God News.

He decided to host the reconciliation nine months into his tenure after ‘old, entrenched patterns began to resurface’ leading 40 percent of the church's 260 members to leave, according to the denomination's report.

Although many of the current MAG members are not the same men and women who caused the pastors to leave, congregants at the reconciliation service prayed to ‘apologize for the offenses committed against the leaders,’ including gossip and publicly maligning the pastors.” _Melissa Steffan

It was one year ago in March that I wrote to Fuller Seminary and was on or near their grounds for two weeks hopeful of opportunity to meet with the three Fuller representatives responsible for a paper released by them, which publicly exonerated the Local Churches after they met in sessions with LC brothers over a period of time.

--- On Thu, 3/15/12, steve isitt <> wrote:

2 Corinthians 5

16 So then we, from now on, know no one according to the flesh; even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him so no longer.
17 So then if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old things have passed away; behold, they have become new.
18 But all things are out from God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Christ and has given to us the ministry of reconciliation;
19 Namely, that God in Christ was reconciling the world to Himself, not accounting their offenses to them, and has put in us the word of reconciliation.
20 On behalf of Christ then we are ambassadors, as God entreats you through us; we beseech you on behalf of Christ, Be reconciled to God.
21 Him who did not know sin He made sin on our behalf that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

On Thu, Mar 1, 2012 at 4:55 PM, steve isitt <> wrote:

Dear Dr. Mouw,

I have been in Pasadena to hopefully discuss the topic of the Local Churches together with you before I leave.

Tuesday night I was in attendance with the Los Angeles rabbis in their discussion of the need for fact-finding and negotiation for bringing about a peaceful resolution to the problems in Israel, Palestine, and Middle East nations.

Concerning the Local Churches, many of us associated with them felt that Fuller's 2006 statement was an important step toward understanding and appreciating positive aspects about this group of churches. On the other hand, many realize there were deficiencies in Fuller's fact-finding endeavor. In a somewhat similar way, on Tuesday night the rabbis spoke of the deficiencies in the movie on Israel that greatly disturbed them. To begin with, the Christian producers did not even involve a Jewish person's input in the creation of the film. The rabbis felt the movie, With God on Our Side, was according to a political agenda the Christian producers had for the movie. As a result, the movie's specious content misled people. In Fuller's review, not one former member or leader was interviewed for their input.

Dr. Mouw, I have been writing transparently on Local Church history for ten years on both the positive and negative aspects. I had been a member for 30 years. There are also three prominent former Local Church leaders nearby in Anaheim available to provide invaluable writings and fellowship. Moreover, another former member wrote a book of her experience in the Local Church; I myself have five websites full of documentation that tell the unfiltered story of Local Church history, teachings, and practices not freely given by LC leaders to you or discovered by you in what was actually a very limited exercise in fact-finding by Fuller.

We observed, Dr. Mouw, the disgust Mark Diamond and Jonathan Freund had for the makers of the movie, With God on Our Side. They were visibly bothered by the lack of truth conveyed in the film and its detrimental effect to their cause of bringing forth facts, understanding, and reconciliation regarding Middle Eastern countries and concerns. At least the director of the movie did "issue a ‘correction’ on the film's website and in a press release" acknowledging the erroneous Ben Gurion quote given in the movie, and it was said in response, "we sincerely appreciate Mr. Speakman's willingness to respond to criticism and to publicly issue this correction."

Not so in the Local Churches, who sadly believe that even when they are wrong they are right.

Regarding the Local Churches, there is a need for third party help and mediation with current and former leaders, toward reconciliation among many members in the Body of Christ. www.HidingHistoryintheLordsRecovery.us The most prominent former leader is now failing in health at 81 years old and told me at lunch two months ago that he would like to see again two brothers, Benson Phillips and Ron Kangas, and spoke of the closeness he especially had with Benson.

I wonder, Dr. Mouw, if you could assist me with that need. You are in a unique position to influence the Local Church leaders, more than I am or the former leaders are. We have no influence on them.

Something I read once about debate or argument is that once facts begin to emerge and take their place, the problems that were thought to be there dissipate in a process of eliminating faulty concepts one by one. However, any attempt by me or others to obtain fellowship "characterized by sincere, open, transparent, unrestricted dialog", as Fuller experienced, has been ignored, to put it mildly. It is not the practice of Local Church leadership to meet with concerned church members in such a way for challenging dialog and fellowship that might warrant a "correction" notice and public acknowledgment of being wrong.

My initial letter of appeal to Dan Towle in 2001

2004 appeal to Dan Towle for fellowship

But I still hope for their attention to facts, which are "stubborn things", and for their capitulation to the truth, which should prevail, not men, not agendas. May the Lord's will be done in our brothers, in me, and in you.

I hope to hear from you, Dr. Mouw, and would look forward to meeting you or meeting with you. I missed you on Tuesday night.

Respectfully yours in Christ,

Steve Isitt
Bellevue, WA

Hello Dr. Mouw,

I am following up my email request to substantiate my reason(s) for seeking mediation help from you, rather briefly presented in the attachment, Hear the Cases.

Thank you for any attention you can give on behalf of Christ in a ministry of reconciliation among brothers who have been "called into the fellowship of Jesus Christ our Lord" who is both their portion and ours in the same one Body.

Steve Isitt

A response came from Moux’s secretary that they did not think they should become involved.

While in S. California last March, I also contacted DCP and Ron Kangas, leaving messages for them, and offering to sit down with them to begin our own sessions of fellowship. I did not hear back from these brothers.

Last edited by Igzy; 03-05-2013 at 06:51 PM.
Indiana is offline   Reply With Quote

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 09:46 PM.