Why We Left Christian Fellowship Ministries (continued)
by Al & Dee Mac
Al - May 24, 2001 - How lame....- I finally read the transcript of the whiney-butt-"you-forced-our-hand" meeting on the 13th. Couldn't you guys come up with anything better than "well, there's no way to know for sure what's true and what's not" and "we couldn't tell because of our ethics?" People saw right through you - we've talked to one after another after another that wondered, "well, what else have they lied about?" I see a large number of people have voted with their feet.
I'm glad to know that a third-rate website like this one was influential enough to "force your hand." I think things have developed so quickly because you had it coming - you've been building this house of cards for a long time and it had to start to fall sometime. Anyone could have come along and flicked a card away - I'm amazed it took this long.
Pete said, "Let us consider some points as we pray, as God directs us as we seek to go forward - were you lied to? Did I and other church leaders told you that Pastor Davis was innocent? In good conscience, I can tell you that the answer is no." Perhaps my recollections of his past statements are incorrect, but I heard Ed say many times since '92 that Lloyd was innocent. Perhaps someone can back me up on that. I know Ed has known about it all along: he told me personally that advances were made on him early on, and, according to the transcripts, the Sorensens confronted him in the 80's (I think) about Lloyd's antics. I suppose I can only conceive of two possibilities: (1) you knew, and you're lying, or (2) you never knew, which would make you colossally naive. Either way, I don't think you're fit to lead anybody.
So what happens now? What if you were officers in a (respectable) corporation, and you admitted that you knew that the CEO was embezzling for years, but decided not to tell anyone? You'd be tossed out on the street. Of course, that can't happen in CFCMI because of the way you structured your by-laws. Good planning there. So, you can just go back to business as usual:
"Brother, how dare you ask those kinds of questions! The allotted week of Q & A has already expired!"
Al - May 28, 2001 - So what happens now?- Pete, Ed, and Inc. have made some vague "admissions," and they want to "move on." So what do we all do now? Dee and I will continue on as we've been doing - posting information as we get it. There's still lots of avenues we haven't explored yet.
But what will CFCMI do? Let's see, lots of families have gone their way and taken their money with them. People in prominent positions have bailed out. However, the leadership probably isn't worried - after all, they've still got the single men, the real backbone of the ministry. The single men provide most of the money and free manpower anyway. No worries, right? All those faithful guys won't be going anywhere, because the leadership has such tight control on their lives and can limit the amount of "uncomfortable" information they're exposed to. You'll just have to work the base more often to bring in new single guys.
But what if some of the single guys started to go? Guys, if there's ever been a time when you wanted to make a statement, it's now. Some of you have done things in the past to make a statement, or perhaps you just tried to have a little bit of a life, and you got royally punished for it. Maybe you were abused by Lloyd, and you were told to stay in your place when you asked about it. Maybe you're just tired of being 30+ years old and having to share an apartment with two or three other guys while the pastor lives in a $200,000 mansion (complete with rock garden) in Ghent - and you're paying for it.
I know many of you have tremendous issues with aspects of the leadership, issues that you don't dare bring up because you know what the response would be: you know that "X" is wrong, but you'll get rebuked just for bringing it up. I urge you to bring those issues up - if you want to stay and make a change for the good, then great, but now is the time to push for change. CFCMI can't survive without you, and the leaders know that. You have a lot of power, and they're afraid you'll find out. It's not just that you'll take your paycheck and free labor away, it's that others will think to themselves things like, "Wow - brother 'X' was really dedicated and had a good head on his shoulders. Why did he leave? -- he must have had a good reason..."
Now, before anyone gets all worked up about me "inciting sedition," just ask yourself if you really believe that God established, sustains and protects CFCMI. If He did and does, then you've got no worries - just keep your peace, bide your time and He'll crush us like a little bug and you'll have the victory in the end without lifting a finger. Heck, we're probably helping you out by cleaning out the dead weight, right?
Al - May 28, 2001 - Just a question...- Does anyone know if the leadership has done anything to prevent the single guys from having internet access in their apartments? It just strikes me as a "quick fix" to prevent them from sneaking a peek at this site, and as something that would be right in line with CFCMI behavior.
Al - July 8, 2001 - Don't forget...- It seems that, as time moves along, someone will talk about "letting God handle things" every couple of months or so. The basic statement is the same, although it's changed since I first heard it. It used to go something like this: "Well, if those things are true, then God will just remove the leaders; it's not my place to worry about it, and you're wrong for bringing it up at all." Now it's this sort of thing: "Well, now that this is out in the open, you need to give it a rest so we can move forward and let God sort it all out." God will miraculously clean the insides of the sepulchre with no human action or initiative at all. Riiiiiight.
Let me point out that no issues of any sort would be out in the open if it weren't for people (real, living, fallible, non-pastoral people) stepping forward and saying something. Whether we were or were not motivated by God doesn't matter - if we had done nothing, then nothing would have changed. There would have been no admissions of any kind - after all, the leaders said themselves that their hand had been "forced."
Why do any of you expect them to act any differently when it comes to ongoing reform of any kind? They were willing to cover things up for so long; do you think they've had a sudden attack of conscience and are suddenly interested in making things right? If you're advocating staying in CFCMI to make things better, are you saying it because you think you can step up and make a difference, or because you don't want to rock the boat?