New Life Church, Part 2 December 18, 2006

New Life Church, Part 2

Ted Haggard stepped down from New Life Church for sexual misconduct…

And then came Paul Barnes

And now comes another guy from Haggard’s church. Christopher Beard had been heading a youth ministry at New Life Church. That is, until his recent resignation after admitting sexual misconduct.

What is in the communion wine in Colorado churches…?

Even more amazing is the way New Life announced this resignation to its staff, almost as an afterthought. Look at the email they sent (emphasis is mine):

Dear Staff,

Wow, what an amazing week! Wonderland [New Life Church’s Christmas program] was attended by more people this year than ever before. Sunday morning was an incredible display of how God uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things.

In the midst of all the extra effort we’ve been putting forth, I hope each of you were able to attend at least one service this weekend to worship God and be spiritually refreshed. I loved hearing from our head Overseer, Brother Larry Stockstill, on video reinforcing his confidence in us and the on going process.

Pastor Ross reminded our congregation this morning that, after the Overseers permanently removed Ted, we asked them to further assist us to ensure that we as a staff are all rightly ordered as the church moves forward. So far, they have interviewed many of us on the pastoral staff, beginning with the senior leaders. As a result, Christopher Beard has resigned his position as director of Twentyfourseven. It is apparent that he has displayed poor judgment in some leadership decisions, in addition to one instance of sexual misconduct several years ago. That misconduct did not involve Ted. Twentyfourseven will continue this year under the direction of our college pastor, Aaron Stern.

Christopher has served New Life for over nine years, and we are grateful for his faithfulness and dedication. We love him and his family, and we stand with them as they walk through this difficult time.

If you have any questions about the Twentyfourseven leadership transition, please feel free to contact me directly at ext. 103. Please continue to pray as we seek God’s will in this vital season of our church.

Excited about our future,

Pastor Lance Coles

I’m not sure what Beard did, but the misconduct happened years ago and did not involve a minor. It involved an unmarried adult (guy or girl, they don’t say…) and this was before Beard was married. What could this guy possibly do that’s immoral when both parties are of legal age and single?

So much for forgiveness.

At what point do these church leaders take responsibility for their own actions? Why does it take a Board of Overseers for Beard to admit his mistakes? Why did Haggard wait for Mike Jones to reveal the truth to the press before admitting any wrongdoing? For that matter, why do the Catholic priests wait until they are accused of molestation before they try to make amends?

When will these churches admit they are fostering hypocrites?

When will the people that attend the churches in question admit their leaders have been lying to them?

What’s most upsetting is that men like Haggard, Beard, and Barnes decide to work in churches, acting as moral leaders and role models. In the back of their minds, they know they’ve acted immoral enough to warrant stepping down from the church. And yet, they still take on the positions while condemning others who do the same thing.

If the church is teaching the value of forgiveness, then they shouldn’t be letting these people go. Either support them, or do your research before hiring them in the first place.

[tags]Ted Haggard, New Life Church, Paul Barnes, Christopher Beard, Larry Stockstill, atheist, Christian, atheism, Ross Parsley, Twentyfourseven, Aaron Stern, Lance Coles, Mike Jones[/tags]

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