To “The Overseers” and Senior workers in this fellowship,
After almost 8 months since the veil was lifted regarding the corruption in our church, we have not had the substantial changes to give any indication that these crimes will not be repeated in the very near future. Allowing already identified perpetrators back into meeting doesn’t even give me hope that the abuse will pause for a single generation.
While there are many doctrinal issues that I disagree with, for me this has really boiled down to an integrity issue. Any church can have different beliefs and customs that set them apart and can post their beliefs and welcome believers that also have the same beliefs, (meeting in the home, traveling ministers, buns, dresses, etc.) our country was founded on this premise. But there are certain levels of integrity that society expects from certain groups of people. A teacher, police officer, counselor and minister are all positions of leadership from which society expects a higher level of integrity. The problem isn’t that we shouldn’t have trusted our ministry, the problem is that they have been untrustworthy.
What I believed this ministry to be when I professed, has been revealed to be a lie. The ministry intentionally led us to believe that they went out with no money and were celibate and were living lives in accordance with the NT early church. They intentionally hid from the main body of believers, truths about the large trust funds that they have and the layers and generations of sexual abuse and sexual immorality committed by the ministry. These things were hidden with the intent of deceiving the main body of believers into following them, believing them to be ordained of God and walking in His Spirit. Although, not all of the ministry (and I hope most of the ministry) may not be in this category, the top layer of leadership in the ministry has for years hid and covered up systemic abuse within its ranks.
Jesus told the woman at the well that those that worship Him must worship in spirit and in truth. The truth about this ministry has been exposed and I no longer feel like I can be any part of it and still be able to worship in truth. I love the form of the Sunday morning meeting and some of the details about how our fellowship meets, but with the corruption of the ministry being revealed, I am not able to continue in truth even though there are parts that I will miss.
The heartfelt desire to be close to God produces some beautiful and godly people and I have seen examples of Christ-like believers in this fellowship. During the time that I was ignorant, I could whole-heartedly appreciate these attributes, but I am no longer ignorant. The horrendous actions of our ministry, the lack of repentance from the ministry and the unwillingness to make substantial changes is incredibly shocking. It is not acceptable for me and I am not willing to continue in this fellowship.
November 12, 2023