Part 1-Jordan Root Is a Confessed Internet Child Sex Abuser: Should The Village Church Trust Him?

The sexual abuse and exploitation of children is one of the most vicious crimes conceivable, a violation of mankind's most basic duty to protect the innocent. -James T. Walsh link

http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=66150&picture=woman
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I am hoping to fill in some background so that people will better understand the seriousness of Jordan Root's support and use of internet child sex abuse. I personally believe that he is at high risk for offending and am concerned that he has already offended. You will see that he is constantly putting himself into situations in which he is around at risk, vulnerable children while at the same time confessing, yet not confessing. 

Today, a number of bloggers received the PDF that was sent to 6,000 covenant™ members of TVC. It is purportedly the *real* story of the Roots. However, just remember that TVC is currently scrubbing videos from the internet as discussed in our last post. The question to ask is this. Who do you trust and why do you trust them?

Remember, we are all positionally holy but we are all functional sinners. Pastors and elders sin as well. However, many pastors and elders want to appear godly and authoritative- you know, *good* Christians but they are no different than the rest of us. TWW has documented problem after problem with pastors and leaders. 

I will discuss the TVC mailing on another post. For now, I am hoping this post will add some much needed information. I have spoken with Karen on a number of occasions and have tried to construct a chronology of events and concerns. She is one smart woman. I only wish I had been as smart when I was her age. I believe what she has to say.

I am going to be a bit matter of fact as I discuss Jordan's history as told to me by Karen. We also have some historical documentation thanks to our internet sleuth, Christian Janeway. I am going to ask everyone who reads this to ponder the details of Jordan's life and ask yourselves if this is a man who should be trusted and believed. 

Prior to college

Jordan confessed to Karen that he repeatedly sexually abused 2 younger children when he was between the ages of 6 and 10 years old. He also spent time babysitting and working in a daycare in Albany NY. This is documented at Watchkeep: She Speaks

Cedarville University

Jordan  graduated from Cedarville with a degree in psychology. His passion was for kids and human trafficking. Here is a link from the Cedarville student newspaper which featured Jordan Root in an article. Ministry Reaches Modern Outcasts, written by Melanie Frageorgia, has this to say about Jordan.

Pimps? Prostitutes? Most Christians want nothing to do with them. But for junior Jordan Root these “untouchables of our time” are his calling.

Root started the Broken Chains organization “to create a passion for raising awareness of and taking  action against child sex trafficking,” according to its official newsletter. The organization was born at the close of the 2005 spring semester, when Root decided to get together with like-minded friends to discuss what could be done about the sex trade. 

…Root said that the long term goal of Broken Chains is to help sponsor a safe house for children rescued out of brothels. He hopes the organization will someday send mission teams to the safe house, and that Broken Chains might even become a non-profit organization with a wider reach than Cedarville University. 

…Broken Chains recently held a coin drive, and plans to raise more funds for the safe house by selling t-shirts printed with “Save the Pimps.” 

…Root first felt the call to missions in eighth grade on a trip to Costa Rica, but it was not until his freshman year of college that he learned about sex trafficking. He read an article on the New York Times’ website about children- involved in the sex trade in Mexico and the United States. Root was devastated.

“It was the first time I’d ever been exposed to it,” he said, “God just really gripped my heart.” His life’s goal became to “be a counselor/ caretaker of children rescued from the sex trade and to help rescue children from the sex trade.” Broken Chains was born out of his struggle to find something he could do while still in school.

Since starting the organization, Root has changed his major from education to applied psychology, with an emphasis on family-child studies to better enable him to counsel hurting children. ​

…Root is also currently in- involved in the Jeremiah Project- , a “street witnessing” ministry mainly targeting prostitutes. Students in this ministry travel to the inner city on Friday nights and simply talk to whoever they meet, whether prostitutes, pimps, homeless people, or people coming out of bars and clubs. 

… Root is also a leader for Cedarkids, a ministry that serves local children, and he is thinking of starting a ministry for the children of prostitutes. 

From Watchkeep She Speaks, there is documentation on his activities involving children. Note the unpaid babysitting gigs.

 … Daycare in Cedarville, OH (Period of time between 2004 and 2007) 

…substantial amount of unpaid babysitting over these years Cedarville, OH, 

Dallas Theological Seminary/Dallas

 Now, take a look his activities involving children during this period of time.

  •       Summer Camp at First Baptist Dallas, Dallas, TX (May-August 2008)
  •       Dolfin Swim School, Dallas, TX (September 2008-July 2010)
  •       In Class Learning Differences Aid, Dallas, TX (September-December 2010)
  • ​      Practicum Counselor at Dallas Life, Dallas, TX (worked with families and children; January-August 2011)
  •        Private Children's Swim Instructor, Dallas, TX (June-September 2011)
  •        Mental Health Technician at Timberlawn Mental Health Services, Dallas, TX (November 2011-March 2012)
  •       Therapist on the Child and Adolescent Unit at Timberlawn Mental Health Services, Dallas, TX (March 2012-May 2014)
  •       A substantial amount of paid babysitting over these years in Albany, NY, Cedarville, OH, and Dallas, TX

Unpaid:

  •        Informal Children's Ministry to Refugee Children in Vickery Meadows, Dallas, TX (2008-2011)
  •        Lived in Santa Fe Trails Apartment Complex, Dallas, TX; spent a lot of time alone with children (2008-2012)
  •        Volunteered in children’s and youth ministries at various churches in Dallas, TX 
  •        A substantial amount of unpaid babysitting over these years in  Dallas, TX 
  •        He enrolls in DTS with the intent to get a counseling degree with a specialty in children.

Manipulation of thought observed in hindsight

Karen makes an important observation about his work with children. He was confronted about spending time alone with children and, on one occasion, was told by an adult that she was uncomfortable with the way he was sitting with and touching a child. He acted shocked and remorseful that his behavior would come off that way. He often would speak out against stereotyping by gender. He believed that people were biased against men spending time with children.

She said that people thought he was unusual in the nicest of ways because he seemed so concerned about children. The children and parents put him on a pedestal or as Karen said "he was like Jesus to them." He was well versed in child safety and emphasized this with the adults and children with whom he worked. He even warned people about the prevalence of child sexual abuse, particularly the grooming process.

Jordan lived alone

He seemed to want to leave his schedule *open* so that he was flexible and had a lot fo free time to himself. He had arranged to live alone for about 2-3 years in Vickery Meadows where he had consistent access to the children of refugees. He apparently enjoyed entertaining children alone in his apartment during this time period. He also kept pictures of many of the individual children that he had worked with in a box. 

Questions you should ask

Here is where astute people should start asking questions. This is unusual behavior if all he was interested in was internet child sex abuse sites.

  • Why all of the push to be alone with children?
  • And, in hindsight, knowing that he was sexually stimulated by little children (starting at 4 years old to prepubescent), why would he put himself in a situation in which to be alone with them? 
  • Wouldn't he want time off so he could go do his evil deeds on the internet?
  • Don't you think we could possibly be dealing with a molester in this situation?
  • ​Would you let your little girl spend the day with him? 

Jordan meets Karen 

He meets Karen in 2009 and they began to date in the spring of 2011. Karen was a hard worker who held a number of jobs to support herself. Although both were seminary students, they met at the Dolfin Swim School where they both worked. They were engaged in October 2011. Jordan had graduated with his counseling degree but was quite slow to find a job. They were married in April 2012.

Karen had served as a summer missionary in Ethiopia and wanted to become a full time missionary. So did Jordan. Jordan did not want to go to Ethiopia and instead the couple decided to find an area that they both would like to serve. They agreed to minister to an unreached people group. 

The beginning of the fraud or what Karen calls "pseudoconfession"

Prior to the marriage, Jordan *confessed* (there is a reason I put this in asterisks as you will see) to Karen that he had a struggle with pornography. Karen quizzed him in depth and his answers confirmed that it was an issue with adult pornography of various kinds. For years, he claimed that night became a turning point and repeatedly told Karen and others that he had not used pornography throughout the rest of their engagement and marriage. Karen believed his confession, including the reassurance that it was in the past.

Folks, think about it. He covered himself with a plausible lesser sin which, of course, had been overcome. Think manipulation. Remember, through this whole process, he was lying and had been lying for a very long time. What was true then and what is true now? Perhaps we should see what we do know. He loved being around little kids and loved to be alone with them. That is something to focus on. Why?

The Village Church/Covenant

They knew they had to work to pay off their student loans before going on the mission field which would take a few years. They decided to join TVC and were asked to sign the membership covenant. Karen remembers this part of the covenant. (Just to save some folks some time, we have downloaded the whole thing so taking it off the website will be in vain.)

I will seek to preserve the gift of marriage and agree to walk through the steps of marriage reconciliation at The Village Church before pursuing divorce from my spouse (Matthew 19:1-12; Mark 10:1-12; Luke 16:18; 1 Corinthians 7:10-11; for the role of the church in the process of divorce, see Paul’s concern for the resolution of legal matters within the assembly of the church in 1 Corinthians 6).

She said to me:

I was so naive. I knew I had married for life. I was going to be a missionary with my husband. I would never pursue a divorce. How could I ever imagine something of this magnitude?

I will be writing a separate post on the TVC Membership Covenant later in the week. She is right. How could someone imagine someone so deceptive would invade her life and change it forever? And how could she envisage how badly the church she loved would treat her? 

The Mission Field and Pseudoconfession

At last, their support was raised and they entered the mission field with SIM. TVC supplied less than 10% of their budget although several other TVC folks supported them individually. They arrived ready to serve in August 2014. They served in different capacities, and Karen was often gone from their living quarters. Karen began to sense things were not right, but she couldn't put her finger on it. 

On Thanksgiving evening, she caught Jordan in an unassociated lie. But she knew there was more and she began to push him to disclose what was going on. He confessed to masturbation which was quite surprising since he had often spoken out against it and declared his own high standards for sexual purity. After being pressed further, he finally confessed to accessing nude pictures of adults.

Karen was dissatisfied and asked him many times over the next 3 weeks if he was being honest. He absolutely denied that there was anything else. Karen was extremely conflicted because she sensed that things were not right but he was repentant, right? 

The Reveal: Was it another incomplete confession?

And then, the shoe dropped. On December 16, as Karen continued to probe, she asked a particular question, and Jordan's reaction revealed that more was going on. She said a calm came over her and she was able to talk with him without being hysterical or angry. He confessed that he had been viewing internet child sex abuse for about 10 years. He then went into graphic detail of the sort of dark and gruesome stuff he remembered watching. Karen says it is hard for her to even describe what he told her. This is when he also admitted to molesting two younger children when he was between the ages of 6 and 10.

Karen went into the bedroom and called her SIM advisor who immediately began to arrange for Jordan's flight back to the United States. Karen would follow 4 weeks later. Oddly, when she came out of the bedroom, Jordan was sleeping soundly, apparently unconcerned.

Karen speaks highly of SIM's response and her fellow missionaries

Karen was impressed at how seriously SIM took this situation. They were also kind to her, offering counsel and support. She was also complimentary of the mission staff with whom she served. To this day, she remains supportive of them and does not want their location disclosed.

Karen returned to the United States broken and hurting. Her life was turned upside down. Little did she know that her trial had not yet ended. We will take up the rest of the story tomorrow.

The Questions

  • Do you believe Jordan's confession?
  • The first thing you should ask is "Which confession?" since the first two confessions left out vital information.
  • So why should you believe the final confession?
  • What details did he leave out?
  • Why do you think Jordan liked to hang around little kids and have them in his apartment when he was alone?
  • Do you trust him when he claims nothing happened?
  • Does his track record suggest that you should trust him?

My opinion

I believe that Jordan is a pathological liar who has lied for many years in order to cover his pedophile tendencies and internet child sex abuse. Did he molest his two younger children when he was a child or is this just the prelude to a bigger confession? It is obvious that the story gets worse and worse the more he confesses. I believe that there is more to come, given his history.

Tomorrow we will discuss how TVC has handled Jordan's problems. 

To Karen,

I am so sorry for the pain that you have experienced at the hands of your former husband and others. You are a hero. I dedicate this song to you.

Comments

Part 1-Jordan Root Is a Confessed Internet Child Sex Abuser: Should The Village Church Trust Him? — 478 Comments

  1. Good job, Dee. You’re also a hero. You held her hand and made sure her voice was heard.

    Thank you for pointing out the pervasiveness and all-encompassing nature of these lies.

  2. A note to Karen Hinkley,
    If you ever have a sad and lonely day and doubt that you did the right thing, I am writing to remind you that you did.
    I went through a similar experience 22 yrs ago and had a mental break down as a result. The reason I had the mental break down was primarily because when I looked for anyone to help, or anyone that had been through this before I found no one. Because of your courage and steadfastness to follow the Lord publicly through this horrible ordeal many women will be able to make it through the same things less damaged. I believe that if I had been able to read about someone else getting out of the authoritarian marriage and church system it would have helped me be able to endure the public and private abuse heaped on me for not submitting and continuing to endure an abusive marriage to someone addicted to porn. (that the church made out to be totally repentant and Godly) The isolation and feeling like I was the only one was so hard to bear. I had attended a similar church for so long that I was convinced I had to stay or I would be sinning against Jesus. Thankfully He showed me the truth. He is using you to show thousands of other women the truth.
    Even if husbands truly repent and never sin that way again, Jesus said fornication is a valid reason we can divorce over. Jesus didn’t say “only if the church aproves the decision to leave”. Fornication with a child is the most horrible fornication there is.
    Also if even one child that was hurt in this manner by your ex husband reads or hears about how you stood up for them it will impact their lives forever. What you did says to all abused children that Jesus doesn’t condone their abuse and that Jesus has people down here that will stand up for them even if it costs them everything. Just like He did for them on the cross.
    Thank you and God bless you and keep you in Christ Jesus our Lord.
    Sandy Cox

  3. Its disturbing. I am working on an Open Letter to Matt Younger at my blog. In reading and re-reading Matt’s letters to Karen it strikes me that there is no room for compromise. Life is hard, people get ill, people lose jobs, there are a million and one things that could trigger problems with membership covenants. I am viewing them as a modern day form of slavery.

  4. OK. This is from the e-mail sent out by TVC over the weekend.

    Notification to Authorities of Sin and Struggles

    Local police were notified about Jordan’s actions soon after we became aware and the local police later transferred the case to the FBI. The FBI has recently concluded their investigation, including a forensic analysis of Jordan’s laptop computer and mobile phones The investigation resulted in no charges being filed against Jordan.

    There is something very wrong here. If Jordan was looking at child pr0n on his computer, there should have been traces, unless he took a sledgehammer to the hard drive and replaced it with another one. Or something. I am not liking this one bit. I have to wonder if there was some undue influence here. Certainly, I do believe that the “no charges being filed against Jordan” part may have weighed unduly in the minds of the TVC powers that be (emphasis on “powers”) in trying to coerce Karen back into her marriage.

    I wonder if it’s possible to get a copy of the police report? Freedom of Information Act request to the FBI, anyone?

    What scares me is the very real possibility there are more victims of Jordan Root’s pedophilia, in addition to the children he viewed on the computer and the two children he molested when young. I think TVC is being derelict here in their failure to understand the reality of the situation.

  5. @ mirele:
    There are some serious problems with that email. Some of it is untrue according to Karen. She is now pondering her options.

    TVC is now on my list as an abusive church.

  6. Oddly, when she came out of the bedroom, Jordan was sleeping soundly, apparently unconcerned.

    I personally have observed 2 pedophiles and their behavior and this is exactly the kind of thing that I saw that unnerved me. It’s creepy. It’s like they are on another planet, self-absorbed, without a care in the world for anyone around them.

  7. Suspected sexual predators can also be reported to I.C.E. (U.S. Immigration Customs & Enforcement, a department of the U.S. Homeland Security).
    http://www.ice.gov/predator

    That includes for overseas sex crimes against children committed by U.S. citizens, which is unlawful for U.S. citizens to do and they can be prosecuted in the U.S. for it.

  8. @ Julie Anne:

    Julie Anne Smith…you know what that behavior also shows. He doesn’t feel guilty about the child porn. I would think that any rational and sound person who broke the law and committed a felony like that would fear the day that they were turned into law enforcement. Jordan’s behavior shows that he didn’t think he did anything wrong.

  9. If he is telling the truth about the timeline of his child porn viewing (which given everything else is questionable that he’s being fully honest), it started around the time or right before he began the sex trafficking ministry at Cedarville.

  10. There is no way on earth he didn’t molest someone in the past ten years. It’s like someone defending Michael Jackson’s actions as not abusive. Yeah right! Karen, hang in there. There are lots of Christian’s who believe you. Stay strong my friend and as a mother of two young boys thank you for telling this.

  11. 2 comments

    1) that he didnt actively search and obtain a job after getting his degree suggests that he didnt want to be under the oversight or authority of anyone.

    2) i understand Karens not wanting to disclose the location of the mission work but i am hoping that SIM does a check with the local children at that mission area. i have been posting Jordans work history on my fb international page and have had appreciative remarks from friends overseas. Christians in other countries are not happy when the u.s. churches dont disclose an abuser or viewer of child porn that worked in their countries, it is too similar to TVC saying ‘we have this under control, no need to worry about kids anywhere else.’ i noticed TVC was quick to point out (for legal reasons i am sure) that they never had Jordan as paid staff around their kids.

  12. Julie Anne, was there something in particular about these two people that could help identify signs of someone who may be engaging in this sort of behavior?
    Julie Anne wrote:

    Oddly, when she came out of the bedroom, Jordan was sleeping soundly, apparently unconcerned.
    I personally have observed 2 pedophiles and their behavior and this is exactly the kind of thing that I saw that unnerved me. It’s creepy. It’s like they are on another planet, self-absorbed, without a care in the world for anyone around them.

  13. Some of my observations of TVC email to members~

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/266531116/The-Village-Church-email-on-5-23-15-to-covenant-members-about-Karen-Hinkley-and-Jordan-Root

    “In December, Jordan confessed that he had viewed online pornography involving children.
    The FBI has recently concluded their investigation, including a forensic analasis of Jordan’s laptop computer and mobile phones The investigation resulted in no charges being filed against Jordan.”
    My impression is that Jordan used a different computer, or that the FBI may be waiting to charge him until after they follow up on any links he might have shared with anyone at TVC or other friends of his, which generally takes many months to do. Or that TVC is being hasty and actually saying, ‘really, no charges have been filed as of our writing this lovely email so she is lying.’ If Jordan confessed to Matt Chandler that he viewed online child porn then Matt Chandler should have been able to have him charged i think, just by his confession if no evidence is found. TVC probably has significant amnesia about any confession now though.

    “Karen.s decision to pursue immediate annulment, to decline any attempt of reconciliation, to disregard her Membership Covenant and pastoral counsel, and to break fellowship with the body has led her into formal church discipline”
    The emails shared yesterday show that Karen did attempt to discuss this with tvc, but they wouldnt have any of it if it wasnt on their terms only. their terms were that she seek reconcilliation with Jordan and not talk publicly about this at all. So Karen is under formal church discipline for listening to Jesus instead of TVC.

    “In similar counsel from our elders, SIM has given Karen a gracious six month leave to pursue healing but also required that she be reconciled to The Village Church before the would consider sending her back to the mission field.”
    My impression or translation of that is: our elders told SIM not to hire her back cause she wont submit to our authority and SIM bought into it or has to have her under another church before they send again, if thats a requirement of theirs.


    We also strongly  urge that you would keep all details of this situation within our church bod, specificall our Covenant Membership. Please do not forward or share this with anyone who is not a Covenant Member. If you are contacted by the media, we encourage you to refer back to the official public statement of The Village.”
    translated this means:
    John 3:19-20 (KJV)
    19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
    20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.
    John 3:20-21 (KJV)
    20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.
    21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.

  14. Here’s my take. There is no chance that Root refrained from molesting children. People who are appalled by their sexual desire for children – and there are some – avoid them. They do not repeatedly seek out opportunities to be around them, let alone spend time with them without others present.

    No one wants to look at images of the sexual abuse of children unless they are pedophiles. This material has been known to make otherwise stoic men and women in law enforcement literally vomit. Root is not just a man who looks at pornography. He is a pedophile who enjoys looking at children being criminally assaulted.

    Pedophilia is not fixable in adults. I assume it would be possible to repent and refrain from further criminal acts with assistance from the Holy Spirit and people closely supervising the person, but even so, the desire does not go away.

    Root’s marriage to Karen was fraudulent. He did not desire her as a wife, he wanted her as a cover for his illegal activities. Karen was right to seek an annulment. Any pastor who thinks the ‘marriage’ can be saved is either a cruel control freak or a fool. Even if Root is genuinely repentant, he is unable to fulfill the role of husband. Forgive my bluntness, but maybe one of these idiot pastors should imagine a daughter being intimate with a husband who is fantasizing that she is a child and ask himself if that is what he would want for her.

    The very idea that Root is not under church discipline but his innocent wife is is truly appalling. They explain that he is repentant so there is no need but they have no idea whether that is true or not. They do not have a clue! The odds are that he is a manipulative predator. Remember, he organized his life around access to children and viewed those horrible images while supposedly being a committed Christian.

    The FBI is very good at recovering deleted files. We already know he was viewing child sexual abuse online. If the FBI can find no evidence of that, then he returned home with a different laptop.

  15. @ Amy Smith:
    Thank you for posting the email.

    This is what doubling down looks like. The email warrants an in-line response. It is that ridiculous. The FAQ questions are actually quite good. The responses not so much.

    The Village needs to start reading the Bible and stop making their Membership Covenant override the New Covenant.

  16. Marsha wrote:

    They explain that he is repentant so there is no need but they have no idea whether that is true or not.

    Since they use different words to mean different things all the time, i believe their definition of repentant is: submitted to our authority, doing what we say. Pedos do that so they can stay in the church, some are actually repentant but most often pedos are very good at fake repentance. Boz at G.R.A.C.E. wrote a great article about that.

  17. dee wrote:

    There are some serious problems with that email. Some of it is untrue according to Karen. She is now pondering her options.
    TVC is now on my list as an abusive church.

    Well, this is not legal advice. Let me be clear on that score. However, I could see the email as being 1) defamatory 2) an invasion of privacy and 3) intentional infliction of emotional distress. All three of these are torts. It’s apparent to me that TVC intended the letter to paint Karen as a rebellious woman (defamation), continued to discuss her situation even though she is no longer a member (invasion of privacy) and again, in my opinion, done with the intent of causing emotional distress (intentional infliction of emotional distress).

    I was concerned that The Village Church’s “membership covenant” may have been more in the form of a contract, but after review, it appears to be missing some basic elements of a contract, including consideration and offer and acceptance. I cannot recommend Wade Burleson’s post on the situation enough because he tells TVC what exactly to do to rectify this situation:

    http://www.wadeburleson.org/2015/05/it-takes-village-covenant-to-raise.html

    Look, even the Mormon church knows not to badmouth people who have resigned their memberships. In its hubris, TVC has overstepped the bounds of decency in trying to keep control of a woman who no longer wants to be a member of their little club. Church membership is voluntary in this country. This is not a case of “You can check out anytime / But you can never leave”. TVC should have realized this a long time ago!

  18. Marsha wrote:

    No one wants to look at images of the sexual abuse of children unless they are pedophiles. This material has been known to make otherwise stoic men and women in law enforcement literally vomit. Root is not just a man who looks at pornography. He is a pedophile who enjoys looking at children being criminally assaulted.

    Thank you for putting into words what I could not. The desire to see children in a sexual manner is not something I understand. How does it happen that an adult would view a child as a sexual object and an object of gratification?

  19. Gram3 wrote:

    The Village needs to start reading the Bible and stop making their Membership Covenant override the New Covenant.

    That’s the key. There’s really no point in even trying to show them that their “Covenant” isn’t “Biblical”. They’re right and they know it. End of story.

  20. sam wrote:

    My impression is that Jordan used a different computer,

    Why does the church think he has one computer? Better yet, why do they think he hasn’t purchased one since he returned?sam wrote:

    In similar counsel from our elders, SIM has given Karen a gracious six month leave to pursue healing but also required that she be reconciled to The Village Church before the would consider sending her back to the mission field.”

    Isn’t that interesting. I happen to know that Karen is pursuing something far different than missionary work.

    Oh yeah, and why aren’t they talking about their meeting with Karen? They know she had a meeting with them.

  21. Standing with you, Karen. Your wisdom in rightly handling this devastation is truly incredible. May the truth be widely known and may that truth set many others free from the chains that hold them to their own abusers. Thank you for your steadfast courage.

  22. So, if I were to call up TVC tomorrow, who should I try to speak to? I do want these guys to know that I’m not a “narcissistic zero” who isn’t afraid to sign her name. I want them to know that a woman in Arizona thinks their actions towards a former member are disgusting.

  23. Marsha wrote:

    Root’s marriage to Karen was fraudulent. He did not desire her as a wife, he wanted her as a cover for his illegal activities. Karen was right to seek an annulment. Any pastor who thinks the ‘marriage’ can be saved is either a cruel control freak or a fool.

    Nuts, they are all nuts. Some crazy village person was telling us on twitter that the book of Hosea should serve as a template. Can you imagine? I think there is some serious magic mushroom eating going on at TVC.

  24. It is very disappointing that SIM is holding Karen to the membership covenant as well as their rather proprietary discipline process. Very disappointing that an innocent party would be denied further ministry because of The Village elders’ own self-serving actions. SIM missionaries need to be on notice that they are bound to the caprice of their home church’s leadership. Not exactly a confidence builder for missionaries, ISTM.

  25. @ mirele:
    I can assure you that Karen is not pleased about the recent email. And she is one smart woman. TVC should begin to sweat a bit.

  26. Karen, you are a lovely lady.

    I am so sorry your former church’s leaders have been so terrible to you. They aren’t fit to serve anywhere. Just “consider the source”.

    May you have healing and a beautiful life, down the road, with a safe man.

  27. mirele wrote:

    It’s apparent to me that TVC intended the letter to paint Karen as a rebellious woman (defamation), continued to discuss her situation even though she is no longer a member (invasion of privacy) and again, in my opinion, done with the intent of causing emotional distress (intentional infliction of emotional distress).

    i agree, and yesterdays emails that were posted here included one of her formally asking them to stop talking about her to members or others

  28. dee wrote:

    Some crazy village person was telling us on twitter that the book of Hosea should serve as a template. Can you imagine?

    Actually, yes I can. They totally miss the point of Hosea, IMO. But then, they often confuse Christ and males in general. So why not confuse YHWH with husbands, too. Or, actually wives, in this case. I don’t recall the wife being the faithful one, nor do I recall the wife being the one who is commanded to take her unfaithful spouse back.

    It’s not in the Bible, but it sounds Bibley and that’s close enough for horse-somethingorother. I think I want to trademark that phrase.

  29. Tree wrote:

    Standing with you, Karen. Your wisdom in rightly handling this devastation is truly incredible. May the truth be widely known and may that truth set many others free from the chains that hold them to their own abusers. Thank you for your steadfast courage.

    Me too!

  30. dee wrote:

    @ mirele:
    Ask for Richard Brindley and Matt Younger and remind them that Karen met with them after she returned.

    I suppose if you added their ages you might get within range of something like elder.

  31. Isn’t bible twisting grand folks? My husband and I are considering attending a new church. Guess what kind of questions I will be asking?

  32. About the computer without evidence. Most countries have internet cafes or whatever they’re called now. So the clean computer is not necessarily surprising. If I were engaging in those tastes, I think I would look for a way to access the garbage without leaving traces on my computer. If it was a ministry computer, then it is even more likely that he would not have used it for porn.

  33. Great work Dee! And also to Xian Janeway on the research! My heart goes out to Karen. TVC has acted abysmally toward her, compounding the pain of what she has suffered. Jordan’s attempts to cover his tracks and his history around kids is disturbing.

    If the FBI found no traces of abusive images on his computer and phone, he likely owned or had access to another device that he never disclosed. And if he never confessed to how he accessed the images then it is hard to believe he’s made a full confession. If so, then TVC’s entire premise for their dealing with him is false.

  34. It is only speculation at this point that there was no evidence of criminal activity on Jordan’s computer. However, should the speculation prove true, one possibility is that Jordan confessed to something he wasn’t doing in order to divert suspicion from a worse thing he actually was doing. I’m only raising the possibility, not making an accusation.

    As to the email to TVC’s membership, all I can (politely) get out at this point is that the more I read the more my blood boiled. The good news is that they are now on the record in a very public and undeniably incriminating way.

  35. This is another case where other local pastors should call TVC and register their disapproval. Yeah, I know, it isn’t going to happen, but I keep wishing.

  36. They say she has to go through their marriage reconciliation process. Fraud is only a one-syllable word, so I don’t think they are stuck understanding the picture. Are they saying they would have allowed her to divorce/annul? If so, then why the high drama an nastygram about it. Just do it, already. Alternatively, if they would not have granted the divorce, then she was smart to back off from their “overprotection an loving care.”

    Memo to Village Church elders: Karen is an adult. She can handle things as she sees fit. MYOB.

  37. XianAtty wrote:

    And if he never confessed to how he accessed the images then it is hard to believe he’s made a full confession. If so, then TVC’s entire premise for their dealing with him is false.

    Exactly, though I won’t hold my breath for them to acknowledge that.

  38. to be a SIM missionary you have to have a church send you, SIM doesnt send people without a church over them.

    http://www.simeast.com/index.php/en/go-serve/steps-for-service
    “Step 1: Talk to your church leadership and members of your church. Ask them to pray with you and advise you about participation. Their encouragement, evaluation, and support in prayer and finances will be vital to your mission experience. But more than that, it’s the church which sends you, with agencies like SIM working in partnership with them.”

    I want to be clear that what the TVC implied was that SIM considers Karen Hinkley unworthy to serve, but that is not what SIM has ever said. Here is what SIM said in their email regarding the termination of Jordan Root:

    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1

    Dated
    February 25, 2015
    “…terminated Jordan Root’s membership with SIM USA.”
    “Karen continues in active status with SIM”
    sincerely,
    Eric E. Ernst
    Director of Personnel

  39. Robin wrote:

    Isn’t bible twisting grand folks? My husband and I are considering attending a new church. Guess what kind of questions I will be asking?

    hehe i think i am too old to even try a church again! it would be months of trying to see if they even knew Jesus or just used His name to get power or prestige or whatever

  40. I have only read the first few pages of The Email, but I thought this line was amusingly disingenuous: that TVC notified the authorities of sin and struggles. Well. Of course they did. Doesn’t everyone go to the police when they learn that a sin has been committed? And the police, upon investigation of the sin, notifies the FBI so they can look more deeply into the committed sin. So. There you go. No crime has been committed, only a paltry sin or two, and a crocodile tear confession has fixed it. The FBI said so. (It’s late and I may not be making sense, so I’ll confess to post-midnight sarcasm and translate: the function of the police and the FBI is to investigate crimes, not sins. While all crimes that I can think of offhand are things that I would also call sins, all sins are not crimes. TVC’s assumption that their members are too naive to realize this is ludicrous. Umm…the members do realize it, right? Right?!)

  41. dee wrote:

    Some crazy village person was telling us on twitter that the book of Hosea should serve as a template.

    And for anyone who doesn’t get that right away, that’s the part of the Old Testament where God instructed a prophet to marry a prostitute.

    From Hosea chapter 1:

    When the Lord first spoke to Hosea, the Lord told him, “Marry a prostitute and have children with that prostitute. The people in this land have acted like prostitutes and abandoned the Lord.”

    To Christians devoted to the “equally yoked” belief (that Christians should not marry Non-Christians), it would have to be a Christian prostitute.

    How does that work, exactly? Isn’t “Christian prostitute” a contradiction in terms?

  42. dee wrote:

    I can assure you that Karen is not pleased about the recent email. And she is one smart woman. TVC should begin to sweat a bit.

    Thank you for letting me know this.

  43. What do you make of emailing this statement out to their 6,000 members? You know when church discipline went on in the New Testament, I always got the idea that everyone in the community knew each other. 6,000 people don’t know each other. They basically printed someone’s business in a newspaper. That seems a little bit different than true pastoral care for church members. I have heard of church discipline take place in one congregation where only minimal information was given and the discipline meant the offender couldn’t partake of the sacrament until restored. You might still disagree with this but, that seems different than what is going on here and other ACTS 29 and 9Marks churches. Can TVC even be classified as a church?! Come on. This isn’t a church. This is a religious business. They focus on biblical themes but it isn’t a church. No group of people who truly care for the sheep behave like this.

  44. Gary W wrote:

    However, should the speculation prove true, one possibility is that Jordan confessed to something he wasn’t doing in order to divert suspicion from a worse thing he actually was doing. I’m only raising the possibility, not making an accusation.

    this makes me want to literally throw up, because it seems to be a pattern he actually has been following. confess to something not so bad, like watching adult porn to cover that he was watching child porn, its not that great a stretch to imagine that he was confessing to watching child abuse to cover that he was perpetrating child abuse. I feel horrible for Karen Hinkley, but even worse for young victims that have to try and deal with something that it isnt possible to make sense of. I think i will spend the evening in prayer for young victims of sexual assault wordlwide, even if Jordan is telling the truth, then for the victims he got gratification from viewing. Come Quickly Lord Jesus

  45. Robin wrote:

    My husband and I are considering attending a new church. Guess what kind of questions I will be asking?

    I never would’ve thought until this week that the question,
    “If I were to marry and afterwards discover my spouse was a pedophile, and I left him, would you guys harass me over that, put me in “church discipline” and refuse to leave me alone?”
    would ever, ever, ever apply. Ever.

  46. Gram3 wrote:

    dee wrote:
    @ mirele:
    Ask for Richard Brindley and Matt Younger and remind them that Karen met with them after she returned.
    I suppose if you added their ages you might get within range of something like elder.

    Looks like Matt Younger is 32 (he graduated from college in 2005). Richard Brindley looks to be about 35 (started college in 1998). This is from their public Linked In profiles, so no stalking necessary.

    I’m old enough to be their mother.

  47. Daisy wrote:

    dee wrote:

    Some crazy village person was telling us on twitter that the book of Hosea should serve as a template.

    And for anyone who doesn’t get that right away, that’s the part of the Old Testament where God instructed a prophet to marry a prostitute.

    From Hosea chapter 1:

    When the Lord first spoke to Hosea, the Lord told him, “Marry a prostitute and have children with that prostitute. The people in this land have acted like prostitutes and abandoned the Lord.”

    To Christians devoted to the “equally yoked” belief (that Christians should not marry Non-Christians), it would have to be a Christian prostitute.

    How does that work, exactly? Isn’t “Christian prostitute” a contradiction in terms?

    hahhahahahha

  48. mirele wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:

    dee wrote:
    @ mirele:
    Ask for Richard Brindley and Matt Younger and remind them that Karen met with them after she returned.
    I suppose if you added their ages you might get within range of something like elder.

    Looks like Matt Younger is 32 (he graduated from college in 2005). Richard Brindley looks to be about 35 (started college in 1998). This is from their public Linked In profiles, so no stalking necessary.

    I’m old enough to be their mother.

    ha you can be their “Elder” mother

  49. Robin wrote:

    What do you make of emailing this statement out to their 6,000 members? You know when church discipline went on in the New Testament, I always got the idea that everyone in the community knew each other. 6,000 people don’t know each other. They basically printed someone’s business in a newspaper.

    Karen’s business was aired among 6,000 people who were probably aware she and her ex-husband were sent out to be missionaries from TVC. What TVC did in airing this to 6,000 people was to defame her among her former fellow church members, IN MY HUMBLE OPINION. (This is not a legal opinion, just a personal opinion.) They intended for her to look bad in the eyes of other church members. There is a reason employers don’t do more than just confirm you worked for them for x period of time. That’s because saying anything more can be seen as defamation.

    Seriously, TVC slipped up badly. I’d strongly advise them to follow Wade Burleson’s advice tomorrow morning, as early as possible.

  50. @ Elder Mirele:
    do you have a woodshed behind your house, take them all there please! spare the rod, spoil the child

  51. Why are even the reformers covering up the Asian location?

    Some sources say “East Asia,” the church says “South Asia,” and there is a strangely ungoogle-able reference to the “Cheuasai people.” One poster hints that the country is China. There is a Jordan Root living in Tianjin, but he seems not to be the same person.

  52. Plus the above speaks of “unreached peoples.” SIM lists 8 countries on its website, several of which are known pedophile meccas.

  53. Zla’od wrote:

    Why are even the reformers covering up the Asian location?
    Some sources say “East Asia,” the church says “South Asia,” and there is a strangely ungoogle-able reference to the “Cheuasai people.” One poster hints that the country is China. There is a Jordan Root living in Tianjin, but he seems not to be the same person.

    I don’t think Mainland China allows in foreign missionaries.

  54. mirele wrote:

    So, if I were to call up TVC tomorrow, who should I try to speak to? I do want these guys to know that I’m not a “narcissistic zero” who isn’t afraid to sign her name. I want them to know that a woman in Arizona thinks their actions towards a former member are disgusting.

    I called a phone number in Arkansas today of someone in the media regarding the Duggar case. I had planned to leave a polite message of disagreement about something he said. He answered! And we had a chat for about seven minutes, even though he was pretty angry and saw things differently. I told him that I was a conservative Christian and that I disagreed with his criticisms of someone who had to follow the law. He was still very angry, talked about liberals in the media, etc. But maybe…I made him think. In a gentle voice I asked him to re-think and not proceed when he was so angry.

  55. Corbin wrote:

    @ Corbin:
    *Me*

    Corbin wrote:

    mirele wrote:

    I’m old enough to be their mother.

    You and Gram are making me feel like a newborn. XD

    Or as Judge Tim would say, “A whippersnapper.”

  56. They are just pissy because a woman actually used her brain and acted without their permission-plain and simple. I remember when Matt Chandler said he “lets” his wife Lauren win a few arguments here and there to feel good about herself. Please. She can think him under the table. He is so seriously arrogant and stupid.

  57. dee wrote:

    Marsha wrote:
    Root’s marriage to Karen was fraudulent. He did not desire her as a wife, he wanted her as a cover for his illegal activities. Karen was right to seek an annulment. Any pastor who thinks the ‘marriage’ can be saved is either a cruel control freak or a fool.
    Nuts, they are all nuts. Some crazy village person was telling us on twitter that the book of Hosea should serve as a template. Can you imagine? I think there is some serious magic mushroom eating going on at TVC.

    If the prophetic books are a catch-all template for modern Christian behavior, then those TVC folks need to be cooking their meals over an open flame, using human feces as a fuel. (Ezek. 4:12).

  58. XianAtty wrote:

    If the FBI found no traces of abusive images on his computer and phone, he likely owned or had access to another device that he never disclosed. And if he never confessed to how he accessed the images then it is hard to believe he’s made a full confession. If so, then TVC’s entire premise for their dealing with him is false.

    This is the confusing part for me.

    TVC trotted out “the FBI declined to take further action” as if it were some sort of vindication for them and/or Jordan.

    But, Jordan has confessed already. So if no evidence was found, (a) the FBI didn’t do their job, or (b) Jordan had additional devices, or (c) Jordan lied about accessing child abuse pornography.

    I’m assuming (a) is out of the picture, because I’d think that the FBI is pretty good at that sort of thing.

    If it’s (b), does it really matter as far as TVC are concerned? I mean, Jordan confessed. No evidence = Jordan is off the hook legally, but not spiritually or practically in terms of church life.

    If it’s (c), it raises serious questions about why someone would ostensibly ruin their own life and career with a false confession to such a heinous crime.

  59. Robin wrote:

    Julie Anne, was there something in particular about these two people that could help identify signs of someone who may be engaging in this sort of behavior?

    Great question. Both of these men have eyes that are empty. They are void of life. Interestingly, ever since I have noticed this, I see the same empty eyes in every convicted pedophile I see on the news.

    There is something amiss when you make eye contact. They both showed very little emotional response. They also had difficulty connecting relationally at any level of depth. Both of these men (related, btw), did not seem to be present with others were around; ie, they gave the appearance of being there, but you could tell their minds were fixed elsewhere.
    Both of them were addicted to religion and poured their lives into ministry work (one was a missionary, the other I believe was an elder in his church). You could engage them on spiritual topics at great depth.

    I had an incident with one man in which my daughter could have been his next victim. At the time, I did not know he was a pedophile, but something was stirring in me about his behavior. My 3-1/2 yr old went to take a shower while he was visiting with neighbors. Out of the clear blue, as the neighbors were talking to him, he bolted up and went towards the bathroom just as my daughter was coming out of the shower wrapped in a towel. I quickly secured her towel and went back with her to the bedroom and the door was open about 6 inches. Next thing I knew, I looked up and saw him peering into the room. I was absolutely livid. Seeing him peer in to see my daughter dressing now answered my questions.

    I kicked the door so hard, hoping it hit him in the head. It didn’t. But he was so brazen, it was shocking. Later, I telephoned someone who knew him and shared my experience. She told me to never let my eyes off my daughter and I heard the rest of the story. I confronted his wife about this behavior and she was very uncomfortable. I suspect very few people had ever asked her this tough question. After a long silence she confirmed my suspicions and said his behavior was despicable. I realized that she was a woman who was trapped in a marriage with the most horrific nightmare. This is the generation that did not talk about such things and for her to say what she did was quite amazing. I used to be really annoyed by her behavior in general and now it all clicked. She, too, was a victim.

    Ok, going back to the other pedophile. I noticed that he has a sneakiness about him. He would disappear when there was a gathering, without telling people where he was going, and then mysteriously reappear. He would go out of his way to be present during diaper changes, changing into bathing suits. Although there were boundaries established, he violated them and would make up stupid excuses to defend himself.

    He has continually refuses to put himself under authority. If you ask him about his past, he admits that he has abused children, but he would not volunteer the information if he went to a new church or mission field, or job in which children were present. This makes him confusing, because he seems to present an honest front, but then you discover that he also conceals important info. At one meeting, his accountability partner and his wife continually reminded him of important details he conveniently left out. He lies so much, he believes his own lies. The honest front is a manipulation tool to convince you that he is on the right track. He has a demeanor of being calm, patient, gentle, but he uses passive aggression and avoids conflict at all costs by remaining silent.

    Both of these men are (one is now deceased) very likable and no would ever suspect they could do such harm. They are absolutely driven by their evil desires.

    Hmm, maybe I needed to do some processing, huh? Sorry for the length. I think this was helpful for me, so thanks for asking!

  60. The FBI just doesn’t have the resources to arrest every perv that looks at kiddie porn. They save their resources to go after the biggest scumbags that are causing the most issues. I have a family member in the FBI and that is this field. He goes after the big-guys. They cannot really say what they found on Root’s computer if they don’t plan to pursue him.

  61. mirele wrote:

    If Jordan was looking at child pr0n on his computer, there should have been traces, unless he took a sledgehammer to the hard drive and replaced it with another one.

    Marsha wrote:

    The FBI is very good at recovering deleted files. We already know he was viewing child sexual abuse online. If the FBI can find no evidence of that, then he returned home with a different laptop.

    Marci wrote:

    The FBI just doesn’t have the resources to arrest every perv that looks at kiddie porn. They save their resources to go after the biggest scumbags that are causing the most issues.

    I normally do not comment on the topic but on this one I’ll jump in.

    It’s not that hard if you know a bit about computers to not leave much of a trace on a computer used for internet searching. On the computer itself. You can do more than just toss a file in the trash or recycle bin and empty it to delete it. (And no, I’m not going to give out lessons here.) There are also secondary traces that can be tracked down from search engines and such but this starts to take serious time, court orders, etc… and there are ways to hide this if you’re really determined. And going on Marci’s point, at an FBI agent’s time costing well north of $100 per hour (I’m guessing north of $300/hr at least) just how much time do they spend tracking down the details one “perv” who was surfing the net? Especially if this “perv” was good at hiding their activities.

    An axiom of police work that makes it not an impossible job is that most crooks are stupid. If they were not crime would be truly out of control.

    My point is that there doesn’t HAVE to be evidence on a computer used by a porn surfer. Most likely there is but not always.

  62. mirele wrote:

    pr0n

    EVERYONE

    This topic is going to cause a lot of comments to go into moderation. Everyone just get over it. There’s no grand conspiracy here. Dee and I both get moderated a lot when dealing with a topic like this.

    But, DO NOT!!! attempt to get cute and skip past our moderation filters. Doing so can get you on permanent moderation.

    And now our #1 rule about moderation. We do not discuss it in comments. If you have a question, email us. We have good reasons for this.

  63. still don’t get why you don’t demand a response from Jen Wilkin, the most forefront woman leader at the village…

  64. mirele wrote:

    I don’t think Mainland China allows in foreign missionaries.

    Not officially, but they do have them. They apply under other kinds of visas.

  65. @ mirele:

    I don’t think Mainland China allows in foreign missionaries.

    Seconding Zla’od – I know an IFB woman whose daughter and son-in-law went in as teachers but are really attempting mission work.

  66. Zla’od wrote:

    mirele wrote:
    I don’t think Mainland China allows in foreign missionaries.
    Not officially, but they do have them. They apply under other kinds of visas.

    Not a good idea. This has been alleged to cause trouble for the Chinese christians. Surely SIM is not doing that sort of thing.

  67. Hester wrote:

    Seconding Zla’od – I know an IFB woman whose daughter and son-in-law went in as teachers but are really attempting mission work.

    We had a couple from here who tried something like that and were asked to leave by the Chinese christians they contacted. The Chinese told this couple that they were putting them at risk and hindering instead of helping. It is not clear whether they were reported and had their visas revoked or whether they came home voluntarily. This is hearsay but that is the story that went around.

  68. He often would speak out against stereotyping by gender.

    The annoying part is, this really is a thing sometimes, when people assume the worst about men who enjoy being with children or want to be teachers. But usually it doesn’t happen because of behavior like Jordan’s; usually it’s just an outgrowth of stupid ingrained ideas about only women being good with kids and the man’s behavior is nothing like this.

    Jordan sounds like a socially skilled child molester to me. Totally expect that more “real life” molestations will come out.

  69. Hester wrote:

    @ mirele:

    I don’t think Mainland China allows in foreign missionaries.

    Seconding Zla’od – I know an IFB woman whose daughter and son-in-law went in as teachers but are really attempting mission work.

    They have to fulfill their teaching or they cannot stay.

  70. @ Nancy:

    The Chinese told this couple that they were putting them at risk and hindering instead of helping.

    Probably true. People are sneaking in but, as you said, that doesn’t make it a good idea.

  71. @ lydia:

    They have to fulfill their teaching or they cannot stay.

    Last I heard they were actually teaching at a school. I probably should have added a disclaimer on the original comment that I wasn’t putting this out there as a good idea.

  72. @ Marci:
    You have to wonder how seriously the FBI took it since contacted by the church with Jordan confessing and willingly turning over a computer.

  73. @ Zla’od:
    There’s more than one Jordan Root in this world? What was it in your findings that excluded him from being the Jordan we’ve been reading about?

  74. A cousin of mine went to prison after being caught with child pornography. There were other charges after the investigation. There are things about Jordan that remind me of my cousin. For example:
    1. My cousin’s employment was always specifically working with children.
    2. He worked in children’s ministries beginning as a teenager.
    3. He babysat often for years.

    I wonder if some of these guys are attracted to children’s ministries because people are often more trusting of someone in ministry? A side note; my cousin received more charges because he was exchanging child pornography with a colleague. He had also snapped a couple pictures when some boys he worked

    It was after my cousin was in prison that he confessed he had molested several children starting in his teenage years. The initial investigation however, didn’t find any kids he had physically molested. I mention that to make the point that even if they haven’t found any children that had been recently digested by him, doesn’t mean he didn’t molest any. There are a lot of children who don’t tell anyone that they’ve been touched inappropriately I until years later.

  75. Have we discussed the question as to whether it is right to stay in a marriage where the covenant has already been broken by the other spouse and where people are being put at risk and where the spouse by staying is providing cover/ a smoke screen for the abuser or criminal? Is this not enabling evil?

    Let me rephrase the question. Is it right to choose one’s spouse over God? Is it right to choose some errant church over God? Since when did marriage become the ultimate good for anybody, married or not? Does Jesus ask too much if he claims that in the final analysis it is about Him (Jesus) and not your spouse, or parents, or–wait I believe there is chapter and verse on that one.

  76. @ Charles:
    Every bio I have found so far on Jen Wilkins describes her as a bible teacher TO women. That is not unusual for the TGC crowd.

  77. Eagle wrote:

    @ Julie Anne:

    Julie Anne Smith…you know what that behavior also shows. He doesn’t feel guilty about the child porn. I would think that any rational and sound person who broke the law and committed a felony like that would fear the day that they were turned into law enforcement. Jordan’s behavior shows that he didn’t think he did anything wrong.

    What that also tells me is that he’s been taught a consequence-less gospel of grace. I’ve confesed, I’m righteous before God, what can man do to me, etc. There’s no healthy fear of God-appointed authority (government and law), only trust in Christians to forgive him and cover for him, apparently. That is NOT the church’s job.

    Justice is independent of forgiveness.

    And something isn’t right about their statement that the FBI found nothing. Or somebody destroyed evidence.

  78. TVC leadership is either extremely naive or culpable in covering for the perpetrator and attacking the witness. If naive, then none of them should be leading a church or involved in church discipline ever or at all. But it is more likely that they know that they do not have the whole story from the perpetrator, and therefore are assisting him in his cover up. That makes then accessories after the fact in this matter. I hope when the FBI is done, they charge a few of those TVC “leaders” as accessories after the fact.

  79. And annulment is not divorce light, as the TVC email suggested. It is a legal statement that, because of fraud, there was never a marriage at all.

    TVC needs to confess its sins in this matter, repent, and plead for forgiveness from Karen. The church belongs in discipline, not Karen.

  80. Charles wrote:

    still don’t get why you don’t demand a response from Jen Wilkin, the most forefront woman leader at the village…

    Women have no authority whatsoever in that system.

    Last week I sat in a Florida courtroom and watched a woman federal judge conduct a hearing on a court case. Now there was a woman who had authority but she knew from long experience when and how to use it. And there was no partiality in her court. She treated the prosecutor (a woman) the same as the lawyer for Kent Hovind and the same as Kent Hovind’s codefendant, who was representing himself. She did sigh once when the codefendant wanted to ask a question of his backup counsel, but she told him “Go ahead,” and we all patiently waited while they had a whispered conversation.

    I don’t know where Judge Casey Rodgers goes to church (and, in my opinion, that shouldn’t even enter into a discussion of her performance as a judge) but I don’t think she’d last very long in a Calvinista, Acts 29 organization. Because she has been given great authority and great responsibility, and I just know the Matt Chandlers of the world (and his minions) would not be happy until they trampled someone like her under their feet.

    It’s worth repeating: I’ve been treated as more of an equal within my evil, too big to fail employer than I was at church. Because my employer doesn’t care about my sex. It cares about my ability to perform at my best. Maybe that’s the lesson of, “nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” And that lesson has not been learned by far too many churches, busy as they are in setting up hierarchies of control.

  81. sam wrote:

    to be a SIM missionary you have to have a church send you, SIM doesnt send people without a church over them.
    http://www.simeast.com/index.php/en/go-serve/steps-for-service
    “Step 1: Talk to your church leadership and members of your church. Ask them to pray with you and advise you about participation. Their encouragement, evaluation, and support in prayer and finances will be vital to your mission experience. But more than that, it’s the church which sends you, with agencies like SIM working in partnership with them.”
    I want to be clear that what the TVC implied was that SIM considers Karen Hinkley unworthy to serve, but that is not what SIM has ever said. Here is what SIM said in their email regarding the termination of Jordan Root:
    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1
    Dated
    February 25, 2015
    “…terminated Jordan Root’s membership with SIM USA.”
    “Karen continues in active status with SIM”
    sincerely,
    Eric E. Ernst
    Director of Personnel

    Dear God!!!! I was kinda okay with the thought that SIM was full of monsters too, but OH MY GOSH, this makes the lies just keep piling higher.

    I never wanted to go after Matt Chandler. I heard him speak a year ago, and while he seemed presumptuous about some things, I thought they were due to theological convictions, not controlling tendencies. I never tagged him on Twitter to begin with–another church anon, “Lex Lutheran” did–because I thought this was Steve Hinkley’s and Matt Younger’s problem. :( Then, it became evident that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. It’s heartbreaking–esp for Karen. :(

  82. @ Julie Anne:
    Thanks for that first-hand description. I have never knowingly had any contact with a pedophile, and that gives me something to go on.

  83. I am confused about something else, too. If I understand the chronology correctly, AFTER Karen officially resigned her membership TVC sent out an invitation church wide to attend a meeting where they would be discussing the situation with Karen and Josh. Then they held this meeting. (Would love to hear audio on that one) Then they send out a church wide email about the situation again.

    How in the world is this NOT Gossip about Karen if she was discussed at all? Not only that but what are the legal considerations for them discussing Karen in a church wide meeting and emails AFTER she has officially resigned?

  84. Gram3 wrote:

    The FAQ questions are actually quite good.

    Actually, I think the FAQs look even more deceptively parsed.

  85. Nancy wrote:

    Have we discussed the question as to whether it is right to stay in a marriage where the covenant has already been broken by the other spouse and where people are being put at risk and where the spouse by staying is providing cover/ a smoke screen for the abuser or criminal? Is this not enabling evil?

    I submit that the following verses actually require divorce or annulment in cases of any form of sexual immorality:

    I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— (1 Corinthians 5:9 ESV)

    But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. (1 Corinthians 5:11 ESV)

    Further, it must be true that one who takes a spouse under false pretenses of the sort reported by Karen Hinkley must surely be a swindler.

  86. Karen,

    You have been in my prayers since I first learned of your terrible ordeal. Be strong because you are an important role model for so many women out there.

    Thank you for your tremendous courage!

  87. One other thing.

    It really irks me these days how backwards a lot of folks are in discerning the sins of the Internet age. There are thousands of ways to cover your tracks on the internet. I’m not familiar with many of the them – i do little more online than twitter, facebook and blog-reading these days – , but I know they exist. The dark underbelly of the internet isn’t just a snarky saying. Old school folks like the ones generally in leadership positions don’t realize this stuff. It’s a different world.

    If a guy wants to watch child porn, he’s already got major issues, and he’s going to bend over backwards to hide that fact from everyone, including his wife, the one living in his own home, possibly coming into contact with his computer. And there’s plenty of ways to do that. The fact that the FBI did a check on the computer and found nothing doesn’t really tell us much, other than he left no traces, or there was another computer, because we know it happened.

    If the FBI never finds anything and never conducts another investigation, is he any less a criminal?

    What do you do if theoretically someone in the church killed someone and confessed, but the local authorities could find no evidence of it? TVC probably wouldn’t put him under church discipline, but I digress. If he truly confessed, wouldn’t he tell authorities where the bodies are hid? Am I making sense here?

    Again, that statement about the FBI concluding their investigation with no charges stinks.

  88. @ Zla’od:
    Yeah, I didn’t know about the “known pedophile meccas” but a friend’s friend visited Sri Lanka and the first question the taxi driver asked him was “Do you like little girls?” and when the answer was “No!” the next question was “Do you like little boys?” The world is so evil I can’t believe it.

  89. @ Marci:
    You can tell a lot by how a pastor refers to his wife in sermons. Degrade wife (even kiddinly) = pastor who will degrade the sheep and cause much trouble in the church.

  90. @ An Attorney:
    Most pastors and I think 99% elders haven’t a clue about counseling, the law, relationships, etc. No way should a person submit to a group of amateurs playing church, even if their playbook, especially if their playbook is 9 Marks.

  91. Tina wrote:

    He helped rescue kids from abuse only to abuse them further??
    Sick.

    Its called a “cover.” Frankly, its clever.

  92. @ Godith:
    Any man who degrades his wife is abusing her. At the Crying out for Justice blog the case is made that abusive spouses are not Christians. I am not presently prepared to say the leaders of TVC are not Christians, but they are clearly acting like men who abuse their spouses. For example, men who abuse their wives are famous for recruiting allies. What is the membership-wide email if not an attempt to keep the membership on board and in alliance with the TVC leadership?

  93. If I may take the opportunity to summaries the 6,000 e-mail for those who haven’t yet read it. It says in essence this: “We had paid professional carpenters ready to drive our love into this woman from every direction, but in her sad sinfulness she rejected every dowel, shim, and splinter.”

    At first I thought this must be overblown, or that Karen suspected her then-husband of abusing their own children, or something of that sort. But if these people are his advocates, then he’s probably guilty of far worse, and they know it.

    And if the FBI couldn’t find anything on his computer, it’s because he overwrote his hard drive, or else he left it in a dumpster somewhere in the East. But the smarmy innuendos of his protectors and the holy self-righteousness of their christian double-speak makes me think she should sue for as many millions as this church took in in the three years she was under their care and loving service. They even blocked her from continuing as a missionary. Then she can self-fund her work.

  94. mirele wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:
    dee wrote:
    @ mirele:
    Ask for Richard Brindley and Matt Younger and remind them that Karen met with them after she returned.
    I suppose if you added their ages you might get within range of something like elder.
    Looks like Matt Younger is 32 (he graduated from college in 2005). Richard Brindley looks to be about 35 (started college in 1998). This is from their public Linked In profiles, so no stalking necessary.
    I’m old enough to be their mother.

    I’m the same age–so that doesn’t give them a pass in my book. :(

  95. Michaela wrote:

    mirele wrote:
    So, if I were to call up TVC tomorrow, who should I try to speak to? I do want these guys to know that I’m not a “narcissistic zero” who isn’t afraid to sign her name. I want them to know that a woman in Arizona thinks their actions towards a former member are disgusting.
    I called a phone number in Arkansas today of someone in the media regarding the Duggar case. I had planned to leave a polite message of disagreement about something he said. He answered! And we had a chat for about seven minutes, even though he was pretty angry and saw things differently. I told him that I was a conservative Christian and that I disagreed with his criticisms of someone who had to follow the law. He was still very angry, talked about liberals in the media, etc. But maybe…I made him think. In a gentle voice I asked him to re-think and not proceed when he was so angry.

    GO YOU!!!!!!!!!!

  96. GuyBehindtheCurtain wrote:

    mirele wrote:
    If Jordan was looking at child pr0n on his computer, there should have been traces, unless he took a sledgehammer to the hard drive and replaced it with another one.
    Marsha wrote:
    The FBI is very good at recovering deleted files. We already know he was viewing child sexual abuse online. If the FBI can find no evidence of that, then he returned home with a different laptop.
    Marci wrote:
    The FBI just doesn’t have the resources to arrest every perv that looks at kiddie porn. They save their resources to go after the biggest scumbags that are causing the most issues.
    I normally do not comment on the topic but on this one I’ll jump in.
    It’s not that hard if you know a bit about computers to not leave much of a trace on a computer used for internet searching. On the computer itself. You can do more than just toss a file in the trash or recycle bin and empty it to delete it. (And no, I’m not going to give out lessons here.) There are also secondary traces that can be tracked down from search engines and such but this starts to take serious time, court orders, etc… and there are ways to hide this if you’re really determined. And going on Marci’s point, at an FBI agent’s time costing well north of $100 per hour (I’m guessing north of $300/hr at least) just how much time do they spend tracking down the details one “perv” who was surfing the net? Especially if this “perv” was good at hiding their activities.
    An axiom of police work that makes it not an impossible job is that most crooks are stupid. If they were not crime would be truly out of control.
    My point is that there doesn’t HAVE to be evidence on a computer used by a porn surfer. Most likely there is but not always.

    Yeah, the Vulcan is a programmer by hobby, so words like “Tor” are in my vocabulary. 😛

  97. @ Gary W:
    Thx Gary. I have challenges with scribd and did not see all pages. How can any member if TVC read that and not be alarmed at the power the elders have invested in themselves?

    Just a quick skim revealed a sick but amusing twist. Karen officially resigned her membership. Yet they don’t recognize it. They say they won’t shun her but will let her go.

    They are like little boys who have to win and have the last word.

    When I get to my laptop, I plan to read it carefully. It is like opening a window into their authoritarian and cheesy Christianese souls. How any member could stay there after reading this boggles my mind. It has cult written all over it.

  98. @ Flicker:

    I can’t help but agree. :( However, I’d be reluctant to do it without the overwhelming support of the Christian community. I’d rather do a large, large Gofundme for her, because of the Biblical teachings about lawsuits against believers. That’s a large part of why watchdog blogs are SO important. If the church fails her, then yes, lawsuits are the next logical step.

  99. Wade’s article is spot on and should be read by all and I hope it will be heeded by TVC leadership.

  100. Yes, the doubled down as they say.

    6,000 Covenant Members x $50,000/year income x 10% = $30 million/year in tithes.

    I can’t believe that a congregation that large and savvy doesn’t have access to at least a couple of pretty sharp lawyers. So the staff members at the Village are either extremely naïve, or extremely stupid, or there is a greater threat than the prospect of a law suit (and they already thinking about this because they asked Karen not to bring a lawyer to their meetings). my guess is that they’re thinking something like this: “Honey, if we make an exception for you, then we’ll have to do it for others, and if we do it for others then we’ll have to do it for everybody. And our whole Covenant system will mean nothing; it’s only enforceable because we say it is. And then, Sweetheart, we’ll all be out of a job.”

  101. XianJaneway wrote:

    because of the Biblical teachings about lawsuits against believers.

    Yes, perhaps you’re right. I’m sure you are. It probably wouldn’t bring glory to God. But then again, exposing these people may bring glory to Him also. I personally don’t think this necessarily applies to the Village because I think of them more as a business than a Christian assembly. I mean when a woman says to some men Leave me alone! and they keep calling her and writing about her, I think something has to be done.

  102. I feel so dirty just reading this story. I cannot believe any church is willing to cover up and support a known sexual predator. SO sick at heart, and wishing that Jesus would come again soon! Let me off this stinking pile of refuse. My heart is with Karen, may she get a nasty good lawyer and own the whole ACTS 29 empire. My experiences with ACTS 29 proved to me long ago what a corrupt and truly godless organization it really is. May I say thank you to Eagle for the mention in his article as well? THANK YOU. I cannot begin to even express what that did for my heart. I pray that leaders will do the right thing and if not…may the G-d of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob move and take no prisoners, may he lay waste to all your earthly kingdoms, bring you to your knees and END the hellish doctrine of the Neo- Cals. In my darkest days I looked up and knew that he saw my heartbreak and heard my cries. I pray each day that he will comfort Karen. Prayers for all of us survivors!!!

  103. Thank you Karen, Dee, Deb, Julie Anne and others for bringing this terrible story to light. I am praying for you, Karen, especially that God will send people to love and support you in ways that meet your needs, not theirs.

    Every part of TVC’s response to this situation amazes me. It would be hard to script a worse response if you tried.

  104. @ An Attorney:
    Thank you for highlighting that. An annulment is not a divorce, and I have to believe that the elders at The Village are not that stupid. But they think that the pewpeons are, so they conflate the two.

    In Gothardese, Karen was defrauded. In plain language, there was no divorce because there never was a real marriage.

    If an Village pewpeons are reading here, your leaders are misleading you on this point and others. It is about their control over every one of the pewpeons. There is no Biblical principle that they are upholding. It is purely a power play.

  105. I was a seven year old victim of sexual abuse in my church. I am one of the kids you are all talking about. Long before my mess with ACTS 29, I was just a little girl with pigtails who liked to wear tennis shoes with her dresses. I like to be able to run faster than most of the boys. But one day I could not run fast enough and I was cornered in a dark stairwell by a man with authority in the church. That changed me forever. He sought me out when he could just to scare me and enjoy his power over me. He loved to pull those pigtails in public all the while I knew and he knew what he had done to me in private. It made me sick and I felt alone in every room filled with people. My mom was sick all the time and always needing surgeries. My grandma was my best friend. But when I told her, she got scared, and told me to never tell anyone else, and that I had to stay close to her from now on. You see she knew better than I did, that no one would believe me and that the only she could do was just keep me close. I never told anyone else. My mom and I finally talked about it after my Dad’s death a few years ago. She was surprised and sometimes I still fear she may not believe me, but I know my grandma did. As soon as I could I made the choice to cut off those pigtails, and eventually that evil man moved on. I started to grow up and that meant he had to find someone else to abuse. My heart aches to know that someone else probably went through what I did. How I wish that I had stood up and said something. It took years for me to talk, and to work through this. My hair once cut off has never been allowed to grow long. For over 25 years I have had almost pixie short hair, if it brushes my neck I am still nauseous. I hope and pray that this man’s victims do not stay silent, that someone speaks out and that he is put in jail. I am tired of knowing that there are more kids out there like me.

  106. PS… I am too close for comfort to be myself here, but I am not involved or important, either. Hopefully a 10 minute email is ok for comment.

  107. @ sam:

    “The emails shared yesterday show that Karen did attempt to discuss this with tvc, but they wouldnt have any of it if it wasnt on their terms only. their terms were that she seek reconcilliation with Jordan and not talk publicly about this at all. So Karen is under formal church discipline for listening to Jesus instead of TVC.”
    BOOM- exactly. Which is why Karen was wise to act as she did. There is never any point allowing yourself to be bullied, in fact the Scriptures are very clear about who to follow when human beings slap you around metaphorically or physically. And on your points about SIM- I truly hope you are correct. SIM may have to shed light on what TVC is saying, since if it happened the way TVC is saying, SIM has some things to answer for by putting Karen in the position of having to reconcile with a cult, excuse me, a controlling 501c3.

  108. @ Godith:
    Still reeling from the rabid sheep remark. TVC members need to give this some serious thought. If one of the thousands steps out of line, they are immediately labeled.

  109. XianJaneway wrote:

    If the church fails her, then yes, lawsuits are the next logical step.

    The church has failed her, and IMO The Village has disqualified itself as a church. Therefore, since the elders and pewpeons refuse to act like a church, she is free to protect herself by whatever means are necessary.

    Since there really is not a Biblical issue at stake here, the whole thing is about power which is a proxy for money in this case. And if it is about money, they will not change until it starts to hurt them economically.

  110. @ Gram3:
    I should add that Paul was making this point. The fact that people have to resort to the civil authorities to get justice is irrefutable evidence that the church has failed to be the church. Conveniently and predictably, the control freaks including the Gospel Glitterati, twist the Bible 180 degrees.

  111. Gram3 wrote:

    @ Gram3:
    I should add that Paul was making this point. The fact that people have to resort to the civil authorities to get justice is irrefutable evidence that the church has failed to be the church. Conveniently and predictably, the control freaks including the Gospel Glitterati, twist the Bible 180 degrees.

    I really do agree. :( It’s sad.

  112. Flicker wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:
    The FAQ questions are actually quite good.
    Actually, I think the FAQs look even more deceptively parsed.

    I think that the questions were carefully crafted so that they could also craft answers which shape their narrative and defuse opposition to them. That said, those questions are the initial ones that any discerning and mature member at The Village should be asking. There are a lot of other ones that they omitted in the FAQ. The whole email is an exercise in PR and damage control, IMO.

  113. Flicker wrote:

    Honey, if we make an exception for you, then we’ll have to do it for others,

    Yup, kind of like King Ahasuerus couldn’t allow Queen Vashti to defy his slightest whim, lest all the wives of Persia get uppity with their husbands.

  114. lydia wrote:

    They say they won’t shun her but will let her go.

    They are like little boys who have to win and have the last word.

    ISTM that they have provided themselves with an out. They can say that what they have done up to this point has not been harrassment but rather it has been care. They then say they will not pursue her indefinitely. Which means they can drop this mess at any time and save face. Or so they think.

    This is the tell. If it were based on a principle of care and calling a sister to repentance (makes me gag just to type that) then they would continue “caring” for her. But if this is just a power charade, then they retain the option to drop it at any time.

  115. @ GovPappy:

    “The fact that the FBI did a check on the computer and found nothing doesn’t really tell us much, other than he left no traces, or there was another computer, because we know it happened.”

    What that says to me is that TVC is dead wrong to assume repentance, because he admitted to it but then appears to have destroyed the evidence or left it where it can’t easily incriminate him. It is one of those fishy things that mean you can’t trust the guy until you see fruits of repentance- for example: full disclosure and total willingness to take full responsibility and be accountable, not to churches or counselors even, but to the law. We can’t know what he does while alone in his home. Why anyone would expect a wife to stay with someone who broke their marriage and can lie through his teeth for so many years, and then trust his word over hers given the lack of evidence he is sharing, is beyond me. That may be speculation, but usually in such things there is not so much evidence and gut feelings do matter. What is absolutely not speculation is that Karen did the right thing, followed Christ, and got punished by the 501c3 she attended. According to documentation they even felt sorry for her pedophile ex when he expressed he was in fear of being arrested. That’s worldly sorrow, not repentance. Repentance can accept consequences. Acts 29 needs humility and training on abuse dynamics.

  116. Three points from me:

    (1) Jordan Root’s CV looks exactly what I would expect for a paeodophile. His whole life has been about getting close to children, even to the extent of a starting a ministry to work with children.

    (2) I wasn’t aware until now that he’d confessed to molesting two children. Everything that I’ve seen said he just viewed pictures online, nothing more. That’s a huge change in the story.

    (3) As someone who knows a fair bit about computers, these days there is much greater awareness that browsing the internet leaves a trail on your computer. You can guarantee that there’s plenty of information around about how to delete this trail beyond the reach of forensic investigators. So the fact the FBI didn’t find anything isn’t really significant.

  117. @ rebeccalynn:

    Rebecca Lynn…you should check out my first post in my blog on Matt Chandler. As part of encouraging Matt Chandler to repent I also challenged him to own the Acts 29 mess with Countryside Church. That disturbs me deeply and I still believe it should be remembered and resolved.

  118. rebeccalynn wrote:

    rebeccalynn on Tue May 26, 2015 at 10:15 AM said:
    I was a seven year old victim of sexual abuse in my church. I am one of the kids you are all talking about.

    @rebeccalynn

    I’m so sorry that this happened to you, and that you felt so alone for so long. Your description of your your hair triggering horrible memories when it grows out a bit is one of the most informative things that I’ve come across on this subject. It’s difficult for someone who did not suffer this to really “get” the labyrinthian and lasting consequences of being sexually abused…you’ve helped me to understand how it invades every fiber of one’s being. I knew this intellectually, but I did not truly process it until just now. I am weeping for that little pig-tailed baby.

  119. @ Gram3:
    Yes. It was becoming a public hot potato. It was harassment because she resigned. they are trying to say the covenant is still enforceable but ‘the great guys that we are’ are letting her go.

    they do have a problem because basically people might connect the dots that they can officially resign and then the covenant is not enforceable.

  120. I just read Wade Burleson’s article that was linked to here at TWW. I posted the following comment there.

    http://www.wadeburleson.org/2015/05/it-takes-village-covenant-to-raise.html

    The entire history here of how The Village Church has treated Ms Hinkley is highly disturbing. But, I find equally horrific what is underneath the story itself, in how these membership covenants have morphed congregational life from something biblical into something bizarre.

    Even if the eyes of the law or the IRS never see things this way, I believe such legal membership covenants change the essential nature of a church from a the equivalent of a non-profit service organization into a for-profit business “owned” by the authoritarian leaders, where the “product” is supposed pastoral care/oversight and discipleship training, and “customers” can’t leave the system unless they’ve behaved well enough to fulfill their contracts.

    In essence, these contractual membership covenants have created a legalized form of the Shepherding Movement. And we know from recent church history the kinds of aberrations such authoritarianism leads to, in terms of spiritual abuse of religious power, failure to fulfill civic responsibilities (such as mandatory reporting of child abuse), attempts to deal with scandals “in-house” to supposedly protect the image of Christianity, and warped perspectives on Christianity for second generation adults of these high-demand systems.

    I think we should fully expect to see lawsuits filed against churches (perhaps even specific leaders) where this counterfeit system of oversight is not corrected, and pastoral power over indentured parishioners is abused. These should now be considered religious businesses with faulty products and perhaps even false advertising. By requiring a legal contract as the only way into membership, it seems that filing lawsuits may be the only way out for those disabused.

  121. Some morning wakeup thoughts. Or maybe just one.

    One of the requirements for getting an annulment based on fraud is that you have to stop cohabiting with the other spouse as soon as you find out about the fraud.

    As I was laying in bed trying to fall back asleep at 5 am, it occurred to me that possibly, just possibly, the Village Church guys wanted Karen to go back to her husband so as to make it impossible for her to get an annulment.

    I know that is horrible, evil thinking on my part, but I couldn’t stop thinking it. Karen was right to cut off contact with these men.

    Sec. 6.107. FRAUD, DURESS, OR FORCE. The court may grant an annulment of a marriage to a party to the marriage if:
    (1) the other party used fraud, duress, or force to induce the petitioner to enter into the marriage; and
    (2) the petitioner has not voluntarily cohabited with the other party since learning of the fraud or since being released from the duress or force.

    http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/Docs/FA/htm/FA.6.htm

  122. Godith wrote:

    Most pastors and I think 99% elders haven’t a clue about counseling, the law, relationships, etc. No way should a person submit to a group of amateurs playing church, even if their playbook, especially if their playbook is 9 Marks.

    In the case of conservative evangelicals, it’s virtually 100%. In fact, they are almost proud to reject any kind of secular counselling. Instead, they rely on ‘Biblical Counselling’, which is neither Biblical nor counselling.

    It’s not Biblical because the Bible doesn’t say a thing about mental illness nor does it give any detailed instructions on resolving conflict between individual – whatever they claim is ‘Biblical’ made up out of thin air.

    It’s not ‘counselling’ because what it amounts to is whipping some Bible verses on the subject and telling them what to do – the only ‘discussion’ involved is sin-sniffing’ by the ‘Biblical Counselor’.

  123. dee wrote:

    Nuts, they are all nuts. Some crazy village person was telling us on twitter that the book of Hosea should serve as a template. Can you imagine? I think there is some serious magic mushroom eating going on at TVC.

    Nuts! No. They just follow John Piper’s teachings on marriage and divorce. A woman should suffer abuse for a night . . . but what they really mean is that women should suffer abuse for the rest of their life, since their is no divorce allowed. John Piper is the nutty one and they follow in his footsteps.

  124. Julie Anne wrote:

    I personally have observed 2 pedophiles and their behavior and this is exactly the kind of thing that I saw that unnerved me. It’s creepy. It’s like they are on another planet, self-absorbed, without a care in the world for anyone around them.

    Not on another planet.

    In their own Pocket Universe which has room only for MEEEEEEEEEEE(TM). Nothing outside of MEEEEEEEEEE exists, nothing outside of MEEEEEEEEEEEE can possibly exist.

    It reminds me of an old thread and links about a pedo scandal in Sixties/Seventies SF litfandom, where(from memory) famous author Marion Zimmer Bradley’s ex(?) was a full-honk pedo and MZB defended him 100% even after his conviction. What this brings to mind is a lot of descriptions sympathetic to the pedo in the case — “You can’t blame him, he’s so much like a child.” To which the answer was “He is like a child — a three-year-old who only understands What I Wanna.”

    “When ‘what is right’ has been thoroughly deconstructed, ‘What I Want’ will still remain.” — attr to C.S.Lewis(?)

  125. JeffT wrote:

    In the case of conservative evangelicals, it’s virtually 100%. In fact, they are almost proud to reject any kind of secular counselling. Instead, they rely on ‘Biblical Counselling’, which is neither Biblical nor counselling.

    It’s Dianetics with Bible proof texts.
    And the same mindless hatred of any other counseling (i.e. the Heathen competition).

  126. Gary W wrote:

    Flicker wrote:

    Honey, if we make an exception for you, then we’ll have to do it for others,

    Yup, kind of like King Ahasuerus couldn’t allow Queen Vashti to defy his slightest whim, lest all the wives of Persia get uppity with their husbands.

    In the Book of Esther (and Festival of Purim), isn’t King Ahasuerus (Padishah, Shahanshah, Shah of all Iran and Not-Iran) portrayed as a weak buffoon whose advisors and cronies (like Haman) lead the all-powerful Shah around by a ring through his nose?

  127. Bridget wrote:

    dee wrote:

    Nuts, they are all nuts. Some crazy village person was telling us on twitter that the book of Hosea should serve as a template. Can you imagine? I think there is some serious magic mushroom eating going on at TVC.

    Nuts! No. They just follow John Piper’s teachings on marriage and divorce. A woman should suffer abuse for a night . . . but what they really mean is that women should suffer abuse for the rest of their life, since their is no divorce allowed. John Piper is the nutty one and they follow in his footsteps.

    No need to invoke Magic Mushies when Purity of Ideology will do.

    Ask any survivor of Cambodia’s Killing Fields about Purity of Ideology.

  128. Pingback: The Village Church Scandal | The Common Room UNITED STATES

  129. I wonder if part of the problem is church culture and attitudes towards sex. Can a child of 6-10 really be a sexual abuser? Or was he engaging in what could be considered normal exploration/play but his parents called it sexual abuse, thus taking his life off a normal trajectory? I’m DEFINITELY not trying to find loopholes or excuses for him as an adult; I’m just wondering about labeling a child and how that might have affected his sexual development.

  130. BTW – I find TVC’s use of the term “covenant member” to be chilling. It’s a not-so-subtle reminder that ‘you signed a contract with us where you agree that whatever we say goes, you have no rights at all”. Not unlike how the communist Soviets and Chinese used the term ‘comrade’. And they all subscribed to the same governing structure.

  131. Mirele, et alia:

    The same kind of circumstances can get one out of a contract or covenant (another word for contract), that is, fraud, duress or force. I do not think it would be hard for a good attorney to prove that TVC used fraud and attempted to use force with respect to having authority over Karen’s decisions regarding her marriage.

  132. dee wrote:

    Isn’t that interesting. I happen to know that Karen is pursuing something far different than missionary work.

    So are they falsely leading their “covenant members” to believe that Karen is trying to return to missionary work?

  133. I called Richard Brindley. He wasn’t there, so I left the following on his voice mail. I used a firm tone of voice. I know how not to start yelling at people during calls because I’ve listened to my share of Kent Hovind supporters shouting into the voicemails of Bureau of Prisons employees over the past week to get their man out of prison and I don’t want to be like them.

    This is from my recording of the call. I checked beforehand, both Arizona and Texas are single-party states and so recording the call is legal. I’ve obscured some identifying information because while it’s not difficult to find out how to get hold of me, I want to make it a challenge.

    Hello, my name is Dee XXXXXXXX. I live in XXXXXX Arizona and my phone number is 6XX-xXX-XXXX. The reason I’m calling is I would like to find out why the Village Church continues to insist Karen Hinkley is a member when she resigned on February 11. And why the Village Church continues to bother Ms. Hinkley and why the Village Church insists on sending out letters to its congregants which could be considered harassment, defamation, invasion of privacy and intentional infliction of emotional distress. If this sounds a bit combative, I think it’s well deserved, because you all have given Ms. Hinkley a real rough time. You all basically need to drop it. You need to leave Ms. Hinkley alone and you need to do it (pause) yesterday, actually. You needed to do it a long time ago. She no longer a member. This is the United States of America and church membership is voluntary. Your covenant does not have force of effect in law, I have looked at it. Really, seriously, you guys messed up here and the only way to make it right is to apologize to Ms. Hinkley, publicly, retract that letter, and leave her alone from now on. I am just speaking to this for myself. My name is Dee XXXXXXXX, I live in XXXXXXX, Arizona, my phone number is 6XX-XXX-XXXX. And the reason I’m letting you know all my information is because your head pastor, Matt Chandler, back in the day, I guess around 2010, said that anonymous people were like narcissistic zeros and I wanted you to know I’m not a narcissistic zero. I just care about people who are being harassed by their church. Have a nice day.

  134. Julie Anne wrote:

    Ok, going back to the other pedophile. I noticed that he has a sneakiness about him. He would disappear when there was a gathering, without telling people where he was going, and then mysteriously reappear. He would go out of his way to be present during diaper changes, changing into bathing suits. Although there were boundaries established, he violated them and would make up stupid excuses to defend himself.

    THAT is So Obvious, the guy sounds like something out of a Lifetime Movie melodrama about child molesters. Like hitting all the Seven Warning Signs at once.

  135. Jordan was a very smart pedophile. He placed himself around children in various places where he would be seen in a positive manner. A swim instructor, volunteered in children’s ministry programs, provided free babysitting, an aide, and a therapist. He knew all of the right answers about providing a safe place for children so that if there was any doubt about his behavior it would cause someone to think twice.

    The dumbest thing he did was to marry someone much smarter than him.

    Why is TVC so invested in this guy? If I were a leader of a church I would be very wary about having a positive connection with a confessed child predator. What is the motivation behind what they have done to Karen?

  136. dee wrote:

    @ mirele:
    Ask for Richard Brindley and Matt Younger and remind them that Karen met with them after she returned.

    Are TVC elders leaving out (omitting) inconvenient truth to make the situation appear different that it is? Isn’t that purposeful deception?

  137. Gram3 wrote:

    ISTM that they have provided themselves with an out. They can say that what they have done up to this point has not been harrassment but rather it has been care.

    Don’t child abusers (“Mommie Dearest” type example) make the same claim?

  138. An Attorney wrote:

    Mirele, et alia:
    The same kind of circumstances can get one out of a contract or covenant (another word for contract), that is, fraud, duress or force. I do not think it would be hard for a good attorney to prove that TVC used fraud and attempted to use force with respect to having authority over Karen’s decisions regarding her marriage.

    Well, I don’t think the covenant has legal force because it doesn’t have consideration and offer and acceptance. In other words, it is missing some basic stuff to be a contract.

  139. Deb wrote:

    @ Godith:
    Still reeling from the rabid sheep remark. TVC members need to give this some serious thought. If one of the thousands steps out of line, they are immediately labeled.

    Make an Example of one, and a hundred will fall right into line.

  140. Charles wrote:

    still don’t get why you don’t demand a response from Jen Wilkin, the most forefront woman leader at the village…

    She is not a femenist as you stated earlier. She is definitely a comp under the watchful eye of TVC. This situation is not about her or anything she has said.

    Why do you want the focus of this article changed?

  141. @ dee:
    I suspected this – some things don’t add up from what TVC said and how SIM has acted. I’m reserving judgement but I think SIM may need to publicly address issues with TVC if they have been misrepresented.

  142. Kathi wrote:

    Why is TVC so invested in this guy? If I were a leader of a church I would be very wary about having a positive connection with a confessed child predator. What is the motivation behind what they have done to Karen?

    Jordan personifies the fact that their system does not work. They sell it as the cure for our cultural decline, like pedophilia, and as the cure for conflict between husbands and wives. They sell their System as the guarantee to wives that if they are submissive enough, their husbands will be good and responsible men.

    Their System is a Lie. It is a con with Jesus makeup. Jordan must be protected because the only way to salvage the System is to show that the System produces repentance and reconciliation and makes really bad stuff work out well. Karen must be destroyed metaphorically to protect their System. Because their System is their idol. The irony is that in an attempt to preserve their System of Authority, they have displayed for the entire world what they truly value, and I believe that those values do not align at all with the Jesus of the Bible.

    On a personal level, these are immature boys posing as men, and the thought of a strong woman who can follow God’s voice without their interference creates a panic among them. They know at some level that this is a play and they are all playing Roles. But none of them has the courage to face that and then to speak up and then to take action. They have demonstrated what they are.

  143. Bridget wrote:

    Why do you want the focus of this article changed?

    Jen Wilkin is, as you say, a Complementarian apologist under the watchful eyes of her overlords. She is like Mary Kassian and Nancy Leigh DeMoss and Mary Mohler and Jodi Ware and some others who make the Christian speaking circuit. If she stepped out of line, at all, her career would be over.

    What Charles is doing is invoking her name because supposedly if one woman thinks that the Complementarian system is not abusive, then obviously it is not abusive. Sadly, this is the level of reasoning I’ve come across so much.

  144. Melody wrote:

    SIM has some things to answer for by putting Karen in the position of having to reconcile with a cult, excuse me, a controlling 501c3.

    SIM won’t do that. They need the church businesses to survive. It is a vicious $$$$ circle that sweeps people under the rug.

  145. Robin wrote:

    What do you make of emailing this statement out to their 6,000 members? You know when church discipline went on in the New Testament, I always got the idea that everyone in the community knew each other. 6,000 people don’t know each other. They basically printed someone’s business in a newspaper

    Perhaps I’m not the first to address this question, but I will contribute my 2 cents anyway. To me, e-mailing the entire 6,000 member roster is nothing more than an attempt to get their story out first (or as close to it as possible). That way, everything else that gets published will always be evaluated in light of the membership letter by those who received it and don’t know all the fact/don’t do the research.

  146. And I also don’t doubt at all that Karen has been carefully misrepresented. That email shocked me because it was so brazen that she was in the wrong while she in fact had Biblical reasons to divorce and as Matt B Redmond pointed out recently there is no Biblical ground for making a spouse married to a sexual abuser, that is someone married to someone who broke the marriage, to wait on a deliberation of the elders as to whether she should divorce or not. In fact these elders make it absolutely clear she would have been pushed to stay married and share income with the guy at least for a while longer. Nuts nuts nuts. They are not in any way shape or form competent to counsel any woman dealing with abuse. They need professional help corporately and personally.

    Melody wrote:

    @ dee:
    I suspected this – some things don’t add up from what TVC said and how SIM has acted. I’m reserving judgement but I think SIM may need to publicly address issues with TVC if they have been misrepresented.

  147. To the pewpeons of The Village, Acts29 churches, and 9Marks churches who may be reading, please consider the history of Sovereign Grace Ministries and Mars Hill Church. There is a reason that these organizations have failed, and the only thing you need to do to understand the failure is to examine the common root of bitterness that these men have planted. Look up the context for that reference and you will find that it does not mean what you have been taught, just like Hebrews 13 does not say and certainly does not mean what you have been taught by your leaders.

    There are stories of people just like you who were consumed by this false system. There are stories of leaders who did not see and did not act and who later repented of their failure to imitate Christ in leading his Church. Not *their* church, but *his* church. These leaders have usurped his authority over his Church, and they have usurped the authority of the Holy Spirit to lead those whom he indwells. Who is your leader? What do you value most?

  148. Whoa misread your points on SIM. I see your point. In my opinion if SIM is submitting to TVC’s judgement they are just as bad as Acts 29. SIM needs to clarify this, and if they don’t they are sadly open to the charge of enabling spiritual abuse by TVC/Acts29. This is the huge problem with corporate politics among God’s people.

    @ Melody:

  149. Kathi wrote:

    Why is TVC so invested in this guy? If I were a leader of a church I would be very wary about having a positive connection with a confessed child predator. What is the motivation behind what they have done to Karen?

    Because he’s such a great guy.

    The last time I saw my “marriage counselor” he told me that the man I was divorcing probably has a personality disorder, but “I just can’t help liking the guy.”

    Also, they want to believe that their special snowflake counseling has cured a pedophile.

  150. Burwell Stark wrote:

    contribute my 2 cents anyway. To me, e-mailing the entire 6,000 member roster is nothing more than an attempt to get their story out first (or as close to it as possible). That way, everything else that gets published will always be evaluated in light of the membership letter by those who received it and don’t know all the fact/don’t do the research.

    Yep! And most of the 6000 will suspend all critical thinking and consume what the elders say just because the elders said it. A cult in action!

  151. Elizabeth Lee wrote:

    Kathi wrote:
    Why is TVC so invested in this guy? If I were a leader of a church I would be very wary about having a positive connection with a confessed child predator. What is the motivation behind what they have done to Karen?
    Because he’s such a great guy.
    The last time I saw my “marriage counselor” he told me that the man I was divorcing probably has a personality disorder, but “I just can’t help liking the guy.”
    Also, they want to believe that their special snowflake counseling has cured a pedophile.

    So do my parents. :( And they’re the most likable people EVER! :(

    Look what I got in my email inbox today: http://links.namb.mkt7048.com/servlet/MailView?ms=MTE5MjIyMTcS1&r=OTkzNDI3MDUxMzQS1&j=NTAzOTE3NzUzS0&mt=1&rt=0

    I just tweeted Crowder, Tomlin, and Shane & Shane, begging them to not participate in the upcoming NAMB church-planting conference until the SBC clears this nonsense up. Music is so powerful, and I pray that they cannot in good conscience lend their persuasive talents to a group that doesn’t clear this up.

    They are my songwriting heroes. I know they’re not perfect, but they’re the amazing people I look up to, and I PRAY with everything in me that they speak out against this. :(

  152. And finally, I can get along me with the idea of SiM wanting Karen to have a church sending her as a support before she heads back to mission field, but if TVC is framing that as SIM expecting her to reconcile with TVC and SIM is not expecting that then that part of the email is abominably manipulative putting SIM in a bad light. So SiM has a responsibility to clarify, or maybe Karen will. In any case it upsets me because I thought SIM was handling this well and now I’m not so sure. Grew up around ABWE and am an MK so it’s always disheartening when Mission boards get it wrong. That’s why I’m quibbling. Hope we get some truth to the matter instead of all this TVC PR, regardless of who it makes look bad. Would be really nice if for once Christian organizations would just tell the truth and own their stuff.

    @ sam:
    @ sam:

  153. Burwell Stark wrote:

    Perhaps I’m not the first to address this question, but I will contribute my 2 cents anyway. To me, e-mailing the entire 6,000 member roster is nothing more than an attempt to get their story out first (or as close to it as possible). That way, everything else that gets published will always be evaluated in light of the membership letter by those who received it and don’t know all the fact/don’t do the research.

    It could also be an act of poisoning the well towards Karen in that community. The implications of defamation definitely come to mind here.

  154. Pingback: I Would Rather Be an Atheist Than Attend the Village Church | Ed Cyzewski :: Freelance Writer UNITED STATES

  155. It’s just all politics politics politics. I would love to see several Christians standing up though. Musicians often know a lot of situations from exposure to everywhere. They have a chance to take a stand and I hope they will do so publicly and openly. Otherwise I really believe we are in the last days because church members love the wrong things.

    @ XianJaneway:

  156. Gram3 wrote:

    Bridget wrote:

    Why do you want the focus of this article changed?

    Jen Wilkin is, as you say, a Complementarian apologist under the watchful eyes of her overlords. She is like Mary Kassian and Nancy Leigh DeMoss and Mary Mohler and Jodi Ware and some others who make the Christian speaking circuit. If she stepped out of line, at all, her career would be over.

    What Charles is doing is invoking her name because supposedly if one woman thinks that the Complementarian system is not abusive, then obviously it is not abusive. Sadly, this is the level of reasoning I’ve come across so much.

    This is a reason you do not see women theological scholars in complementarian circles (if you do, they are not women who would be accepted as scholars outside of the evangelical bubble.) Women leaders are selected and conditioned on being psuedo-intellectual and psuedo-insightful at best. Derivative and robotic thinking is more liekly the case. Basic is celebrated. It’s ironic that these women feel proud about their celebrity status when they probably would not feel so hot if they realized the real reasons why they were being chosen or promoted.

    This is probably why Karen bothers TVC, and I have an inkling she might be operating on a higher intellectual plane than them. She sensed the control, and a woman living into all her faculties knows not to take into that system.

  157. One other thought ran through my mind regarding this situation. I think I have read everything that is available on the Root/TVC/Hinkley situation and no where have I seen TVC leadership admit that Root’s actions directly contribute to the production and dissemination of pornography (in general), especially violent child pornography. The fact that Root can watch and continue watching children being raped and tortured should where the focus lies, NOT on whether or not Karen got an annulment.

    I will say it again, Root is DIRECTLY contributing to the worldwide rape and torture of children through his increasing appetite and consumption of child pornography! Put that in your covenant and sign it, elders.

    I can almost guarantee that behind closed doors the TVC leadership is in full-on panic mode. If they aren’t, they should be. They are facing an international criminal investigation into the worst possible criminal activity imaginable.

    Also, a word to the TVC leadership: You should not be so vain as to imagine that your Biblical “counselors” are equipped to handle a subject as depraved as this. My cousin did earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology and wrote her dissertation on child sex predators…and it nearly put her in a depression due to the disgusting and vile nature of the offenders, not to mention the seeing what the children went through. You elders are in way-over-your-head if you think you can quote some Bible passages and see this man delivered. By viewing the deliberate, methodical and repeated torture and rape of children, Root undoubtedly has undergone chemical, neurological and most likely physical changes in his central nervous system (i.e., his brain). His way of thinking is NOT normal by any standard definition and he has become hardened/de-sensitized in ways you cannot imagine.

  158. @ Melody:
    Exactly. I’ve met all of these guys, taken classes from Shane & Shane, and still have a Chris Tomlin autograph (somewhere) from when he was playing a song that was based off humpty-dumpty. (not kidding. :) )

  159. I’d be curious to find out just how fully Karen or anyone else at TVC understood what they were signing in terms of the level of authority the leaders expected to be able to exercise over their lives. Here’s hoping this situation opens a lot of eyes to the shortcomings of these ‘covenants’.

  160. Burwell Stark wrote:

    Also, a word to the TVC leadership: You should not be so vain as to imagine that your Biblical “counselors” are equipped to handle a subject as depraved as this. My cousin did earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology and wrote her dissertation on child sex predators…and it nearly put her in a depression due to the disgusting and vile nature of the offenders, not to mention the seeing what the children went through. You elders are in way-over-your-head if you think you can quote some Bible passages and see this man delivered.

    THIS!

  161. And you know what: it’s bullying, its refusal to back down, and it’s arrogance. You will know them by their fruits. Shameful when you feel like you are dealing with Scientology not Christians.

    @ mirele:

  162. Exactly!!! I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to read further because of the subject matter. It put me in a depression this weekend and it makes me sick. How anyone can equate this sin with consensual adultery is just an indictment on the lies in the church lately. How anyone can judge a woman for getting away from someone who sins this way is beyond me.

    @ Bridget:

  163. Melody wrote:

    And you know what: it’s bullying, its refusal to back down, and it’s arrogance. You will know them by their fruits. Shameful when you feel like you are dealing with Scientology not Christians.

    I don’t have any experience with Scientology, but I have quite a bit with this group of Authoritarian Control Freaks. The thing is, there is a pyramidal structure, and the only way to advance above your current level is to follow the lead of the guy on top of you. When you are someone with very few marketable skills, there are not a lot of non-painful options if your conscience is pricked.

    The indoctrination is deep. The younger guys *do not have* a sound basis for doing their own investigation of Biblical teaching. There are pewpeons with much greater understanding of the Bible, but these young guys are primed with the appearance of a good foundation in Biblical studies. They are parrots or Chatty Cathies, for those of us who remember those. Yet they *think* they have a solid understanding because that is what they have been told by the Big Guys like Grudem and company.

  164. @ Gram3:
    And I should also say that I’ve seen a lower-rung guy have his conscience pricked but then be brought to heel by his superior only to become even more dogmatic than before, probably as a psychological defense. His superior, in turn, got his marching orders from the guy above him in the chain and obeyed, because who would he be if it weren’t for the guy above him? A nobody, and that is something that is beyond thinking.

  165. Gram3 wrote:

    @ Gram3:
    And I should also say that I’ve seen a lower-rung guy have his conscience pricked but then be brought to heel by his superior only to become even more dogmatic than before, probably as a psychological defense. His superior, in turn, got his marching orders from the guy above him in the chain and obeyed, because who would he be if it weren’t for the guy above him? A nobody, and that is something that is beyond thinking.

    Hey Gram, did you know Eagle is emailing *every* single employee of the Village Church w/ his blog posts & open letters? Right down to the interns. I think this is why.

  166. Hmmm. Looks to me like they have no qualms throwing mission boards as well as individuals under their bus when they wish to redefine reality…hmmm. Wow. That was a really twisted email if what I’m thinking is true. What’s also sad is I doubt SBC will do anything publicly. Would love to be wrong and think best of all but oh boy. Everybody loves to pass the buck rather than own their own stuff. Sickening.

    @ Bridget:

  167. XianJaneway wrote:

    Eagle is emailing *every* single employee of the Village Church w/ his blog posts & open letters? Right down to the interns. I think this is why.

    I will be shocked if it makes any difference. OTOH, there may be some unseared consciences that will prompt some insiders to do the right thing and at least let the light shine on the dark places. That would make them the opposite of narcissistic zeroes. They would be true heroes.

  168. Yep. I am inclined to believe TVC will misrepresent any person or organization in order to look good. When instead they should just own their mess, apologize, and reform.

    @ sam:

  169. This is a small point to make, but it might be useful. I am going to offer a different explanation for Jordan falling asleep and sleeping hard. I don’t think it’s evidence of his conscience one way or the other.

    Please understand that I am in no way making any excuses for him. I am a victim of child sex abuse at the hands of my pastor who was also my father, and decades later, even now that I am a grandmother, the shadow and damage he did to me and my life are still quite visible. It’s horrific. I have CPTSD because of it, and I struggle to function normally on a daily, sometimes an hourly basis. For just one example, I cannot go to church- 18 years of listening to the man who abused me at home preach sermons that countered everything about what he did to us at home makes church a horrible, frightening place for me. I have actually passed out trying to fight it while forcing myself to work at getting ready to go on a Sunday morning.

    For Jordan to have sexually molested two children when he was himself so young, it is highly likely that he was also molested. If this is true, then it’s a strong possibility he has a form of PTSD from that trauma, too, which also requires living life with the adrenaline constantly racing, the cortisol levels spiking repeatedly all day long, This, I live with. It is *exhausting.* And quite frequently when I’ve just been through something that really pulled all my reserves (which can be as innocuous as trying to go to church, or being given a gift of something with a design my abuser collected and which I find nearly unbearable, I find myself suddenly overwhelmingly exhausted, tired to the core, and I drop off into a deep, heavy sleep (even though every night, I cannot sleep because I can’t relax enough to let my guard down).

    REgardless of any additional problems he has, besides being a vile predator, Jordan has spent his entire life highly invested in keeping secrets, staying on alert, living a lie, playing a part 24 and 7. That would exhaust anybody. And I think that during that conversation he also had to apply everything he had to protecting himself, to being careful about what details he did and did not share, to guessing about what his then wife knew and didn’t know, guessed at, or understood, what was the least he could admit to and keeping his lies straight- because I have no doubt that even in his ‘confessions’ he was telling boatloads of lies.

    I suggest that that session he had with Karen had all his on guard resources up and active and his entire system was on high alert, so when she walked out of the room, he just couldn’t stay awake. It has nothing to do with lack of guilt or an easy conscience- it’s more a reflection of how hard he had been working to deceive.

  170. Eagle wrote:

    Its disturbing. I am working on an Open Letter to Matt Younger at my blog. In reading and re-reading Matt’s letters to Karen it strikes me that there is no room for compromise. Life is hard, people get ill, people lose jobs, there are a million and one things that could trigger problems with membership covenants. I am viewing them as a modern day form of slavery.

    Dee, Christian Janeway, for others of you discussing Matt Younger — i’m not saying that Matt doesn’t wholeheartedly believe in the 9 marks type of system that is in place at the village, but just so you aware… there was some banter about ages of these “elders”. I’ve been involved w/ multiple acts 29 churches and this par for the course. In many cases, a29 churches aren’t looking for “elders” that provide wise / seasoned counsel to temper the “lead pastor” but to be yes men to the lead pastor. I’ve seen first hand when disagreements occur the “elder” gets kicked to the curb, or the bylaws get changed to strip him of his power or something. The “yes men” do the bidding of the lead pastor or campus pastor in this regard and have no real power/authority that doesn’t pass through the hands of the “qualified” acts 29 member. The whole network is a little bit of a paradox because it preaches so strongly about plurality of elders – but also the only person that matters as far as a29 goes, is the lead pastor. So therefore, you can’t have anyone an elder that doesn’t tow the company line.

    The Village is a bit of an odd duck. To their credit, they have older mature men that are elders, especially at the Flower Mound campus. I have had the privilege of meeting several of these men and really think they love Jesus and His church. However, YRR guys like Matt Younger [should then theoretically be] tempered by older wiser men. But it would seem in this case, that Matt Younger and Richard are staff guys that are calling the shots. (and of course Steve Hardin). I’m wondering therefore in a case like this, how much is getting passed through the hands of the elder body and how much is getting passed through the uppers on staff such as Matt Chandler and Steve Hardin, which points back to my “yes men” comment.

  171. Burwell Stark wrote:

    That way, everything else that gets published will always be evaluated in light of the membership letter by those who received it and don’t know all the fact/don’t do the research.

    Not to mention the covenant members who received the letter are already buying into the cheesy Christianese language they use.

  172. @ Gram3:

    I dislike BS…and I make it known! This was over the top, uncalled for and wrong. In certain situations I have no problem pushing back. This is one of those times. And its not me longing for a fight, its just that there are times when you step forward and call something out. So yes…even the interns got my posts! 😀

  173. @ justin:
    Seasoned , wise and the spiritually mature would not be in leadership at TVC. They would find the membership covenant ridiculous and totally foreign to a priesthood of believer.

  174. Burwell Stark wrote:

    Also, a word to the TVC leadership: You should not be so vain as to imagine that your Biblical “counselors” are equipped to handle a subject as depraved as this. My cousin did earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology and wrote her dissertation on child sex predators…and it nearly put her in a depression due to the disgusting and vile nature of the offenders, not to mention the seeing what the children went through. You elders are in way-over-your-head if you think you can quote some Bible passages and see this man delivered. By viewing the deliberate, methodical and repeated torture and rape of children, Root undoubtedly has undergone chemical, neurological and most likely physical changes in his central nervous system (i.e., his brain). His way of thinking is NOT normal by any standard definition and he has become hardened/de-sensitized in ways you cannot imagine.

    I haven’t really thought of this aspect of the story yet, but holy cow. Yes. This.

    I KNOW I would go into depression if I took a course on this stuff. It’s beyond sick. I can’t even comprehend it.

    Bible is a COMFORT to the addict, as is prayer, but God uses means to HEAL. Usually human means. Doctors. Therapists. Pastors and counselors are out of their element and should realize this.

    My dad had spent years fighting off depression as a mere “spiritual” problem. No luck. I think I might have the same genetic tendency.

  175. @ lydia:
    If you would like me to add, “compared to other Acts 29 churches, the village has…” i would. I’m simply saying the ages and life experiences of these “elders” is beyond the typical A29 church. Before leaving and resigning my post i was installed as an elder at an a29 church at the age of 24. I was the prototypical YRR persona.

    I’m not saying these men are perfect, just saying maybe there are others in this church that should be making decisions. I’m guessing there are many people in the village that are questioning things after that letter. And I totally agree w/ you on the priesthood comments.

  176. Here’s my prediction…the Deebs are going to be very busy for a while. In a system like this it takes one incident to disrupt the system. If you are familiar with how the Eastern Block collapsed in 1989 think of this in a similar manner. What will happen is that Karen’s story will trigger questions, and there will be some, (not all) but some people in The Village and Village Church plants that will want to leave but will be stuck due to these membership covenants. There will be problems ahead and I will explain this to Dee, but I would bet my ROTH IRA that in the days to come she will get a few emails from a couple of people in the Village Church or a Village Church plant asking for help so they can leave. They, like Karen, signed something while being naïve and it will hit them. They will realize that they can run afoul of the system as well. So I am guessing in the months to come we will probably see a few more posts here on this blog by a couple of individuals who went through in trying to leave.

  177. I think it might be a good idea to pray not only for Karen Hinckley (and I have) but also for Jordan Root and for The Village Church & the specific ministers involved. There is some reason for hope for this – a minister of similar leanings came to his senses relative to another matter of controversy (“discipline”) – See:

    http://www.christianitytoday.com/gleanings/2014/september/james-macdonald-asks-forgiveness-for-unbiblical-discipline-.html

    However, it was arguable that he did not go deep enough. See:

    http://www.wadeburleson.org/2014/09/you-cant-forgive-foolishness-james.html

    So keep praying and when warranted – WRITING.

  178. @ Gram3:

    I DID got Matt Chandler’s Out of Office email. I was thinking of all the people I know who would have drooled, and foamed at the mouth of getting something like that in their email. Not me! 😛

  179. @ lydia:
    What i’m trying to say (sorry if i’m not communicating clearly) that there are elders and there are staff members (some of the staffers are elders like Matt Younger). The staff members are the ones that drive the ship and the older, non-staff elders are those that are called to “weigh in” on matters from time to time but they aren’t making the day to day decisions. I would imagine that this whole situation took many elders by complete surprise and they didn’t fully grasp everything that had happened until the damage was done. For such a large church, the work gets done by a small group of people that are pushing the vision Matt Chandler lays out.

  180. @ justin:
    I am quite familiar with that structure. The elders come to the elder meeting for the dog and pony show. The staffers run the place. Still, one wonders if they agreed with the membership covenant in the first place.

  181. Holy. Freakin. Crap.

    So incest deserves the death penalty only if it was full blown violent rape resulting in a baby?

  182. @ mirele:

    “As I was laying in bed trying to fall back asleep at 5 am, it occurred to me that possibly, just possibly, the Village Church guys wanted Karen to go back to her husband so as to make it impossible for her to get an annulment.”

    Wow. Horrifying and actually makes complete sense. Whereas Karen did absolutely the Christian thing by separating herself immediately from a deceitful manipulator. Wow. TVC has a lot to answer for.

  183. I lydia wrote:

    Still, one wonders if they agreed with the membership covenant in the first place.

    I hear you and wonder that too. I can say that we actually attended membership class at the village and there was no way we were signing that covenant. I heard the word “mission” once or twice, but heard “authority” “discipline” (and something about a discipline room, i digress) and submission 5-10 times. We left quietly and only casually attended for a while after that. However, I wonder if would have been deceived into signing such a covenant if we had not been through our last church experience prior to that.

  184. @ mirele:
    Karen has acted so professionally and maturely that she is fast becoming the poster woman for dealing with this issue. if she had listened to these men at all, life would be a living hell and she would be enabling evil.

  185. @ justin:
    That sounds like what I’ve seen. There are seasoned older men, or at least men who should know better, but they have been caught up in the vision of “reaching the young people.” That may not make sense to anyone who isn’t an older person, but that is how some well-intentioned seasoned citizens of the Kingdom get sucked into this power vortex and end up following much younger men and covering for their sins. They are deceived because they truly want to make a difference and they truly care about the future. But they have chosen unwisely and have followed the crowds of young people flocking after people like Driscoll and Chandler, assuming that the crowds are the work of the Holy Spirit. That totally disregards the lessons of the crowds who followed after Jesus because they wanted something and not because of who he is.

    That said, no one gets a pass for not taking responsibility to guard the flock from false doctrine. When things are brought to the attention of a responsible person, that person has a duty to investigate impartially. That rarely happens. We should expect the Mars Hill scenario all over again, because Acts29 and like-minded groups refused to learn the real lessons of that disaster.

  186. Gram3 wrote:

    His superior, in turn, got his marching orders from the guy above him in the chain and obeyed, because who would he be if it weren’t for the guy above him? A nobody, and that is something that is beyond thinking.

    “Brewery-wagon driver rescued from obscurity by his beloved Nazis.”
    — Leon Uris, Armageddon: a Novel of Berlin, regarding a fictional SS officer/death-camp commandant

  187. justin wrote:

    I’m guessing there are many people in the village that are questioning things after that letter. And I totally agree w/ you on the priesthood comments.

    I’m interested in whether you think those people are a plurality or even a majority view. How do you think this will play out. In my experience with the Gospel Glitterati crowd, doubling down is the only way they know.

  188. lydia wrote:

    @ JeffT:

    The “membership covenant” is John Calvin’s Geneva without the church/state magistrates to enforce.

    And the Christian Reconstructionist/Theonomy types are working to remedy that deficiency.

  189. justin wrote:

    What i’m trying to say (sorry if i’m not communicating clearly) that there are elders and there are staff members (some of the staffers are elders like Matt Younger). The staff members are the ones that drive the ship and the older, non-staff elders are those that are called to “weigh in” on matters from time to time but they aren’t making the day to day decisions. I would imagine that this whole situation took many elders by complete surprise and they didn’t fully grasp everything that had happened until the damage was done. For such a large church, the work gets done by a small group of people that are pushing the vision Matt Chandler lays out.

    Taking Justin’s description as accurate, that looks like the elders also probably constitute the non-profit’s board of directors. If I’ve understood correctly, that makes things even worse in terms of organizations infrastructures, as that sounds like a situation with a relatively “passive board.” In other words, they hold legal responsibility over the tax-exempt non-profit, but merely advise but don’t truly oversee much of anything or actively ensure that participants are protected from harm.

    Such an “elder” board fits neither the biblical sense of leadership nor what I understand to be sound non-profit practices. But they are still ultimately responsible for staff decisions and actions, aren’t they? And that’s regardless of whether we’re talking the theological/congregational aspect or the tax-exempt/non-profit aspect.

    I am highly aware of the problems of a passive board because I’ve been in one of those situations, watching the destructive impact from a non-profit board that basically rubber-stamped the decisions of the on-site ministry director. Thus, the board allowed the director to bring in a very young Christian who was unqualified for ministry leadership roles, and let him “lead” others. This young Christian’s overlording was abusive and, as far as I know, the board never took responsibility. And neither the board nor director nor other staff apologized or made amends to those traumatized by an UNqualified (and, as it turned out, later DISqualified) man they put into a role of authority.

    At one point, I told the director that I was surprised that he/the ministry [implying the board] had not been sued due to the damage their chosen leader had inflicted. Given that background, I will be observing to see what happens with the elders/board, staff, and members in this current situation …

  190. Burwell Stark wrote:

    Also, a word to the TVC leadership: You should not be so vain as to imagine that your Biblical “counselors” are equipped to handle a subject as depraved as this. My cousin did earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology and wrote her dissertation on child sex predators…and it nearly put her in a depression due to the disgusting and vile nature of the offenders, not to mention the seeing what the children went through. You elders are in way-over-your-head if you think you can quote some Bible passages and see this man delivered.

    Especially since successful predators groom third-party authorities (like church Elders) as well as their prey. As allies & supporters.

    If they weren’t such masters of manipulation and camouflaging what they really are, they’d have been caught long ago.

  191. Before I became a Muslim I grew up in a “non-demoninational” evangelical church pastored by a person that, imo, embodied all of the best things Christianity had to offer.

    I used to tease him because the umbrella organization that licensed the church had a membership agreement that they told pastors to use with a lot of similar language, so I’d always sneak into the office and grab a copy of the membership form and joke about the ways he could abuse his power. “Why don’t you excommunicate this person who doesn’t like that you let addicts attend services? You could always put this lady who complains about you playing ‘there’s a train a comin’ under church discipline!”

    One night I arrived at the church and the pastor was sitting in a chair outside next to a small fire. He’d been burning trash lately, so I didn’t think anything of it. I went into the office – all the membership agreements were gone!

    He had the smuggest look on his face when I walked out and realized what had happened. He was burning the membership agreements. “Now no one can use those powers.”

    If only more pastors could be that bold.

  192. justin wrote:

    For such a large church, the work gets done by a small group of people that are pushing the vision Matt Chandler lays out.

    That is the irony. They talk about a plurality of elders, but in practice it is mere eyewash for the rule of the Chief. Or the visionary. These men should not take the position of elder if they are unwilling to do the hard work of protecting the flock. Period. If they are mere glory hounds and yes-men, then they should not be elders. Period.

    I appreciate your perspective from the inside. That must have been difficult, and maybe you will tell your story or as much as you can tell.

  193. @ Been There. Still in Hell:
    I cannot imagine what your life is like and has been like. What you say about PTSD is so true. I hope that you will find some peace and rest. Thank you for sharing your story and telling what living a lie looks like and the consequences for a little child.

  194. My (now ex) husband and I went to a Recovery Group at TVC’s Dallas campus a few years ago. He has severe PTSD….so we asked the guy in charge (I don’t recall his name, nor do I know if it’s now the same person) about PTSD recovery resources. He did not know what PTSD was. UMM, WHAT? He was in charge of recovery services for that campus. Needless to say, and especially as I am a mental health professional specializing in trauma, we did not return. I share this to reinforce the perhaps shared sentiment that Jordan is unlikely to get the mental health services he so desperately needs as long as TVC is in charge of his “care.” I see it as an extension of their abuse that they are not providing competent services for people with serious problems (which is consistent in my research on spiritual abuse…leaders acting outside of their competency and preventing others from receiving appropriate medical/mental health services). Ugh.

  195. Anyone else feel like J D Hall is an expert at kicking when you’re tied up? What a bully. Phil Johnson, if you presume to read this, I am ashamed I ever supported Grace to You since members of it think there’s nothing wrong with certain associations you all know about. If they are not the spirit of Westboro I don’t know what is. J D Hall needs public rebuke for weighing in on something he hasn’t educated himself about properly. The sin of watching children raped on camera is not a sin of the heart affecting no one but the sinner. Karen is a strong woman, has never painted herself as a victim despite being victimized, and people like J D are opportunists. I’m done with any organization where guys are willing to overlook bullying and do conferences with each other as brothers when said “brothers” are willing to profit off situations for their own ego. Why I’m off Twitter at present. I can’t stand the heat… Grieving.

  196. @ mirele:

    So, two different attacks to be made on the “covenant”, which, once proven to be ineffective, means that all of their actions regarding Karen become TORTS! And I believe that they are engaged in a conspiracy to abet the crime(s) that Jordan committed, as accessories after the fact, so the whole lot could see criminal charges, provided the DA and investigating agency has the guts to go after a Highland Park mega church.

  197. @ brad/futuristguy:

    I’m viewing Matt Younger as a tool of the system. His letters are heinous and uncalled for. I’m struck by how in one breath he expresses sympathy and the next threatens church discipline. As I said the Kool-Aid is strong with this one. I ma working on a post which I hope to get up tomorrow night. Its going to be an open letter to Matt Younger and it will be very blunt.

  198. Kathryn Keller wrote:

    My (now ex) husband and I went to a Recovery Group at TVC’s Dallas campus a few years ago. He has severe PTSD….so we asked the guy in charge (I don’t recall his name, nor do I know if it’s now the same person) about PTSD recovery resources. He did not know what PTSD was. UMM, WHAT? He was in charge of recovery services for that campus. Needless to say, and especially as I am a mental health professional specializing in trauma, we did not return. I share this to reinforce the perhaps shared sentiment that Jordan is unlikely to get the mental health services he so desperately needs as long as TVC is in charge of his “care.” I see it as an extension of their abuse that they are not providing competent services for people with serious problems (which is consistent in my research on spiritual abuse…leaders acting outside of their competency and preventing others from receiving appropriate medical/mental health services). Ugh.

    Oh bloody freaking hades, are you KIDDING me???
    This shouldn’t surprise me, it’s Van Tillian presuppostionalism at it’s finest:

    “The argument in favor of Christian theism must therefore seek to prove if one is not a Christian-theist [he means a regenerate believer] he knows nothing whatsoever as he ought to know about anything … On the contrary, the Christian-theist must claim that he alone has true knowledge about cows and chickens as well as about God.[1]”

    Source: Hester’s Blog— https://scarletlettersblog.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/how-to-think-like-a-christian-tbb/

    This is a common heresy in the church, and it’s also complete lunacy.

  199. Charles wrote:

    still don’t get why you don’t demand a response from Jen Wilkin, the most forefront woman leader at the village…

    Why? Does she have authority in that church to make decisions, or is it a complementarian church where only men may make choices, be in elder and preacher roles?

    Was she involved directly in how the Jordan case was handled? Did the Village Church seek her input and counsel and put it into practice?

    Asking why nobody has asked about her in this matter would be like asking, “Why isn’t anyone here asking about Matt Chandler’s pet poodle’s role?”

  200. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:
    It’s Dianetics with Bible proof texts.

    There has been SO MUCH about this story that reminded me of Scientology…just watched that documentary and it is giving me chills to see the almost innumerable parallels…

  201. Hester wrote:

    Jordan sounds like a socially skilled child molester to me. Totally expect that more “real life” molestations will come out.

    I agree. I wouldn’t be surprised if more information comes out that he has in fact molested many children. But Village Church members seem to be banking on the fact that he has not, that he’s a totally changed man now, etc.

  202. Nancy wrote:

    Since when did marriage become the ultimate good for anybody, married or not?

    Yep. I know I hammer on the singles topic quite often, but these weirdo views some evangelicals have about singleness vs marriage also impact married people, how abuse is handled, and other things.

    Some Christians put marriage so high on a pedestal, they demand horrible things like women endure abuse or stay married to an abuser, etc.

    The deification of marriage needs to be repented of by evangelicals. If they did so, it may clear up a host of issues.

  203. Gram3 wrote:

    That is the irony. They talk about a plurality of elders, but in practice it is mere eyewash for the rule of the Chief. Or the visionary. These men should not take the position of elder if they are unwilling to do the hard work of protecting the flock. Period. If they are mere glory hounds and yes-men, then they should not be elders. Period.
    I appreciate your perspective from the inside. That must have been difficult, and maybe you will tell your story or as much as you can tell.

    You nailed it. The three men that were once the “trinity” (i’m being totally sarcastic) of the Acts 29 movement were Driscoll, Chandler, and Darrin Patrick. I heard a talk once (actually more than once) by MD about “the man, the message, the mission” where he lays out his vision for church planting. Patrick borrowed this and made a whole book about it called “Church Planter”. The idea is that there is this specially “annointed” man who is to be a qualified planter and approved by the likes of a system such as Acts 29. Which IMO puts a ton of pressure and responsibility on the “lead guy” which can result in pride for the ones that make it, and despair for those that don’t. This whole idea which I don’t see as being biblically supported as THE way to plant churches IMO results in this type of septic group think where the lead pastor’s vision is on par w/ the Word of God.

  204. I have generally always liked Chandler and am disappointed in the appearance of how this has been handled.

    Personally I always hold out hope in redemption and restoration for people. But it doesn’t change that you still have to operate appropriately. My cousin just recently passed away from a drug overdose after having been clean for about 2 years. He had cycled back and forth with addiction for about two decades. And even at his best, I still wouldn’t “trust” him with certain things. We had a lot of grace for him and towards him, but we weren’t naive either. While his death was heartbreaking and frustrating(he had never done heroin before but decided, apparently, that if he was going to fall off the wagon he might as well go for it…..) we are also not “shocked”.

    In the same way, I would WANT my pastors to have a heart of hope for people who come to them…regardless of WHY they finally came, or what the exact issue was. BUT, depending on the issue, I would expect them to act appropriately….AKA…inform families who had contact with them, contact authorities, etc.

    As far as the “discipline” issue goes I am personally occilating back and forth in my understanding/feelings on the issue. By the letter of their “covenant” any individual seeking divorce MUST go through their counseling process. I do not read that as a “YOU HAVE TO STAY MARRIED NO MATTER WHAT”. But more of a, “We ultimately want to see reconcilliation, but whatever decision you will ultimately reach, you have entrusted yourself to our care, and this is the agreed upon process of how we address it”.

    Where the ham fisted tone deafness comes in is the “forcing” of the issue. A few years ago we had a member leave her husband and had her new(married to a woman going through chemo) boyfriend and teenage boys move in with her and her young daughters. Then they started showing up at church together. She actually came to church more with the new bf than with the old husband…so I guess there is that…..We confronted her and told her that 1) She couldn’t be a member in good standing(which simply means in our context that you can’t teach sunday school or lead something) if the relationship continued, and, 2) We would never acknowledge her new relationship as appropriate…aka…we wouldn’t do a wedding for them one day.

    They chose to leave. We didn’t run after them and/or inform their “new” church of their malfeasance. We had everything documented because she had a tendency to lie about people so that if anyone ever said, “Hey I heard you kicked her out” we could say, “No, that is not what happened, here is the truth of the matter”

    Even though in this situation she was completely in the wrong, I didn’t feel like it would be helpful or appropriate to keep after her. It wouldn’t solve anything clearly.

    Circling back…EVEN IF Karen is making the “wrong” decision…what value is there in pursuing this. I don’t have a problem, in general, with a church saying, part of membership is an agreement that THIS is how we address THESE problems. But if someone just won’t do it….move on. In Dallas there are 1000’s of churches. Most of them could care less that she left TVC while under discipline. Even if one can make a case for their process being in general a good and helpful one, they are shooting themselves in the foot by making the process itself sacrosanct.

  205. Melody wrote:

    guys are willing to overlook bullying and do conferences with each other as brothers when said “brothers” are willing to profit off situations for their own ego.

    By their fruits you shall know them. Do they look like Jesus? If not, they just might not be in Jesus. Apologies to Jeff Foxworthy.

    J.D. Hall is an idiot. And I mean that in the most winsome way possible. He neither looks like nor speaks like the Jesus whose name he claims.

  206. I am still in stunned silence over the purely sinister nature of Jordan Root starting an organization in college to “help” (gain unfettered access to) sex trafficked children. Do you have any idea how much dedication, complex planning and strategizing that takes? His entire life has been unremittingly devoted to gaining access and trust in target rich environments. Funding the org by selling t-shirts that say “Save the Pimps”? A bit self-prophetic but cleverly paints even the pimps as victims too.
    .
    He conspired to gain unlimited access to the most abused children in the world, using his psychology degree to target the easiest base of victims, as these children were already accustomed to sexual abuse and being battered into silence. Who would believe these children if they claimed their “savior” was now their abuser? Why, they are confused or projecting or acting out based on prior atrocities. Poor Jordan! He dedicates his entire life to helping the least of these only to face false allegations from these psychologically damaged children. Why we’ve seen Jordan’s tireless efforts. This man is brilliant, diabolical and a valued covenant member at TVC.
    .
    Dee wasn’t exaggerating about the cover. Had someone besides Karen found the pictures and videos of little children being sexually tortured on his laptop? Why, brave, selfless Jordan was only doing research as any devoted psychologist/missionary would do. It was so he could better understand what these kids – his kids – went through so he can be better equipped to help them fully recover. Naturally, the images “repulsed” him but he was compelled to make the sacrifice for the good of the victims (night after night because you can never “research” too much). You certainly can’t blame him for feeling the need to empathize. After all, the man is a low paid missionary and devoted husband and family man. He serves out of love. And churches protect their own. They want to believe the best even when they are looking a wolf in the eyes.
    .
    There is not one documented case of a pedophile having been cured. Not one. This is a life long condition TVC! Jordon is a wolf. As another reader already commented, his only misstep was marrying a beard who was too smart and selfless to aid him in continuing the ruse. This man manipulated people into funding his perversion and you want to allow him to continue infecting the flock? At what cost? He was never there to serve God. He used God to serve his perverted, evil lust. Let him attend a Celebrate Recovery church where they are experienced in handling such people and in spotting manipulation. There are plenty in the North Dallas area. Please, Matt Chandler! Do the right thing.

  207. Melody wrote:

    Wow. TVC has a lot to answer for.

    Karma and her sister Comeuppance are working on it as we speak. Those two are relentless and will not stop until Themis’ balances are reset.

  208. Gram3 wrote:

    Jordan personifies the fact that their system does not work. They sell it as the cure for our cultural decline, like pedophilia, and as the cure for conflict between husbands and wives. They sell their System as the guarantee to wives that if they are submissive enough, their husbands will be good and responsible men.

    Their System is a Lie. It is a con with Jesus makeup. Jordan must be protected because the only way to salvage the System is to show that the System produces repentance and reconciliation and makes really bad stuff work out well. Karen must be destroyed metaphorically to protect their System. Because their System is their idol. The irony is that in an attempt to preserve their System of Authority, they have displayed for the entire world what they truly value, and I believe that those values do not align at all with the Jesus of the Bible.

    On a personal level, these are immature boys posing as men, and the thought of a strong woman who can follow God’s voice without their interference creates a panic among them. They know at some level that this is a play and they are all playing Roles. But none of them has the courage to face that and then to speak up and then to take action. They have demonstrated what they are.

    Absolutely brilliant comment. Quoted for truth.

  209. Eagle wrote:

    in one breath he expresses sympathy and the next threatens church discipline.

    He thinks that the spirit of the threat is masked by the sweet words. Cow Compost.

  210. Just to say thanks again to TWW and Watchkeep for exposing this, and praying for you as you prepare to post later. Also thank you to Karen for taking decisive action and standing up against child sex abuse, even though it is costing you so much. My husband and I will be praying for you beyond this time. God bless you.

  211. @ justin:
    Just out of curiosity, what would you say was the average age of those who attended that prospective membership meeting at The Village Church?

  212. justin wrote:

    septic group think where the lead pastor’s vision is on par w/ the Word of God.

    As a practical matter, they have supplanted the Word of God and corrupted it for their own purposes. Either none of them see that the emperor is buck nekkid or they are ruled by the Fear of Man. Priolo indeed.

  213. Adam Borsay wrote:

    By the letter of their “covenant” any individual seeking divorce MUST go through their counseling process. I do not read that as a “YOU HAVE TO STAY MARRIED NO MATTER WHAT”. But more of a, “We ultimately want to see reconcilliation, but whatever decision you will ultimately reach, you have entrusted yourself to our care, and this is the agreed upon process of how we address it”.

    I disagree with your assessment of what the problem is in your comment. I believe the problem is exactly what you quoted above. In this case, they are completely off base believing that reconciliation should take place. If the elders didn’t understand the situation when Karen first met with them, then they shouldn’t be elders.

    The verbiage in the contract of “under our care” is just creepy and reeks of an attitude of hierarchy. And who is to say what “their counsel” might entail? Never sign church covenant. It is like seeing/experiencing the Sheperding Movement on steroids!

  214. Burwell Stark wrote:

    One other thought ran through my mind regarding this situation. I think I have read everything that is available on the Root/TVC/Hinkley situation and no where have I seen TVC leadership admit that Root’s actions directly contribute to the production and dissemination of pornography (in general), especially violent child pornography. The fact that Root can watch and continue watching children being raped and tortured should where the focus lies, NOT on whether or not Karen got an annulment.

    I will say it again, Root is DIRECTLY contributing to the worldwide rape and torture of children through his increasing appetite and consumption of child pornography! Put that in your covenant and sign it, elders.

    I can almost guarantee that behind closed doors the TVC leadership is in full-on panic mode. If they aren’t, they should be. They are facing an international criminal investigation into the worst possible criminal activity imaginable.

    Also, a word to the TVC leadership: You should not be so vain as to imagine that your Biblical “counselors” are equipped to handle a subject as depraved as this. My cousin did earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology and wrote her dissertation on child sex predators…and it nearly put her in a depression due to the disgusting and vile nature of the offenders, not to mention the seeing what the children went through. You elders are in way-over-your-head if you think you can quote some Bible passages and see this man delivered. By viewing the deliberate, methodical and repeated torture and rape of children, Root undoubtedly has undergone chemical, neurological and most likely physical changes in his central nervous system (i.e., his brain). His way of thinking is NOT normal by any standard definition and he has become hardened/de-sensitized in ways you cannot imagine.

    Excellent comment. All the TVC morons need to read and understand this NOW.

  215. Adam Borsay wrote:

    I have generally always liked Chandler and am disappointed in the appearance of how this has been handled.

    The appearance disappoints you? Are we as Christians, and pastors in your case, supposed to be concerned with appearances? The substance of this instance is corrupt and rotten. That is because this instance is the fruit of a corrupt and rotten System. This is not about appearances, and Matt Chandler is not a pastor in the Biblical sense or he would not be so blind and so oppressive and so arrogant. I honestly do not see how you guys are able to listen to people like him, and especially after the D-I-V-O-R-C-E of Mars Hill and Acts29 wherein Chandler showed exactly what he was about!

    Adam Borsay wrote:

    As far as the “discipline” issue goes I am personally occilating back and forth in my understanding/feelings on the issue. By the letter of their “covenant” any individual seeking divorce MUST go through their counseling process.

    She did not seek a divorce; she sought an annulment. Divorce is not the same thing as an annulment. There was fraud perpetrated against her. There was no marriage! Please do not confuse this because it is an important point if we do not wish to go with the letter which kills.

  216. Adam Borsay wrote:

    Circling back…EVEN IF Karen is making the “wrong” decision…what value is there in pursuing this.

    Adam, what do you think about her decision? Your comment left me unsure.

    I think the very idea that anyone is expected to remain married to a paedophile is sheer insanity. It is the most disgusting criminal form of infidelity the human mind ever came up with.

  217. nathan priddis wrote:

    @ Gram3:
    Can you fill us in on what you ar referring too? Thanks.

    Federal Vision. Covenant Faithfulness. Paedocommunion. That’s a taste of what is happening in the PCA, and it is nothing but a re-work of Reconstructionism which was an epic fail. These are not the doctrines of the Westminster Standards, however much they twist them, yet the Big Names among the P&R shelter them.

    You can google the history of Reconstructionism and follow the names right to Moscow. Leithart was part of that crowd from the beginning. Wilson is a relative latecomer. They are preaching a gospel of power, just as the Gospel Glitterati are. I suppose Keller and Duncan are the interpreters.

  218. LT wrote:

    There is not one documented case of a pedophile having been cured. Not one. This is a life long condition TVC! Jordon is a wolf. A

    And because of their membership covenant and Jordan’s “repentance” they are obligated to “care” for and “serve” him. according to their membership covenant they are responsible for his soul.

  219. Gram3 wrote:

    I do not believe a word out of James MacDonald’s mouth. And I have reason to say that. Sorry, too late.

    Neither do I. He recently broadcast a radio series about how to gospelly manage your money, and the evil of debt. This from an admitted high-stakes gambler (with his 6-figure pastor’s salary), who lives in a multi-million dollar mansion (with his pastor’s salary), who ran his church into huge debt.

    And there he is, constantly and whiningly insisting that people ‘give sacrificially’. A grotesque hypocrite, IMO. And a great friend of Park Fiscal’s (where’s Nick been, anyway?).

  220. Deb wrote:

    Just out of curiosity, what would you say was the average age of those who attended that prospective membership meeting at The Village Church?

    I feel like most of the other people that were there probably 25 – 40, but i’m just guessing. It was 2 years ago.

  221. Been There. Still in Hell wrote:

    I suggest that that session he had with Karen had all his on guard resources up and active and his entire system was on high alert, so when she walked out of the room, he just couldn’t stay awake. It has nothing to do with lack of guilt or an easy conscience- it’s more a reflection of how hard he had been working to deceive.

    Excellent point. I’m very sorry to hear about your hell. Reading your story was difficult and you are suffering the aftermath all of these years later. People just don’t get it. Ugh. There is no quick fix. Your personal insight was very helpful. Thank you.

  222. Eagle wrote:

    I’m viewing Matt Younger as a tool of the system. His letters are heinous and uncalled for. I’m struck by how in one breath he expresses sympathy and the next threatens church discipline. As I said the Kool-Aid is strong with this one. I ma working on a post which I hope to get up tomorrow night. Its going to be an open letter to Matt Younger and it will be very blunt.

    Sometimes churches can overcome problems. It’s far more difficult when the systems are interlocking among harmful theology, flawed organizational strategies and structures, and unqualified people leading and/or implementing the system. This looks to be one of the systems where the corroded individual elements amplify the interconnected impact to an extreme level of toxicity.

    Hope your open letter makes a positive difference, Eagle … if only for people in the system who may not be so entrapped that they can’t see their way out.

  223. @ justin:
    If our former Acts 29 church in the DFW was any indicator, my husband and I were on the end of the age spectrum at 42 and 33 years old

  224. @ Melissa:
    At the time we began attending. We were there as non official “covenant” contract members for two years when I left. We continued to be on the older end of the age spectrum

  225. Question:

    What is it about Dallas?

    It’s like the church is the mafia, running everything behind the scenes. And such a high value placed on appearances, presentation, glamour, happy smiles, gloss and veneer — like this is the ruling priority, nothing must interfere with it.

    I can’t imagine anything like this happening where I live.

    I have a friend who worked in a national department store chain who said that their buyers choose special merchandise only for their Dallas stores, things not sold in their other stores in other places. The things Dallas shoppers prefer would not sell well anywhere else.

    I apologize to all DFW-ites for the general indictment here. I know there have to be many who carve their own path.

    Can anyone in the know explain Dallas to me?

  226. Burwell Stark wrote:

    Also, a word to the TVC leadership: You should not be so vain as to imagine that your Biblical “counselors” are equipped to handle a subject as depraved as this. My cousin did earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology and wrote her dissertation on child sex predators…and it nearly put her in a depression due to the disgusting and vile nature of the offenders, not to mention the seeing what the children went through. You elders are in way-over-your-head if you think you can quote some Bible passages and see this man delivered.

    Excellent summation.

    I saw a lot of these Village Church and Duggar Defenders on other blogs and social media who believe a mere statement of repentance, or a belief in Jesus, is enough to “cure” a pedo. It’s a very naive way of looking at things, and it can put more children in danger.

    If the Jesus of the Bible is true, sure, I believe Jesus has the power to “insta-cure” a pedo, but looks to me more often than not, he chooses not to do this.

    I still see plenty of Christians with depression, drinking problems, etc., to realize that Jesus (and having faith or memorizing Bible verses) simply does not provide a solution for every person, all the time, with every problem under the sun.

  227. @ Daisy:

    I think of my own problems and difficulties in life and am grateful that its not anything like pedophilia. Yet many Christians are sexually screwed up. And they are screwed up in other ways. I believe parts of the Christian culture make it worse.

  228. lydia wrote:

    And because of their membership covenant and Jordan’s “repentance” they are obligated to “care” for and “serve” him. according to their membership covenant they are responsible for his soul.

    The Devil already owns Root’s soul, for he has not completely and fully confessed and repented, and his church is abetting the Devil in this regard!!!

  229. elastigirl wrote:

    Question:

    What is it about Dallas?

    It’s like the church is the mafia, running everything behind the scenes. And such a high value placed on appearances, presentation, glamour, happy smiles, gloss and veneer — like this is the ruling priority, nothing must interfere with it.

    I can’t imagine anything like this happening where I live.

    I have a friend who worked in a national department store chain who said that their buyers choose special merchandise only for their Dallas stores, things not sold in their other stores in other places. The things Dallas shoppers prefer would not sell well anywhere else.

    I apologize to all DFW-ites for the general indictment here. I know there have to be many who carve their own path.

    Can anyone in the know explain Dallas to me?

    Honestly, these church mafias sound a lot like the social psychological environment of Stalin’s Russia. The lay people are both anonymous yet being watched at all times, sometimes by their own peers but no one really knows who to trust but there is a veneer of close quarters and community at the same time. Any crack in obedience or keeping in agreement with the society leads to punishment.

  230. Adam Borsay wrote:

    As far as the “discipline” issue goes I am personally occilating back and forth in my understanding/feelings on the issue. By the letter of their “covenant” any individual seeking divorce MUST go through their counseling process. I do not read that as a “YOU HAVE TO STAY MARRIED NO MATTER WHAT”. But more of a, “We ultimately want to see reconcilliation, but whatever decision you will ultimately reach, you have entrusted yourself to our care, and this is the agreed upon process of how we address it”.

    I’m sorry but when a party has confessed to viewing child pornography, the marriage is over. It is a kind of adultery. Karen Hinkley did the right thing by leaving Jordan Root and asking for an annulment. I said it above, and I’ll say it again: In the state of Texas, once you find out about the fraud, you must no longer cohabitate with the other spouse to get your annulment. This is what Hinkley apparently did. (I want to give an ATTABOY to whoever gave Karen this advice.) In my opinion, in my very personal and private opinion, I have the sneaking suspicion that the leadership of TVC wanted to put Karen and Jordan back together so that Karen would be in an impossible position: either forced to stay in the marriage or tainted with the stain of divorce. Because if she had gone back to Jordan and cohabitated with him, she would have lost her right to an annulment. And the reason why I think this? I honestly believe the leaders of TVC are so deluded that they believe Jordan Root has repented and is cured. WRONG.

    Adam, I am no theologian, and I’m barely literate in the Baptist doctrine of “soul liberty / soul competency.” But from what I read, the elders at TVC wanted to be Karen Hinkley’s conscience, no matter what it did to Karen’s life. Karen is the one who will be standing before God in the end, not Matt Chandler and the rest of the TVC management. Ultimately, it’s *her* decision, taken as she believes in God. She has to live with it.

    I think the whole notion of a “covenant” and elder oversight of ones life grossly interferes with “soul liberty / soul competency.” There’s no surprise to me that the leader of this Southern Baptist Convention-affiliated church has no advanced education beyond his degree in Bible from Hardin-Simmons (although it appears he may have been an Aggie). Consequently, he’s completely unfamiliar with what appears to be a pivotal Baptist doctrine. I’d personally like to hear Wade Burleson’s take on this.

    I don’t think there’s any good spin you can put on this situation. Speaking of Wade Burleson, I wish TVC would take his advice–yesterday. It’s very good.

  231. roebuck wrote:

    Neither do I. He recently broadcast a radio series about how to gospelly manage your money, and the evil of debt. This from an admitted high-stakes gambler (with his 6-figure pastor’s salary), who lives in a multi-million dollar mansion (with his pastor’s salary), who ran his church into huge debt.
    And there he is, constantly and whiningly insisting that people ‘give sacrificially’. A grotesque hypocrite, IMO. And a great friend of Park Fiscal’s (where’s Nick been, anyway?).

    This calls for a filk of an old Dr Demento piece, “Gimme that ol’ Unemployment”:

    “The tithes come in every Sunday,
    The tithes come in every Sunday,
    The tithes come in every Sunday,
    It’s good enough for me!
    Hit the racetrack every Monday,
    Hit the racetrack every Monday,
    Hit the racetrack every Monday,
    It’s good enough for me!”

  232. Gram3 wrote:

    You can google the history of Reconstructionism and follow the names right to Moscow.

    As a Cold War kiddie, I find the double meaning of “Moscow” very amusing.

  233. nathan priddis wrote:

    @ Headless Unicorn Guy:
    Correct. You should read Augustine. It will explain a lot about christian sex fetishes.

    I have read an online commentary on it titled “The Christian Sex Cult” which tipped me off to the subject. It’s thesis was:

    Monica’s son Auggie was a real horndog who through his entire life had no opportunity to ever relate to women as people, only (before) as sex objects and (after) as The Forbidden Fruit. (Tell me he didn’t bring a LOT of baggage into his writings.)

    And subsequent theology did not take that personal baggage into account. He was also (before) involved with a Manichean cult that separated the Spiritual (“Good!”) completely from the Physical (“Baaaaaaaaad!”), and that brought still another load of personal baggage into the equation.

  234. Eagle wrote:

    people in The Village and Village Church plants that will want to leave but will be stuck due to these membership covenants.

    I wonder how people can get out of those covenants?

    Does anyone remember Klinger on the TV show MASH? He would dress in skirts to get kicked out of the U.S. Army. Intentionally disobeying rules didn’t work for him, but could something like that work for someone in a church like The Village?

  235. Adam Borsay wrote:

    I do not read that as a “YOU HAVE TO STAY MARRIED NO MATTER WHAT”. But more of a, “We ultimately want to see reconcilliation, but whatever decision you will ultimately reach, you have entrusted yourself to our care, and this is the agreed upon process of how we address it”.

    It is beyond me how anyone could think there can be a marriage when one of the two can only be sexually attracted to children. Reconciliation is an obvious impossibility in such a situation. There is nothing to reconcile when nothing was there in the first place, and there is nothing to reconcile towards.

    As soon as such breathtakingly bad thinking was spoken by leadership, the “covenant” relationship with the church skidded to a stop. Add the arrogance, and it lay in shreds. It wasn’t Karen but the church leaders who did it.

    And that they did this to her immediately after she’d faced the heartbreak of a marriage sham, is beyond the pall.

  236. Lydia wrote:

    To give you an idea of how bad it is in the SBC, McDonald was invited to preach at this years SBC Pastors conference!

    Gaahh! If I were JD, I’d be thinking about keeping a low profile, downsizing, and showing some humility and repentance. But these guys do so love to bask in the limelight…

  237. LT wrote:

    This man manipulated people into funding his perversion and you want to allow him to continue infecting the flock? At what cost?

    LT, what is “beard” in this context? From your above statement, it sounds similar to the archaic term “fishwife”, i.e. a marriage entered in by a (usually male) homosexual to camouflage his orientation with the appearance of a heterosexual marriage. The wife married under such pretenses is the “fishwife”.

  238. Deb wrote:

    Guess who’s speaking at the 2015 SBC Pastor’s Conference…

    James MacDonald (among others)

    As I said to Lydia (I was reading backwards up the comments)

    If I were JD, I’d be thinking about keeping a low profile, downsizing, and showing some humility and repentance. But these guys do so love to bask in the limelight…

  239. @ LT:

    P.S. LT?

    “For Satan himself can transform himself into an Angel of Light.”

    And Sociopaths can, too. Successful pedos, serial killers, predators, sociopaths are all masters of camouflage. And of shifting the suspicion onto others. From my experience with a master manipulator, the all-around uncanonized saint whose skubalon doesn’t stink, THAT’s the sociopath.

  240. Gram3 wrote:

    J.D. Hall is an idiot. And I mean that in the most winsome way possible. He neither looks like nor speaks like the Jesus whose name he claims.

    My old college roomie had a saying:
    “You know what the Bible calls him? A FOOL!”

  241. Daisy wrote:

    I wouldn’t be surprised if more information comes out that he has in fact molested many children. But Village Church members seem to be banking on the fact that he has not, that he’s a totally changed man now, etc.

    And such Inconvenient Facts would mess up a JUICY Testimony.

  242. roebuck wrote:

    If I were JD, I’d be thinking about keeping a low profile, downsizing, and showing some humility and repentance.

    Deflect blame, double down and pretend the outrage did not happen. That is the formula. Not for a pastor, of course…

  243. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    And such Inconvenient Facts would mess up a JUICY Testimony.

    I believe this is the ultimate goal. To have a Trophy of God’s Grace (with an assist from our awesome system) which really then is a trophy of The Village’s awesomeness, as Lore so artfully put it, IIRC.

  244. Gram3 wrote:

    Steve Hardin? Matt Younger? Brindley?

    :) I see what you did there.

    I just was wondering why that guy keeps asking anyone here to weigh in about a person from TVC who I take it had nothing to do with any of this, who is not in a position of authority, etc.

    It would also be like demanding that we interview Chandler’s mail man, his barber, his dentist, his fourth cousin twice removed, the guy who delivers ths pizza to his house, etc.

    Unless that Jen lady that guy here keeps bringing up has power in that church and/or was directly involved in the discipline procedures that went on, I can’t see where she is relevant to any of this.

  245. Bridget wrote:

    (quoting Adam B)
    By the letter of their “covenant” any individual seeking divorce MUST go through their counseling process. I do not read that as a “YOU HAVE TO STAY MARRIED NO MATTER WHAT”. But more of a, “We ultimately want to see reconcilliation, but whatever decision you will ultimately reach, you have entrusted yourself to our care, and this is the agreed upon process of how we address it”.

    This is one of several things I cannot comprehend.

    So, if Karen had stayed with her spouse, and gone to the church’s program as the church wanted, would they have allowed her to quit the marriage, ultimately?
    If yes, then they are more obsessed with putting on a good show and appearances, and are into anal-retentive, bureaucratic rule- following than anything.

    I am assuming that, like most churches, had Karen gone to their care meeting, they likely would have pressured her into staying with the spouse no matter what, arguing that “God hates divorce” (and so on and so forth), and they would have argued that pedo is not a good enough reason for divorce or annulment.

  246. @ roebuck:
    Lydia and I were on the same page regarding James MacDonald speaking at the SBC Pastors Conference.

    But I’m confused about the commentary on J.D. Hall. Did I miss something?

  247. mirele wrote:

    I honestly believe the leaders of TVC are so deluded that they believe Jordan Root has repented and is cured. WRONG.

    That appears to be the case with laypersons from that church.

    If you challenge this view in any way, they will come back with comments such as: “So you think Jesus is too weak and inept to heal someone of pedophilia.”

    Which is not at all what you are saying to these guys, but let me tell you, when I have gotten the flu over my life time, I’ve ended up having to take medicine for it. Bible reading, prayer, and faith did not remove the clinical depression I had for over two decades, either.

  248. Daisy wrote:

    Unless that Jen lady that guy here keeps bringing up has power in that church and/or was directly involved in the discipline procedures that went on, I can’t see where she is relevant to any of this.

    Well of course not. A Relevant Red Herring is an oxymoron.

    On a more relevant matter, Article 10.2 of the BY-LAWS states that a member is bound “to submit to the authority of the Scriptures as the final arbiter on all issues (Psalm 119; 2 Timothy 3:14- 17; 2 Peter 1:19-21).”

    So, ISTM that the elders, Campus or Central, Lay or Vocational, are saying that the Scriptures are the final arbiter on *all* issues. I infer from that article that the elders of whatever stripe are themselves bound by the Scriptures as the final arbiter of *all* issues since they are presumably members. Therefore, ISTM that the *elders* bear the burden of proving that Karen was in fact bound in a real marriage at the time that she submitted her voluntary resignation.

    Unless I’m missing something about the meaning of *all* and *arbiter* and *final* and *Scriptures* then the ELDERS need to produce the goods before they go blustering all over the place about how guilty Karen is if disobeying them. They skipped the step where they need to prove that *they* are submitted to Scripture and not their vain imagination.

    As an aside, it seems unreasonable to have a set of bylaws that requires such parsing. Karen does not have a J.D. like the person(s) who drafted that document most like has/have. Scribes and Pharisees tying up burdens on other people’s backs that they are not willing to bear.

  249. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    relate to women as people, only (before) as sex objects and (after) as The Forbidden Fruit.

    If you think about it, they’re both the same thing.

    The Forbidden Fruit view ends up telling women they are to blame for men’s sexual sins, and women should dress modestly because men are supposedly so visually stimulated, that catching a glimpse of my lady knee or bare lady shoulder will give a man the the hots.

    That ‘modesty / men are weak, helpless creatures around women’ (derived from the Forbidden Fruit) view also sexually objectifies women also, but takes a different route to get there.

  250. Deb wrote:

    But I’m confused about the commentary on J.D. Hall. Did I miss something?

    J.D. Hall probably knows what he has to do :-)

    I think I conflated JM and MD – surely that is understandable 😉

  251. @ Gram3:
    Should have said I don’t know if Karen has a J.D. But a member should not have to have an attorney read documents presented by people claiming to speak for Jesus. This makes it clear that no one should ever sign a document from The Village because the ELDERS do not mean what they say.

  252. @ Burwell Stark:
    That really is the bottom line, isn’t it. Neurology does say we create hardened pathways through experience, and I’ve never read that these pathways can be completely extinguished. Jordan can repent, he can be remorseful, he can avoid children like the plague. But if he ever is in a position to reactivate those receptor sites and neural pathways and brain centers he WILL relapse to his previous ways of thinking and feeling, whether he wants to or not.

    God can and does work miracles, but also once the house is swept clean the demon can return with all his friends.

  253. Melody wrote:

    And finally, I can get along me with the idea of SiM wanting Karen to have a church sending her as a support before she heads back to mission field, but if TVC is framing that as SIM expecting her to reconcile with TVC and SIM is not expecting that then that part of the email is abominably manipulative putting SIM in a bad light. So SiM has a responsibility to clarify, or maybe Karen will.

    I tweeted that TVC was implying that Sim was in agreement to hush up abuse and that they had also terminated Karen and would they respond?. i am hoping they will somehow weigh in on this publicly. all formal info i have seen from them in the emails on http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1 say that they think families should be notified if they had contact with Jordan and that Karen is in good standing with them.

  254. Deb wrote:

    But I’m confused about the commentary on J.D. Hall. Did I miss something?

    Unless I’m confusing him with other people I was reading about, Hall was on Twitter today or yesterday saying that Root’s sins were “heart sins, not physical ones.” Or something to that effect.

    It came across to several people who read it as though he was watering down the seriousness of online child abuse images.

    He also made this (which I have not listened to and have no desire to):
    “Village Church and the Survivor Blog Gals”
    http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=52615115163

  255. But, wait! Article 9 of the BYLAWS says that God determines what constitutes a marriage which the ELDERS define as a relationship of “permanent fidelity.” So, again, the ELDERS have failed to demonstrate that the marriage was not dissolved by Jordan’s failure to be faithful. I should point out that the ELDERS’ own definition of sexual sin includes pornography use. That is assuming the best set of facts for the ELDERS, which is that a marriage existed in the first place.

    But, wait again! The list of sexual sins does *not* explicitly include pedophilia, so I guess the ELDERS/SCRIBES have a BYLAWS loophole for not immediately placing Jordan into the Church Discipline process.

    I clearly did not give the ELDERS enough credit.

  256. i would like to posts some excerpts of emails to show what was really said, in light of the obfiscating email that TVC sent to their members recently. hope its not too lengthy. they are from http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1
    first one is SIM letter in whole:
    Sims letter of termination sent to “friends of Jordan and Karen Root” February 25, 2015
    “Jordan has stated that he has not harmed any child and that he believes that he does not pose a threat to children. But due to the seriousness and nature of this conduct, it is unwise to rely on a person’s judgement about himself to determine the past and present risk to children who have been in his care.
    “We understand that this may create anxiety and stress for families that have been closely involved with Jordan. We encourage you to contact a counselor with expertise in child psychology to assist you in recognizing indicators of harm, and assist you with ways to speak with your children regarding this concern.
    “Karen continues in active status with SIM, and she will communicate with you further regarding her next steps. We appreciate your continued prayer support for her at this time.”
    Eric E. Ernst
    Director of Personnel SIM

    2nd letter from SIM is on same website, i only note this part: february 26 2015 confidential letter re jordan root sent from SIM. jordan confessed at interview with SIM representatives, from SIM child safety coordinator.

  257. email from TVC telling karen not to talk to anyone, and also suggesting they might not financially support her
    December 20, 2014
    To: Karen Root
    From: tvcdallas@psmail.net
    Subject:updates/initial thoughts

    1) Steve, Adam, Matt Younger and I are meeting tomorrow..I’ll fully inform them of everything I know from you and from Jordan. I will also pass along your caution regarding whether all sin has been revealed or not.
    3)…You questioned whether you have a duty to inform the families and ministries Jordan has worked with involving kids…
    Should further sin come to light, then, absolutely…But, for now, I think it might be best to hold off on communicating the possiblitity of sexual molestation to families… I think the most loving thing we could do for them is wait to see if any evidence surfaces that would be cause for accusation.
    4) …I think there is wisdom to you, us, and SIM collaborating on this. Have you sent any updates to your support network yet? If not, would it be ok to hold off on that for another day-till after our Monday collaboration meeting with SIM? I definitely want you to be able to get something to them quickly. I just also see long-term benefit to us all talking through how we handle communication together so that your supporters receive a unified message from you personally, as well as from SIM and The Village. This may be particularly beneficially in helping shepherd supporters from their joint support of you and Jordan toward supporting just you-should tha be the course we take. What do you think about that?
    thanks…
    richard.

    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1

  258. Daisy wrote:

    Which is not at all what you are saying to these guys, but let me tell you, when I have gotten the flu over my life time, I’ve ended up having to take medicine for it. Bible reading, prayer, and faith did not remove the clinical depression I had for over two decades, either.

    No kidding. I’ve had the same experience. What helped me was a recognition I had chronic major depression and I absolutely had to take my medication to be a functioning member of society. I’ve tried it without and got to spend some time in a special hospital back in the late 1990s. It’s one of the reasons why I’m opposed to Scientology, because while it would not provide me services (because I’ve taken evil psych drugs–and let’s be clear, Scientology “services” don’t do anything), it also wants to do away with the psychological/psychiatric professions and replace them with Scientology. I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be here today without my medication.

    We know some about pedophilia, but not nearly enough. What I know about pedophilia indicates it can’t be cured. I wouldn’t trust a child around a “saved” pedophile, not on my life. I’d be far more concerned it was a trick to get close to the child. Maybe when we’ve figured out the wiring of the pedophile mind, I can be less suspicious, but for now, I think the highest level of suspicion is warranted.

  259. excerpt from Dec 26, 2014
    From:Steve Hardin, The Village Church (mailto:rbrindley=thevillagechurch.net@mail70.atl91.mcsv.net)on behalf of steve hardin, the village church

    *****email from Steve Hardin saying Karen and Jordan are returning from missions. refrain from speculation (TVC tells church), don’t ask karen or jordan, ask TVC*** Sending Program minister Richard Brindley @ instead rbrindley@thevillagechurch.net or 972-537-1337
    signed
    In our Lord,
    Steve Hardin, Campus Pastor
    and The Village Dallas Elders

  260. Feb 11, 2015
    from Karen
    to the Village Church-Dallas Northway

    This letter serves as notification of my withdrawal from membership of the Village Church as of today, February 11th, 2015
    (excerpt)
    As Jordan does not have a future in ministry with SIM and I am no longer under the authority of The Village Church, I take full responsibility for communicating with my friends, family, and supporters from this point forward. I ask that The Village Church refrain from any future communication on my behalf to my friends, family, and supporters.
    In the Name of Jesus,
    Karen Root
    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1

  261. karens response to their refusal to take her withdrawel
    Feb 11, 2015
    to rbrindley@thevillagechurch.net; myounger@thevillagechurch.net
    Cc shardin@thevillagechurch.net; mattchandler@thevillagechurch.net
    subject withdrawal of membership
    Dear richard and matt,
    Please see the attached letter regarding my withdrawal from membership of the Village Church, effective immediately.
    I am still willing to meet with you at our scheduled time tomorrow if you feel it would be beneficial. Please confirm if you would still like to meet; I will need to know before noon tomorrow if you do. If the meeting happens, I plan to bring a friend with me.
    Because The Village Church has taken responsibility for overseeing Jordan’s care, and for the sake of the children, I want to plead with the church one more time to recognize that there is a serious possiblitity that Jordan is not being fully honest with you, that sexual abuse of children may have occurred, and that Jordan might pose an ongoing risk to the safety of children. I sincerely hope the church will do everything in its power to ensure that any child who may have been harmed is given the opportunity for justice and healing, and that children are protected from possible harm from this piont forward.
    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1

  262. sam wrote:

    email accidently sent to karen:
    Feb 11, 2015 3:44 PM
    from pastor steve hardin (mailto: shardin@thevillagechurch.net)
    to karen root
    cc rbrindley, myounger,
    subject: Re: withdrawal of Membership
    matt and richard,
    Any back story on her email? Where is she living? Have we tried to help push her under our care?
    love you brothers
    Steve Hardin
    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1

    “Have we tried to help push her under our care?” RUN AWAY, RUN AWAY!

  263. Threats of discipline if she doesnt withdraw petition to annul

    Feb 11, 2015 4:26 PM
    from: Matt Younger (myounger@thevillagechurch.net)
    to: Karen Root
    cc Richard Brindley; pastor steve hardin
    Karen,
    (excerpt)
    The elders of TVC cannot presently accept your resignation of membrship. In addition, should you not immediately revoke the petition for annulment, we would sadly move forward and formally discipline you as a member of the church.
    (excerpt)
    You are in no position to make these decisions apart your covenant community and the leadership
    (excerpt of them canceling the scheduled apointment she agreed to and instead insisting on a full elders meeting with her, reminiscent of petry at Mars Hill)
    We will forgo tomorrow’s meeting with you and will plan to meet with you this Sunday so we can have other elders present. Please do everything possible to be in attendance..
    Matt
    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1

  264. another request to stop harrassment and control from karen (excerpt)
    Feb 12, 2015 5:38 pm
    to matt younger
    cc richard brindley, pastor steve hardin, matt chandler
    (response to their rejection of her withdrawel.)
    …the leadership has made attempts to exert control over decisions that are beyond the scope of their authority (what and when I communicate, whether I take steps to protect myself financially, whether I may consider annulment, etc.).
    I respectfully ask that the leadership of The Village Church refrain from any future harrassment of me.
    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1

  265. Feb 20, 2015
    letter from the Village Church to Karen Root
    …As we have weighed the details of your situation, we do not yet know where we stand on any long-term implications for your marriage to Jordan…
    …we have been perplexed by your decision to file for an annulment of your marriage without first abiding by your covenant obligations to submit to the care and direction of your elders. as I mentioned in my first letter, this decision violates your covenant with us-and places you udner discipline. per section 10.5 of the village church bylaws, you are prohibited from voluntarily resigning membership…
    Matt Younger
    o/b/o the dallas northway campus elders of the village church.
    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1

  266. feb 20, 2015
    from: steve hardin
    february 20, 2015
    Important Update on Jordan Root.
    “A message on Jordan & Karen Root from The Village Church”
    Dear family, friends, and supporteres of Jordan Root

    ((explains removing jordan from leadership, never says why or what his termination from SIMs was for.))

    Removal from Ministry- Both SIM and the village church find Jordan disqualified from ministry leadership indefinitely. This includes all formal ministry roles for a season at the Village as well as SIM’s decision to terminate Jordan from employment.
    ((MY NOTE: removed permanently by SIMs but “for a season at the village”))

  267. continued from last post
    Removal of Financial Support- As a result of Jordans termination, Sim has automatically shifted all financial support to Karen. As all supporters originally signed up to support both Jordan & Karen as a couple, each of us will have to decide how proceed with our giving. The Village Church will make our decision on whether or not to reestablish support pending an ongoing conversation we’re attempting to have with Karen.
    In Christ,
    Steve Hardin, Campus Pastor
    The Village Church Dallas Elders

    The Village Church Dallas Campus, with permission from Jordan Root

    ((MY NOTE: sims is financially supporting Karen but TVC isnt sure they reestablish support and the church members should think about that)) ((reestablish, means they discontinued already at that time??))
    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1

  268. mirele wrote:

    We know some about pedophilia, but not nearly enough. What I know about pedophilia indicates it can’t be cured. I wouldn’t trust a child around a “saved” pedophile, not on my life. I’d be far more concerned it was a trick to get close to the child. Maybe when we’ve figured out the wiring of the pedophile mind, I can be less suspicious, but for now, I think the highest level of suspicion is warranted.

    I totally agree with you on all that.

    I hope your depression goes away, or at least is not troubling you too much anymore.

  269. re last two posts. clearly SIMs gave all the financial support to Karen, who also is a missionary. Clearly TVC jumps on this and possibly had discontinued financially supporting Karen and they are asking others in the church to see if they dont want to also end their support. Backpedaling on this in the Q&A they recently posted is probably because this is illegal in the employment field, and backlash that is illegal to employees who are wrongfully terminated and they would get their arse sued off for this and maybe still can

  270. Deb wrote:

    But I’m confused about the commentary on J.D. Hall. Did I miss something?

    I haven’t been able to find the exact quote that set people off, but I did find one of Hall’s obnoxious exchanges with Julie Anne here, where he refers to people behind survivor blogs, and who have been hurt or exploited by churches, as “unhinged” and as “professional, wide eyed victims”-
    https://twitter.com/Sing_His_Song/status/603338627670609920

    This guy should not be on social media, should not be a preacher, should not be in a leadership anywhere, not in church, not in the secular world.

    He regularly demonstrates a complete lack of empathy for the wounded.

  271. excerpts from Karen again asking harassment stop and the email inviting the whole church to come out and talk with them about Karen. I Hope someone that went will come forward and share what was said at that info session. Note at end of invite: bring the kids! ((((PUKE))))

    Feb 22 2015
    from karen
    To myounger@thevillagechurch.net
    subject re:letter from the elders
    {when she withdrew she was in good standing, again requests they refrain from any future harassment of her}

    Mar 11 2015
    from steve hardin
    subject: a conversation with the elders on karen root
    dear covenant members and supporters of the Roots,
    ..the elders would like to host an open conversation, specifically as it relates to Karen Root.
    Please join us this Sunday, March 14, at 11:30 am in Cambridge Cafeteria. We will be on hand to speak to the situation personally, to answer any of your questions to the best of our ability, and to join together in prayer for the roots.
    Steve Hardin
    The Village Church Elders.
    note: childcare provided
    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1

  272. finally the church publicly says that Jordan was fired for viewing child porn, in march. encourages everyone to love on him.

    March 13, 2015 from Steve Hardin to Karen

    (contains copy of church wide email, explains that SIM terminated Jordan for child porn.)

    ” Reconciliation in Relationships- As soon as he is able, Jordan desires the chance to seek your forgiveness for not living up to the trust each of you placed in him. If you so desire, we encourage you to prayerfully and graciously reach out directly to him.”
    http://watchkeep.blogspot.com/2015/05/she-speaks-village-church-protects.html?m=1

  273. Many many thanks to Watchkeep for posting those, as the media CYA blitz begins from TVC and Matt Chandler, (who learned from Mark Driscoll) the antidote to their lies is as always, the Truth.

  274. @HUG

    By “beard” I was referring to pedophiles in general and clergy pedophiles quite specifically who marry lovely, quiet, submissive wives as a cover. Pedophiles are only sexually aroused by their target age/gender group so the marriage is a facade. It is not a true partnership. The wife serves as a cover so the man can gain more trust and easier access to children than a single man could. Some wives don’t know. Some do and stay anyway for a variety of reasons. Based on how premeditated all of Jordan’s other educational, occupational and recreational choices were, it seems likely that picking a missionary minded young lady was his ticket to working with children in Asia who had been brutalized in the sex trade world, with less suspicion. The fact that their work involved some physical separation from each other in Asia was also helpful. He was still the “devoted missionary husband”, sans close quarter daily spousal supervision.

    In my part of the world the term “fishwife” refers to a really loud, obnoxious, boisterous woman who screams and swears in general, but with a bit extra zeal at her husband. It comes from the old fish markets where the tough fishermen’s wives would drive a hard bargain on the fish between gossiping and bawdy jokes. Somewhere I’m picturing certain TVC leaders slouching in a leather arm chair nursing a scotch and muttering the term “fishwife” as they read TWW on their IPhone 6Pluses. Whether that refers to Dee or Karen, I know not….

  275. I have had Karen on my mind the entire day, and I have come to the conclusion that what has happened to her is PROVIDENTIAL.

    The egregious situation in which she finds herself is giving us a birds eye view of the atrocities that are being carried out in the name of Jesus Christ, which have largely been concealed to both those on the inside and outside of Neo-Cal churches.

    This is the revamped shepherding movement, and it is wreaking havoc in congregations across the U.S., especially those aligning themselves with Acts 29 and 9Marx (NOT a typo!)

    I absolutely believe our beloved Karen is in this terrible mess FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS.

  276. i am remembering that at Mars Hill the “covenant” included that the wives must always give their husbands access to any electronic communications they have, and the men if asked by their group leaders or elders have to provide same to them. I am praying that any women or men in WVC are given grace and protection in this area by Jesus so they can see the online conversations about this and not just what the church feeds them. amen

  277. Deb wrote:

    I have had Karen on my mind the entire day, and I have come to the conclusion that what has happened to her is PROVIDENTIAL.

    The egregious situation in which she finds herself is giving us a birds eye view of the atrocities that are being carried out in the name of Jesus Christ, which have largely been concealed to both those on the inside and outside of Neo-Cal churches.

    This is the revamped shepherding movement, and it is wreaking havoc in congregations across the U.S., especially those aligning themselves with Acts 29 and 9Marx (NOT a typo!)

    I absolutely believe our beloved Karen is in this terrible mess FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS.

    i agree!
    Esther called for the nation to fast and pray for her during her ‘SUCH A TIME AS THIS.’ i think we should too

  278. @ Deb:

    Me too, Deb. You know, courage and truth are inspiring. Power and control are oppressive. I cannot get over how she took her own life in hand and did what she did at her age. She totally separated herself from deception and fraud. It is just sadly amazing her own church leaders wanted her to get their permission to separate herself from such evil deeds. That church is not safe.

  279. Deb wrote:

    This is the revamped shepherding movement, and it is wreaking havoc in congregations across the U.S., especially those aligning themselves with Acts 29 and 9Marx

    I still thing Mahaney is the key. He was into shepherding when he was young. Shepherding fits with the obsessive and insecure control-freakery of Piper and Grudem. They mix that with the urbane Dever who is politically connected with Mohler who controls the assets of the SBC along with its flagship seminary that is pumping out acolytes for the System. Keller and MacDonald bring in their constituencies and soon we have a real mess.

  280. @ Lydia:
    Some of us who are older are happy to have the opportunity to speak up for our younger sisters who are being oppressed. I must say I am disappointed and puzzled by some of our commenters who have been less than totally supportive.

    I’m so proud that a young woman who is vulnerable to the whims and caprice of men who have such a warped view of women had the courage to stand up to the bullies and the intimidation. Deborah and Jael for a new generation.

    And I truly hope that a lot of young women who are caught up in the romance of the myth that these men are spinning will wake up and smell the coffee. These power-mad men are not interested in protecting you, and they will eviscerate you if they think you are a threat to their empire.

  281. @ Gram3:

    When the Mahaney scandal first hit, Mohler gave a quote to a local reporter, Peter King of the Courier Journal, within a day or so. (As if his words of support would make it all go away).

    And of course, King is going to print whatever local great Mohler says. Mohler said soemthing along the lines that the “bloggers” just do not like Mahaney’s strong leadership. Mohler was blaming the bloggers for telling stories because they wanted to take the powerful down. He said some other praising things about Mahaney that are boilier plate.

    Within a year, that article was totally erased from the internet.

  282. Lydia wrote:

    Mohler was blaming the bloggers for telling stories because they wanted to take the powerful down.

    This is a theme that they all just keep repeating. It does not occur to them that perhaps God is using the bloggers because the Great Men and all their wannabes have abandoned their responsibility to protect his church, and God is raising up others, even females(!) to defend his church. Isn’t that the reason they always give for Deborah being a judge? Do they ever pay attention to what they are saying?

  283. Gram3 wrote:

    I must say I am disappointed and puzzled by some of our commenters who have been less than totally supportive.

    You should read the comments over at Matthew Paul Turner on this topic. There are several implying Karen is the problem for not abiding by the covenant. It is scary what people believe.

    It starts small like it did in the SBC. We want to clean the rolls off because we are lying about our numbers. Oh yes, people totally agree! Who wouldn’t?

    Then they call it church discipline. Yes, ok. Give it a name

    Then that definition expands to we want adulterers out of our churches. Oh yes, totally.

    Then it becomes about submitting to a local church. Hmm. Ooookaaay.

    Well of course the devil is in the details so the local church really means the leaders who want to care for your soul. Well you have gone along all the way so now you want to disagree?

    And before you know it, the leaders are acting as the Holy Spirit for the members. And the members did not have a line in the sand.

  284. GovPappy wrote:

    The fact that the FBI did a check on the computer and found nothing doesn’t really tell us much, other than he left no traces

    I’ll throw my two cents in here. I’ve done computer forensics for numerous court cases so I have some experience.

    It used to be that you could find most anything someone did on a computer but no longer. The understanding that even deleted files can be recovered is becoming fairly well known and tools are available to overwrite deleted files so they will be unrecoverable.

    If the perpetrator is reasonably intelligent they will be aware of these tools to cover their tracks. The FBI might not be able to recover the files, but there would likely be traces or indications that such tools were used. The difference is this would be an indication of suspicious activity but would be well short of the evidence required to bring any charges.

    So the question would be are there indications the computer had been recently wiped, deleted files purged, or tools installed that would keep the system “clean”. The FBI would likely not provide an answer for that.

  285. JD Hall is a bully. Did a web search to see what was being said about TVC and so on and saw personal comments from him on Twitter using someone’s spouse just to make a perverse point about heart sin. Then if it’s true he thinks Jordan Root viewing child sex abuse images only constitutes a heart sin and is not worth divorcing over because JR apparently wasn’t actually abusing anyone himself, well, JD needs more than just help he needs a little rubber room. And anyone who loves him needs to tell him so and stop associating with him and doing conferences and patting him in the back until he quits bullying and educates himself about abuse. Plus he needs to learn to get his facts right before he talks about anything. I can’t believe he has been allowed to keep preaching and teaching online. His internet time out if any was shorter than Driscoll’s.

    @ Daisy:

  286. mirele wrote:

    “Have we tried to help push her under our care?” RUN AWAY, RUN AWAY!

    Could you imagine if Valentine’s Day cards were like this?

    “Hey Baby, I want to push you under my care. Be my Valentine, I insist. Be Mine, or else.”

  287. @ Bill M:
    I’d also be curious if he’s confessed and documented to the authorities how he accessed child porn. That takes some knowledge of the seedy side of the web, it’s not like you can google it up. He’ll either be a member of a site or use something like the TOR browser to access a deep website.

  288. Daisy wrote:

    mirele wrote:

    “Have we tried to help push her under our care?” RUN AWAY, RUN AWAY

    Could you imagine if Valentine’s Day cards were like this?

    “Hey Baby, I want to push you under my care. Be my Valentine, I insist. Be Mine, or else.”

    Ha! Snort.

    How does anyone think they have that much right to invade a person’s life???

    How can you not say, we understand why you want separation of support/counsel, we hope you find the healing you need.
    Please do not hesitate to let us know if we can do anything for you in the future.

    But I guess that’s just what…I don’t know, SANE people might say.

  289. Ok so I just read about TVC telling people to affirm and care for JRoot because he had repented. That creates a potential situation where Karen is left standing with no support anyway while JR gets to look like a victim. I mean seriously on top of that they discipline her for expelling the evil person from her life?!?!?!?!?

    Mandy wrote:

    Daisy wrote:

    mirele wrote:

    “Have we tried to help push her under our care?” RUN AWAY, RUN AWAY

    Could you imagine if Valentine’s Day cards were like this?

    “Hey Baby, I want to push you under my care. Be my Valentine, I insist. Be Mine, or else.”

    Ha! Snort.

    How does anyone think they have that much right to invade a person’s life???

    How can you not say, we understand why you want separation of support/counsel, we hope you find the healing you need.
    Please do not hesitate to let us know if we can do anything for you in the future.

    But I guess that’s just what…I don’t know, SANE people might say.

  290. Lydia wrote:

    There are several implying Karen is the problem for not abiding by the covenant.

    They’ve been doing that on almost every blog where this is being discussed.

    I think even Adam B. was saying this here, if you scroll up the page to find his post in this thread. He sees a problem in that he thinks the wife did not follow the procedures outlined in the church’s membership.

  291. Burwell Stark wrote:

    My cousin did earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology and wrote her dissertation on child sex predators…and it nearly put her in a depression due to the disgusting and vile nature of the offenders, not to mention the seeing what the children went through.

    I worked on several computer forensic cases in this area and turned further work away for the same reasons you cited. The bulk of the forensic work in my locale was in this category so I never developed it as a specialty, just the occasional criminal case where the information needed was accounting data or emails. Interesting stuff and I didn’t need purge and shower later. I also didn’t need to shut my office door to hide what I was working on.

  292. @ Melody:
    Another thing, too, I’ve read interviews with women who divorced a husband over adult porn use, and they say the porn consumes the husband, and other than it making the wife feel second rate, they cannot get their spouse’s undivided attention anymore.

    There are some addicts who get over adult porn use, and out of those, I have heard them admit that all their free time, mental energy, and money went into the dirty pictures.

    They preferred to spend their time looking at that stuff than in working on their relationship with their wives.

    So even if the husband is not actually have a “flesh and blood” affair with a living woman, looking at photos on a computer or magazine all day, every day can disrupt a marriage just as badly.

  293. Melody wrote:

    Ok so I just read about TVC telling people to affirm and care for JRoot because he had repented. That creates a potential situation where Karen is left standing with no support anyway while JR gets to look like a victim. I mean seriously on top of that they discipline her for expelling the evil person from her life?!?!?!?!?

    It is sickening. I mean, it sound like they really believe they were doing the “right thing”- at first.
    Kind of like a kid in preschool who squeezed the bunny too hard because “it needed love”.
    By now they MUST know it was, in fact, a terrible plan.

    But they are in too deep. To apologize? Admit they were wrong? That the didn’t have authority over this lowly woman?

    Perish the thought.

  294. Daisy wrote:

    The deification of marriage needs to be repented of by evangelicals. If they did so, it may clear up a host of issues.

    A. Men. Last time I checked, even Neo-Cals didn’t think that marriage had salvific power.

  295. @ Melody:

    Because when you submit to the leadership it wipes away your sins. The ulitmate sin is not submitting to their “care”.

  296. I read the thread at MPT. There are some people on that thread who are so far into the cave dive that they will never, ever find their way out. Seriously, what is it that makes people such nitpickers about a man-made document that is vague. I imagine we will discuss the particulars of the covenant on an upcoming thread. But honestly, I had no idea. But then, I thought SGM would take down the System because it was so outrageous and indefensible. Then Mars Hill. Now The Village. Why have people lost their minds to the point that they are focused on Karen’s non-sin unpardonable “sin?”

  297. Beakerj wrote:

    Adam, what do you think about her decision? Your comment left me unsure.

    Sorry for a slow response…I agree with her decision to have her marriage annulled. My larger point was when you initially agree to their counsel in the event of a potential ending of a marriage, it is a bit tricky to then say you didn’t mean that. Again, I think they are being ridiculous and harmful in how far they are taking this. But this is why it is important to know what it is you are agreeing to when you agree to something.

  298. Gram3 wrote:

    Why have people lost their minds to the point that they are focused on Karen’s non-sin unpardonable “sin?”

    I have been thinking about this sort of thing for a long time, and all I have been able to come up with is that these ‘churches’ are no more than control-freak franchises taking advantage of the desire for people to come together to worship the Lord. If that seems cynical, so be it. But from what I’ve seen and heard and read, it’s the way it is.

    Full disclosure – my church experience has been in small churches where everybody knew everybody, so the whole MegaChurch thing strikes me as, well, not at all right.

    Mega Church = Oxy Moron

  299. Adam Borsay wrote:

    But this is why it is important to know what it is you are agreeing to when you agree to something.

    There is no way to spell out every contingency in a contract. There is something called the reasonable man standard which has probably changed into the reasonable person standard. Would a reasonable person reading the covenant expect that they would be disciplined for seeking an annulment from an admitted pedophile and consumer of child pornography? I think not. Karen is being held to a standard which far exceeds what our hypothetical reasonable person would meet.

    It is false piety. Plain and simple.

  300. roebuck wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:
    Why have people lost their minds to the point that they are focused on Karen’s non-sin unpardonable “sin?”
    I have been thinking about this sort of thing for a long time, and all I have been able to come up with is that these ‘churches’ are no more than control-freak franchises taking advantage of the desire for people to come together to worship the Lord. If that seems cynical, so be it. But from what I’ve seen and heard and read, it’s the way it is.
    Full disclosure – my church experience has been in small churches where everybody knew everybody, so the whole MegaChurch thing strikes me as, well, not at all right.
    Mega Church = Oxy Moron

    Amen

  301. Lydia wrote:

    @ Melody:
    Because when you submit to the leadership it wipes away your sins. The ulitmate sin is not submitting to their “care”.

    Isn’t that the issue that Martin Luther struggled against?? “These current “Christian leaders” want us to go back 500 years!! They are turning themselves into “little Pope’s”

  302. Daisy wrote:

    They’ve been doing that on almost every blog where this is being discussed.

    I’m wondering if you have come across any YRR’s who are discussing this on their blogs or Twitter or FB? If so, what is their defense of The Village?

  303. roebuck wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:
    false piety
    That’s the phrase I was straining for…

    So which one of the ELDERS at The Village will be the first to put down their stone?

  304. Daisy wrote:

    I hope your depression goes away, or at least is not troubling you too much anymore.

    I’ve found that as long as I take my medication and remain cognizant of my mood, everything is good.

  305. Adam Borsay wrote:

    My larger point was when you initially agree to their counsel in the event of a potential ending of a marriage, it is a bit tricky to then say you didn’t mean that.

    But she had resigned her membership, meaning there was no longer any ‘covenant’ in effect. They can’t hold her to something she is no longer a party to – unless the argument is that once you sign a church ‘covenant’/servitude/bondage/serfdom agreement it is for life.

  306. Adam Borsay wrote:

    My larger point was when you initially agree to their counsel in the event of a potential ending of a marriage, it is a bit tricky to then say you didn’t mean that.

    But isn’t that the larger point? You agree to something because you trust and it never enters your mind these same people would use it for evil purposes. As believers we are never bound to shore up fraud of any kind. Whether it is from “loving leaders” who use tactics of control or to a fraudulent husband.

    TVC leaders are the frauds along with the husband. Karen’s biggest mistake was naivte in signing it and believing they could all be trusted to have her best interests at heart adn they were all who they claimed they were. They didn’t and they weren’t.

    Now what I am seeing is many want to bind her to a man made document that is fraudulent. To them, her act of signing that is more important than her personal relationship with Christ, to truth and doing the right thing by not enabling evil. It sickens me.

  307. Gram3 wrote:

    I’m wondering if you have come across any YRR’s who are discussing this on their blogs or Twitter or FB? If so, what is their defense of The Village?

    I’m not sure of the theology of everyone involved. It seems that most are people who are members of The Village themselves.

    I don’t know about Young Restless and Reformed, but if you’re looking for Middle Aged or Older and Reformed, does J D Hall of Pulpit and Pen fit that bill? I think Hall is Reformed.

    I’m not sure of all his specific justifications for his views on this topic, but he seems to side with The Village Church and against the people who are siding with the Karen.

    Here is a screen shot with some of his Tweets about the matter:
    https://twitter.com/Sing_His_Song/status/603338627670609920

    He did a podcast about it, I provided a link above somewhere. I haven’t listened to it.

    If I see any YRR guys discussing it, I can let you know.

  308. @ mirele:

    I’m glad to hear you’re better. :)

    I used to have clinical depression, and medications didn’t work for me personally, but a change in how I view things sure helped.

    I do think depression may have a biological element in my family, because a lot of my family on both sides have had it, and according to my paternal grandmother (now deceased), several family members from way back when committed suicide.

  309. @ Daisy:

    The SBC pastor blogs probably won’t touch it. They totally ignored the Mahaney scandalabra. If they ignore it, it is not news. I think they are all scared to offend Mohler.

  310. Gram3 wrote:

    nathan priddis wrote:
    @ Gram3:
    Can you fill us in on what you ar referring too? Thanks.
    Federal Vision. Covenant Faithfulness. Paedocommunion. That’s a taste of what is happening in the PCA, and it is nothing but a re-work of Reconstructionism which was an epic fail. These are not the doctrines of the Westminster Standards, however much they twist them, yet the Big Names among the P&R shelter them.
    You can google the history of Reconstructionism and follow the names right to Moscow. Leithart was part of that crowd from the beginning. Wilson is a relative latecomer. They are preaching a gospel of power, just as the Gospel Glitterati are. I suppose Keller and Duncan are the interpreter

    I miss understood what you where referring too. I hung out with a Reconstructionist group and am familiar with their teachings. Including teachings that are not meant for the public.

    I did not recognize the names. Are you familiar with a new Reconstructinist effort? Related to TVC?

  311. Lydia wrote:

    The SBC pastor blogs probably won’t touch it.

    Cowards and hirelings. I certainly would not expect them to touch it. A pastor with a pastor’s heart would be outraged by this offense against the name of Jesus. For all their talk of leadership, and serving and protecting women and stepping up and all of the other selling points they are constantly spewing to mask what their System is about, it would be so refreshing if once, just once, one of these brave knights would actually take the point on this issue. If just one would have the courage to say what needs to be said. If just one would be willing to be cast out of the camp for the sake of righteousness.

  312. nathan Priddis wrote:

    Are you familiar with a new Reconstructinist effort? Related to TVC?

    Leithart was part of Tyler, but I don’t know what part of the movement you hung out with or when. I don’t know of a connection between The Village and “Reformed” Reconstructionism. They share a lot of common ideas, especially the chain of command authoritarianism and culture war. That said, there was a lot of hybridization between Gothardism and Reconstructionism, IMO. It must be Texas. :)

  313. Adam Borsay wrote:

    By the letter of their “covenant” any individual seeking divorce MUST go through their counseling process.

    She didn’t get divorced. According to Texas state law, she was never married. As someone pointed out above – TORT. I hope Karen pursues legal action, if only to wake the nation up to the lunacy of some evangelical practices.

  314. @ Hester:
    Men who want to be teachers follow the same rules that other female teachers do-don’t be alone with a child, don’t seek children out as your primary companions, etc. That’s just common sense nowadays (or at any time). Both the school where i work and my church have several rules for students and teachers being alone. It doesn’t just protect the student; these rules also protect the teacher from false accusations. There have been enough news story the past few years about female teachers molesting their students that they could fill a book. Wise people avoid putting themselves in compromising situations. People that constantly put themselves in compromising situations may be dumb, and they may also be abusers.

  315. Lydia wrote:

    @ Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist:
    they did not plan for annulment in the prisoner contract. i bet it will be added.

    hehehe

  316. @ sam:

    Matt Younger to Karen Hinkley regarding her decisions about her marriage:

    “You are in no position to make these decisions apart your covenant community and the leadership”

    A woman who used to go to Mars Hill:

    “We (women) just wanted to be participants in our own lives” (paraphrased)

  317. Gram3 wrote:

    Leithart was part of Tyler, but I don’t know what part of the movement you hung out with or when. I don’t know of a connection between The Village and “Reformed” Reconstructionism. They share a lot of common ideas, especially the chain of command authoritarianism and culture war. That said, there was a lot of hybridization between Gothardism and Reconstructioni

    A defunct group that were disciples of Rushdooney. Related to Philips father. I do not know all the personal connections. The movement never went away IMO, just had to hide. Incredibly angry and armed with a long list of enemies to be killed. Ended 2000.

  318. My beef is with false churches masquerading as Christian.

    Is this all too cynical?

    The VC cannot admit that there are any exceptions to the holy efficacious divinely-mandated authoritative nature of their Covenant, otherwise it would lose psychological force and no one would be emotionally, religiously or by conscience bound to it. This Covenant surely requires 10% tithing. If the Covenant becomes unenforceable to its signatories, there is no verbal or psychological or social means to cajole, shun, or intimidate tithing from those who might stop. There is a – now clear – mechanism for extorting tithes: not tithing places Covenant Members into disciplinary status, and disciplinary status prohibits them from resigning (even after the fact); members therefore cannot formally enter any other participating church without clearing their debts and their spiritual record with VC (and for some, excommunication may be the equivalent to condemnation to hell).

    I don’t know their financials, but as the roughest of guesstimates, if there are 6,000 Covenant Members with an average household annual income of $50,000 the resultant tithes to VC may well be as much as $30 million annually. If the campuses require a third of a million annually to maintain, and 80 paid staff receive an annual $100,000 salary, that still leaves $21 million dollars to be divided among the top 10 staff members, as salaries, perks and capital to leverage.

    If the 80 lower staff only average only $50,000 annually, then the top 10 divide $25 million dollars a year however they wish in salaries, perks and capital to leverage. Life is good! /sarc

  319. elastigirl wrote:

    Question:

    What is it about Dallas?

    It’s like the church is the mafia, running everything behind the scenes. And such a high value placed on appearances, presentation, glamour, happy smiles, gloss and veneer — like this is the ruling priority, nothing must interfere with it.

    I can’t imagine anything like this happening where I live.

    I have a friend who worked in a national department store chain who said that their buyers choose special merchandise only for their Dallas stores, things not sold in their other stores in other places. The things Dallas shoppers prefer would not sell well anywhere else.

    I apologize to all DFW-ites for the general indictment here. I know there have to be many who carve their own path.

    Can anyone in the know explain Dallas to me?

    Non-native Dallasite here and I’ll take a swing.

    At the time of Texas’ annexation, Dallas was a barely habitable swampy plain with extreme weather that happened to be in the middle of some trade routes. The rise of cotton, oil, and now modern commerce has made this a very prosperous place. However, there’s no cultural heritage besides cartoonish homages to Texan stereotypes and no defining natural features. So there’s nothing left to do besides make and spend money.

    With places like The Village, Watermark, Fellowship, First Baptist, Prestonwood Baptist, and Gateway, you can see how secular Dallas culture has more influence on Dallas churches than the other way around.

  320. Albuquerque Blue wrote:

    That takes some knowledge of the seedy side of the web

    Thankfully that is something outside my area of expertise.

    I do know these guys use proxy servers to hide their identity in case the site they go to is a sting operation. They are very cunning, adept, and careful. I’ve had the misfortune of dealing directly with narcissist and found how manipulative they are, I can’t imagine the mental gymnastics going inside a pedophile. @ Been there offers some valuable insight.

    Such single minded devotion is dangerous even for a just cause, for the purpose of using children for gratification is the epitome of evil.

    Speaking of insight, this whole thread has offered a great deal of insight on a very disturbing subject.

  321. nathan Priddis wrote:

    The movement never went away IMO

    The movement splintered into various factions centered around personalities. It’s hard for those who believe that the are the ones who are born to rule to live together in harmony long enough to bring in the Kingdom. What is scary is that their ideas have crept into so many places. Glad you got out.

  322. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    And the Christian Reconstructionist/Theonomy types are working to remedy that deficiency.

    And that is one of the reasons I follow blogs/sites like TWW. Because I am terrified of what will happen to me if those types of Christians get the power and control they want, so I need to keep an eye on them.

  323. Albuquerque Blue wrote:

    I am terrified of what will happen to me if those types of Christians get the power and control they want, so I need to keep an eye on them.

    It is always wise to keep your eye on people who want to rule over you. In the case of the Reconstructionists and their heirs, I don’t think they will be a big problem for one very practical reason. If everyone in the group wants to be the king, sooner or later everyone will be trying to kill off everyone else in the group. That’s difficult to believe unless you know some of these people and have observed them. That should be a practical comfort for you. For all the squelching of free speech and free exercise of religion that is happening in our beloved free country, I don’t see them gaining traction for their overwrought dominion theology with the vast, vast majority of Americans.

  324. Stan wrote:

    At the time of Texas’ annexation, Dallas was a barely habitable swampy plain with extreme weather that happened to be in the middle of some trade routes. The rise of cotton, oil, and now modern commerce has made this a very prosperous place. However, there’s no cultural heritage besides cartoonish homages to Texan stereotypes and no defining natural features. So there’s nothing left to do besides make and spend money.

    As a curious outsider, can I ask this – is Phoenix Arizona similar? Or not comparable at all?

  325. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Especially since successful predators groom third-party authorities (like church Elders) as well as their prey. As allies & supporters.

    If they weren’t such masters of manipulation and camouflaging what they really are, they’d have been caught long ago.

    There has been a few rumblings in the Australian media this year, culminating in Monday night’s “Four Corners” investigative report on bullying including sexual harrassment in the medical profession, but especially in the surgical field. One Registrar was described as the most charming man to his patients and superiors. The charm dissipated in the evening when behind closed doors the mask would drop and he would verbally harange and rip it up the interns – for lengthy periods of time (of interest, not only did the profession close ranks when faced with these allegations, including the Royal College of Surgeons and the Australian Medical Association, but so did the HR Departments, who have proven utterly ineffectual to raise complaints with).

  326. @ Gram3:
    I’m afraid I don’t share your comfort level about that Gram3. I have friends who have lost jobs, been harassed by church members in positions of political authority because they have left the church or are openly atheist or non Christian. I’ve also seen legislatures trying to create state religions, holy books or other trappings of theocracy.

    Here’s a picture of a woman pre revolution in Iran. https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/33/8a/40/338a40927f3dbe991003d21090b24693.jpg

    That sort of change can happen quickly and it’s something I watch for and fear from the Christians in America. Look at TVC, that’s 6000 people helping this happen. Or read the amount of people giving the Duggars a break cause they’re good Christian folk.

  327. Charles wrote:

    still don’t get why you don’t demand a response from Jen Wilkin, the most forefront woman leader at the village…

    I’m sure that at some point TVC’s legal counsel will point out that a bunch of guys ganging up on an already-victimized woman is a PR nightmare, and will urge TVC to get one or more female faces/voices involved.

    It will be interesting to see if any women agree to do this, and if so, who it will be.

  328. Stan wrote:

    elastigirl wrote:
    Question:
    What is it about Dallas?
    It’s like the church is the mafia, running everything behind the scenes. And such a high value placed on appearances, presentation, glamour, happy smiles, gloss and veneer — like this is the ruling priority, nothing must interfere with it.
    I can’t imagine anything like this happening where I live.
    I have a friend who worked in a national department store chain who said that their buyers choose special merchandise only for their Dallas stores, things not sold in their other stores in other places. The things Dallas shoppers prefer would not sell well anywhere else.
    I apologize to all DFW-ites for the general indictment here. I know there have to be many who carve their own path.
    Can anyone in the know explain Dallas to me?
    Non-native Dallasite here and I’ll take a swing.
    At the time of Texas’ annexation, Dallas was a barely habitable swampy plain with extreme weather that happened to be in the middle of some trade routes. The rise of cotton, oil, and now modern commerce has made this a very prosperous place. However, there’s no cultural heritage besides cartoonish homages to Texan stereotypes and no defining natural features. So there’s nothing left to do besides make and spend money.
    With places like The Village, Watermark, Fellowship, First Baptist, Prestonwood Baptist, and Gateway, you can see how secular Dallas culture has more influence on Dallas churches than the other way around.

    Agreed.

    Native Texans know that Dallas isn’t really culturally Texan, and hasn’t been for a hundred years or more. Going to Dallas in order to experience Texan culture would be like going to On the Border to experience Mexican culture. Or like going to Medieval Times to experience medieval European culture.

  329. Daisy wrote:

    mirele wrote:
    I honestly believe the leaders of TVC are so deluded that they believe Jordan Root has repented and is cured. WRONG.
    That appears to be the case with laypersons from that church.
    If you challenge this view in any way, they will come back with comments such as: “So you think Jesus is too weak and inept to heal someone of pedophilia.”
    Which is not at all what you are saying to these guys, but let me tell you, when I have gotten the flu over my life time, I’ve ended up having to take medicine for it. Bible reading, prayer, and faith did not remove the clinical depression I had for over two decades, either.

    TVC, like all Acts 29 churches, like Mars Hill Church, and like many (most? all?) Neo-Reformed, Calvinista churches, supports so-called “biblical counseling” (AKA Nouthetic Counseling), and eschews professional clinical psychology.

    Nouthetic counseling is a horrible, horrible thing, invented by a non-expert named Jay Adams in the 60s and 70s. It’s very name is drawn from the Greek verb used in the New Testament for “rebuke.” As you might guess, it errs towards victim-blaming and revictimization. Not to mention – it was created as the antithesis to professional, clinical psychological therapy…

  330. Mr.H wrote:

    Nouthetic counseling is a horrible, horrible thing, invented by a non-expert named Jay Adams in the 60s and 70s. It’s very name is drawn from the Greek verb used in the New Testament for “rebuke.” As you might guess, it errs towards victim-blaming and revictimization. Not to mention – it was created as the antithesis to professional, clinical psychological therapy

    “Just like Dianetics, Except CHRISTIAN(TM)!”

    L Ron Hubbard would be proud.

  331. Gram3 wrote:

    It is always wise to keep your eye on people who want to rule over you. In the case of the Reconstructionists and their heirs, I don’t think they will be a big problem for one very practical reason. If everyone in the group wants to be the king, sooner or later everyone will be trying to kill off everyone else in the group. That’s difficult to believe unless you know some of these people and have observed them.

    “Not difficult. I grew up in King’s Landing.”
    — Maester Aemon Targeryn

    House Lannister sends their regards…

  332. Burwell Stark wrote:

    By viewing the deliberate, methodical and repeated torture and rape of children, Root undoubtedly has undergone chemical, neurological and most likely physical changes in his central nervous system (i.e., his brain). His way of thinking is NOT normal by any standard definition and he has become hardened/de-sensitized in ways you cannot imagine.

    I think this is what the Bible refers to as “a hardened heart”, “a conscience seared by a white-hot iron”. Poetic ways of describing this rewiring and reprogramming of the central nervous system.

    Or, to paraphrase Roos Bolton in Game of Thrones, “Root has his own way of doing things.”

  333. @ Haitch:

    There are some people like this in the medical profession-or at least there certainly used to be. I am not sure what you mean by sexual harassment but being a generally nasty person and taking it out on the little guy-sure. In fact, a certain level of that has been not all that uncommon in health care in my experience. These people may indeed be the greatest guy on earth to the patients who basically adore them. And the hospital may genuinely adore how many patients he admits and how many procedures he does ($$$$) so no use complaining as long as he is a rain maker.

  334. Albuquerque Blue wrote:

    Because I am terrified of what will happen to me if those types of Christians get the power and control they want, so I need to keep an eye on them.

    There are things that I am worried about also. Probably not exactly terrified, but concerned. And it does seem to be that if things in general get really difficult then somebody will come along and try to identify the source of the problems and then target groups of people. I am concerned about a backlash due to some of the current immigration issues. A couple of my grandchildren are Asian and could easily be in some difficulty should things erupt. But I think that problems could arise from either side of the political spectrum and from either hyper-conservative christians or total heathen.

    So, yes, stuff could happen. I hope it will not. I plan to continue to live as if it will not. But I do not dismiss your concerns.

  335. Pingback: The Red Pill and The Village Church | Echoes and Stars UNITED STATES

  336. Nancy wrote:

    And it does seem to be that if things in general get really difficult then somebody will come along and try to identify the source of the problems and then target groups of people. I am concerned about a backlash due to some of the current immigration issues. A couple of my grandchildren are Asian and could easily be in some difficulty should things erupt.

    World War II prison camps for people of Japanese descent, anyone? Frighteningly, that’s not too far in our (United States) past.

  337. @ Albuquerque Blue:

    The IRS can now penalize you for not buying health insurance. Our state is requring workers to have their waists measured to get lower health care costs taht are 30% higher than last year at the low cost. That was not the work of Fundy Christians who want to micromanage your life.

    I simply do not understand why one is worried about what has not happened yet to officially control your life but not worried about what has already officially happened to control you.

  338. @ Lydia:
    Lydia actually any problems I have with the requirement for health insurance is that I’d prefer to go to single payer health insurance, we haven’t gone far enough yet. And I’d disagree with Fundy Christians trying to micromanage my life, considering how much they interfere in healthcare (birth control & family planning), education (teaching creationism and forcing a substandard sex ed), equality and many other topics. I submit that as a member of the majority religion you may not see how it treats the rest of us.

    I believe you’re a libertarian of the right wing, correct me if I’m wrong. Well I’m a libertarian socialist myself and I bet we could talk politics all day long, in a pretty lively way. However this isn’t the best place for that maybe? Allow me to leave you the last word though.

  339. mirele wrote:

    There is something very wrong here. If Jordan was looking at child pr0n on his computer, there should have been traces, unless he took a sledgehammer to the hard drive and replaced it with another one. Or something. I am not liking this one bit.

    Each of the major browser has a method for browsing without leaving anything behind:
    IE: InPrivate Browsing
    Chrome: incognito
    Firefox: Private Window.
    Also, if he knows computers well, there are utilities that are available that will write garbage over deleted files, making it pretty much impossible to recover anything.

    The lack of any evidence just tells me this guy knows how to cover his tracks.

  340. I haven’t read all of the comments on this thread yet, so I hope what I am about to say hasn’t been said. The manner in which TVC is treating Karen reminds me of the Scripture: “You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel!” Mt. 23:24 The gnat in this case is Karen’s refusal to be under the care of the elders at TVC because she signed a document of covenant membership. The camel is Jordan Root’s sin – that of finding perverse pleasure in watching children being molested over the course of ten years! How can the elders at TVC not see what is wrong with this picture?

  341. sam wrote:

    Deb wrote:
    I have had Karen on my mind the entire day, and I have come to the conclusion that what has happened to her is PROVIDENTIAL.
    The egregious situation in which she finds herself is giving us a birds eye view of the atrocities that are being carried out in the name of Jesus Christ, which have largely been concealed to both those on the inside and outside of Neo-Cal churches.
    This is the revamped shepherding movement, and it is wreaking havoc in congregations across the U.S., especially those aligning themselves with Acts 29 and 9Marx (NOT a typo!)
    I absolutely believe our beloved Karen is in this terrible mess FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS.
    i agree!
    Esther called for the nation to fast and pray for her during her ‘SUCH A TIME AS THIS.’ i think we should too

    Just letting the TWW family know that I am fasting and praying for Karen today.

  342. I’ve attended TVC in Flower Mound for just over three years and it’s very sad to see how people outside our community are stretching truth and making assumptions about this sad situation. I’ve read all the correspondence and understand where both parties are coming from.

    It’s clear from all that I’ve read in these comments that there will be no changing minds. Logic will not sway. Truth will not will out. The witch hunt is on and no one wants to extinguish their torch. That’s fine. I’m not going to address covenant membership or the pros and cons. As my wife is Catholic, we have never made the leap into covenant membership. She attends TVC weekly (as do our children) but was uncertain if membership would require rebaptism, so we’ve been content to attend regularly and not make things official until we move closer to the Flower Mound campus. So, as we aren’t covenant members, it would be disingenuous to discuss something I have no personal experience with…and would be hypocritical, since the problem I have with most of your arguments is that you know neither the players nor the system.

    I did want to comment on two assumptions I’ve seen made regarding power (or control) and money.

    First, one of the things that drew me to TVC (after a few years on staff at another large church) was the transparency of the elders and staff. Matt Chandler has repeatedly discussed his own fallen nature, the various backgrounds Christ has saved the staff from, etc. etc. In three years, he has never rallied people to vote Republican, has preached against societal Dallas area Christianity that can be a haven of deception, has worked to make the church a safe place for anyone struggling in sin to know and be known because we’re all messy in our wickedness. He’s preached hard truth that many megachurch pastors refuse to discuss for fear of driving people away…and has, in fact, refused to build a megachurch because he believes real church is us building community with each other and NOT what happens on the weekend. The multi-campus model is designed to spin off independent churches. Our Denton campus, for instance, is becoming its own entity, no longer tied to or sharing an elder body with TVC…and that is the goal for EVERY campus.

    TVC has an elder body, yes. Each pastor is an elder of the larger church body. However, there are always more non-paid, lay staff on elder board as a safety catch…so that it doesn’t become a bunch of “yes men” that vote a certain way to keep their paycheck coming.

    And lets talk about money. Someone posted about the number of members and the kind of money that brings in. The only thing right about that post was that, yes, the church bring in a significant amount of money. However, in 3 years, I have never seen an offering taken up in service nor have I heard money talked about in a service (unless they ask for a vote on how to spend it…which happened once, when we purchased our Plano campus.) People give gladly and TVC is transparent with their budget and spending. Matt Chandler drives a ’08 Honda and lives in a modest house. He has signed over his book royalties to the church (because what he does is in service of the church) and is funneled into missions and smaller churches…and takes no salary for his work with ACTS 29. Likewise, our worship team has chosen to sign over the royalties for the songs they write for TVC. Our ministers live humbly. And Matt and his family tithe back out of his pay, as well as budget for charity. Their daughter, who LOVES horses, had to wait several years for Matt and Lauren to find a way to fit a horse into their budget and, ultimately, the family had to sacrifice and save to make it happen. These are not people living high on the tithes of the people. In fact, Matt is usually the first to condemn that sort of thing.

    Secondly, if money were important to them, spinning off our campuses into their own entities would go against that goal. As it is, when there has been a surplus in the past, they present to the church a plan to put some into missions, some to help smaller churches with fewer financial sources, and to plant more churches elsewhere. They never save money or upgrade the sound system or any of that stuff. They ALWAYS sow it back into the kingdom in hands other than their own. ALWAYS.

    If you attended TVC and knew the elders, most of these arguments would be non-starters. The level of transparency is unparalleled. The amount of care taken to keep our church from being “The Matt Chandler Show” and his yes men is tremendous and led by Matt, who is aware of the temptation of and problems with a closed system. After reading all the correspondence, I see a church wanting to keep their end of a covenant that the member, sadly, no longer cares about. And SIM, who originally had no problem with her, is left wondering why they should send someone into the field who cares so little about her church covenant.

    As for Jordan, the email sent to covenant members makes it clear the sort of restrictive measures placed on him. TVC believes in counseling and while, yes, they have a few church-based programs in place for support, they DO NOT believe those are a substitute for psychiatric help, medications prescribed, etc. Matt Chandler is a big proponent of common grace coming to us through doctors, psychiatrists, etc. He doesn’t deny that God can miraculously heal, but he’s talked time and again about God’s grace to us coming through medicine and counseling. He’s also not one to just believe Jordan just because he submits to authority…which is why there are precautions put in place. Several years ago, a man in the congregation left his wife and the elders entreated him to return home and work on his marriage. Instead, he found a new girlfriend and tried to bring her to church. They asked him to leave and circled around the wife and children with support. This is not a men vs. women thing. While you may not agree with their handling of the situation, I believe their desire is truly to love rightly and not about power or control. But I also know that, since you don’t know those you are accusing, I’ll not convince you of that.

  343. @ Mr.H:

    you’re funny. but how is it that church leaders/culture there seem to have such power over other industries?

    is that a very large percentage of the population go to church, including those with wealth and power whom church leaders glom onto to co-opt their influence?

    why do church leaders feel this is all well and good? do average church-goers also see no real problem with this? or is it something they are ignorant of?

    it’s all very weird to me. like some parallel reality, based on values that are embraced as good but are actually very crappy.

  344. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    And SIM, who originally had no problem with her, is left wondering why they should send someone into the field who cares so little about her church covenant.

    I’m glad you commented here to provide one perspective of a member at The Village. This sentence that I quoted demolishes the entirety of the rest of your comment, however, for people who are looking in. And that is because you are focusing on a trivial matter which is *not* as clear as you would like to portray it.

    I have known SIM since it was Sudan Interior Mission. You are totally wrong about that organization. Period. I know the Dallas church scene and seminary scene–SWBTS and DTS–fairly well. At one time I knew it very well. I know people who know it very well. So, you are totally off-base by suggesting that SIM has been disadvantaged *at all* by this, and least of all by Karen’ actions. On the contrary, they acted well, while The Village has acted like the totalitarians. Please re-think this because you are mistaken about SIM.

    You cannot demonstrate that The Village did not break its covenant by failing to guard her interests as the offended party. To most everyone without an interest in the System this is plain. This covenant came with responsibilities for the ELDERS to fulfill, and they did not fulfill those responsibilities, unless you want to define said responsibilities as being limited to protecting their reputations and telling a woman that she must submit to their perverted notion of what constitutes a marriage and their perverted notions of leadership and their perverted notions of the Gospel, and their perverted notions of who is the Spiritual Authority of each and every member of *Christ’s Body* which is not subject to the arbitrary power plays of some immature men who have let their own self-importance rob them of any semblance of sound reason, never mind any semblance of Christ.

    You do not know who I know. You do not know that I am quite familiar with the System. So please do not tell me that I do not know how the System works or who pulls the strings. I don’t know all of them, but I know some of them, and they all sing from the same sheet and in perfect harmony. There is not a courageous one among them, from all appearances. They are bullies, and it is very concerning that you cannot see their anti-Christian behavior for what it is because you are so focused on a technicality that is totally fabricated in the first place!

    If you would like to discuss any of the issues using logic and the texts of the Bible, I’m more than willing to do that. Unlike the Gospel Glitterati, I do know how to reason, and I do know how to read the text, and I do *not* have any interests invested in making God say things he did not say. Including that the Son is the Father’s gopher. Yeah, those words sound blasphemous, don’t they? But they convey the real meaning behind their doctrine of eternal subordination. Do you believe that Jesus is a 2nd Lieutenant in the Trinity?

    I have no doubt that you have sincere appreciation for Matt Chandler. But it has blinded you to the reality. If you had a daughter who suddenly discovered they she was married to a pedophile, are you saying that you would march her down to the office of the ELDERS and make her submit to a “covenant” which nowhere says anything whatsoever about annulment. Nowhere does The Village say what someone signing their covenant is agreeing to, and they make their covenant mean what they want it to mean to serve their own interests. Just like they do with God’s words.

    A covenant does not exist when one party breaks it. Even the pagans in the state of Texas know that. Why is this so difficult for people who claim the name of Christ to see? This is 1 Corinthians being acted out before our very eyes. Along with Galatians. And Revelation 3. Wake up. Please. Before your daughters or granddaughters are caught in this deception.

  345. @ Eagle:
    That might be off-putting to many – to compare a voluntary signing of a church statement to slave labor and all it’s death and horrors. Not saying the village handled this correctly…. But SHEESH get some perspective.

  346. @ Eagle:
    That might be off-putting to many – to compare a voluntary signing of a church statement to slave labor and all it’s death and horrors. Not saying the village handled this correctly…. But SHEESH get some perspective.Eagle wrote:

    Its disturbing. I am working on an Open Letter to Matt Younger at my blog. In reading and re-reading Matt’s letters to Karen it strikes me that there is no room for compromise. Life is hard, people get ill, people lose jobs, there are a million and one things that could trigger problems with membership covenants. I am viewing them as a modern day form of slavery.

    I made a comment a second ago about his inappropriate it would be to compare voluntary church covenants to slave labor and this is the quote/comment i was referring to.

  347. elastigirl wrote:

    @ Mr.H:
    you’re funny. but how is it that church leaders/culture there seem to have such power over other industries?
    is that a very large percentage of the population go to church, including those with wealth and power whom church leaders glom onto to co-opt their influence?
    why do church leaders feel this is all well and good? do average church-goers also see no real problem with this? or is it something they are ignorant of?
    it’s all very weird to me. like some parallel reality, based on values that are embraced as good but are actually very crappy.

    It is a very weird reality, I agree. I don’t fully understand it myself.

    The best I can come up with is to point to the centuries-old role that the church has played in Southern society. It’s like, in Texas, being in a church is like having a membership at a country club. It’s a social component. No offense against Methodists, but they in particular have a strong reputation for this in Texas. Rich white folks who want some sort of social group / cause they can support. I think Baptists, who started out largely as a fiery, revivalist reaction against Mainline denominations, have slowly succumbed to the very thing they arose in reaction to. So now you have rich white folks (of which suburban Dallas has many) who are a part of Baptist churches for social reasons. “It’s just what good Texans do.” etc. etc.

  348. Actually, before you can become a covenant member, you must attend a class where they discuss your covenant to the church and the elders’ covenant with you and BOTH groups must sign. It is also sent for renewal EVERY YEAR so that you have the opportunity to revisit it. You must sign it again, each year, to remain a covenant member.

    Chandler and the pastors at The Village have NEVER taught that Jesus is some sort of underling or 2nd Lieutenant, but an equal member of the Trinity in both power and authority. Take that from someone who has sat under this teaching for 3 years. Also, all the sermons are available for download if you choose to not take my word for it. But why let facts get in the way now?

    You say I do not know who you know, but I have only your word for that. That’s fine. Your use of a term like Gospel Glitterati (a term I had not heard before visiting this site) suggests a smugness that I doubt would be breached by logic or continued argument.

    As for the Elders responsibility to Karen, they had a responsibility to BOTH members (Karen AND Jordan) and, by all appearances, attempted to fulfill those responsibilities. I understand that Karen didn’t want to reconcile…and I don’t blame her. Nor do I suspect that TVC blames her…they wanted only to sit with her and go through it. Why? Because you don’t endure the trauma that Karen did–finding out your marriage was a sham and your husband a liar–and immediately start thinking clearly. Many people that rightly divorce still carry guilt over HOW they handled it. Making life altering plans in the heat of that sort of pain and sorrow and grief is seldom a good thing. And because marriage IS MEANT to be forever, those steps even when so justified, should be weighed and discussed carefully. Nowhere is it suggested that they said to go back to him. Only that moving money was a move to finality and needed to wait until they discussed it. In fact, they supported their separation, so an annulment would NOT have been denied by the state because they were not asking or expecting her to cohabitate or even meet with Jordan.

    As for my daughters, I have two. And my hope would be that their marriage would never be subject to the sort of deception and hurt that Karen has endured. I would still, however, even in the midst of anger toward the offender, caution them to take some time to let their emotions cool down before making a decision such as annulment or divorce. Then, after wise counsel from credible sources, I’d back their play. My personal counsel would be to do what Karen did and opt for annulment. My dealing with TVC leadership has not led me to believe they would have an issue with that. Are they perfect? No. Could some of the wording have been better in some emails coming from the Dallas campus? Sure. It’s called being human. Even our BEST is filthy rags, remember? So we try our best. I hate that Karen feels let down. I don’t doubt that she does, nor will I say she doesn’t have that right. She has the right feel WHATEVER feelings all this has brought out. My only point was that, knowing these men, there is no conspiracy or power grab. There is only an elder body feeling their way through a difficult situation as best than can. I’ve watched them sacrifice for the body repeatedly and humble themselves to authority. Maybe they have it wrong. It’s not my place to say since they can’t discuss all the private details and, as details go, we only have one woman’s story. However, wrong or right, I believe their ultimate goal is love and grace. I have yet to see anyone grasping for money or power in that community…and those are things I am constantly on guard for.

  349. I’ve seen them. Did you read what I wrote before? Chandler drives a ’08 Honda and gives his book royalties to the church. He also tithes from his salary AND gives an extra percentage to missions/church plants outside of the TVC supported ones. There is no THERE there.

  350. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    I’ve attended TVC in Flower Mound for just over three years and it’s very sad to see how people outside our community are stretching truth and making assumptions about this sad situation. I’ve read all the correspondence and understand where both parties are coming from.
    It’s clear from all that I’ve read in these comments that there will be no changing minds. Logic will not sway. Truth will not will out.

    1. We are going by TVC’s own documentation
    2. Not sure what logic you are referring to except that you must believe your leaders are your mediator– which is not logical to me.
    3. If there is a “truth” that has not been spoken, then please enlighten us. Again, we have the documents from TVC.
    4. How have people stretched truth? ARe we not to take the words of your leaders from their own documentation seriously?

    What I think is that TVC is your normal. Most of us understand that because we have been in similar situations. You really do believe that your leaders have some sort of special annointing and they must be obeyed.. You believe that signing a membership covenant is biblical. I get that. Many of us see that as dangerous especially in an Acts 29/YRR environment.

  351. @Texas Truthsayer,

    Karen is thinking far more rationally and logically than The Village Church’s pastors/elders. It was within their power to order Jordan Root to do the following:

    1. Tell all of the names of the victims that he sexually abused, with details, and write it all down and sign it;

    2. Tell all of the electronic devices he used for child porn and how he concealed it;

    3. Go to law enforcement, confess to all crimes, and plead guilty in criminal court.

    4. The Village Church should have spear-headed the campaign to attend to Jordan Root’s victims and their families, wherever they are in the world.

    5. Instead THE FAILURES at The Village Church failed these children, their families, and Karen.

    Who cares how many *nice* times you have had at The Village Church? Who cares what kind of car that Matt Chandler has? Who cares what kind of money he gives to the church or the house he lives in?

    He and those pastors elders FAILED everyone and they bullied this dear saint Karen. It is inexcusable what they did.

    These are felony sex crimes, pal. Felonies.

  352. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    I’ve seen them. Did you read what I wrote before? Chandler drives a ’08 Honda and gives his book royalties to the church. He also tithes from his salary AND gives an extra percentage to missions/church plants outside of the TVC supported ones. There is no THERE there.

    Who cares? He’s still a bully and a failure.

  353. Actually, no, I’m not concerned with “normal.” As I said, I haven’t signed a covenant and am not sure I every will. My only concern is the character of those being slandered. While I do NOT know the pastors on the Dallas campus, nothing I’ve known of Chandler or the Flower Mound pastors and elders would lead me to suspect anything but grace as their intent. So, when people start saying “it’s all about control” or “it’s all about the money” when I have experience with such places and purposely and prayerfully chose TVC because they do neither of those things, I can’t just sit back and shrug. Chandler takes instruction humbly and frequently from the elders and the lay people on the elder board are there specifically to prevent “yes man” syndrome. All financials are completely transparent to covenant members (and guys like me that happen to see them anyway) and they don’t make any moves (opening new campuses, splitting a campus off as a separate entity, giving millions in overages to other ministries, etc.) without putting it to the body as a whole. They are the most open-handed church I have ever had the pleasure to experience. Forgive me for believing what I have seen and experienced for myself over the opinions of people looking in on an emotional situation from the outside.

    As for Acts 29, though I know little about the organization other than Chandler’s involvement, it’s well known that he was instrumental in removing Driscoll for the sort of abuses you are now accusing him of. If he would do that for the ultimate benefit of a friend (Driscoll) and a church (Mars Hill), do you think he would willingly let that same trouble brew on one of his own campuses? I guarantee you that if thinks abuse happened, we’ll start seeing Dallas staff on probation or removed from ministry. He doesn’t play. He knows he has to answer to God one day for the people in his care and I have never seen him NOT take that very seriously.

  354. Lydia wrote:

    Texas Truthsayer wrote:
    I’ve attended TVC in Flower Mound for just over three years and it’s very sad to see how people outside our community are stretching truth and making assumptions about this sad situation. I’ve read all the correspondence and understand where both parties are coming from.
    It’s clear from all that I’ve read in these comments that there will be no changing minds. Logic will not sway. Truth will not will out.
    1. We are going by TVC’s own documentation
    2. Not sure what logic you are referring to except that you must believe your leaders are your mediator– which is not logical to me.
    3. If there is a “truth” that has not been spoken, then please enlighten us. Again, we have the documents from TVC.
    4. How have people stretched truth? ARe we not to take the words of your leaders from their own documentation seriously?
    What I think is that TVC is your normal. Most of us understand that because we have been in similar situations. You really do believe that your leaders have some sort of special annointing and they must be obeyed.. You believe that signing a membership covenant is biblical. I get that. Many of us see that as dangerous especially in an Acts 29/YRR environment.

    Texas,

    Lydia asks good questions above. We are trying not to make any assumptions beyond TVC’s own documentation, Karen’s, and public record (like the annulment agreement).

    You do know that if there was ANY additional information that the leaders of your church could bring to light that would add additional credibility to their side of the story, that they would have done so already. You do know that, don’t you? The job of the Christian leader is to bring all appropriate information out into the light, whether it makes them look good, bad, or ugly. The job of the worldly leader is to control the disclosure of information, so that only what makes them look good (and their opponent bad) is dispensed.

    Ask yourself if there is ANYTHING to their side of the story that makes them look bad, and conversely, if there is ANYTHING to their side of the story that makes Karen look good. Anything at all.

  355. Michaela wrote:

    Texas Truthsayer wrote:
    I’ve seen them. Did you read what I wrote before? Chandler drives a ’08 Honda and gives his book royalties to the church. He also tithes from his salary AND gives an extra percentage to missions/church plants outside of the TVC supported ones. There is no THERE there.
    Who cares? He’s still a bully and a failure.

    I don’t see many other megachurch pastors with that sort of humility…nor any that consistently tell people in the audience to stop passing good churches in their own communities to drive to TVC. The man is constantly trying to shrink the church so the growth spreads into other churches.

  356. @ pcapastor:
    I have read nothing of theirs that made her look bad…only that she had no interest in talking with them. I feel her taking shots at them and, in her current state, I can understand. I feel for her and wish her well. I don’t think poorly of her for being upset. I wish she wasn’t so quick to see villainy where I believe there to be none…however, she is the recent victim of some terrible stuff and already feeling duped and mistreated, so I can see how those feelings might carry over into other situations. After my divorce, it took me years to trust again and it’s still tempting to bring pain from a past relationship into my 2nd marriage. Those hurts affect many things beyond marriage. I pray she finds what she’s looking for.

    As for additional information, TVC is not allowed to speak publicly about the private lives of members. They can speak about things within the body (such as an email to members) but not to the press or bloggers. I respect that. If they would rather look bad to a handful of people than betray what is promised in their covenant, I respect that…though it must certainly be tempting to just throw everything out there.

    As for the request to withdraw, I think it’s a matter of what both parties promised to do. Had she met with them at the point she decided to decline, I don’t think this would be an issue. I think perhaps they feel trapped by their own commitment to the covenant to do what they said they would. Since it takes two coming together in agreement to MAKE a covenant, it takes two to end it. Instead, she’s just said she’s done…which is not how it works, nor what she agreed to. But I’d like to see them let it go for their own sake and hers. But that’s not my call.

  357. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    Michaela wrote:

    Texas Truthsayer wrote:
    I’ve seen them. Did you read what I wrote before? Chandler drives a ’08 Honda and gives his book royalties to the church. He also tithes from his salary AND gives an extra percentage to missions/church plants outside of the TVC supported ones. There is no THERE there.
    Who cares? He’s still a bully and a failure.

    I don’t see many other megachurch pastors with that sort of humility…nor any that consistently tell people in the audience to stop passing good churches in their own communities to drive to TVC. The man is constantly trying to shrink the church so the growth spreads into other churches.

    Oh he’s so *humble* that he takes out this dear woman [Karen] before 6000 people when she’s been through enough. They insinuate themselves into her life and personal business, ordering everything from her finances on through.

    By the way, how did they know she had a separate financial account? From Jordan Root?

    How come they didn’t make him turn himself in and confess to all of his crimes?
    Why didn’t they order him to plead ‘guilty’?

  358. Michaela wrote:

    Texas Truthsayer wrote:
    Michaela wrote:
    Texas Truthsayer wrote:
    I’ve seen them. Did you read what I wrote before? Chandler drives a ’08 Honda and gives his book royalties to the church. He also tithes from his salary AND gives an extra percentage to missions/church plants outside of the TVC supported ones. There is no THERE there.
    Who cares? He’s still a bully and a failure.
    I don’t see many other megachurch pastors with that sort of humility…nor any that consistently tell people in the audience to stop passing good churches in their own communities to drive to TVC. The man is constantly trying to shrink the church so the growth spreads into other churches.
    Oh he’s so *humble* that he takes out this dear woman [Karen] before 6000 people when she’s been through enough. They insinuate themselves into her life and personal business, ordering everything from her finances on through.
    By the way, how did they know she had a separate financial account? From Jordan Root?
    How come they didn’t make him turn himself in and confess to all of his crimes?
    Why didn’t they order him to plead ‘guilty’?

    He was required to cooperate with DPD and FBI as one of many steps to maintain membership. The FBI has, thus far, filed no charges. You don’t plead guilty unless you are on trial for something. Just like the police don’t arrest you if you confess to a crime they find no proof of. So, TVC is left to tend to the spiritual side of the issue and leave the legal system to do it’s own work. Their only expectation is Jordan’s cooperation.

    As for the separate account, Karen said that she asked them to talk to Jordan about a separation of finances. That would be how they knew she wanted a separate account. For the record, I disagree strongly with some of the wording of their follow-up email…however, I believe their intent was good but muddied by poor wording.

    And, yes, humble. You can’t pick one thing you disagree with in the entirety of someone’s life and try to paint them as a villain. All I have ever seen is humility and he is not the HEAD pastor, he is the teaching pastor and, thus, is subject to the board of elders…not making decisions on him own or even leading the charge. He’s only the most visible because he’s an outstanding proclaimer of the Gospel.

  359. @ Michaela:
    Michaela wrote:

    Email

    So, we just inspect your life, find the worst moment…or at least the one most often misunderstood, and sit in judgement on you? Or does it take more than one instance? Because, I’ve got three years of constant gracious behavior on which to form my opinion. You’ve got one situation. If you don’t see the problem with that, I don’t know what else to say.

  360. Michaela wrote:

    Texas Truthsayer wrote:
    @ Michaela:
    I find him to be neither, but you are certainly entitled to your opinion.
    In life, Behavior is Truth.

    Sorry. My previous reply was to this comment.

    And I’m friends with a teacher who accidentally hit a child with her car. In a panic, she ran. She found out the boy died, put her house in order (one child was getting married, one expecting a child) and said her goodbyes and, then, turned herself in a few days later. People were incensed that she waited. Incensed that she fled the scene in panic. To that, I said two things, you cannot know what you will do or say until you are in the horror of that moment. And, secondly, that one moment, no matter how awful, does not erase the years of good and service, compassion and grace. So, even if I thought Chandler, et al. to be inexcusably wrong in this instance, it would not erase the years of humility, compassion and open-handedness with money and resources that I have witnessed over the last 3 years. And I think it’s unfair to take a situation that you are not personally involved in, assume you know all the details, and judge the entire ministry of a church and its officers based on that one thing. That’s hubris…and suggests you aren’t in touch with your own sinfulness.

    I’ve seen people ask why Jordan gets to stay at TVC…well, because like me and everyone else in every church everywhere, he is a sinner saved by grace and, though he needs extensive help, is still a brother. I see no intention to turn their back on Karen in that process, only her disinterest in it. That’s her right, of course. I don’t fault her for that.

  361. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    @ pcapastor:
    I have read nothing of theirs that made her look bad…only that she had no interest in talking with them. I feel her taking shots at them and, in her current state, I can understand. I feel for her and wish her well. I don’t think poorly of her for being upset. I wish she wasn’t so quick to see villainy where I believe there to be none…however, she is the recent victim of some terrible stuff and already feeling duped and mistreated, so I can see how those feelings might carry over into other situations. After my divorce, it took me years to trust again and it’s still tempting to bring pain from a past relationship into my 2nd marriage. Those hurts affect many things beyond marriage. I pray she finds what she’s looking for.
    As for additional information, TVC is not allowed to speak publicly about the private lives of members. They can speak about things within the body (such as an email to members) but not to the press or bloggers. I respect that. If they would rather look bad to a handful of people than betray what is promised in their covenant, I respect that…though it must certainly be tempting to just throw everything out there.
    As for the request to withdraw, I think it’s a matter of what both parties promised to do. Had she met with them at the point she decided to decline, I don’t think this would be an issue. I think perhaps they feel trapped by their own commitment to the covenant to do what they said they would. Since it takes two coming together in agreement to MAKE a covenant, it takes two to end it. Instead, she’s just said she’s done…which is not how it works, nor what she agreed to. But I’d like to see them let it go for their own sake and hers. But that’s not my call.

    Fair enough. I respect your opinion. You seem to be a reasonable and soft-hearted brother. Do keep in mind, though, that where you believe there to be no “villainy” on the part of the TVC leaders, that you weren’t present during any of their meetings/phone calls etc. with Karen. You have your reasons for choosing to believe their account of things. Reading Karen’s response to their 8-page letter to TVC’s membership, I am choosing to believe her account.

    (Also, I don’t see her accusing them of “villainy,” but I take your point. I hear her accusing them of overstepping their bounds, manipulating the truth, using their authority to bully rather than serve, failing to take the depths of Jordan’s wickedness seriously, failing to adequately protect the children of the church, etc. Maybe all of that put together equals her accusing them of villainy, but I’ll leave that to you to judge.)

    My perspective (which I recognize is as subjective as anyone else’s), as a long-time pastor in a conservative Presbyterian denomination, is that the leaders of TVC have a warped and unbiblical understanding of church authority. That doesn’t make them bad men, but it does (in my judgment) make them wrong, and participating in a system that cannot help but do damage, no matter how well intended they may be. There are reasons why (in our country anyway) a person, no matter how loving and well-intentioned, can’t just build a house for his family to live in, without it being inspected and deemed safe first. TVC built a method of church government (invented out of whole cloth fairly recently by 9Marks, but that is another story) that is unbiblical and unsafe. All the love in the world can’t keep men from crashing through the termite-infested floorboards onto the heads of women and children underneath. And the stories of the wreckage are multiplying from those who are finding their voice.

    Finally, I very much appreciate you saying, “But I’d like to see them let it go for their own sake and hers. But that’s not my call.” I think TVC would be in better hands if you were one of the pastors there. The longer they hold on their “rightness,” the stupider and more stubborn and arrogant they are looking. And worse, the more it looks like they are believing deep down inside that their standing before God depends upon their “rightness,” rather than being done with all that crap, and resting in the rightness of Jesus alone. Which, if they were truly resting in, they would, like you hope they will do, let it go.

  362. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    @ pcapastor:
    I have read nothing of theirs that made her look bad…only that she had no interest in talking with them. I feel her taking shots at them and, in her current state, I can understand. I feel for her and wish her well. I don’t think poorly of her for being upset. I wish she wasn’t so quick to see villainy where I believe there to be none…however, she is the recent victim of some terrible stuff and already feeling duped and mistreated, so I can see how those feelings might carry over into other situations. After my divorce, it took me years to trust again and it’s still tempting to bring pain from a past relationship into my 2nd marriage. Those hurts affect many things beyond marriage. I pray she finds what she’s looking for.
    As for additional information, TVC is not allowed to speak publicly about the private lives of members. They can speak about things within the body (such as an email to members) but not to the press or bloggers. I respect that. If they would rather look bad to a handful of people than betray what is promised in their covenant, I respect that…though it must certainly be tempting to just throw everything out there.
    As for the request to withdraw, I think it’s a matter of what both parties promised to do. Had she met with them at the point she decided to decline, I don’t think this would be an issue. I think perhaps they feel trapped by their own commitment to the covenant to do what they said they would. Since it takes two coming together in agreement to MAKE a covenant, it takes two to end it. Instead, she’s just said she’s done…which is not how it works, nor what she agreed to. But I’d like to see them let it go for their own sake and hers. But that’s not my call.

    [Woops! This is a re-post, as my first attempt got put into moderation, probably for my use of a different word for “nonsense.” Ha ha.]

    Fair enough. I respect your opinion. You seem to be a reasonable and soft-hearted brother. Do keep in mind, though, that where you believe there to be no “villainy” on the part of the TVC leaders, that you weren’t present during any of their meetings/phone calls etc. with Karen. You have your reasons for choosing to believe their account of things. Reading Karen’s response to their 8-page letter to TVC’s membership, I am choosing to believe her account.

    (Also, I don’t see her accusing them of “villainy,” but I take your point. I hear her accusing them of overstepping their bounds, manipulating the truth, using their authority to bully rather than serve, failing to take the depths of Jordan’s wickedness seriously, failing to adequately protect the children of the church, etc. Maybe all of that put together equals her accusing them of villainy, but I’ll leave that to you to judge.)

    My perspective (which I recognize is as subjective as anyone else’s), as a long-time pastor in a conservative Presbyterian denomination, is that the leaders of TVC have a warped and unbiblical understanding of church authority. That doesn’t make them bad men, but it does (in my judgment) make them wrong, and participating in a system that cannot help but do damage, no matter how well intended they may be. There are reasons why (in our country anyway) a person, no matter how loving and well-intentioned, can’t just build a house for his family to live in, without it being inspected and deemed safe first. TVC built a method of church government (invented out of whole cloth fairly recently by 9Marks, but that is another story) that is unbiblical and unsafe. All the love in the world can’t keep men from crashing through the termite-infested floorboards onto the heads of women and children underneath. And the stories of the wreckage are multiplying from those who are finding their voice.

    Finally, I very much appreciate you saying, “But I’d like to see them let it go for their own sake and hers. But that’s not my call.” I think TVC would be in better hands if you were one of the pastors there. The longer they hold on to their “rightness,” the stupider and more stubborn and arrogant they are looking. And worse, the more it looks like they are believing deep down inside that their standing before God depends upon their “rightness,” rather than being done with all that nonsense and resting in the rightness of Jesus alone. Which, if they were truly resting in, they would, like you hope they will do, let it go.

  363. @ pcapastor:

    I respect your opinion, even if we see it differently. And I appreciate wholeheartedly the way you said it. For me, it really falls into an area of who I’ve had the opportunity to watch as they work out their salvation. It isn’t that I am in any way accusing Karen of being dishonest. Only that someone I do not know (personally or in any spiritual sense) is describing men I do know (somewhat personally and spiritually through watching them closely and sorting through teaching for falsity–as we all should) in a way that does not compute. I’d certainly, for everyone’s sake, choose to believe this is all a matter of poor communication on both sides and not one side or the other seeking to demonize. That said, if I saw a pattern that repeatedly refutes what I have come to know, I would be forced to reconsider. Time will tell, I suppose.

    I don’t think they are failing to take Jordan’s wickedness seriously, btw. They just don’t see any man being beyond the hope of a gracious God. Jordan is no more depraved than you or I. It has just come out of him in a way we find more repulsive than others. I know them to be very cautious men, though forgiving they may be. Jordan must check in every time he attends, must be escorted while on the premises and isn’t permitted in areas where children gather. That suggests they take the threat he imposes to be a serious thing indeed…just not one that should deny him a chance at redemption. Forgiveness in no way applies “getting off lightly” for his contribution to evil which, by my count, includes sex trafficking, child pornography and whatever abuse the children in such material suffered. Grace and the love of your community in no way means escape from consequences. But those consequences are for other authorities…as well as one ultimate authority when that time comes.

  364. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    @ pcapastor:
    I respect your opinion, even if we see it differently. And I appreciate wholeheartedly the way you said it. For me, it really falls into an area of who I’ve had the opportunity to watch as they work out their salvation. It isn’t that I am in any way accusing Karen of being dishonest. Only that someone I do not know (personally or in any spiritual sense) is describing men I do know (somewhat personally and spiritually through watching them closely and sorting through teaching for falsity–as we all should) in a way that does not compute. I’d certainly, for everyone’s sake, choose to believe this is all a matter of poor communication on both sides and not one side or the other seeking to demonize. That said, if I saw a pattern that repeatedly refutes what I have come to know, I would be forced to reconsider. Time will tell, I suppose.
    I don’t think they are failing to take Jordan’s wickedness seriously, btw. They just don’t see any man being beyond the hope of a gracious God. Jordan is no more depraved than you or I. It has just come out of him in a way we find more repulsive than others. I know them to be very cautious men, though forgiving they may be. Jordan must check in every time he attends, must be escorted while on the premises and isn’t permitted in areas where children gather. That suggests they take the threat he imposes to be a serious thing indeed…just not one that should deny him a chance at redemption. Forgiveness in no way applies “getting off lightly” for his contribution to evil which, by my count, includes sex trafficking, child pornography and whatever abuse the children in such material suffered. Grace and the love of your community in no way means escape from consequences. But those consequences are for other authorities…as well as one ultimate authority when that time comes.

    Thank you, Texas Truthsayer. Good words. I agree with all of that completely.

    Meanwhile, on another thread here at TWW, I have learned of this news, and I am pretty stunned, in a good way:

    http://matthewpaulturner.com/2015/05/28/matt-chandler-the-village-church-offer-apology-to-karen-hinkley/

    I don’t have the same starting point as the TVC pastors, and I might have said things a bit differently here or there, but this is incredibly encouraging to me.

    (At the same time, I want to remove myself from the equation, because whether or not I am encouraged matters next to nothing. Whether Karen herself is encouraged is what matters.)

    Anyway, thanks for the respectful interaction, Texas Truthsayer.

  365. Jm wrote:

    I made a comment a second ago about his inappropriate it would be to compare voluntary church covenants to slave labor and this is the quote/comment i was referring to.

    It is binding her and removing her agency to determine how she will live her life. How would you define slavery? ISTM that the seizure of another human’s personal agency is the essence of slavery. That triggers a lot of “Complementarians” and makes them huffy. They need to think about what they are really saying.

  366. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    You say I do not know who you know, but I have only your word for that. That’s fine. Your use of a term like Gospel Glitterati (a term I had not heard before visiting this site) suggests a smugness that I doubt would be breached by logic or continued argument.

    How do the words “Rebellious Woman” sound to you? Or the idea of a woman who “wears her husband out” sound to you? That last one is from Matt Chandler himself. I use the term Gospel Glitterati because it is very descriptive of a number of things which are true about these men and their followers.

    There is an obsessive desire to imitate their idols. As in David Platt and Matt Chandler’s imitation of C.J. Mahaney’s style. There is a rigid loyalty to their idols. There is an unquestioning acceptance of anything that flows from them, and a corresponding vigorous defensiveness if anyone dares to touch God’s anointed. They like to make fun of the Word of Faith preachers, but it is the same phenomenon.

    The “conferences” which are what we used to call Friday afternoon pep rallies. Probably don’t have those anymore. But the point was rallying the spirits of the troops and strengthening the loyalty of the followers.

    These men are treated like kings. And yes, I do know how they are treated.

    So, exactly how does this picture differ from the people who slavishly follow the every move of the Kardashians or whoever is on the cover of People this week?

    If you look like a Glitterati, you just might be a Glitterati.

  367. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    So, we just inspect your life, find the worst moment…or at least the one most often misunderstood, and sit in judgement on you? Or does it take more than one instance? Because, I’ve got three years of constant gracious behavior on which to form my opinion. You’ve got one situation. If you don’t see the problem with that, I don’t know what else to say.

    And you wonder why The Church has NO CREDIBILITY with unbelievers. You want a special exemption for Jordan Root.

    These are FELONY crimes, pal. Felonies. Why didn’t Jordan Root confess to his crimes against children? Their names? What he did? Why wasn’t he forthcoming with where he hid the evidence? And yes, people can confess to crimes they committed and be charged. Why didn’t he man-up and do just that?

  368. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    But why let facts get in the way now?

    I’m happy to talk facts and logic and Bible text all day long. You should look into their Trinitarian teaching. You can look in Grudem’s Systematic Theology, or pretty much anyplace on Desiring God or CBMW. It is pervasive. It is like air that we breathe but do not take notice of. I have no doubt that they have not mentioned Eternal Subordination of the Son. They don’t talk about a lot of things that they believe. Do some research and ask some questions. Ask them if they believe that the Eternal Son is subordinate to the Eternal Father. I don’t mean the kenosis or the incarnation, either. I mean the immanent Trinity, though they say they are only talking about the economic Trinity. How does a Person in the Godhead play a Role? What does that even mean?

  369. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    Michaela wrote:

    Texas Truthsayer wrote:
    Michaela wrote:
    Texas Truthsayer wrote:
    I’ve seen them. Did you read what I wrote before? Chandler drives a ’08 Honda and gives his book royalties to the church. He also tithes from his salary AND gives an extra percentage to missions/church plants outside of the TVC supported ones. There is no THERE there.
    Who cares? He’s still a bully and a failure.
    I don’t see many other megachurch pastors with that sort of humility…nor any that consistently tell people in the audience to stop passing good churches in their own communities to drive to TVC. The man is constantly trying to shrink the church so the growth spreads into other churches.
    Oh he’s so *humble* that he takes out this dear woman [Karen] before 6000 people when she’s been through enough. They insinuate themselves into her life and personal business, ordering everything from her finances on through.

    All I have ever seen is humility and he is not the HEAD pastor, he is the teaching pastor and, thus, is subject to the board of elders…not making decisions on him own or even leading the charge. He’s only the most visible because he’s an outstanding proclaimer of the Gospel.

    So far I’ve seen you dismiss FELONY crimes, that are felonies under federal and state law, against children. If you are willing to do that, of course you are willing to dismiss Matt Chandler’s and the other pastors/elders’ egregious treatment of Karen. Those men aren’t fit to serve in any church and should step down. They are arrogant.

  370. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    Nor do I suspect that TVC blames her…they wanted only to sit with her and go through it. Why? Because you don’t endure the trauma that Karen did–finding out your marriage was a sham and your husband a liar–and immediately start thinking clearly.

    There is an embedded assumption that needs to be challenged. She is the Weak and Emotional Woman who cannot function without a man to lead her. Jordan is not available, therefore, the ELDERS will lead her. There is no place in the Bible that says that a female must be led by a man except in Grudemations and 1 Piper. The ELDERS betrayed what they care about, namely controlling an independent woman who decided they did not have Spiritual Authority over her life. She wounded their Pride because she dared to listen to the Holy Spirit *and* the people she trusted whose interests were not divided.

    Exactly what is loving about what they have done? Where is the text in Scripture that authorizes them to bully her like this? If we are going to be Biblical, then let’s be Biblical using the, you know, Bible.

  371. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    As for my daughters, I have two. And my hope would be that their marriage would never be subject to the sort of deception and hurt that Karen has endured. I would still, however, even in the midst of anger toward the offender, caution them to take some time to let their emotions cool down before making a decision such as annulment or divorce. Then, after wise counsel from credible sources, I’d back their play.

    For starters, Karen did take some time, and she did speak with trusted counselors. She did not trust the ELDERS, and it from all appearances she was wise not to do so. The idea that she is incapable of listening to other voices who have the same indwelling Holy Spirit as these ELDERS do is simply false. The ELDERS do *not* have any Spiritual Authority whatsoever over anyone. Repeat anyone. They are usurpers of the rule of Christ over Karen, and they are usurpers of the place of the Holy Spirit as the one to guide her. The ELDERS are not God, though they have certainly tried to impersonate him.

    I do not think it is wise for you to continue to play the Weak Emotional Female Who Can’t Think card. No one outside the bubble believes that is what we are really talking about. It is a red herring designed to, after the fact, justify reprehensible behavior by ELDERS who claim so speak for Jesus but which bear the marks of the spirit of anti-Christ.

  372. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    Are they perfect? No. Could some of the wording have been better in some emails coming from the Dallas campus? Sure. It’s called being human. Even our BEST is filthy rags, remember? So we try our best. I hate that Karen feels let down

    No, you cannot go there with me. I don’t play the “Well, everyone sins” game, nor do I play the “Well, nobody’s perfect” game nor do I play the “Sure, they could have done some things better” game. Those are all red herrings. Every last one of them. And I have heard them so many times I can vomit thinking about the things that are excused obliquely by deploying them.

  373. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    knowing these men, there is no conspiracy or power grab. There is only an elder body feeling their way through a difficult situation as best than can. I’ve watched them sacrifice for the body repeatedly and humble themselves to authority. Maybe they have it wrong. It’s not my place to say since they can’t discuss all the private details and, as details go, we only have one woman’s story. However, wrong or right, I believe their ultimate goal is love and grace. I have yet to see anyone grasping for money or power in that community…and those are things I am constantly on guard for.

    I could have written this paragraph from memory. There is a power grab of her life and her personal agency and there is, in fact, a group of men who have bullied her for the sole purpose of interposing themselves between Karen and the Holy Spirit.

    How do you know their ultimate goal is love and grace? You just said we are just filthy rags. Does that not apply to the ELDERS? To what authorities have these men humbled themselves? To SIM? To the state of Texas? To whom have they humbled themselves? The PR statement in Christianity Today is disgraceful, and resembles the Driscoll strategy of the modified limited hangout followed by a “we should have been more patient and gentle.” That is a veiled accusation wrapped in pious language that fools no one except those who want to be fooled. Chandler went to Christianity Today who, not unexpectedly, had nothing to say about this very big story. Yet there isn’t a conspiracy? There isn’t a coverup? Go ask for a copy of the publisher’s agreement between Chandler and Crossway. Then we can talk about whether there is a cozy conspiracy and a PR strategy with select media.

    “Can’t discuss private details.” “One woman’s story.” Do you have any idea at all that you are delivering talking points? Do you have any idea how degrading that is to dismiss Karen as “one woman.” You have apparently drunk deeply of the Kool-aid such that you would stoop to that.

    I doubt that you are on guard for what you should be on guard for. I pray that the Lord will protect your precious daughters.

  374. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    My only concern is the character of those being slandered.

    But you have no problem with the slander that the ELDERS perpetrated against Karen and continue to perpetrate against her. Please try not to play the man-victim card so obviously while deflecting what these “men of God” are doing in Jesus’ name. That should make them and you tremble.

  375. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    I don’t see many other megachurch pastors with that sort of humility…

    Calling people who question him “narcissistic zeroes” in a public rage is hardly humble, IMHO.

  376. pcapastor wrote:

    My perspective (which I recognize is as subjective as anyone else’s), as a long-time pastor in a conservative Presbyterian denomination, is that the leaders of TVC have a warped and unbiblical understanding of church authority. That doesn’t make them bad men, but it does (in my judgment) make them wrong, and participating in a system that cannot help but do damage, no matter how well intended they may be.

    Honestly, I find the past few posts from you very discouraging. If what these men have done to an innocent woman is not “bad men” behaving badly like bullies while claiming to act in the name of Jesus and loving her like Jesus, then I do not know what a “bad man” looks like. We are talking mere degrees, not kind. Professed good intentions do not mitigate real harm in any way.

    Until your co-clergy get this, things will continue as they are. It is very sad when some men bully a woman who is innocent, and other men will not forthrightly call it what it is without speaking of their supposed intentions which their actions have totally denied.

  377. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    I would still, however, even in the midst of anger toward the offender, caution them to take some time to let their emotions cool down before making a decision such as annulment or divorce.

    She waited two months.

    She was, as the documentation shows, expected to submit herself and her finances to the elders. They were treating her like a child.

  378. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    My only concern is the character of those being slandered. While I do NOT know the pastors on the Dallas campus, nothing I’ve known of Chandler or the Flower Mound pastors and elders would lead me to suspect anything but grace as their intent. So, when people start saying “it’s all about control” or “it’s all about the money” when I have experience with such places and purposely and prayerfully chose TVC because they do neither of those things, I can’t just sit back and shrug.

    What you describe is not slander.

  379. Bridget wrote:

    They were treating her like a child.

    That’s because their theology teaches that females require a man to lead them, whether the female is an adult or not. Horses need to be led. Children need to be led. An adult female with the Holy Spirit living in her does not need a sinful man to lead her. The Shepherd will lead his sheep. Hirelings act like hirelings.

  380. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    :
    So, even if I thought Chandler, et al. to be inexcusably wrong in this instance, it would not erase the years of humility, compassion and open-handedness with money and resources that I have witnessed over the last 3 years. And I think it’s unfair to take a situation that you are not personally involved in, assume you know all the details, and judge the entire ministry of a church and its officers based on that one thing. That’s hubris…and suggests you aren’t in touch with your own sinfulness.

    I’ve seen people ask why Jordan gets to stay at TVC…well, because like me and everyone else in every church everywhere, he is a sinner saved by grace and, though he needs extensive help, is still a brother. I see no intention to turn their back on Karen in that process, only her disinterest in it. That’s her right, of course. I don’t fault her for that.

    Matt Chandler & Company abuse this dear saint Karen (who has been through how much), including being such bullies who should step down from serving as pastors/elders, after what they did to her and did it before 6000 people, and you come back with another defense? You are a piece of work.

    I am involved because Karen is my sister in Christ.

    Jordan Root has committed crimes, not just garden variety sins. There is an epidemic of child sexual abuse in the conservative evangelical church (source: Church Mutual, the largest insurer of churches; child sexual abuse is the No. 1 reason that churches get sued every year – cite: Richard Hammer, attorney, Church Law & Tax).

    You have no idea how many other people that these pastors/elders harmed. They were even willing to threaten the international ministry that Karen served with.
    They are bullies because NO humble man of God would EVER do that. Ever.

  381. Gram3 wrote:

    pcapastor wrote:
    My perspective (which I recognize is as subjective as anyone else’s), as a long-time pastor in a conservative Presbyterian denomination, is that the leaders of TVC have a warped and unbiblical understanding of church authority. That doesn’t make them bad men, but it does (in my judgment) make them wrong, and participating in a system that cannot help but do damage, no matter how well intended they may be.
    Honestly, I find the past few posts from you very discouraging. If what these men have done to an innocent woman is not “bad men” behaving badly like bullies while claiming to act in the name of Jesus and loving her like Jesus, then I do not know what a “bad man” looks like. We are talking mere degrees, not kind. Professed good intentions do not mitigate real harm in any way.
    Until your co-clergy get this, things will continue as they are. It is very sad when some men bully a woman who is innocent, and other men will not forthrightly call it what it is without speaking of their supposed intentions which their actions have totally denied.

    First of all, I wish there were a lot more godly and wise Christians like you. I say that having been reading your comments pretty consistently for several years now. So if you take issue with my comments I take that pretty seriously.

    My point in that part was simply to say that having a bad ecclesiology does not in and of itself make one a bad man. That is all I was trying to say by that. OTHER parts of what they have done could and would make a person a “bad man,” though, without question. Hope that makes sense.

    But now, by their OWN ACKNOWLEDGEMENT (one trusts), they are beginning to acknowledge their very real badness. So, if they are being genuine, they should take no issue with you or I calling what they did to bully her, “bad men acting badly.”

    As Martin Luther said, Jesus did not die for paper mache sinners, but for real sinners. So there is hope in their beginning to acknowledge their real and definite sin. Unless they want to remain paper mache sinners. And then there is no present hope for them. But (unlike, say, CJ Mahaney or Mark Driscoll or Doug Wilson or Doug Phillips or Bill Gothard), that is not the sense I got from Matt Chandler’s comments today.

    (One perhaps minor, but certainly myopic, peculiar, and downright offensive point: I actually do not consider Matt Chandler or the pastors at TVC to be “co-clergy” with me. I take no issue with their own and others [including our government] viewing them as such, but I don’t. They have never been truly ordained to the gospel ministry as I understand the Scriptures to require. Were any of them to apply to become ministers in my denomination they would have to go through the whole process from start to finish [which typically takes four years post-college at a minimum] — they would not be seen as fellow ministers seeking to transfer their credentials into our denomination [as, say, an Anglican or Methodist or Lutheran would be — all of which I have seen happen, by the way], they would be seen as brand new applicants for ordination.)

    But back to what I see as the main point presently. Which is that how KAREN understands, receives, and processes their apology to her matters in every way; and what I think of it matters for next-to-nothing.

    I have respect for every single thing she has done up to this point. I do not have any respect for how the TVC pastors and elders have treated her up to this point, But today’s beginning of an apology is a start. I feel pretty confident that the same wise Christian friends and counselors that have been her help and support throughout all of this will help her to be able to discern one way or another the genuineness of TVC’s beginning of an apology, and its subsequent fruits. If all they are doing is mere “damage control” and “spin” and “CYAing,” then she and her godly brothers and sisters will suss that out pretty easily, I would think.

  382. dee wrote:

    Why does the church think he has one computer? Better yet, why do they think he hasn’t purchased one since he returned?

    Dee, this is what jumped out at me, too. They are acting as if no one on earth could have 2 computers…..

  383. Gram3 wrote:

    About the computer without evidence. Most countries have internet cafes or whatever they’re called now. So the clean computer is not necessarily surprising. If I were engaging in those tastes, I think I would look for a way to access the garbage without leaving traces on my computer. If it was a ministry computer, then it is even more likely that he would not have used it for porn.

    Precisely.
    Though I am inclined to doubt that they looked at HIS computer. Maybe a Walmart ‘special’ with nothing on it because he bought it on sale for the purpose. Of course that would mean that they actually care enough to look at anything…..

  384. Gram3 wrote:

    Honestly, I find the past few posts from you very discouraging. If what these men have done to an innocent woman is not “bad men” behaving badly like bullies while claiming to act in the name of Jesus and loving her like Jesus, then I do not know what a “bad man” looks like. We are talking mere degrees, not kind. Professed good intentions do not mitigate real harm in any way.

    There is a lot of separating the person from the behavior that goes on in evangelicalism. Or claiming it is just a difference in ecclesiology or something like that.

    I am not talking about a one off situation. I am talking about situations where we find people actually DOING what they teach. Walking their talk. This is one of those situations. Chandler and the leaders at TVC were being true to what they believe and teach and that is BAD. What they believe and teach is “BAD”. It is a LIE. That makes them “bad men” unless they have been drugged and hypnotized like stepford pastors and had no choice.

    The problem we really have is people do not want to believe this is what they really believe and teach. How they responded to Karen is WHO THEY ARE. What part of that do people not get? That is probably the most frustrating part of all of this for me.

    The lesson from this should be so simple. Was their behavior in this situation like Jesus or not. And if we do not know Him then perhaps that is what is keeping people from seeing it.

    This is not something to forgive (what are bloggers forgiving a 501c3 about?) and sweep under the rug. This is something that should take us right back to Jesus Christ to look deeply at WHO HE really is. This is something to, using bible language, rebuke and warn about because it presents a lie about our Savior.

  385. @ pcapastor:
    I just saw this. Thank you for explaining your point. The truth is that this meltdown has made me disgusted beyond words, and I apologize sincerely for placing that on you, which appears to be what I did. By co-clergy I was referring to those in Baptist circles who do see a divide between clergy and laity. And, as you know, that is not a Baptist point of view.

    IMO, what you pointed out about not going through the ordination process and the examinations that go along with that is a big part of this. These guys have either set up independent shop or they have come up through what amounts to a production line. There is not the deep tradition of leadership of churches and what that might entail. So these guys have a very superficial picture of that, and it gets reduced to “I lead and therefore they must follow.” That has not been my experience at the church level in the PCA with one exception. And that was a guy with an entirely different set of issues. People are people.

    Anyway, thanks again for the clarification. I was misunderstanding you, and again apologize.

  386. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:

    It is always wise to keep your eye on people who want to rule over you. In the case of the Reconstructionists and their heirs, I don’t think they will be a big problem for one very practical reason. If everyone in the group wants to be the king, sooner or later everyone will be trying to kill off everyone else in the group. That’s difficult to believe unless you know some of these people and have observed them.

    “Not difficult. I grew up in King’s Landing.”
    — Maester Aemon Targeryn

    House Lannister sends their regards…

    I have been thinking Game of Thrones for some time now, just reading about TVC.

  387. James the Mad wrote:

    Each of the major browser has a method for browsing without leaving anything behind:

    And even this Cranky Old Lady knows about them. They are indispensable when using a computer at the public library, for example.

  388. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    Jordan is no more depraved than you or I.

    Jordan is pedophile. That means he is a monster. That is all I need to know about a creature who preys on innocent children in pursuit of his own perverse sexual desires.
    This is why the vast majority of the rest of the occupants of planet Earth are sickened & disgusted that anyone–whether claiming to be Christian or no, are NOT as “depraved” as Jordan. We are all sinners, yes. But we have somehow restrained ourselves from raping small children. And we have done so without so much as having to work at it.
    Even among the heathen such matters are known to be evil. You might want to check your Bible. St Paul, among others, has no problem in condemning perversion. And Our One Lord & Saviour has already told us, that those who would cause even one child to stumble would be better if sunk to the bottom of the sea. (That is also in your Bible. It makes for excellent reading—when you have a spare moment from defending your “pastor”).

  389. Michaela wrote:

    Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    So, we just inspect your life, find the worst moment…or at least the one most often misunderstood, and sit in judgement on you? Or does it take more than one instance? Because, I’ve got three years of constant gracious behavior on which to form my opinion. You’ve got one situation. If you don’t see the problem with that, I don’t know what else to say.

    And you wonder why The Church has NO CREDIBILITY with unbelievers. You want a special exemption for Jordan Root.

    These are FELONY crimes, pal. Felonies. Why didn’t Jordan Root confess to his crimes against children? Their names? What he did? Why wasn’t he forthcoming with where he hid the evidence? And yes, people can confess to crimes they committed and be charged. Why didn’t he man-up and do just that?

    Jordan Root probably didn’t man-up because child abusers aren’t really very much man at all…..

  390. Gram3 wrote:

    I pray that the Lord will protect your precious daughters.

    As do I. Certainly their church leaders won’t, & it sadly appears that their father is too entranced by said leaders to see the danger he is leading them into.

  391. zooey111 wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:

    I pray that the Lord will protect your precious daughters.

    As do I. Certainly their church leaders won’t, & it sadly appears that their father is too entranced by said leaders to see the danger he is leading them into.

    Michaela wrote:

    Jordan Root has committed crimes, not just garden variety sins. There is an epidemic of child sexual abuse in the conservative evangelical church (source: Church Mutual, the largest insurer of churches; child sexual abuse is the No. 1 reason that churches get sued every year – cite: Richard Hammer, attorney, Church Law & Tax).
    You have no idea how many other people that these pastors/elders harmed. They were even willing to threaten the international ministry that Karen served with.
    They are bullies because NO humble man of God would EVER do that. Ever.

    Amen, Sister! And again, amen.

  392. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    That’s hubris

    Yes, perfect! What better word to describe a bunch of really, really young men who deign to call themselves elders, with authority to lord it over others, in opposition to Jesus’s own words. And, lest Texas TruthSlayer should fail to get my meaning, I am speaking of Matt “Narcissistic Zero” Chandler and his lieutenants.

  393. I have to rebuke you. I have read some of the stuff you have written and you have hatred and bitterness in your heart. You need to go talk to your pastor and get an education. The church has one mission on this earth, to bring souls to Jesus. The State of Texas needs to deal with Jordan appropriately according to the law. We are a nation of laws not men. But you are rebuked in the name of Jesus Christ go confess your hatred, bigotry and bitterness to your pastor. Unfortunately, ignorance and stupidity are not sins.

    MOD: I’m going to let this one through as an example of your thinking. But unless you bring something more to the discussion this will be your one and only comment here.

    Everyone else. DO NOT start a debate with this one.

  394. As a long-time advocacy writer to expose the collusion with abuse, especially in fundamentalist circles, this story reminds me of the secular song about poverty, “Another Day in Paradise.”

    SIM gave a very unusual response for mission boards–a sharp contrast to what my husband and I received when we stood for the removal of a 25-year Southern Baptist veteran/colleague of ours as we served under the Foreign Mission Board (now International Mission Board) of the Southern Baptist Convention. Every attempt possible was made to silence us at every level of the organization!! In fact, we finally realized we could no longer work for them; and the only way to keep our voices was to come back to the States and find a new ways of ministry. Writing and responding with a personal letter to every single reader who has contacted me since 1993 has brought as much fulfillment as all that we were able to accomplish in ten years, serving in Africa. What resulted from that was a ministry that brought so many wonderful people our way! Spirituality and religion are two different things entirely, I can tell you now. Yet the sorrow never goes away as we witness story after story like this.
    I like to think things are getting better. I know the opportunities for education has grown immensely. NOBODY has an excuses for being naïve or exercising the patriarchal responses TVC did–not in this day! What I fear, however, is that far too many people are doing the right thing out of fear, rather than conviction. The courts have had to teach the lessons, and I’m glad they have. Yet I still wonder how many hearts have truly been changed. How many people think that the best way to “protect” institutions is to take the same response that we are seeing in colleges and universities across our nation today?

  395. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    Jordan is no more depraved than you or I.

    False. Even God in the Bible (and Jesus in the NT) recognizes that some sins are worse than others.

    Any sin can send a person to hell, but to argue that all sins are basically the same (as you seem to feel), and hence, all are “just as bad” as each other, is un-biblical.

    I do not, nor have I ever, molested kids, nor have I ever wanted to, so yes, Jordan is more depraved / deviant / evil than I am or ever will be.

  396. Gram3 wrote:

    She wounded their Pride because she dared to listen to the Holy Spirit *and* the people she trusted whose interests were not divided.

    This reminds me of something else that is at times discussed at A Cry For Justice blog (about domestic spousal abuse).

    The writers there frequently point out that many preachers try to take the “neutral” stance (they say they will take neither the husband’s side nor the wife’s side), or they take the “50/50” stand, which is, if a wife tells the pastor she is being abused by her spouse, the pastor will blame the wife 50% for it and her abusive spouse for the other 50%.

    As they explain at that blog (and I’ve seen this in literature about domestic abuse in general, too), either the “neutral” or “equal blame (50/50)” approach ends up favoring the abuser.

    I’m not sure if Jordan could be considered a spousal abuser pe se (since he was abusing children, and Karen suffered the fall out of that), but the church’s first attempt to deal with it all seemed to be the same approach – to be neutral or 50/50.

    What that does is actually favor the spouse who is in trouble (Jordan), not the innocent party.

    By trying to help Jordan (by insisting Karen stay with him etc and so on), they are in effect penalizing Karen, they were not helping her. (They explain this dynamic much better over at ACFJ blog.)

  397. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    I would still, however, even in the midst of anger toward the offender, caution them to take some time to let their emotions cool down before making a decision such as annulment or divorce. Then, after wise counsel from credible sources, I’d back their play. My personal counsel would be to do what Karen did and opt for annulment.

    What you really should be doing is raising your daughters to think for themselves, not relying on father or church or preacher to do their thinking for them, or making their life choices for them.

    Ironically, by coaching your daughters to rely on other people’s approval or thinking rather than make their own choices, you are leaving them vulnerable to attracting abusive or using / controlling men or boys (when or if they start to date).

    I was raised in a context just like that. I was not encourage to make choices for myself, think for myself (not at life choices anyway), nor to have boundaries. So I kept attracting abusive people, people who exploited me, etc.

  398. @ Texas Truthsayer:

    And PS, why on earth would you even consider asking your daughter to “cool down” before dumping a guy who is a self professing pedophile???

    Divorce is not the unpardonable sin.

  399. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    I don’t see many other megachurch pastors with that sort of humility…

    At the end of the day, Chandler supports gender comp, and the brand of gender comp supported at the church he helms is preachy keen with pressuring a woman to stay married to a pedo. This speaks very poorly of his character and the rest of the people on staff there.

  400. Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    I have read nothing of theirs that made her look bad…

    One or two of the preachers kept contacting her even after she plainly told him/them in one email she wanted nothing to do with them, did not want to hear from them.

  401. Daisy wrote:

    Texas Truthsayer wrote:

    Jordan is no more depraved than you or I.

    False. Even God in the Bible (and Jesus in the NT) recognizes that some sins are worse than others.

    Any sin can send a person to hell, but to argue that all sins are basically the same (as you seem to feel), and hence, all are “just as bad” as each other, is un-biblical.

    I do not, nor have I ever, molested kids, nor have I ever wanted to, so yes, Jordan is more depraved / deviant / evil than I am or ever will be.

    Exactly, Daisy! Christian radio show host Janet Mefferd said same.
    A vile ‘Christian pastor’ said that every man thinks of sexually violating others and to ask her husband.

    Mr. Mefferd’s reply: “To my husband’s credit, he decided to directly and honestly respond to the man. Here’s what he wrote: “No, I never had a thought that evil cross my mind. If you do, I’d suggest professional help.”
    http://janetmefferd.com/2015/05/predators-dangerous-deviants-j-d-hall/

  402. @ Michaela:

    I wish these guys would answer a hypothetical.

    Suppose your daughter (if you had one) was on a plane that crashed, and the pilot doesn’t make it, and the passengers of the plane end up on a desert island.

    Suppose that the two other passengers on the plane with your daughter are a 1. pedophile or 2. a con artist.

    If you got to choose which guy, #1 or #2, survives to live with your daughter on an desert island for a year, which one would you pick or prefer to survive, and why?

    Everything else is equal.

    The worse thing that man 2, the con artist will do, is try to talk your daughter out of her ten dollars in cash in her purse, or talk her out of any coconuts she finds on the island.

    Where as guy #1, the pedo, will sexually assault your kid for 12 months.

    Which man do you choose to spend a year with your daughter on the island, you guys who say, “but we’re all sinners!! We’re all equally depraved and in need of grace.”

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