For background on this post please avail yourself of an earlier post titled, “The Chapel is in a Crisis & The Thomas White Connection.”
Pastor Happy Peterson – The Chapel Church, Green Campus. July 11, 2021.
May 22nd, 2021
Dear Chapel Family,
Our Church is in crisis. As a Church, our future will be defined either by obedience to the Lord’s will or against it. We, as a Board, recognize that discerning the Lord’s will in this situation is predicated on our recognition that by our own power we cannot correct this ship.
…Furthermore, its aim [The Constitution Committee] is to ensure maximum transparency, total objectivity, and strict adherence to Biblical principles in reviewing the events that transpired.”
…The Board will present the findings to the entire church body, in the spirit of utmost transparency.
…This Constitution Committee will begin meeting this week to examine the events leading up to and through this past week. Its aim is to ensure maximum transparency,
…In lieu of that, you can count on these updates from The Board as the most up-to-date information possible.
…At this meeting, the Committee selected an independent third-party firm to assist in our fact-finding measures. The Chapel has come to a formal agreement with this organization to enlist their services, and their work of interviewing is scheduled to begin early next week. In an effort to protect the privacy of pastors and other staff members participating in the inquiry, we will not release the name of this firm or any of its employees at this time.
…The Committee remains steadfast in their desire for an expedient and effective process for the church, and it is our goal to keep you informed throughout.
…As you wait on this process, we know it is a difficult season for many in our church. We understand that many might desire more answers, more information, more details. We request your grace and your patience as we walk a careful line between full transparency and the wise restraint necessary to honor the investigative process, and to protect the dignity and privacy of all Chapel staff members, pastors and their families.
…The coming days and weeks will be full of prayer, pondering, and deliberation for both the Committee and our Board of Trustees. For the church, it will likely feel like a time of silence, as we intend to communicate next when the decision-making phase comes to a close and we have more information about next steps to share.
The Board of Trustees
“Transparency” – the Chapel’s Board of Trustees and I obviously have a different conception of what that word means! The Chapel has 3 pastors on administrative leave and has yet to say a word about what the crisis in their group of churches consists of. I can only conclude that whatever the issue is within The Chapel’s leadership, it must be quite grave. It appears that once The Chapel hired The Center Consulting Group they were advised to throw that “maximum transparency” out the window and instead batten down the hatches. Loose lips sink ships! Judging by the Constitution Committee’s communication with the proletariat, The Chapel has steadily backed away from “maximum” transparency to “it will likely feel like a time of silence.” Frankly, none of their communiques contain any news that approaches maximum transparency; their policy is akin to a “need to know” policy, and the membership has been deemed outside of that circle.
Below is the latest exhibit of maximum transparency. It appears membership may be finally informed of what the crisis is and what the Constitution Committee has decided to do in response to it. I have a feeling their final report will not be published in a public forum. I hope I am wrong.
July 10, 2021
Dear Chapel Family,
For the last six weeks, The Center Consulting Group has worked exhaustively on our behalf, conducting interviews and gathering data so as to help us bring truth to light in our present leadership inquiry. The Constitution Committee turned to The Center because of their expertise in fact-finding measures such as these, and the Committee members are pleased with the depth and breadth of The Center’s work.
During the week of July 5, the Committee heard the formal presentation from The Center, bringing the fact-finding phase of our inquiry to a close. This presentation included in-depth findings and a variety of recommendations for the Committee to consider. We now begin the critical work of making wise decisions in light of this information.
The Constitution Committee remains committed to a thorough and expedient process and now anticipates spending the next several weeks in the decision-making phase of the inquiry, with the objective of finalizing The Chapel’s next steps and communicating these to you within 30 days. The coming days and weeks will be full of prayer, pondering, and deliberation for both the Committee and our Board of Trustees. For the church, it will likely feel like a time of silence, as we intend to communicate next when the decision-making phase comes to a close and we have more information about next steps to share.
In the ensuing weeks, will you please join us as we come before the Lord in prayer and fasting as the Spirit leads? Here are specific areas in which your prayer makes a difference, with some passages of Scripture to consider as prompts:
- Pray that our Committee members and Trustees would be filled with wisdom and courage. Pray that they would seek the Lord and His will (Proverbs 2:1-15, James 3:13-18).
- Pray for a spirit of unity among our pastors and staff. Pray that they would persevere together in the work of the gospel, in the midst of distraction and uncertainty (John 17:20-23, Ephesians 1:15-23).
- Pray for peace and attentiveness to the Lord for Pastor Tim, Pastor Jim, and Pastor Mike and their families (Philippians 1:3-11).
- Pray that all who make up The Chapel will trust and rest in the One who gives wisdom (James 1:2-8, Philippians 2:1-11).Our hope remains, not in men or in outcomes, but in the Lord. Our church belongs to Him, and all these things are in His hand. He is faithful to grant wisdom to those who seek Him and confidently ask Him for it.But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, which shines brighter and brighter until full day.Proverbs 4:18Sola Gratia, The Chapel
Below is an updated list of The Chapel’s Board of Trustees communications with their members. I simply added the latest update from July 10th to the end of the document.