In a recent article I mentioned the “Rise and Fall of Mars Hill” podcast. The Christianity Today series tells the story of Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill Church, Seattle. Driscoll became well known as a church planter and mega-church leader succeeding in an area regarded as hard to reach. He went on to head up… Continue reading Throwing people under the bus
Prompted by a friend, I’ve started re-reading the Chronicles of Narnia. The one volume edition we have starts not with the Lion, the witch and the wardrobe but with its prequel “The Magician’s Nephew”, the story of how Narnia all began. The story is of a boy Digory and his friend Polly, tricked into using… Continue reading How we treat others – a lesson from The Magician’s Nephew
Has there been anything in history comparable to the horrific things reports of abuse, bullying and toxic culture coming from evangelical churches over the past few years? Well, yes there has. Right back in the first century, the mission of the church could have almost been undone by the antics of the Corinthian church. There… Continue reading The solution to toxic culture? – a meal with Jesus
When it comes to concerns about abuse and bullying I think we can identify the following types of context Clear examples of coercive, cruel and manipulative behaviour Clear examples of false example One off but significant failures The reality that all of us are finite and fallen and consistently get things wrong in terms of… Continue reading Abuse, bullying and slander – a war of attrition
Occasionally you hear rumours about a certain type of church. Perhaps you hear that they sit down with the church members and go through their accounts and payslips before telling the members how to tithe, or you hear about the two old ladies who go on a holiday together only to be met with a… Continue reading Shepherding and heavy shepherding
I’ve not got round to listening to The Rise and fall of Mars Hill podcast. From what I’ve heard, it’s not easy listening. The podcast tells the story of Mark Driscoll’s rise to prominence as an evangelical leader and subsequent fall from grace. Driscoll became a bit of a poster boy for the neo-Calvinists and… Continue reading The problem with church lad culture
I’m encouraged to see that The FIEC are keeping the focus on the problem of abuse with a series of podcasts involving John Stevens and Adrian Reynolds looking at spiritual abuse in particular. The term “spiritual abuse” has been at times controversial with people debating its definition and even its existence. I saw one definition… Continue reading Weaponising spiritual abuse
From time to time I write about bullying and abuse. I started tackling this subject a few years back as I not only became aware of some concerning stories surrounding significant ministries but observed first hand how Christians talk to each other on social media. In the last couple of years, some serious scandals broke… Continue reading Bullying and abuse – do you know what is happening and what to do?
Yesterday, MPs gathered in Parliament to pay tributes to Sir David Amess MP. There were a number of moving contributions. I thought that both the Prime Minister and the leader of the opposition spoke particularly well. One particularly passionate and powerful speech came from back bencher Mark Francois. In it he called for MPs to… Continue reading Should there be a “David’s Law” against anonymous online abuse?
In our #FaithrootsLive sessions we’ve been looking at church leadership and the roles than men and women can/should play in this. I come from what is usually referred to as a “complementarian” position. Now, one of the challenges about this conversation is that it is a difficult, if not impossible conversation to have because as… Continue reading Is complementarianism harmful and dangerous?