It Just Struck Me…

A couple of years ago, I approached one of the pastors at my old church about starting an adult singles ministry (I had written a research paper on the subject and I was/am passionate about ministering to single adults). I met a few times and had a few phone conversations and eventually was pretty much told that a singles ministry was not on the horizon at that church (with an attendance of nearly 2,000).

I also committed a HUGE (unintentional) faux pas. I had been told by the pastor that my proposal would be discussed at the board meeting, he gave me the date and time. So I showed up. Bad idea. I thought it was an open meeting.
When I had my elder interview for membership in January 2005, one of the elders who had been at that meeting was one of my interviewing elders. I felt blind sided when the only thing that he was interested in was a commitment from me to "submit to the leadership". No discussion of spiritual gifts, abilities, or anything else. We talked about my history and then went to "you're a strong woman" and "will you submit to leadership".

That is a theme that has popped up several times.

Will you follow the leaders without question? Even if you think they're wrong? Even if you don't understand?

Pastor Dave's "prayer thoughts" in December 2005 said, "Sometimes these authorities act and talk in ways that don't represent us, yet to trust God is to submit to their leadership. If you rebel against this prayer thought…ask God about it, he put the authorities in place.”

"Apostle" Sherman Shelton said in January 2006 (from our pulpit), "when your pastors start to lead you, don't try to figure it out, just follow."

His wife, "Prophet" Corine, said, "God says whoever does not cooperate with the unity that is between the two [the pastors] of you God says if they do not obey by the Spirit He will have to deal with their flesh."

I had never been in a church where this popped up so much.

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2 thoughts on “It Just Struck Me…

  1. Ellen, I'm so glad it's your OLD church. Just hearing about the emphasis on submitting to church authority NO MATTER WHAT makes the hair on my neck stand on end. I'm actually quite surprised that that church has evolved in that direction because it's just not all that common in that denomination.


  2. It's been frustrating - the board didn't discuss my letter last week because "one of the pastor's couldn't be there" - uh - yeah! He was in New Orleans in church at Firehouse Full Gospel Ministries - that's why he couldn't be a the board meeting.

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