Last week I posted a letter from Dave Corning who was a long-time elder at Harvest Bible Chapel (HBC), under Pastor James MacDonald. I mentioned that Corning’s letter would be my go-to letter for describing spiritual abuse because it described some of the most common tactics spiritual abusers use.
Friday, I tore the letter apart and paraphrased it into Twitter-size tweets. Ryan asked if I could post the tweets, so here they are (not necessarily in the order tweeted).
You’ll notice the hashtag #Harvest25. I was trying to find HBC’s Twitter handle, but couldn’t find it. I did, however, find the #Harvest25 hashtag when looking at James MacDonald’s Twitter feed. Harvest25 refers to the celebration they had last Saturday – – they were celebrating the church’s 25th anniversary and had a pretty big shin dig. So, in between the celebratory tweets, I was tweeting about #SpiritualAbuse 101.
Ironically, while many people were partying on Saturday, perhaps completely unaware of what has been going on with their leadership, others have been in an emotional and spiritual battlefield as they realize what has happened to their lives at this church. Some have left, some are in the process of making difficult decisions even now. How do I know? Because of e-mails/tweets I have personally received. Please pray for the HBC church family. This is a very messy situation.
Dee, of The Wartburg Blog published a new article on this story, be sure to check it out: The Elephant’s Debt Roars. Are James MacDonald and HBC Deaf?
Fourteen staff/elders have come out publicly to share their deep concerns about what is going on under the leadership of Pastor James MacDonald. You can find their stories here. You see, in these abusive-types of churches, “2 or 3 witness” really doesn’t matter. And in this case, 14 don’t, either. Ugh!
20 thoughts on “Harvest Bible Chapel: #Spiritual Abuse 101 Tweets from Elder’s Letter”
From the Wolves’ Dictionary of Self-Serving Aspersions:
1. Any woman who asks questions
2. Any woman who deigns to utter disagreement with a man
3. Any woman who speaks truth to (male) power
4. Any woman who confounds the faux manliness of the phallically challenged
4. Julie Anne
#4, Gary!!! You crack me up. Lol
Oh, that #3 could also be “perceived male power.”
JA, You’re absolutely right. I would propose to reword it:
3. Any woman who speaks truth to (perceived male) power
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“And in that day the Lord God of hosts Called for weeping and for mourning, For baldness and for girding with sackcloth.
But instead, joy and gladness, Slaying oxen and killing sheep, Eating meat and drinking wine: “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die!” (NKJV)
One of CON’s and Tony Miano’s friends blessed me with a response to a tweet today. It’s so interesting how this dude puts himself in place of God in determining one’s salvation. That’s pretty arrogant.
Oh, and look what I just found. I was going to retweet it, but it looks like he has me blocked, too. Another one of those manly men where communication is a one-way street.
Be of good cheer, Julie. Anytime one points out error, the “humble” are always there to correct us.
That’s what I thought of when I read this post and the comments…
LOL, so true, Hannah
Did you see James MacDonald’s blog post from yesterday (9-24-2013)?
+ + + + + + +
When I was in Kindergarten I learned that you need to apologize when you behave badly. You need to go to the person, and identify your exact sin, and humble yourself.
Anything short of that is simply pride and arrogance masking itself as humility. (Yes, we’ve seen your cringe-worthy 10-minute You Tube video on Humility with C.J. Mahaney. I’ve never been able to watch more than 2 minutes of it.)
It’s not enough to say you are disappointed in yourself. That proves nothing and it changes nothing. You need to apologize very specifically to those elders first, then other people who’ve left your church, people who’ve been treated shamefully by your staff at your direction.
It’s time to apologize directly, probably in writing, to the people you’ve hurt, the debt you’ve rung up, and your lavish, entitled and immodest lifestyle.
That’s pretty sad about sogoswell’s tweet, JA. Another who has learned that manlyman technique of blocking and hiding. Create your own reality much? Un- manlymen such as these have their own little world they live in. If anything crosses their path they do not like, they delete/block. The un-Christlikeness of it all stuns me.
Since tweeting is so popular with these men-as in that’s what they DO in their lives, I am sure Miano won’t mind me bringing this tweet up for further inspection (I would do it on his FB but I am blocked from commenting further, and one must “join” his blog to be allowed to comment there so as to keep away the “attacks”… to use his word):
Tony Miano @TonyMiano 8h
@WashDCE @Spurgeon_ Spurgeon also said the sight of a woman preaching was like watching a dog walk on its hind legs.
9:47 PM – 24 Sep 13 · Details
IOW-unnatural. Not how God made dogs-they walk on all fours. Or, it could mean a freakishly comical sideshow replete with imbalance and stumbling. I would have to find the quote and see the context. But does Miano approve of what Spurgeon said? I would guess yes- since it flows with his anti-women OA preaching argument.
I can’t help but think of his oldest daughter Michelle Miano (who was OA preaching as recently as 2 or so years ago), and if she read this tweet how that would make her feel knowing that’s what her father would think of her now if she were still OA preaching. A dog walking on its hind legs….however Spurgeon meant it. I remember watching a video where Michelle was up on a box preaching through tears to a crowd with Miano saying how proud he was of her. But now Miano has changed; he has seen the light and he is “right” (well, God’s word is right the way he interprets it) and his prior views and others who hold to that view (JMacArthur for one but we don’t want to talk about the fact that Miano would declare MacArthur as not thinking biblically) are now wrong. And for a fee, you can read all about his repentant change.
Spurgeon also said this about women (taken from Ray Comfort and Living Waters, Miano’s old employer and with whom Miano once agreed regarding women-Mr. Miano if you are sinfully reading this blog, block/delete your eyes from this now):
“Charles Spurgeon included women when he spoke of Jesus making his hearers “Fishers of men.” Although it’s not clear if he is speaking of testifying in the open air, he exhorted both men and women to be fishers of men: “Now, if never before, every glow-worm must show its spark. You with the tiniest farthing candle must take it from under the bushel, and set it on a candlestick . . .You men and women that sit before me, you are by the shore of a great sea of human life swarming with the souls of men. You live in the midst of millions; but if you will follow Jesus, and be faithful to him, and true to him, and do what he bids you, he will make you fishers of men.” ”
“I am not Rick Warren’s ultimate judge. God is (James 4:12). I can speak with no more certainty about the true spiritual condition of Rick Warren’s soul than I can about anyone else’s soul. I can’t and won’t assign Rick Warren to heaven or to hell.”
“Why I Fear For Rick Warren’s Soul” Thursday, March 14, 2013 Cross Encounters
sogoswell/Jeff Isaiah needs to read this from his bff.
Good sleuthing, Diane. I noticed that he accuses Warren of being a chameleon, yet it’s okay for him to go 180 degrees in the opposite direction in what he believes regarding women open air preaching and then furthermore, treats those who don’t believe the way he now believes as though they are imbeciles. Again, look at the behavior. Is it kind, is it loving? Just because you believe you now have seen the light (whether it really is or not is irrelevant), do you treat those who differ with your opinion as thought they are heathens? Furthermore, how should we treat heathens?
About the dog quote- It is a Samuel Johnson quote, which Spurgeon repeats:
“When Boswell told Johnson one day that he had heard a woman preach that morning at a Quaker’s meeting, Johnson replied,’ Sir, a woman preaching is like a dog’s walking on his hind legs. It is not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all.’ We will add that our surprise is all the greater when women of piety mount the pulpit, for they are acting in plain defiance of the command of the Holy Spirit, written by the pen of the apostle Paul.”
(I don’t think Johnson approved of Quaker women leading in their meetings.)
AUTHOR: Samuel Johnson (1709–1784)
QUOTATION: Sir, a woman preaching is like a dog’s walking on his hind legs. It is not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all.
ATTRIBUTION: Life of Johnson (Boswell). 1 Vol. ii. Chap. ix. 1763.
From the London edition, 10 volumes, 1835.
Dr. Johnson, it is said, when he first heard of Boswell’s intention to write a life of him, announced, with decision enough, that if he thought Boswell really meant to write his life he would prevent it by taking Boswell’s!—
Thomas Carlyle: Miscellanies, Jean Paul Frederic Richter.
(Johnson sounds like a gem! lol)
Oh goodness, folks. A “confession”.
Not a very convincing “confession” is it?
Anonymous2 (Formerly Anonymous)
Anonymous2: You really nailed it:
When you are a parent and teach your child how to apologize, you specifically identify the offense. I wonder if he’d accept this kind of response from his kids if they hurt someone?
Women preachers are being compared to dogs? Why not Gazelles? Why not lionesses? Whatever may have been intended by Samuel Johnson, in the present context I suspect slur, a slur masquerading as cleverness, a slur on all women. At least that is how it comes across to me. I can just see this supposedly grown, Twittering man twittering and chortling away, like an adolescent boy who just managed to call all girls bitches without having actually used the word. I only suspect. I hope I’m wrong.
Ha ha ha. Just substitute the word “elder” for deacon.