Set Free and Phil Aguilar
Posted by: Jeff Seymour ()
Date: July 05, 2006 02:15AM

Hey Veronica,
It’s funny how people can see things differently. For example, on one side we have me and you seeing Phil Aguilar & Set Free one way and one the other side we have the moderator and others seeing it differently. Since we are all believers I will give an example using Jesus and how people viewed Jesus. Ralph Waldo Emerson once said “To be great is to be misunderstood”.
[b:9f16d8f7ea]First [/b:9f16d8f7ea]we have those people closest to Jesus, the Peters, Mary’s, Luke’s, and Johns. These were individuals who really knew Jesus up close and personal. These people loved Him, disagreed with Him, abandoned Him but ultimately understood him best.
[b:9f16d8f7ea]Second[/b:9f16d8f7ea], there were those people who only heard about Jesus and they had mixed reviews about Him. This was the general crowd of people who could really careless either way about him.
[b:9f16d8f7ea]Third[/b:9f16d8f7ea], there were the rulers (Pontius Pilate and Caiaphas) or people who were looked to as authority figures. These were people who didn’t know how to handle Jesus.
[b:9f16d8f7ea]Finally[/b:9f16d8f7ea], there were those people who were very close to Jesus and they were similar to the Peters, Mary’s, Luke’s, and Johns with one exception they betrayed Jesus and in today terms they put a big fat knife in his back, and were like Judas Iscariot.
[b:9f16d8f7ea]To sum everything up[/b:9f16d8f7ea] I think it is about perspective. It’s kind of like the bible and how each gospel tells the same story but from different points of view. Mathew, Mark, Luke and John saw the same thing but wrote about it differently. One difference though is you and I have been in Set Free and the moderator has not (lol).
I’m not the sharpest tool in the box but lest I be misquoted or taken the wrong way by some that read this I am not saying Phil is Jesus (lol). I know how some people love to twist the truth.
[b:9f16d8f7ea]Regarding the Dream Center[/b:9f16d8f7ea], I was there when Phil and a handful of us first started that place. Let’s give credit where credit is due. Once again I am not writing this to be a Phil Aguilar cheerleader because that position has already been taken (thank you Jesus for your beautiful creations, lol). By the way I didn’t even know about the Cheerleaders for Jesus web sight until I came to this web sight (thanks for the cool link Rick Ross). Anyways it was Phil and his family that lived at the Dream Center in that ghetto neighborhood with all of those gang bangers. It was Phil who took those same gang bangers into his home. And it was Jesus who them took those gang bangers and changed their lives. When any Church or person does something out of the norm of that society it can be seen as controversial.
[b:9f16d8f7ea]Regarding my comments about Phil and his finances:[/b:9f16d8f7ea]
Dear Rick Ross,
I like what you are trying to do with this web sight by helping people but please try and be more accurate with what you write. For example, you said and I quote “Your comment that no one receives a salary is not correct”. To clarify my point I looked up the word salary and the definition says “Fixed compensation for services, paid to a person on a regular basis”. Phil does not receive a fixed compensation for services, paid to him on a regular basis. He is not like me who every week I receive a regular pay check from my employer. The truth of the matter is that he has taken a vow of poverty. The bible refers to this vow in the Gospel of Luke where Jesus teaches that those who wish to follow Him should dispose of their personal property. The second is found in the Acts of the Apostles where it is revealed that the early Christians did not claim private ownership of any possessions, but rather, shared everything in common.
[b:9f16d8f7ea]Again I do not mean to be malicious when I say this but how come you only say negative things about Phil Aguilar and Set Free?[/b:9f16d8f7ea] You never mention even one time about all the good things he has done. At least Veronica and I are telling the whole story; the good, the bad, and the ugly. I also noticed that you haven’t answered some of my questions in my earlier posts? Is this because you don’t want to admit you might not be telling the whole truth. I have found that if I am truthful about the whole situation that God then can be the judge and I release the control over to Him this way. [i:9f16d8f7ea]I am starting to feel that you have an agenda regarding Phil Aguilar and Set Free and I am not the only one (see Veronica’s post earlier). [/i:9f16d8f7ea]
Jeff Seymour

Set Free and Phil Aguilar
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: July 05, 2006 02:25AM


Phil Aguilar is not "Jesus" and you are not an apostle.

The analogy doesn't make any sense and is not applicable to the situation of "Set Free."

You have no idea where the money goes. There is no way for you to find out.

Set Free and Phil Aguilar
Posted by: veronica77 ()
Date: July 11, 2006 05:19AM

Wow, this conversation is unbelievable. I’m curious, moderator are you speaking from first hand experience or just word of mouth?

I have first hand experience with the Barnett church and all the lies that they twisted while I attended church at the Dream Center (Jeff, I was also there). I was there when Matthew Barnett on camera cried about holding a gang member in his arms and bringing him to Christ before he died. I was also there when the young man he spoke about died and I don’t ever remember him being there. I also remember Pastor Phil Aguilar helping some on the neighborhood kids arrange a car wash and I was also there when he gave the family money for the funeral. This was actually the reason I began to attend services at the Dream Center. Anyway, I’m glad that our comments are not getting deleted so people can see both sides. I will always be grateful for the kind words I received at Set Free, for the peace of mind I had by knowing that I was accepted as I am and for set free giving me my first bible and I could go on forever but I guess this would never change your mind.

Set Free and Phil Aguilar
Posted by: veronica77 ()
Date: July 11, 2006 05:34AM

Just a quick comment.

There was a comment made that we don't know where the money goes to? All you have to do is spend a day with the ministry people from set free to know how their money get used. Again, this goes back to people speaking not from their own experience but from what the heard or think they saw. I also think that the ministry money gets mistaken with the money that "people" give. Have you ever seen who goes to set free? You really think they make money from the offering? Jeff, you have to agree with me on this, right? I can only imagine the big bucks they get from picking up homeless people or going to skidrow.

Also, it was common knowledge to me and others that i attended set free that many of the Aguilar family member held jobs. How many ministry leaders do you know that have their wifes, son's or daughters working or have who live in the ministry homes themselves? And by the way, this is public information if you would like to check it out. I believe that Pastor Phil's sons work with interatining the arm forces for a few years, his daughter has had a few jobs and even his wife worked in a few places. I know this from first hand experience because she helped me get my gym membership a few years back. If they get money like you say they do...why would she have to work?

One last thing....I didn't think Jeff was calling Pastor Phil,'s strange how people read into things. Interesting.


Set Free and Phil Aguilar
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: July 11, 2006 06:29AM

I have received very serious complaints about Set Free.

You have offered nothing of substance here.

If you have an independently audited financial statement that details all money paid out from the ministry post the details here, including any and all compensation paid out to the Aguilar family.

Otherwise, admit you don't know where the money goes.

Without such an audited financial statement you have offered nothing objective to prove anything.

An independently audited financial statement is objective proof.

If Set Free has nothing to hide they should publish one annually. Many other ministries do.

Set Free and Phil Aguilar
Posted by: veronica77 ()
Date: July 11, 2006 08:42AM

Is this all about money? I didn't realize that this is what made a cult leader. I'm expresing my experience in various levels not just the $$$. I havent seen you post anything other than articles from years ago and a bunch of definitions. I would also question why you haven't posted those but hey, it's your word and I'm just trying to share with you and others reading this, my experience. I would guess that the same things can be said about many churches but for some reason is seems that it all goes back to finances....right? I would like to ask again, do you speak from a personal experience or is this just what you have read? This site proclaims to have done research on the did the site only speak to those that had issues?

If you google Phil Aguilar or Set free you will find 100,000 articles and links and I have to say that more have to do with his good work than the insident you keep quoting from like 10 years ago.

Another thing, I'm not here to argue with you but just share my opinion and experience and from the look of the communication it seems like it's an attack. I have offered to speak with you before and I'm still willing to do it. You seem to have set your mind on this individual and that church. As a fellow researcher, I have to say that I would not recomend taking that position. It's not very ethical.

Set Free and Phil Aguilar
Posted by: veronica77 ()
Date: July 11, 2006 08:58AM

Just wanted to be clear....Jeff, did you read the disclaimer? :D

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Set Free and Phil Aguilar
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: July 11, 2006 07:22PM


No it is not all about money, but financial transparency is one issue.

Another would be a democratically elected board and bylaws to create accountability for Aguilar as previously discussed.

Jeff noted no such provision exists within Set Free.

You are repeating yourself over and over again.

OK you support Aguilar.


If you have something of substance to add such as a link to financial disclosure statement post it.

Otherwise please don't keep posting the same comments.

Set Free and Phil Aguilar
Posted by: veronica77 ()
Date: July 12, 2006 01:48AM

Dear rrmoderator:

Financial transparency is one issue, yes I understand. You said it, it's one issue not all. I as you wanted to see actual documents of which this man is accused. You are also focused on one thing and continue to post the same thing but yet you have not posted anything to me that is of any substance when it comes to the original posting that came from Rachel Smith. I was commenting on her posting from the beggining but it seems that your concern is the financial aspect. You say you have received various complains about Phil Aguilar and Set Free but where are these complains and why are you not giving credit to the comments you are receiving from me?

It's not about me supporting or not supporting "Aguilar" as you choose to call him. This is about being able to have someone that is objective to issue but I am not getting that from you at all. I will stop this posting now because we seem no to go anywhere in this conversation. Thank you for allowing us to voice our opinions and I hope that the forum continues to allow all postings.

Set Free and Phil Aguilar
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: July 12, 2006 04:42AM


I agree we are going in circles and you have not really offered anything other than repeated apologies for "Pastor Phil" and anecdotal stories about your positive experiences.

Others have contacted me with serious complaints.

They don't wish to post at this board.

Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.
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