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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: lintar123 ()
Date: December 09, 2012 08:06AM

kelvin, I can`t help but feel sad for you because you seem to be missing the whole point. In your attempt to stand up for SMC you seem to avoid the truth that so much damage has been caused to so many honest and genuine people for so many years by SMC. Are you blind? Also I don`t get the impression from you that you actually hear what people are saying. READ the posts on this forum again. You obviously haven`t been in Struthers long enough to have experienced any of what we posters have experienced. You also come across as having a problem with the Catholic church.? I dont quite follow that comparison with Struthers.

You therefore have no inkling of the true emotional and psychological harm and damage that Struthers leaders past and present have caused. You haven`t addressed one of chesterk53 `s questions. This strikes me as cold and uncaring. People on this forum gave their all to Struthers and got no support when they asked for help, and or clarification of things.Some actually took their own life or ended up mentally ill. Do you ok that? We were not allowed to questions because we were told we were "of the devil" or "backsliding".It was emotional blackmail, mind control in every sense. No one was ever elected leaders.There were never any AGMs nor complaints procedures. Believe what is posted, kelvin. I dont get the feeling that you have actually experienced the true Struthers or maybe you are just so steeped in it that we again are seeing how uncaring a place it is. You dont even seem to show any christianity in the way you demean our very accurate and real experiences. I feel very sad for you.
As for the school.You accepted the point that the choice of staff could be seen as favouritism. These" relatives" wages are being paid by the congregations. Do you not think that is wrong also? I know that the General Teaching Council of Scotland would also find it a bizarre setup.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Rensil ()
Date: December 09, 2012 08:15AM

Clive
I don't think you get it. It IS important to examine the accounts of an organisation especially a church, because its members are contributing their hard-earned cash to it with the belief that their money, once given, will be used wisely by the organisation's officials. Furthermore, if it's the financial affairs of a christian church, there are guidelines in the Bible about how a church and its finances should be dealt with. Added to that, you would expect that the leaders of a church which believes itself to be holier in behaviour and outlook than any other church, which is what SMC believes, then you would expect that their finances would be above board and that there would be honest and not dishonest practices going on. You would expect a lack of secrecy and cover-up and an acknowledgement and apology when things go wrong. Mr Hugh Black did apologise publicly for the financial scandal of the 1980s, but after the furore died down and many people left, nothing more was ever said openly about it.

The church accounts should be clear and necessary information provided. It's true that we were told that the School's income, including that required for the i-pad deployment, came from parents' fees plus the ONE annual collection taken for the School on a Saturday night at the church. Thanks to Latigo's research and analysis, we learned that money was also taken from church funds to finance the school. This seems to me to be dishonest, even deceitful. And we're talking about a "holiness church" aren't we?

All of the questions which Chesterk55 has outlined can be answered in the affirmative. I know the answers are "Yes" and so do many hundreds of people who were once in SMC. If someone hasn't been in SMC for long or has just started visiting it, they won't know that all these things have been going on. But many of us on this Forum were in SMC for years and we know what has been going on. We have all witnessed these things. They aren't lies or fabrications. If asked about these, SMC leaders would probably deny that these things happened and would tell new members and visitors that SMC have been misunderstood. And, as The Petitor so clearly reminds us, they will then blame the questioner or the one who is complaining, and say it is them who are not right with God or not spiritual enough.

Re the age of SMC, we were told by the leaders that it started around 1954 as a small house-group in Greenock. SMC recently held a 60 years Celebration. Seems the maths is wrong there too?! Whether it's young or old doesn't really matter. They have had long enough (they boasted about the 60 years) to see the effects of their teaching and way of treating their members to offer apologies and to seek to do things differently. Nothing. They will just deny the things they are accused of, most likely. The Early Church in the Book of Acts was a young church and it didn't carry on like that. Scripture tells us, "they broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favour of all the people."

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Clive ()
Date: December 09, 2012 07:54PM

Kelvin - "People still have to engage their brains and know what they are getting in to - do you agree? "

If you spend any time looking into research on human psychology you will quickly come to realise that our ability to self-monitor our selves, rationally assess what is REALLY going on in a social or group situation is very limited.

The old chestnut about surely "X could not be duped/mistaken/manipulated because X is a highly intelligent and educated person" simply doesn't stand. Go look into any cult and you will see that there are many many members in it who are very intelligent and/or educated.

Even scientists are vulnerable, although it usually tends to be people who are not on the leading edge of research - for example technologists or "second tier" scientists ( people doing the lab grunt work ) who are most prone.

And of course other educated people who are simply USING the results of scientific or medical research done by others, like Doctors and engineers. Among the terrorists who bombed the WTC we find many many engineers for example. Not many leading edge physicists, cosmologists or biologists.

Francis Collins is a rare example of an evangelical who did leading edge research - but would he approve of SMC - or indeed the other pentecostal nonsense going on ? I doubt it.

Humans tend to see themselves as being natural sceptics - not able to being fooled or manipulated whereas psychology tells us something quite different.

And where people are joining a religious group in good faith - believing that they simply want to learn from leaders how to serve god, how to live a more spiritually fulfilling life - but in reality are being subject to a conflation of the wills and whims of human leaders with gods will - we have a prime candidate for a cult.

One should not forget the power of self-selection in such gatherings. It is common that religious people who are naturally happy, have good careers, success in their life, will be perfectly happy with whatever religion or church they happen to find themselves in. They will not have complaints. In fact there will be ( and we see this a lot ) a tendency to view any others who don't see things in the same light as being deficient. Either spiritually or morally.

I'm reminded of the saying by some ancient bloke: "to him who has, more will be given, to him who has not, everything will be taken away".

There will always be "yes men" who are in effect self-selected. The other spiritual "dross" get pushed to the side. Any problems they claim to exist - must be their own fault.

Its a kind of argument for intolerance and authoritarianism based on spiritual meritocracy.


Finally - heres a story from a big American church which is relevant to this thread. As to be said - it doesnt mention authoritarianism or spiritual abuse though:

[www.ministrybestpractices.com]



Edited 6 time(s). Last edit at 12/09/2012 08:17PM by Clive.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: cbarb ()
Date: December 10, 2012 12:26AM

Happy Sunday everyone!

I've got just a couple of things to say today.

@cbarb

Based on what you have said, I wonder if your problem is actually with a few individuals?


Thanks for that one Kelvin, it gave me a great belly laugh and shows that you really haven't read that many of my posts; most of which are regarding the TEACHING of SMC leaders, the lack of LOVE and RESPECT for fellow human beings as a whole and not about specific individuals. Yes, I DO have a problem with DR being a pastor in the church (although she never was when I attended) and my problem with her is based on personal knowledge of the person and the damage she has caused many of the posters here. However, this is not a PERSONAL problem because she has done nothing to me and, as I say, wasn't a leader in my day but I did know her, as a young girl, and kept a great distance between us because of the spiritual feelings I got around her. That said, I would never have mentioned her at all if it weren't for all the testimonies here of the spiritual damage she has caused them. In this case, I was backing up these people with my own limited experience of her.

@Chesterk55

I don't really want to pick on individuals who seem to have sincere problems. However, since you insist, I will say that one poster identified her parents as being former leaders in good standing with the main pastor. It would appear that he/she absolves her parents of any responsibility while sticking the boot into anyone else, by name. Did that not strike anyone as odd? The idea that, in leaving SMC, you become a veritable saint as though what you did when you were there was not contributing to SMC becoming this church you now despise. Even if you were a pastor! Seriously.


Another belly laugh at this one. Yes I believe my parents are saints (doesn't everyone unless their parents are abusive?) But they were saints INSIDE the church as well as outside. I didn't alude to them BECOMING saints because they left. I believe they left because they disagreed with the increasingly oppressive TEACHING and my Dad was not willing to be a 'YES' man to human beings, he is only a 'YES' man to GOD himself. At the time my Dad was a pastor and we were brought up in the church was between the 60's to mid-80's and the TEACHING of SMC only changed after Miss Taylor's so-called 'vision' for the church. This 'vision' gradually made the church more insular and seculded and completely changed the atmosphere and spirituality of the church. Given that my Dad is a highy intelligent and logical man as well as being a very Godly and spiritual man, he could no longer preach what SMC wanted him to and was 'seen off the premises'. Add to that the fact that my Uncle then took over the church, in his place, and also realised that the TEACHING was not completely biblical and that much spiritual damage was being done to individuals he also disagreed with the Hugh Black/Miss Taylor stance on certain aspects of holiness teaching and he too was unceremoniously 'seen off the premises'.

Both my Dad and my Uncle went on to pastor other churches and lead very productive and fruitful spiritual and holy lives OUTSIDE SMC and many hundreds of people have been helped and supported by both these men.

As I have said before, when I attended the church ALL the leaders were male apart from Miss Taylor and ALL these leaders left or were 'seen off the premises' because they wanted to be more open and honest than the main leaders wanted them to be.

Also, by many accounts, Miss Mary Black realised - on her deathbed - just how much damage she had caused people over the years and was phoning people, from her bed, to apologise to them and ask for forgiveness. That, my friend Kelvin, is the sad facts but it was too late to undo the damage which had been caused although it may have given the individuals involved some sort of closure and perhaps eased their pain a bit.

In it's hey-day the church had over a thousand members UK wide, how many are left today?

The main problem about SMC IS it's leadership and what the leadership believe in and how they go about controlling and manipulating members into being THEIR 'Yes' men and not to question anything which is said by those leaders. It is HUGELY disrespectful to castigate and humiliate people from a public platform and should be left to politicans. That kind of treatment is NOT biblical NOR spiritual and you should, rightly, not expect to be hearing such things in a church which claims to be holier than any other church in the land and to have some supposed 'divine' insight which no one else is privvy to (that should be left to spiritualists and mediums!).

I don't judge anyone and I believe that Kelvin is entitled to his/her views but 'views' is all they are because you don't have the 'experience' that we have but you cannot then put people down, on this site for relaying their own, VERY REAL, experiences. The leadership of SMC know what's being said here is the truth but they will, as they always do, stick their heads in the sand and blame everyone else for - dare I say it - having 'grudges' or being influenced by the devil or being back-slidden and , therefore, unworthy of any note.

Friend Kelvin, take Clive's advice and properly READ every single post. Yes there is a lot of emotion and hurt and sometimes rather long-winded sermons on LOVE, RESPECT, GRACE, PEACE and GODLINESS and the lack of ALL of these in SMC leadership - sorry about that folks, I do tend to go on a bit (a fault of being born to a preacher maybe) :) But a very definite pattern of systematic spiritual abuse, mind control and manipulation will emerge if you get by all the emotion to the bare facts.

In an earlier post, friend Kelvin, you talk about the anonymity of people posting on this site and that you believe it would be different if people here were to talk to those in leadership in SMC on a face-to-face basis. Personally I have made very little attempt to hide my identity and my handle here is only a shortening of my true name. A couple, at least, of those who are currently leaders of the church can have absoultely no doubt about who I am and they are very welcome to contact me and speak to me personally. There are members of the congregation who are still very great friends of my family so there would be absolutely no problem with them getting a hold of my address or phone number and I would positively welcome a chat. I would even welcome them into my home and give them a cup of tea while we chatted - I might even buy some chocolate hob-nobs for the occassion! :-)

To conclude, if you haven't already seen it, you should watch Derren Brown's recent mind manipulation game which managed to prompt a perfectly innocent man into believing he may have committed murder! It's extreme but it illustrates the point that no matter how intelligent we are, as human beings, most of us are susceptible to mind control and manipulation and that opens us to abuse by unscrupulous people. Personally, I believe the current leaders have been so controlled by previous leaders that they whole-heartedly believe they are right and beyond question; but we are all human (even the most saintly) and are all susceptible to making mistakes. Unfortunately SMC leaders seem to hold themselves above other human beings and believe that they never make mistakes and, if they are made aware of inconsitencies and wrong-doing they stick their head in the sand and say the other party is wrong or being led by the devil. A very convenient way of keeping the status quo instead of entering into intelligent debate and being willing to accept that they may NOT be right in some areas and indeed they are quite ANTI-biblical in some of their dealings with individuals in their congregations (past or present).

Sorry guys, I guess I had more than 'a couple' of things to say today - sorry, I do go on a bit don't I?

Biiiig love and huge huggggggs to you, friend Kelvin
God bless xxx

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Rensil ()
Date: December 10, 2012 08:53AM

Cbarb,
Thank you for posting your explanation re the truth about what happened to your parents whilst in SMC. I hope your explanation will dispel any views which say that you have a problem with only a few individuals in SMC. Your parents were two of the most godly and friendly people I have ever met and they were missed when they left SMC, as were your aunt and uncle. Of course, we in SMC were never told what happened and the story was, as is usual in SMC, that they hadn't followed out the teaching and hadn't made spiritual progress to a sufficient degree. What lies! It was SMC's loss when they left the church. SMC could have kept your parents and aunt and uncle, and think how the church could have been enriched greatly by their input. Instead they showed them off the premises.

Clive, the ancient bloke who said: " to him who has will more be given but to him who has not, everything will be taken away" was Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: ThePetitor ()
Date: December 10, 2012 06:21PM

Kelvin

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Kelvin
"This is all just nonsense". Okay, that's a pretty clear view. No need to worry about putting together a reasonable response then! ;
Well, I am happy to admit I can might carried away, and phrases like the above are conveying some of the frustration I feel rather than a logical argument. Fair point, and I apologise.

I am not sure that negates the need for a response however – just because someone conveys emotion or uses the wrong words does not mean what they are saying is wrong. The fact that I express myself badly or inappropriately doesn’t take away form the fact that you seem to have a whole list of reasons from NOT examining things in SMC. Similarly, even if the issues about the accounts are raised due to a grudge, so what – are they real issues or not?

You have in fact just added to my list, as there is now the additional point that, if people convey too much emotion, are judged to have a grudge, or are dismissive of criticism, then that is yet another reason NOT to examine the underlying issues.

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Kelvin
"That seems to me to be the thrust of your arguments – always find a reason to avoid actually examining the issue." If you do have a point (re. the whole purpose of this forum) it at least benefits from proper scrutiny, right?

I absolutely believe in the need for scrutiny of this forum as well as of SMC and any other organisation, and am personally very happy to take criticism (hopefully constructive although, as I illustrated above with my own comments, it is not always easy to remain detached in the course of a discussion).

It becomes a bit surreal when you are scrutinizing the people raising “grievances” without actually examining the underlying issues however – that has probably been the single most powerful way of suppressing truth throughout history - or at least the most recent centuries when the pen has been mightier than the sword. Is that not exactly what happened in the Roman Catholic church only a few decades ago when they tried to suppress knowledge of child abuse? In fact, is it not almost a hallmark of abuse that the victim is made to think it is their fault and that they are bad for reporting things, and that they can’t possibly be true because the people concerned are in a position of authority and are above suspicion?

If you read books like’ “the subtle power of spiritual abuse” you will find that propensity to focus the scrutiny on the victim rather than the (alleged) perpetrator is the main reason abuse can flourish, and this is true of almost all forms of abuse. That doesn't prove abuse is happening of course, but it does mean that, if abuse does happen, there is less chance it will be identified and corrected.

So, I am sorry, but I do get hot under the collar when I see that people who have been through serious trauma are then having their testimony questioned without them being granted the opportunity for their case to be heard.

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Kelvin
What you seemed to want from the outset is for me to accept your version in its entirety.
No, absolutely not. Claims should be scrutinised.

They should not be dismissed out of hand however. I would not expect you or any others to accept claims listed here without hearing any counter-claims or evidence to the contrary. I do not see that evidence however, I do not even see any acknowledgement that there is a need to bring evidence or counter-claim. Instead, I see a view that there is no need to examine the issues or bring any counter-evidence as they are so obviously unreasonable. Deciding in advance that issues must be too trivial, too unbelievable, too un-provable, too wild or are accusing people who are too respectable is not the answer as far as I am concerned.

as Clive says:

Quote
Clive
Finally I actually went through this entire forum thread some months ago and tried to collate the "Essence" of testimonies - in particular those ones from people who grew up in this church, while cutting out the chatter and fluff. ;

And I have to tell you Kelvin, that once one does that - a very consistent pattern starts to emerge. ;

Does that not warrant examination? I am not asking you to accept anyone’s version in its entirety, but I am asking you whether you think the issues, helpfully listed by Chesterk55, are worthy of investigation or can all just be dismissed without checking.

My view is that the list of issues raised by Chersterk55, the “very consistent pattern” identified by Clive and your agreement that there is an issue re the airing of grievances would suggest to me the need to focus our energies on the (alleged) perpetrators rather then the victims of abuse.

If there are people in SMC worthy of respect, I suggest they too read ALL of what is written here and on the Latigo site. The Bible says that accusations against elders that are brought by two or three witnesses should be heard. Well, there are accusations here brought by 30 or 40 witnesses, but no-one is prepared to hear them. We all know what happened in the Roman Catholic church re abuse, and all of the issues related to Jimmy Saville and others are in the press at the moment. He was a respected person who did a lot of charity work, but it now seems he abused that position - and others who should have known better turned a blind eye, perhaps thinking there was nothing they could do or using the old chestnut that it was for “the greater good”.

Well, if there are respectable people in SMC, and they chose to turn a blind eye, I suspect they will largely be judged as being equally guilty. This is their chance to say, “These are serious allegations of abuse. They must be investigated and (without prejudice to the outcome of these investigations) we must develop public policies to ensure that nothing like this can happen in our organisation in future.” That to me is the fundamental choice people in SMC have - pretend it can all be dismissed without examination, or wake up and start to look at whether things do have a basis in fact and might need examination. The Chesterk55 list (including the financial questions) would be a good place to start.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: cbarb ()
Date: December 11, 2012 04:30AM

Hi guys

Thanks for your comments Rensil my folks would be very happy to hear that and I appreciate your support.

I'd also like to qualify my invitation to SMC leaders to contact me, for a chat, by excluding the leader of Cumbernauld church (got it right this time, Rensil :-)) from that invitation because I firmly believe she is a very dangerous person and could probably take the place of Derren Brown. Derren however, is open and upfront in teaching us how easy it is to be manipulated. The leader of Cumbernauld church, on the other hand, is unscrupulous and devious in her manipulation of people and uses the FEAR of reprisals to ensure she stays in her comfortable position. She is not the kind of person I would want in my home. That said, any of the other pastors are welcome to contact me for a chat.

ThePetitor, I agree with you that it is hard sometimes to be objective rather than subjective when you feel your pain and hurt is being ignored by those who caused it and it is difficult to put that hurt into words without the emotion creeping in.

However, I feel that the recent postings from Kelvin have actually advanced the forum, in some respects. He/She may not be a committed member of SMC but it may perhaps prompt some who are committed members to think again about what's being said on the forum and ask themselves:

'Why have there been so many lies from people who claim to be annointed by God and should, rightly, be expected to be completely honest and open in everything they do and say?'

If someone is claiming to have special insight to peoples lives because God is talking to them directly (in a way he doesn't talk to anyone else) but then uses that so-called 'discernment' to berrate, castigate, humiliate and tell lies about people from the public platform in order to keep the rest of the flock 'in check', for FEAR they may be the next person to be abused in this way, is this Godly? Does the Bible tell us that it's OK to humiliate people in this way? Of course the answer to both questions is a very definite 'NO!"

OK, so following a logical train of thought here - if it's not Godly or Biblical then the perpetrator of the abuse must have an ulterior motive for such actions - if they have an ulterior motive (known only to them) then they are not acting on God's say-so, are they? - if they're not acting on God's say-so they cannot claim to be Godly and must therefore be acting on behalf of themselves - if they are acting on behalf of themselves then they are also lying about being holy people - if they are lying about being holy people then they are UN-holy and - dare I say it - acting on behalf of the fallen angel, who I believe is laughing his burning butt off right now and probably very pleased at his work in SMC.

SMC leaders can say whatever takes their fancy and attribute it to God speaking to them and the congregation are expected to swallow every word and keep their heads bowed and their mouths shut.

Here's a scenario: Someone in the church decides they should be on the platform of one of the SMC churches so they go about gathering as much damning evidence against the current pastor as they can, or if they can't find anything damning they make something up. They then approach the main leader(s) with some 'concerns' about the pastor they wish to usurp. This is done in a mealey mouthed way, with down-cast eyes and words like 'I really don't want to cause trouble but I'm so worried about 'so-and-so' and I feel awful for bringing this up but God has put this person on my heart and, although I feel so bad about it, I just had to bring this to you because I don't know what else to do for them and God is telling me I need to bring this into the open.

This scenario may not be exact but it's not far from the reality of what goes on in SMC. The gossipers and cliques are always on constant alert to the least hint of mis-demeanor which they will then gossip about among their own clique and we all know that gossip has a way of completely changing a situation from something quite harmless into something ugly and abhorrent. If a person is disliked by the cliques you can be sure they will be the subject of much gossip and, in some cases, will be 'sent to coventry' to make life as difficult as possible for them so that they will have no choice but to leave the organisation and then be publicly denounced as being 'back-slidden' or 'not spiritual enough' etc. etc. and the recipient of the abuse is left feeling that they are the most unworthy person in the world, when in fact they have done nothing to deserve this nasty treatment.

The Bible tells us to be wary of the gossipers and not to be drawn into conversations where people are being discussed when they are not present in the situation, to defend themselves. Unfortunately SMC thrives on this kind of UN-holy cliquishness where they can feel free to talk behind people's backs because they feel 'concerned' for the person in question; however that kind of 'concern' is just gossip in fancy dress.

The Bible also tells us that if we have a problem with someone then we should speak to that person directly and not behind their back but we all know that the back-stabbing is rife in SMC. To get close to the 'inner-circle' one has to have a solid reason for speaking to them and the most widely used reason is 'concern' for another member of the congregation. This earns them brownie points and perhaps another step closer to the attention they crave from leaders, it also gives those leaders fodder for their so-called 'insights' into peoples lives.

The reason this works so well in SMC is because the leaders are aloof and apart from everyone else and they don't speak to all members of their congregations in the same spirit. Indeed some members have probably never had a proper conversation with any of the leaders because they don't have anything in particular to discuss that is worthy of the leader's time.

This is the kind of thing that my Dad and Uncle found that they could not agree with, especially nasty public announcements about people in the church or who had left the church. As my Dad says 'The pastor cares for and supports ALL members of his church with equality in mind and humility in spirit' In other words, favouritism doesn't wash with God and each individual soul is as important as the next. The pastor should count himself as the SERVANT to his congregation and not the other way round, as it seems to be in SMC. The present leaders appear to count themselves so much higher than their members that some members may never be good enough to even warrant a 'Good morning' from their pastor.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, if your pastor is not coming to your home to visit or spending quality time with you, when you need it, then they are not fit to be pastors. The meetingitis in SMC makes it easy for the leaders to perhaps believe that they don't need to make home visits or spend quality time with their members because they're too busy spouting verbal diahorrea from the public platform and that seems to be all they are concerned with. Spreading God's love is done LESS on the platform and MORE with face-to-face contact with people but SMC leaders, as far as I know, don't even visit the sick and old and, in some cases, instruct the other members to be as callous as they themselves are.

I have never once heard my Dad say a bad word about anyone in public and gossiping angers him. When he was pastor of Port Glasgow, he had a full-time job as well as being fully available EVERY day of the week to ALL members of his congregation and he often went without sleep to help people who were in need of his advice and prayers. He often worked away from home but members of the congregation could still contact him if they needed to, via my Mum. When members were hospitalised he encouraged all the other members to pray for them and to make at least one visit to the person, if they could, regardless of why the person was in hospital. He would also ensure that part of the week's collection would be used to buy the person flowers and a card from everyone in the church, to wish them a speedy recovery. My Mum also did prescription runs for the members who were less mobile or had no transport to pick up their prescriptions and she did extensive work with local women who had trouble with alcohol and drugs. Joan Jewell, for one, KNOWS this to be true since she attended Port-Glasgow while my Dad was pastor.

Do the current pastors do these sorts of things for ALL the members of their congregations? Do they follow God's will or do they hand-pick those they feel are worthy of their time? Do they treat all people equally and consider themsleves the SERVANTS of God and, thereby, the SERVANTS of their congregation?

That, friend Kelvin, is why my folks didn't contribute to how SMC is today; because they are truly Godly people who love and respect all of humanity and not just those they think are worthy of their love and respect. I'm not saying they're infallible, we all make mistakes but the difference is that they admit their mistakes immediately and put them right. It's a pity the current pastors seem to find it so hard just to admit they have made mistakes never mind trying to put them right.

The people have already voted with their feet as shown by the massively reduced membership today and those who are left in the church I'm afraid can only be considered as the most pliable and easily led people, whether they like to admit it or not. I'm sure Derren Brown would have a field day with the SMC congregation but of course he doesn't need to because the current leaders, it seems, are already having a field day aren't they?

It would do no harm, and would probably be of great benefit to the current leaders if they were to embark on some theology and christianity courses. Apart from making them more qualified to be pastors, I think it would open their minds and their hearts to the TRUE word of GOD, the word of LOVE, RESPECT, GRACE and - dare I say it - SERVITUDE to God, with which comes SERVITUDE to those you seek to be a leader of.

Here's a suggestion, if SMC cut out just one or two meetings a week the pastors could use that time much more effectively for concentrating on the members of their congregation who are experiencing problems and in need of some PERSONAL time with their pastor, for support through difficult times or illness. This would be far more beneficial to the congregation than sitting every day just listening to sermons which don't necessarily address any of the problems they may be experiencing in their lives or difficulties they may be having in their daily walk with God. Of course it would only be beneficial if the help given is appropriate and given with proper pastoral care.

The Bible tells us that the true leaders of men are those who care nothing for themselves but put all their efforts into the support and guidance of the people they lead. By all accounts the leader, of Cumbernauld at least, appears to hold herself in higher esteem than any members of her congregation and even higher than God Himself? - I'm alluding to the 10 cities rubbish where she seems to think that she (not GOD?) will be lifted up and be famous (or infamous) in her wee part of the world. All I can say is "Hogwash, Balderdash and smell the verbal diahorrea!"

Sorry, but sometimes I just have to have a belly-laugh that people actually believe this rubbish even although they must know how un-Biblical and un-Holy it is to be putting oneself in God's place and using so-called 'discernment' to instill fear and exert control over ones fellow human beings. Do you truly believe this is God's Way?

Also, how can the congregation sit and listen to what is no more than gossip being made public about other members of their group from someone who claims to be Holy? When this is so BLATANTLY UN-Biblical and UN-holy.

As always Biiiiiiigg LOVE and huge hugggggs to all
God bless you xxxx

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: kelvin ()
Date: December 11, 2012 05:07AM

@rrmoderator

Please post my earlier reply to @cbarb.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Clive ()
Date: December 11, 2012 05:49AM

I still get the impression that some here are tending to get carried away with critiquing Kelvin personally - questioning his motives etc.
EVEN if - at times - it seemed he was questioning ours.

We may be putting off people who want to discuss the church but want to post stuff in defence of SMC - or maybe some of it. Maybe to providing what they honestly see as balance. Rightly or wrongly. If the moment they start to post they then get the impression that they are being set upon by a pack of wolves, where everything gets shouted down. Then one could understand why so few from inside the SMC bother to come here.

I know this isn't easy, and for sure - I am very much a "Wolf" myself - guilty as charged on numerous occasions - not exactly given to self control or word-restraint !.

But if it is a true conversation we are looking for, we need to - as one says - cut some slack :)


I appreciate these are matters that raise high emotions. But its important to keep the criticisms to where they belong - the SMC leadership and modus operandi. If anyone who wants to ask questions and are for whatever reason, slightly sceptical as to the claims, tone, bias etc here. its surely better to at least let them say their piece without instantly having every line turned round into a character assessment or assassination.

In philosophy there is this thing called "The Principle Of Charity". Namely one should always attempt to read and portray someone else's statements and claims in the best possible light, before proceeding to "rebut" it. in other words, its quite possible that someone coming online here to defend or raise questions about posts here might not quite have put his question in the best, most diplomatic, accurate way etc.

For example if a sentence COULD be construed as a personal attack on one of us - first see if maybe it could just be interpreted as a general question and answer it as such. And only if subsequent replies start to look more and more like true personal attacks - THEN maybe treat them as such.

Back to Mr Hugh Black, I have a question - Can someone here STRONGLY verify exactly what was said by that woman- after people left ?.

It seems to have been interpreted as a test from god as to who was spiritually strong enough - or loyal enough to the church/SMC/god to stay "faithful" to the true church and not leave in disgust.

Can anyone provide a recollection of anything near to what exactly was said ?



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 12/11/2012 05:57AM by Clive.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Rensil ()
Date: December 11, 2012 09:12AM

Clive
I have already done that in a previous post - written my recollection of what Miss Mary Black said re the financial crisis at SMC being a test and that some people failed the test and left. I have the cassette tape with it on, if you want me to send it to you.

Is it that you don't believe she said that? Well, she did, and I'm sure there are others on here who remember what she said and can back me up on that. I'm not surprised if you find it hard to believe, because it does sound far-fetched and ridiculous, and very derogatory and unkind of course. But that is honestly what was said and this view was subsequently propagated throughout the congregation by people talking (you could say it was gossip, similar to what Cbarb describes above) but it was true nevertheless. People in SMC still hold to that view today and give it as a reason as to why a large number left the church in the late 1980s.

Many of us stayed, partly because we were at the time young and therefore finances had little meaning and were not of much importance to us. We trusted the leaders as we were committed to SMC and we forgave Hugh Black and put it all behind us. Looking back, I can see now that we were totally indoctrinated with SMC's teaching and beliefs and thought the leaders could do no wrong. You don't see it when you're in it.

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