Hi English, good to hear from you. I remember the Pudsey group well, including a story about one of you nearly being sold for 25 camels, or something like that.
I also heard about the money being invested and lost in the stock market crash, and a number of professionals leaving at that point as they thought what happened was unacceptable. I know Mr Black volunteered to resign over this at a Saturday night meeting, but there was no notice of the meeting in advance, no written report, no real analysis of why it had happened and no action.
I think that answer the moderators question about whether the organisation is financially transparent – if they were, there would be a written report on this matter.
Pentecostal, you need to think carefully about what you are actually saying here- see my comments below.
“in the interests of balance an fairness” – great, we are all for that. Welcome to the forum and thanks for contributing.
“I find the tone too biased” – really? that is an entirely different matter. Bias implies prejudice or an unfair slant. I assume you don’t know most of the people here, how can you accuse them of prejudice or bias? Sorry, but this is typical Struthers-speak. Instead of answering the question, you criticise the way it is asked. “I find the tone” other than confirming the fact that you are criticising the individuals, not the quantity of responses, what does that mean? Do you have a criticism of what has actually been said, or is it just something about the “tone”? If there are things you disagree with, say them – I am sure they will contribute to the debate, and add to the overall picture, but please do not accuse people of bias or criticise the tone of what they say. Deal with the issues, rather than basing your comments on presumptions about the people raising them (bias perhaps?)
Thankfully, you do go on to do this, raising an actual example of a matter referred to in scripture when you say; " ‘If he refuses to listen to them (i.e. 2 or 3 witnesses), tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector.’. Ever seen that happen at your local church? Now we may debate how this public ostracisation is done, but I have seen it done in very few churches”
With regard to this question, can I first ask you to remind me how Jesus treated tax collectors and sinners? You seem to make an interesting jump between treating people as tax collectors and sinners and ostracisation. Do you have any scripture to back up this equivalence? That’s not what I read of how Jesus treated tax collectors and sinners.
Second, and more importantly, I don’t see how this comment is relevant to this thread. This thread is about Struthers Memorial Church, but you do not mention them in this context, you simply talk about whether people have seen this happen in their new church. Are you implying that this is something Struthers does? If so, I have not seen any evidence of it in Struthers or in this forum. Do you actually know of any cases where there have been 2 or 3 witnesses, and action has been taken on that basis? I am NOT asking whether you know of cases where THE LEADERS HAVE SAID there have been 2 or 3 witnesses, I am asking whether you have actually heard these witnesses speak with their own mouths. In your following post you say, “I do not have all the information from BOTH sides of any given "case history" to make a sensible judgement.” If that is so, how do you know that Struthers does in fact implement the practice you quote above? You don’t. All you know is that the leaders tell you that is what they are doing. And linking this back to my earlier comments, how can you accuse people of bias when you admit you cannot make a sensible judgment about any given case? If you cannot make a judgment, please do not accuse people of being bias.
Finally, is that really the test of a good church? Whether they ostracise their members? That is not the test that Scripture suggests we use. It might be worth having another look at an article I quoted earlier [smallvoices.net