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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Clive ()
Date: August 27, 2011 08:20PM

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rrmoderator
To whom it may concern:

Please focus on the topic rather than petty bickering and/or theological debates.
The topic is "Sturthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church".

Actually this IS very much to do with accusations made of the Struthers Memorial Church. Not every one is valid. The trouble is that posters are accepting ANY story, event or bit of information as somehow being valid “cannon fodder”, without the least bit of scepticism being applied to the reasonableness of the accusations. ThePetitor and other here seem to be suggesting that Struthers Memorial Church Leaders should be obliged to persuade this woman to keep this vow.
I claim this is a matter for L and M to resolve. But if L simply does NOT WANT THIS. Then that is the end of the matter.

Treetop writes "Actually, for many christians, this summary is fairly accurate! Bear in mind we aren't told what the vow was, only that it wasn't about their relationship. Chester's points about a vow made to God apply to both men and women (unless you see God having less expectations of women or vice versa.”

Let me give you a example of a solemn wow made between a man and woman, and to God in the presence of God. Its called the vow of marriage. Such vows are taken with the utmost seriousness. NO rash action in a field. No camera. Now tell me, of the two types of incident, which one should we take more seriously ?, Which carries more weight ?. ThePetitor - please tell us - was the vow made to M anything like as serious as a marriage vow ?.

Forgive me again if i am being presumptuous but I suspect a vow of marriage carries more weight.

And yet consider this hypothetical but all too common story: A pentecostal woman X marries man Y. She makes a vow to Y and God to be faithful, to .. “TIL DEATH DO US PART” !!! .
Time passes, X no longer loves Y. X seeks a divorce, and gets one. X Knows she failed God, but asks his forgiveness and continues going to church.

Now I ask you Treetop, ThePetitor, would it be considered perfectly reasonable and RIGHT - for Y to - THIRTY YEARS LATER, turn up on the church doorstep and start accusing the pastor and X of spiritual failings in this matter ?. ( and TreeTop can clarify one way or the other )

The whole problem with this L and M business is that it is really very much to do with someone who is NOT a leader of Struthers Memorial Church. As the moderator has said this thread is about SMC and how its leadership is
destructive. Yet the focus in this incident is very much about the obligations of a female individual to a man.

ThePetitor continually chooses to couch this whole business in mystery rather than clarification, yet if we go to the Latigo site - one aimed at Struthers Memorial Church, the need to provide clarification is a constant refrain. Here is another quote - "This might also have been raised, not by M, by someone with a concern for L – after all, it is her spiritual life, not M’s that is being compromised. It is actually her I feel sorry for, not M.”

ThePetitor, please clarify for us - is this MIGHT a real MIGHT ? or are you just deliberately obfuscating things . Are you categorically suggesting that YOU are speaking on behalf of someone else or for yourself. Clouding all this in such ambiguous terms does not help anyone judge whether this really is something that warrants questioning SMC about. Readers will reach their own opinions about what exactly really is going on here.

And people here seem only too happy to say AMEN to using this incident as a stick to beat SMC with, without realising that ThePetitor has deliberately witheld the very information that we in reality need to make this judgement for ourselves.

ALL THAT GLISTENS IS NOT GOLD and not all accusations made against SMC are valid.

And am still waiting for someone - ANYONE - to point out to me exactly WHAT IS THE FINANCIAL SMOKING GUN in the Latigo financial entries. Everyone goes “oh gosh” “wow I never knew that” !. But nobody has come out and named ANY financial impropriety or ANYTHING, that would cause its member to resort to litigation or calling the local Greenock Rag for a story.

I perceive a distinct lack of scepticism going on here.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/27/2011 08:31PM by Clive.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: clare ()
Date: August 28, 2011 03:06PM

Could i make a small point. I have been reading all the posts about the L and M story and more interestingly the friction between Clive and others. Having read Clive's first posts here it seems that he is giving opinions from a more objective view point rather than a subjective one and this seems to be if i am understanding correctly because his personal involvement with struthers was not at the same degree as others here.
Its all about perspective. Its far easier to be objective when you have been less hurt.

Now i'm going to be flippant... SMC = Sado-Masochistic Church.
But from what i can see here they certainly like to inflict pain but those who stay and take it ? doesnt that make them masochists .

To all the confused young people who read this forum in secret, God will not punish you for leaving struthers, you can just leave, there is life after struthers! and if you are there under obedience to parents He will honour your obedience , pray that He will shield you until you can leave.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Pilgrimess ()
Date: August 29, 2011 03:39AM

Hello. I have read the various comments over a couple of months, with interest.
My experience was years of commitment in Struthers, the last 10 or so where I felt bound in to something with a feeling of not being able to escape. It will seem incredible to anyone who has not been in this kind of situation to try to understand why I stayed in it for so long. It is a complex thing to be involved in such a machine.
I will introduce myself by sharing a few of the things which puzzled me.
Why did Struthers always start a separate Christian gathering at Higher Education establishments? Why was the established Christian Union not considered good enough?
Why, when women were doing almost everything in the 'meetings' did the female leader insist that when the sacraments were being given out it had to be done by one man and one woman, not 2 men?
Why, when Bible classes were run, were females allowed to lead the group (at that time comprising mostly young boys) on their own but when a male was on the rota he had to be accompanied by a female? (This was nothing to do with 'Disclosure' but to do with the church leader not trusting the spiritual condition of men.)
I know some young men who have turned out to be strong and highly respected friends in their own part of society who were frozen out at a young age as they were considered 'dark'.
So I have now introduced myself and explained my position!

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: seekingsusan ()
Date: August 29, 2011 08:35PM

In just in the recent months there seem to be more and more people "coming forward” which is interesting.

I thought it might be encouraging to people here to compile all the testimonies - mostly first time posts - from posters here, thus “cutting to the chase”.

I’ve posted these on the other Refuge Wendover Thread, since it might prove useful to parents and children ( they target young children down there ) who were casually just skimming that thread out of curiosity and don’t have the time to wade thru masses of pages on the main thread.



Edited 4 time(s). Last edit at 08/29/2011 08:44PM by seekingsusan.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Rensil ()
Date: August 30, 2011 07:07AM

Re the L and M story, the word or couplet which comes to me is "soul tie". When a soul tie has been formed, for good or ill, it also has to be broken if it not a healthy one. In my view, this story is about a soul tie which will still be in operation spiritually until it is broken. Perhaps that explains why M is still struggling with the issue. Vows and oaths have weight and are real. If they are unhealthy they need to be broken in prayer. They don't just go away. They affect people's lives. SMC leaders should be aware of that kind of thing and seek to have it broken. However, I know that they will think they are right to just dismiss what happened and forget about it, as long as they have L with them in their cause. I never heard any of the leaders teach or minister regarding vows and soul ties, even although it is in the Bible. They always think they are right and have the last word. It is sad that they are not willing to meet and talk with M whom they most likely label, along with all of us here, as a backslider. Maybe M could seek some christian counselling with people who minister regarding breaking of soul ties.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Clive ()
Date: September 01, 2011 08:51PM

Quote
clare
Having read Clive's first posts here it seems that he is giving opinions from a more objective view point rather than a subjective one and this seems to be if i am understanding correctly because his personal involvement with struthers was not at the same degree as others here.
Its all about perspective. Its far easier to be objective when you have been less hurt.

...

To all the confused young people who read this forum in secret, God will not punish you for leaving struthers, you can just leave, there is life after struthers! and if you are there under obedience to parents He will honour your obedience , pray that He will shield you until you can leave.

Yes Clare, your understanding is correct and I share your assesment of what is going on here.

But more importantly, reflecting on the last part of your post I would like to add something to this sentiment, written by Thom Stark - no pentecostal btw but someone who comes from the Stone Campbell denomination:

"Find a community that will allow you to be honest with your doubts, a community that won’t force you to comply with phony definitions of faith that allow for no dissent and no despair. Find a community that will not only allow you to struggle openly, but one that will struggle with you, without the need to force easy answers onto questions that won’t allow for them. Find a community that knows how to argue, both with one another, and with the text. The Bible is an argument with itself. Find a community that knows that joining in that argument is exactly what it means to be a people of the book. Find a community that doesn’t let experts speak over the top of the ignorant. Find a community that holds those who doubt in high regard, and one that treats those with all the answers with the kind of care appropriate to the mentally ill. If you’ve already found such a community, find someone who hasn’t. And if you haven’t found one yet, keep looking. They’re out there. I’ve found mine. You’ll find yours. Christian or not, we all need such communities; it’s what it means to be human. There may not be any answers forthcoming, but woe to the one who has questions and no one to throw them at."



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 09/01/2011 08:58PM by Clive.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: clare ()
Date: September 03, 2011 03:21PM

Soul -Ties

The subject of soul-ties has been mentioned .
I think its interesting to consider that soul-ties dont only relate to male/female relationships.
My brief reading on the subject suggests that a soul-tie can be formed with objects ( idols) animals, virtual characters like in "second life" or " world of warcraft " online games. Places, and of course other people like family members and church leaders.
We consider soul- ties normal and healthy and of no cause for alarm as long as their foundation is properly based in God, is part of our walk with Him etc
But, soul-ties can put us under the influence of the other , good or bad .
A leadership of a church is in the dominant position in the soul-ties it has with its members and so has a lot of influence, and those " tied in" will find the tie hard to break .
So like in an abusive relationship the abused one might want to leave for years, many dont despite the ongoing abuse because of the soul-tie that exists between them.
It seems to explain in part why some people stay in struthers memorial church even though they are depressed, damaged , unhappy people.
Its hard to let go of something even when its so obviously bad for us.
You can do it with Gods help, ask Him to help you, dont be too hard on yourself , you are not the only one who should have left years ago, you will feel scared, it will feel like you are walking out onto no-mans-land ,but you will start to breathe clean air, (metaphorically speaking) and the veil of confusion will lift.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Rensil ()
Date: September 03, 2011 10:22PM

Totally agree with you re soul-ties, Clare. Thanks for explaining it so well. Yes, wrong soul-ties definitely exist between leaders and people in SMC. I know this to be true because I know some people who have had to have these soul-ties broken spiritually during special ministry from wise, discerning anointed Christians. Yes, it explains why it's so hard to leave SMC even when you're unhappy and discouraged with things and feel you're getting nowhere. It explains the hold the leaders have over people's lives and also why people who leave, sometimes end up back in SMC.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: DAM CULT ()
Date: September 07, 2011 08:05AM

This site appears to have a certain bias against Struthers Memorial Church. My wife, myself, and my young son at the time attended Struthers in Glasgow from 89 till 93. I had previously attended from August/Sept 88 and never was any pressure placed on me to attend full time as it were; this was our decision, and we had many great times there.


I worked for a brief period in the bookshop with Mr Black. I think anyone who got remotely close to him would have to concur that he was a devout man, quite a humble man, and a man of character who displayed integrity and sincerity to a degree that could only have come from someone who took his position, not only as Christian but as a leader in a church, very seriously indeed. I had an anxiety problem, and working in the bookshop, doing paperwork, found myself going to have an anxiety attack one time; I said to Mr Black that I was going to have an anxiety attack and that I would be back shortly to resume my work. I reflected on this with my youngest son the other day, and how I had never been able to do that with anyone else apart from my immediate family, and yet I would not say I was especially close to Mr Black, but he was definitely not someone offended by the infirmities or short comings of man; so I felt able to trust him when trusting anyone at that time in my life was far from second nature to me.


I would expect a cult to be heavy laden with leadership involvement in my personal life, sorry to disappoint many of you but this did not happen. My employment and means of employment were never questioned, what I listened to or watched was never contested.


I think this website is in danger of becoming a free for all that denigrates the fine reputation of many people. I made some great friendships at Struthers, and it was me who turned my back on them, not them with me, so I would ask the Christians on this forum to remember humility. Mr Black had a favourite saying: "when you point a finger at someone, remember that there are four pointing back at you". Some would do extremely well to remember those words from a fine man of God

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: September 07, 2011 08:53PM

JohnMcK:

Please explain how accountability works within Sturthers Memorial Church.

Is there a democratically elected church government mandated by its constitutional bylaws with an elected board, officers, etc.?

How does that work?

Are board members elected to fixed terms through secret ballot?

Is there an independently audited financial budget published annually that discloses in detail all salaries, compensation and expenses paid out from church funds?

How would someone obtain a copy?

Most churches have such safeguards. Does Struthers Memorieal Independent Pentecostal Church have such safeguards?

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