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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: kelvin ()
Date: December 08, 2012 06:12AM


Of course, no-one would be positively in favour of authoritarianism. One flaw in your argument is that, unlike nation states, an "authoritarian" church is not a dictatorship run by force against the will of free-born people. No-one has actually (I hope) claimed they were physically unable to leave SMC, or that they cleaned out their bank account. Sure, there may have been some personal consequences (and I would not trivialise the case of someone brought up there losing their peer group) but let's not get carried away here. People still have to engage their brains and know what they are getting in to - do you agree? Look, I'm not arguing for an anti-democratic church, just that democracy is qualified even in those denominations you quote. Good oversight, with external advice, would be a positive step I will agree with you on that. You are probably not a Catholic, but I don't think the Pope comes up for re-election until he is dead, nor is his word open to debate, and yet the RC church is one of the oldest institutions in the world.


I do see your point about apparent favouritism, but I also note that Roman Catholic schools in Scotland are allowed to discriminate on the basis of which Church their staff attend. They are doing nothing illegal.


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


I would maintain that a lack of education would correlate better with propensity to get drawn into a "cult". Also, you'd probably need a very charismatic (in the colloquial sense) leader to carry away highly educated individuals. Is that your honest view of the leadership in SMC, that they would be capable of it?


I'm not getting drawn into your style of argument, nice try. I will say this though: if you look at it objectively, how would anyone know some of the more wild claims on here are "factual"? The SMC accounts are factual and audited but that did not stop Latigo and others casting aspersions (which is the thing that ticked me off about this forum). I didn't notice you were so outraged by that. As for ad hominem attacks, well you have truly astonished me with the audacity of that statement. Go back through the site and see who has actually been attacked in person on here and by whom. Was it really me? Be honest now. As to your second point, it's pure speculation but interesting speculation nonetheless - perhaps you need to update your knowledge of members.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: December 08, 2012 08:46AM



Your posts have really provided clarity about SMC.

The only way people can vote is with their feet. If they are physically able to walk out they can leave. Otherwise they can simply shut up and put up, because they have no vote and there are no meaningful checks and balances.

The Pope is elected. Who in SMC was elected? Apparently no one.

You are actually " arguing for an anti-democratic church".

BTW-- you also seem in favor of churches being "allowed to discriminate".

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/08/2012 08:48AM by rrmoderator.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Chesterk55 ()
Date: December 08, 2012 12:15PM


Please stop referring to "vague wild claims" on this forum unless you are prepared to say what specific claims you dismiss as wild and who made them?

You appear to be attempting to imply some, or many, of the stories people have shared here are not true or are lies by implying that this forum contains nothing but vague wild claims. Tell us what you are talking about or stop these unsubstantiated sweeping references. If you have read all 75 pages on here one of the things you will most consistently notice is that people who bring facts and experiences frequently find others on the forum backing them up and agreeing that what is being shared mirrored their own experience. To an unbiased person this would appear to be verification that such claims are neither vague, wild or non-factual but reflect true shared experiences. I suggest you make clear what claims you are referring to or stop using this cheap generalisation and avoidance technique.

quote from Kelvin
The SMC accounts are factual and audited but that did not stop Latigo and others casting aspersions (which is the thing that ticked me off about this forum)

Perhaps you are a little confused about what accounts are.

If anyone was claiming the only problems and questions arising from the accounts was that they were full of lies you might have a point but who is doing that? Nobody is denying the accounts contain some facts and the accounts are audited.

So were the accounts of Enron, Bearings Bank, BCCI and many other organisations which have nevertheless had serious issues to address. By the way I suspect intelligent professionals ran all these organisations.

Accounts can contain errors and mistakes. Latigo have pointed out factual errors and mistakes in the accounts. You cannot change the numbers from the previous year and not explain why. It cannot be factual that they had one number of employees in 2010 in one set of accounts and another number for 2010 in the next set of accounts. The report section claims most income comes from giving at church services. That is not what the figures show. Your assertion that people on this forum mischievously “cast aspersions” on factual accounts suits your argument but it is not correct. The report and accounts contained factual errors.

But the accuracy of the accounts and the fact that the auditors missed factual errors is a not the main reason for concern about Struthers accounts – as anyone who had actually read the Latigo article would see.

For example accounts can "factually" claim that people work in the school. That does not mean those people have been recruited in line with charity law requirements which are very specific about what can be done in relation to employing the relatives and closely connected people to those running a charity. It is not an aspersion to ask about this. We have been asking questions about recruitment for some time now and there has been no attempt to answer them. That might lead to people assuming something is being hidden. That would not be the only possibility but neither would it be an unreasonable conclusion for sensible people to reach. Some family members have been given jobs. What was the recruitment process?

That is not casting an aspersion it is asking a publicly accountable charity a question.

We cannot do much about the fact that that seems to make you “feel ticked off” but since we believe our right to free speech is more important I think we can probably live with that.

Accounts can be factual but presented in a way that makes understanding what is being done with a charity's money hard to see. That is the case with the Struthers accounts.

What is the subsidy to the school? This is particularly important as in a press interview one of the Struthers church leaders claimed the school was fully funded by fees. That is not what the accounts reveal.
How many school places are the church funds paying for?.
How are such places granted?
What objectives of the charity are met by providing housing for some of the members but showing no clear income stream from “Fidra operations”.
Why are the bookshops with many volunteers helping them making year on year losses? What is the reason for the collection plate income drop if membership is increasing as claimed?
Who are the employees of the church and who is on the church payroll?
When will the organisation be clear of the debt they have been carrying for years despite continually claiming that they intend to be in surplus?

Its easy for Struthers to make claims without a plan to deliver them. We are asking about the plan. It may be there is no plan and friends and relatives of people on this forum still giving to the church are being misled – again. This happened before and much of the money donated to this church was lost in failed stock market speculation. We were misled because we were told this money was being collected for the the work of the church. Many intelligent people were in the church at the time but what was happening was kept secret from them until it was too late for anyone to help and fix the problem. That is a fact admitted to by the leadership at the time. Why would anyone seeking to prevent that happen again “tick you off”?

Accounts can be perfectly factually correct in every way, though the SMC accounts are not. But even accurately presented accounts raise questions. That is the very reason for their existence. Accountability and openness and telling the truth to the charity supporters and the public. The culture in Struthers has been to discourage and freeze out people who question and make it an issue of loyalty to not enquire. Since we do not want anything from Struthers other than these answers we are able to ask without fear. And make no mistake there is a lot of fear in that church.

It is easy and blasé for you to say unhappy people should “just leave”. But that is massively difficult if you are dealing with Christian leaders you believe have shown you the way to God and convinced you they have special access to divine knowledge – about you and your life. These people can abuse that power and influence to convince even intelligent people that to leave Struthers is to walk away from God and consign themselves to hell. People I know and love have believed that was true at the point of leaving. That is the culture which has existed for many years in Struthers. It is horrible and it is a lie. Many of those on this forum now know it to be a lie and have shared that new understanding here in the hope of helping others. I would ask you not to disrespect that by casting aspersions on the motives of the people on this forum; though to be fair that may be because you do not know much about facts which we have been dealing with for decades.

So in the interest of the “factual” which, let me assure you, we all value here please ask the Struthers friend you hold in high regard the following:

Have exorcisms on children ever been performed in Struthers churches or conferences?
Please note there is a big difference between “that would never happen now” and “it has never happened”. It has. This issue is not in dispute. Whether your friend will talk about it, admit it is true and defend it is the issue. If your friend gave money to the church they funded this. Whether they are proud of that and tell their non Struthers friends about it is another matter.

Were charitable donations used to buy stocks and shares and a huge but never disclosed amount of money was lost by the undemocratic leadership of Struthers in the 1980s. Then ask who was responsible for finance at the time?

Have people in the church, and people who have left, ever been publicly criticised and berated during sermons from the pulpit?

Have people who have disagreed in some way with the leaders ever been publicly named and berated in sermons from the pulpit?

Have young people in some branches had their clothing or appearance publicly criticized by church leaders in front of their peers?

Have any Struthers church leaders told people that it is a sin to dye their hair and if they do it will result in no Christian service opportunities ever being granted to them?

Have the leaders ever placed their own family members in positions of influence, leadership and in some cases salaried employment?

Have people ever been encouraged not to meet with other Christians from other churches as this would be spiritually damaging to them?

Have adults and children been banned by the leadership from attending public meetings run by Struthers with no opportunity for appeal or written explanation? Is this acceptable under charity law?

Have any of the Struthers directors refused to answer correspondence from former members asking about their treatment by the church ?

Have any Struthers leaders ever advised a woman to leave her husband because he was not obeying the leader of the church? Or for any reason not connected with personal safety from domestic violence?

Have Struthers leaders ever instructed people who they can and cannot talk to within their congregations, and who they are allowed to be friends with, and branded them as rebellious to God and threatened them with expulsion if they did not agree to this?

Have Struthers leaders ever told someone they are not to get married, or not to marry or date a particular person? Do some of the leaders see that as their God given right?

Please put these questions to your friend. We have factual evidence of all these things having happenend in Struthers. In most cases we have multiple sources for each of these facts. That you, or anyone else, may find some of these facts "wild" does not make them any less facts.

That is the church your valued friend attends and supports. If that friend has not been fully honest with you about what happens in Struthers perhaps it is that, more than the people sharing the truth on this forum, that you should be “ticked off” about.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: ThePetitor ()
Date: December 08, 2012 09:56PM

Well said! thanks for bringing this discussion back to what it is really about – the pain and hurt causes by SMC.

We can have all the esoteric arguments about democracy, but the point is people have been hurt, and the leadership of the organization at the centre of all the concerns couldn’t care less.

@Kelvin – there are a number of points I would like to comment upon. You say:

I would agree with you [rrmoderator]and @ThePetitor that there seems to be an issue with the airing of
Well, indeed. Add that to the list of grievances in Chesterk55’s post and we have a very serious problem. What are your respectable friends in SMC doing about it? Remember the adage that Mr Black used to quote, “For evil to abound, all it takes is good men to do nothing”. Well, any action points?

I guess it is no one's interests that this forum is the route to do it.

Have you read the testimonies on this site? Many, many people have said the opportunity to share their pain and to realise they are not alone in their experience has been very beneficial. How can you further condemn these people – after the pain they have already been through – by telling them this forum is of no benefit? I know I personally have found it of great benefit. It has helped me understand that I am not alone and it is not necessarily all my fault. Do you know what is it like to live with that for 20 or more years? Most of the contributors on this forum do.

I would even go as far as suggesting this forum is of benefit to SMC itself. I don’t think they knew of the impact they were having on people’s lives. If there are any people worthy of respect in the organisation then they surely didn’t know of all the issues listed by Chesterk55. So here is the opportunity for them to wake up and smell the coffee. Come on leaders of SMC – you can now see the big picture, possibly for the first time. Everyone was working in isolation and you perhaps didn’t see the pattern. Well, it is here now in plain sight – what are you going to do?


Of course, no-one would be positively in favour of authoritarianism.
You are so wrong about that, and it demonstrates a remarkable lack of understanding of what is being said here and in SMC itself. The whole point is the leaders of Struthers ARE positively in favour of authoritarianism

As for “no-one has actually (I hope) claimed they were physically unable to leave SMC”
It is much worse than that – if you were physically unable to leave, you might still have a chance of escape, or might be rescued. Just read the testimonies on these pages. People are emotionally trapped – they have been told that even to attend another church is falling away from God and putting them in danger of hellfire. Many, many have felt unable to take that step to freedom when put under such emotional pressure. Some have been subjected to exorcism to “cure” them of the contamination they have suffered by attending other churches.

Yes, people have to engage their brains, but we also engage our emotions. People are in a position that they are told that engaging their brain is unspiritual, they see others publicly castigated for leaving and are told it is the worst thing they can do.

I do see your point about apparent favouritism, but I also note that Roman Catholic schools in Scotland are allowed to discriminate on the basis of which Church their staff attend. They are doing nothing illegal. 

That is factually inaccurate. RC schools are allowed to insist that teachers will be able to deliver the full RC curriculum and this includes things like morning prayers. If a person is not willing to take part in these RC activities, they will be employed. That is very different from nepotism. You may agree or disagree with it, but it is at least open and transparent. Everyone knows in advance what the criteria are and can chose whether to apply.

You quote cbarb saying
@cbarb;Based on what you have said, I wonder if your problem is actually with a few individuals?

YOUR problem? I guess that is open to various meaning, but it come across to me as condescending. It is not cbarb’s problem, it is SMC that has a problem. Even if it is “just a few people”, so what? What if it is just a grievance against one person, is that not worthy of investigation? If all of those on this site have a grievance against, “just a few people” it adds up to quite a lot – and I suspect it would be the same few people anyway, as all of the power is concentrated in the few at the top.
If indeed the answer to complaints was as you state, then the leader in question has certainly not been reading "How to win friends and influence people" (understatement) .
This is an interesting one – “if the leader in question” (singular). Where did that come from, I wonder? I think you are being fed a line from your respectable friends on Struthers – “don’t worry, it was only an isolated incident. Nothing to worry about" That was certainly not my meaning. Telling people it is unspiritual to ask questions is a verifiable, consistent philosophy in SMC. It is the only method they know for dealing with complaints – that is why there is a need for things like this website.

Just ask your learned friends if there are any records of any grievances or complaints at all – even just one written record.
There would need to be a filter on trivial and vexatious complaints however.
Really? How would that work? I presume that is complaints that the leaders judge in their infinite wisdom are trivial. I don’t see anything about that approach on the ACAS website, and I certainly don’t think most of the complaints listed here are trivial.

As for vexatious complaint, that might be OK if the complaints had been dealt with in the first place, but that has not happened. The grievances have not been dealt with. Many companies do have policies about vexatious complaints, but they are always at the end of a process – the grievance has to be heard first, you cannot simply ignore someone and refuse to speak to them then try to portray it as the fault of the complainer.

This is all just nonsense. You have said you need to hear both sides of the argument, but you are then saying that some complaints can be dismissed out of hand for being trivial or vexatious. How can you make that decision without listening to both sides? You can’t. You don’t know whether a complain should be upheld or not until it is investigated. With the SMC policy that it is always someone else’s fault, this is never going to happen.

In all of this, the story is the same – do not address the question, find a way to blame the questioner. So, if there are mistakes in the accounts, lets not look at them, oh no, lets instead blame the person who has dared to raise the issues.

If there are grievances raised, lets not deal with them either, lets either say they are too trivial to be considered or two outrageously unbelievable to be considered.

If that doesn’t work we could blame the person concerned for being emotionally unstable, or for being vexatious, or for not being spiritual enough, but please, lets not look at the actual issue.

We will then ask “how would anyone know some of the more wild claims on here are "factual". That should stump them – there is no point in having any sort of investigation or examination, as no-one can never actually know anything – it is all existential anyway.

If there is one we can’t avoid, we will say it was just an isolated incident and it was due to some sort of minor and understandable mistake, but we still won’t actually look at what happened. Oh no, it is not possible that even one of the issues needs to be examined. Definitely not.

That seems to me to be the thrust of your arguments – always find a reason to avoid actually examining the issue.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Grace-girl ()
Date: December 08, 2012 11:39PM

Dear all
I have been watching this forum for a wee while now since posting last. One thing i want to say id lets pray for freedom for thoese still "locked" inside Struthers! I have now finished the "Freedom in Christ" course and one thing god dealt with was all the hurt, rejection and lies that i had belived for over 20 years! Freedom is not about being"deliverd" from demons or spirits!! it's about knowing who who are as children of the King! and beliving what it says in His word about our idenity! One thing i think struthers has got a bit muddeld up about... for years i struggled trying to be "sin free" or a better christian and now i realise Jesus has done it all and all we have to have is the correct "tool kit" to use what he has already given us! I was hurt and broken by a lot of what i had beilived but one thing i would say to all the people on this forum is lets pray for the people and leaders inside the church uk wide, to have there eyes opened and begin to live in the liberating freedom of grace. to all thoese still hurting seek out Jesus to heal the wounds and pray for grace to forgive the people that hurt or rejected you. Freedom is great, so amazing is our god... in the end He will judge and correct and if Struthers refuses to acknowledge this forum and all the views of the people here then i think it is up to god to deal with it. Prayer changes things.. i know that! some of my family are still in Struthers which is sad and i have tried to tell them how free i am now since finding the God of grace. The sad thing is they dont understand me, even although my life has changed so much over the past year and a half since leaving struthers. So my brothers and sisters lets pray hard for God to change the church from the inside out so that people are safe and not hurt anymore.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Clive ()
Date: December 08, 2012 11:52PM

Can I just add some perceptions as "the only atheist in the village" that I am seeing the same kind of emotional over-reactions here to Kelvin - who, although daring to come on here and question OUR stances - and indeed
may have chosen his words slightly less than optimally, does seem sincere in getting at the truth.

As is so common with online ( and in particular anonymous ) conversations - there can be a very rapid escalation of words from people who if they were to actually meet or know each other would be a lot more careful with their words.

Kelvin has been described as "strident" by one poster. His only gaffe so far seems to me to be the use of the word "grudge". See the thing is - when dealing with a subject that raises such emotions from people who may have suffered and been victims of a wrong - it is very difficult to not retort in flames.

There was one recent and very public example of this in the atheist community - referred to as "elevator gate" - where, following on from, what to me seemed an innocuous youtube plea for men who are total strangers to a woman in a lift - that maybe it isn't such a good idea to proposition them in the enclosed confines of a lift - asking - even if intended quite harmlessly - the woman back to their hotel room.

The woman who posted her feelings on this got a barrage of extremely nasty email, and the atheist community went to "flame war" and a lot of feminists and women ( in the minority among sceptic groups for sure ) suddenly found that any attempt to question fellow members of their community was incendiary. Now unfortunately feminists and others who supported this womans suggestions to make men a little more aware of how women feel in such situations - they too overreacted and started name-calling people who were in fact sympathetic to or even vocal supporters of feminism, but just didn't quite agree with everything. And in the end the whole thing got totaly out of hand !.

It seems to me that Kelvin KNOWS that there are some issues which SMC need to address. I have to say - that personally, even though as rrmoderator says - a democratically run church tends on the whole not to
be so vulnerable to cultish behaviour - and indeed the majority of complaints on this forum are from non-democratic churches we dont run companies in the same way. There is freedom on our country for groupings of people who emphasise strong leadership over democratic control and decision making.

Lets not forget that there is not to my knowledge a single paragraph in the bible that teaches democratic values. For centuries the model being adopted in all western churches was KINGSHIP.

Or to put it another way - Benign, divinely ordained dictatorship !.

And plenty of charismatic fellowships speak of this kind of thing far more than the greek/western ideas of democracy.

The focus is very clearly on LEADERSHIP. NOT VOTES !.

In this sense SMC really ARE being biblical in a big way. The problem is - I of course see no evidence of a god or divine approval in ANY of what SMC leaders get up to.

I also think that too much talk here on how SMC runs their finances is diverting attention from the far bigger problem - and that is the psychological damage, emphasis on delegating all one's thinking and decision making to a handful of largely female leaders, who seem to change their policies on a whim.

So much of what SMC and - in particular - their more docile members - advocate as their policy - seems merely the very arbitrary result of the current "flavour of the month" leaders' whim.

Getting back to "grievances/grudge" and Kelvin - It should be expected that on a forum designed to allow people to report abuses in their church - that the overall number of posts would be negative. Those who are victims are clearly going to have more of a reason to post here than - lets say - the majority of SMC congregants who may simply be quite content with things as they are.

And even though some here recently have in fact stated that they hold NO grudge ( and I take them at their word ) - wouldnt it be expected that people who are victims of a wrong DO feel a grudge ?.

And in the case of people like Diana Rutherford - If it turns out that very very many of the victims of wrongful behaviour by SMC leadership do in fact lay the blame on a particular leader - miss DR - one should not be surprised that grudge is indeed the best word for this. Although in actual fact grudge is far too demeaning a term for what has been going on.

In fact I would say grudge might apply to ME.... but for people who'se lives have been wrecked, marriages broken up, sent into spirals of depression and self-loathing etc etc, that "grudge" really doesnt cut it.

Neither does "grievance" it seems to me.

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.

Kelvin, I think you mean well. I'm not so interested in all this accountancy talk going on here or on Latigo. I think sifting through yearly accounts looking for some needle in the haystack to bash SMC with - is ultimately counter-productive.

But - and this is a strong BUT - the issue about Hugh Black and how he was able to so easily get his loyal sheep to sign off those share deal forms, and the huge financial loss that ensued - followed by - it is strongly alleged here - the teaching from SMC leadership that for congregants to then reappraise the SMC leadership and following on from this - LEAVE the church - was WRONG, SINFUL, UNLOYAL and evidence of BACKSLIDING ETC ETC.

That issue and story should NEVER be allowed to die.

I would like some more clarification and evidence on what precisely WAS the stated position by SMC on all those who just got utterly disgusted and disillusioned with the SMC leadership - and subsequently left.

If they were castigated and condemned for leaving. I would like to ask the present SMC leadership - exactly why - when not a single SMC leader appears to have had a "Still small voice" - even a hint - that maybe what Hugh Black did wad uttely wrong.


Hugh Black had a whole book printing infrastructure paid for and supported by SMC. His books and sermons were top of the bill for recommended reading and listening to. This was a man supposedly led by god. A person who - it was claimed - followed the will of the Holy Spirit. He lived and worked among others - including Mss Taylor. Did Miss Taylor hear nothing from god- the Holy Spirit on this ?

Why was it that the spiritual wisdom and discernment of the Hugh/Taylor/Diana trinity was so "authoritative" when it comes to countless divinations of demon possession - and "words from the lord" in meetings, and when it applied to how god supposedly wanted others in the congregation to live their lives, but when it came to vast sums of money given by its members to the SMC for the direct purpose of furthering the gospel , tongues, everything "holiness" and "holy spirit" related....




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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: December 09, 2012 12:15AM

If SMC goes back to the 1980s, it is at least forty years old, and no longer a 'young church'.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: Clive ()
Date: December 09, 2012 01:19AM

Hmm... SMC goes back a lot further than the 80's isnt it in fact more like 80 years old ?

But it does seem that a lot of the problems start arising in the 80s for sure.

But even then we are talking of a "young" cult - or "cult-like" sect here.

The Mormons, Moonies, Scientology, Christian Science, all the so-called "heretical" sects - Christadelphians, Spiritualists ( oh and how close the SMC does seem to them sometimes... really. ) all these are I think - still quite a bit older.

Jim Jones. 70s.

But when we get to the older sects - Baptists, Methodism, Anglicans, Lutherans, Catholicism. Yadda Yadda. We are talking many centuries here.

So in context "young church" does seem pretty spot on.

But to me it makes no difference. The AGE of a movement, sect, or belief system - says absolutely nothing about how true its teachings are. Nor about whether
god gives his seal of approval to it.

But of course any historian will tell you that the age of a religion DID have a great bearing on how the ancients - for example - the Romans emperors - viewed such religions.

This is one reason why - even though they ruled over Judea and Jews - they still had quite a bit of respect for Jews and Judaism. That is - until they started to object to paying taxes, tributes and allegiance to the emperors. The Jewish revolts - and all that. Can;t be having that now.. Terrorism you see..

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/09/2012 01:24AM by Clive.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: kelvin ()
Date: December 09, 2012 04:36AM


As @Clive says, you may have gone off the deep-end a little in that last post. One of your points is worth answering though. Re: employment law, it's not quite as clear cut as you might think. Note that the lack of a religious test only applies to public bodies, which is not the same as a charity.

"This is all just nonsense". Okay, that's a pretty clear view. No need to worry about putting together a reasonable response then!

"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? What you seemed to want from the outset is for me to accept your version in its entirety.


"Discrimination" used to be a neutral term, however I can well understand the US it is a loaded word. See above, it seems religious organisations in the UK are allowed to apply a religious test for employment. I think you are giving a backhanded compliment in thanking me for clarifying aspects. The Pope is elected by the College of Cardinals whom a Pope largely appoints. So the RC Church is not terribly democratic. However, and this is a key point, free people of the church have to decide whether to accept what the Bishop says because it cannot be enforced. One might argue that it's not much different from SMC where the leader of a church is appointed by a group of other leaders.


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.

On the accounts issue, you are probably aware that OSCR requires a standard set of accounts but internal (i.e. full) accounts would be discussed at an AGM and would generally be confidential. That's normal charity practice in my experience. In a way your raising Enron etc. is quite amusing in light of @ArchibishopLaud's previous point about the membership not being very clever. Which is it, I wonder. Are they evil geniuses running a massive plot of fraud and deception, deluding right-thinking people everywhere? Or are they so dumb they don't know what a basic set of accounts looks like? It also seems to me you are confused about the information for which you are asking. If you were a member then it would be reasonable to ask about a "plan", for example. If you are not, you are going to have to accept some information is simply not going to be given to you. That's not on the face of it suspicious to a reasonable person. Repeatedly demanding that SMC leadership furnish you with information they have no obligation to give seems, at best, naive. So why do you keep asking other than to attempt to imply guilt? That's what irritated me. Principally because by not focussing on a real issue people I respect are getting dragged into something that was before their time i.e. someone made an error over the stock market. Has the same happened since, or have lessons been learned to the best of your knowledge?


Indeed, holding a "grudge" does not imply the offence was not (a) real or (b) serious. I take it to mean, it is a personal rather than altruistic search for justice. It's pretty obvious some posters are using things like "accounts" and the like to give legitimacy to a personal grievance. It's probably not the making of a mistake so much as the apparent lack of humility that causes the problem.

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Re: Struthers Memorial Independent Pentecostal Church
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: December 09, 2012 06:56AM


There you go again.

Who is the "Pope" in SMC?

Was he actually elected by anyone?

"Information they have no obligation to give"?

Apparently, legally they can conceal the financial details.

You have established that you are willing to accept the lack of meaningful accountability and financial transparency at SMC.

That's your choice, but it's not surprising that others are not willing to accept that kind of regime.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 12/09/2012 06:58AM by rrmoderator.

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