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Re: New Frontiers International
Posted by: Rob Wilkerson ()
Date: June 08, 2010 01:32AM

Because New Frontiers is a family of churches relating together through apostolic guys who are planting those churches, there is no constitution and bylaws. And there is no democratically elected church government within local churches since the biblical model more points towards apostolic men (church planters) ordaining a plurality of elders to lead local churches. The election through secret ballot voting for men serving fixed terms may certainly be a helpful structure in other forms of organization, but it is foreign to the New Testament. Again, the answer to bad leadership is not no leadership...and neither is it democratically elected leadership. Since discipleship is the model, leaders are discipled and equipped by other leaders, and so forth.

As far as meaningful financial transparency, it appears that churches can voluntarily give of their tithes and offerings to New Frontiers USA to continue supporting future church plants. And when they do, a full report is given at the annual meeting called Equipped for Mission. I watched it personally and interacted with a few folks about it. It was everything I remembered at Southern Baptist business meetings...without the fights and votes.

Salaries and compensations are set for men by local churches with the help and assistance of apostolic team members if it is so desired. My salary was set for me, and is available for anyone to know or see. Expenses from ministry funds as a church plant are more numerous than offerings, so we are always in the red, as are most church plants.

So the reason many of the accountability features you speak of as present within other protestant organizations and/or denominations is because New Frontiers isn't like these organizations or denominations. It's so different from other organizations and denominations with whom I've worked that there's virtually no way it can work like the others do. It's not even in the same category.

Hope that helps.

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Re: New Frontiers International
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: June 08, 2010 02:03AM

Rob Wilkerson:

You did not respond directly to the issue of an annually published budget distributed to all contributors, which discloses in detail all salaries, compensation and expenses spent from ministry funds.

Is there such an annual budget statement sent out by New Frontiers or any of the local churches?

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/08/2010 02:06AM by rrmoderator.

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Re: New Frontiers International
Posted by: Rob Wilkerson ()
Date: June 08, 2010 02:19AM

Sorry about missing that last question in a more thorough way. This should answer the question appropriately.


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Re: New Frontiers International
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: June 08, 2010 02:45AM

Rob Wilkerson:

The link you provided discloses the amount of contributions.

"About £1.1/4 million was given."

Then there is a general statement that the money "has funded initiatives and activities..."

The link at the bottom of the posted letter to "annual report and financial statements for 2008" does not disclose in detail the specific salaries and/or compensation paid out of charitable funds to those associated staff and leaders.

How is this more specific information disclosed to contributors?

And who specifically approves individual salaries and compensation?

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Re: New Frontiers International
Posted by: Rob Wilkerson ()
Date: June 08, 2010 03:34AM

Brother...I have no earthly idea of the answers to the questions you're asking. I'm so sorry. I am in no way any official spokesperson for New Frontiers...but only trying to convey information I know about since my partnership with them, in an effort to salvage a biblical sense of unity by negating this organization as any kind of cult.

As I stated before, local churches determine the salaries and compensations of their local leaders...not New Frontiers. New Frontiers has persons in a few local churches who can help determine adequate salary amounts for local church leaders if those local churches desire help.

My only other reply to you would be that the lack of information you're seeking at the moment...or even in the future...would not constitute New Frontiers as being a cult...nor would it by itself constitute such for any other orthodox Christian organization.

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Re: New Frontiers International
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: June 08, 2010 09:29AM

Rob Wilkerson:

What you have described through your disclosure seems like a totalitarian organization that has very little accountability through the standard checks and balances provided through typical Protestant groups.

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Re: New Frontiers International
Posted by: Rob Wilkerson ()
Date: June 08, 2010 12:03PM

unbelievable. i'm stunned by the conclusion. i almost couldn't believe it so I looked up the word totalitarian at case it had changed definitions in the last twenty years or so.


1. of or pertaining to a centralized government that does not tolerate parties of differing opinion and that exercises dictatorial control over many aspects of life.
2. exercising control over the freedom, will, or thought of others; authoritarian; autocratic.

adj. Of, relating to, being, or imposing a form of government in which the political authority exercises absolute and centralized control over all aspects of life, the individual is subordinated to the state, and opposing political and cultural expression is suppressed:

And from the disclosure I provided, New Frontiers fits this definition?

I'm not sure how to end my replies here on this thread and this forum, in light of the strange and disconnected conclusion, except to graciously ask for a visit to reality so that grace can be seen, encountered, embraced, and experienced.

I pray the Lord's abundant blessings to you all here.

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Re: New Frontiers International
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: June 08, 2010 07:36PM

Rob Wilkerson:

Nothing to be "stunned" about.

You said, "There is no democratically elected church government."

And you concluded, "So the reason many of the accountability features you speak of as present within other [P]rotestant organizations and/or denominations is [not present at New Frontiers is] because New Frontiers isn't like these organizations or denominations."

You said, "My salary was set for me, and is available for anyone to know or see."

But then you provided a link, which did not disclose your salary and failed to disclose any salaries and compensation specifically, that are paid out from contributed funds.

This means there is actually only minimal and general financial disclosure, without accountability through detailed disclosure that provides meaningful financial transparency.

New Frontiers can be seen as an organizational structure that "exercises dictatorial control" without a democratic process as you have admitted like most Protestant churches and ministries.

That is, an "authoritarian" and/or "autocratic" regime, which lacks meaningful checks and balances.

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Re: New Frontiers International
Posted by: chrisjones ()
Date: June 08, 2010 10:36PM


I think you are sadly missing the point and i am not sure why you felt it necessary to discuss your own background. Having done so the question must be asked "Was your father in his position annointed by God?"

I do not know the moderator who has intervened we may I suspect even be on different continents. His/her comments are pertinent and covered in most books on religious abuse and not just related to cult.

You did not answer my comments on the thinking behind NF. We know the financial dealings of some parts at least are dubious and not open. The appointment of male elders is contrary to all Western thinking on sex equality and it attracts mysoginists and male narcicistics.

What training have you and more important your leaders had? Do you know anything about personality disordered people and what damage they can do in leadership, particularly when appointed under the terms of NF Male only, God annointed, secret society appointment of Eldership. I offered to mediate in one scenario with an eldership against a lady who was being seriously undermined and challenged. This was rejected, as i was not a NF member. In fact it was made clear that my opinion would be regarded as worthless and as I was not a NF member I would not be able to gain salvation!! (all I did was offer to help!)

Do you know Gods will for other people? Do you believe by your annointment that you know Gods will for other people? What does your leadership tell you about this?

It seems some NF leaders really believe they do. This means they have in their eyes total authority over their flock. What they do, how they live and much more. This means when a problem arises people are very vulnerable to that leadership. Is this servant leadership? If people wish to live under such passive tyrrany then that is their choice. When I and other caring people come across abusive practise and damaged people we feel the need to protect and offer guidance and support.

When an organisation professes to know what is best for others it had better be transparent in its dealings. NF is not - maybe you do not even know this.

I would ask again why does NF not feel the need for accountability under the full regulation of the law. Saying that you are just different is actually not acceptable to many.

Sadly there is nothing you have said that reassures.

You have invited private e mail contact, I am grateful for that offer but I would prefer only open forum unless a troubled soul is so distressed that they wish their traumas to be private. Your situation clearly does not fulfill that requirement and neither does mine being very much at peace with the world.

I see you would like to end your interraction, again that is your choice. Please take one message from this site. There are a lot of spiritually damaged people out there, some do have pychiatric problems but many others are suffering because they believe not because they dont. They put their trust in leaders and some of those leaders fail, abuse, mistreat, dominate and coerce their membership. Perhaps with your further enlightenment it may assist your practise and leadership, maybe you will be strong enough to discuss this with your congregation. Maybe NF one day will sort itself out and invite an expert on religious abuse to help understand its own problems. I will not hold my breath.


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Re: New Frontiers International
Posted by: anon-uk ()
Date: June 28, 2010 04:50AM

The most typical traits of potentially unsafe groups (some that have been called "cults" or "cult-like":

Ten warning signs of a potentially unsafe group/leader.
1. Absolute authoritarianism without meaningful accountability.
2. No tolerance for questions or critical inquiry.
3. No meaningful financial disclosure regarding budget, expenses such as an independently audited financial statement.
4. Unreasonable fear about the outside world, such as impending catastrophe, evil conspiracies and persecutions.
5. There is no legitimate reason to leave, former followers are always wrong in leaving, negative or even evil.
6. Former members often relate the same stories of abuse and reflect a similar pattern of grievances.
7. There are records, books, news articles, or television programs that document the abuses of the group/leader.
8. Followers feel they can never be "good enough".
9. The group/leader is always right.
10. The group/leader is the exclusive means of knowing "truth" or receiving validation, no other process of discovery is really acceptable or credible.

Ten warning signs regarding people involved in/with a potentially unsafe group/leader.
1. Extreme obsessiveness regarding the group/leader resulting in the exclusion of almost every practical consideration.
2. Individual identity, the group, the leader and/or God as distinct and separate categories of existence become increasingly blurred. Instead, in the follower's mind these identities become substantially and increasingly fused--as that person's involvement with the group/leader continues and deepens.
3. Whenever the group/leader is criticized or questioned it is characterized as "persecution".
4. Uncharacteristically stilted and seemingly programmed conversation and mannerisms, cloning of the group/leader in personal behavior.
5. Dependency upon the group/leader for problem solving, solutions, and definitions without meaningful reflective thought. A seeming inability to think independently or analyze situations without group/leader involvement.
6. Hyperactivity centered on the group/leader agenda, which seems to supercede any personal goals or individual interests.
7. A dramatic loss of spontaneity and sense of humor.
8. Increasing isolation from family and old friends unless they demonstrate an interest in the group/leader.
9. Anything the group/leader does can be justified no matter how harsh or harmful.
10. Former followers are at best-considered negative or worse evil and under bad influences. They can not be trusted and personal contact is avoided.

Wow, that pretty much sums up my experience at various NF churches in the UK. I was brought up in an NF church by my parents. However, since the age of 16 I battled with the leadership and some of the theology. I ended up trying a few different NF churches to see if it was localised to one church, but sadly it wasn't.

It's no surprise very few people speak up about this problem amongst NF churches; there is a real fear of the repercussions. I have experienced some of the nasty repercussions myself. I really wish other people would realise what a destructive group of churches these are. Since I left the church I have lost a lot of my so called friends, mainly due to the leadership ordering members not to contact me as i'm no longer one of them. That's not a true friendship, thats more like a cult!

chrisjones if you do want more specific information feel free to message me.

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