Welcome to De-Commissioned, a place for former members of the Great Commission movement (aka GCM, GCC, GCAC, GCI, the Blitz) to discuss problems they've experienced in the association's practices and theology.

You may read and post, but some features are restricted to registered members. Please consider registering to gain full access! Registration is free and only takes a few moments to complete.
De-Commissioned Forum
January 27, 2022, 02:10:32 pm *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
 
  Home   Forum   Help Search Login Register  
Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: GCx Leaders Unrepentant  (Read 1692 times)
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« on: February 07, 2021, 07:59:42 pm »

GCx Leaders Unrepentant



The following is very similar to a post I thought I submitted before, but could not find.  Hopefully it’s just my oversight.


“If spiritual abuse is minimized or justified, the victims will not receive the care they need to heal. Victims will be made to feel like they are the ones at fault. They overreacted. They are overly sensitive. They failed to submit, etc. This attitude subjects them to spiritual abuse…again. This is equal to throwing salt on an open wound.

Don’t Create a Cover-Up

I understand that it’s very hard to fully own something as ugly as spiritual abuse. No one wants to own that it happened in their organization. But if you don’t admit it – fully – you will only add to the tragedy.

If you are quick to move on, without changing and asking forgiveness, you choose to sacrifice the abused for the sake of your reputation. You mistakenly think that, by not admitting the abuse, you will be saved from the pain and shame of fully disclosing it. In your mind, it’s for “the greater good” that you minimize what took place and move on. You believe God wouldn’t want to hurt your ministry. But creating a cover-up is a terrible solution that will only lead to ruin eventually.”  (From Broken Trust by Remy Deiderich)


GCx indeed minimized and justified their rampant spiritual abuse in a 1991 Paper they wrote likely to pacify the substantial evidence of it presented in the upcoming book, Churches That Abuse by Ronald Enroth.  It has been revealed on here that Enroth informed GCx of the charges against them before it went to publication in 1992.  The 1991 Paper is referred to by several names :  The Weakness Paper, The Statement of Error, The Apology Paper.  Most former members NEVER received it.  Those who did were most definitely offended by its tone and language of grand minimization of their abuse, and remorseless “apology”.  It struck it’s former members as a disingenuous repentance.  It never bore the fruit of most of it’s apologetic claims probably because there was no true heart of regret behind it.  As you will see in the testimonies representative of many former members these spiritually abusive methods were never really changed in the vast majority of its churches.

The excepts below (from this site) contain much evidence from former members that many GCx Church Leaders did not truly repent from their abusive teachings and practices.  These are only some of innumerable instances of continued spiritual abuse in their churches.  Perhaps some have repented, but they seem to be in a very small minority.



The problems supposedly addressed in the correction [GCx 1991 “Weakness Paper”] are STILL going on there, including an excommunication for "gossip and slander" in 2010.  And we occasionally listen to their teachings and they are still unhealthy, focusing on unity, submission, authority...

Knowing what a big name Enroth [author of “Churches That Abuse” in which GCx (GCI, GCM, GCAC, GCC) Churches were called out] is in the world of spiritual abuse, it really bothers me that they somehow convinced him that they had made significant changes. ...

Luke 19:8-9 is an example of godly repentance in the bible, the story of Zaccheaeus.  He was so convicted of his wrongdoing that not only did he want to make it right, but he wanted to make it right and then 4 times that. That is a man in the presence of Jesus, gripped by grace and convicted to make things new as he is a new creation. Zaccheaeus didn't just say "well, I will make this minor change here, and respond to this person's complaint about my abuse here, and seek to work things out with this particular family, and I'll hold a meeting to "explain" what "really" happened, I'll explain that this is what all tax collectors do, and some people might get to witness that I'm stealing less now..."  No, he wanted to make things right with *every* individual as well as sacrifice for the greater good.  He immediately stopped his exploitative behavior and made restorative amends.  

Luke 19:8-9  "But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”  Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham."

Peace [a current member of a GCx Church], I pray your church comes to have a Zacchaeus moment.  Until you see that and nothing less, in my opinion, you are deceiving yourself to hope for meaningful change. ...

I know that at Cedarcreek Community Church in Eau Claire leadership is spiritually abusive and continuing all the errors of the past.  These are personal stories, but all you have to do is look at the Correction Statement and compare it to material on GCC's current [2017] website to see that they are unabashedly continuing every single thing identified (except now it's more under the radar).  It's in GLCI content, their values statement, and of course the "you know you're godly if people say you are a cult" letter by JH [name abbreviated].  Current teachings by any of the main leaders (or even the "little guys" like Cedarcreek pastors) also exhibit those long-ago identified "errors."

My now-husband and I moved away from the area for graduate school (after my husband was encouraged instead to remain in the area to become a pastor rather than attend medical school).  We witnessed or were subjected to everything in the correction statement.
-Rebel in a Good Way



My name is TC and I am on staff with GCM. I strongly agree with a LOT of what was said on the GCMwarning website. Before even reading it, it was not hard for me to guess what I would see there. I still remember the first time I read the GCM apology [Weakness] paper and being shocked – because all of the weaknesses remained in my church to some extent. In my opinion, there are some MAJOR issues woven into the DNA of GCM as an organization.
-Anonymous



I have seen other posts on this board about wishing GCC churches could recognize the error of their ways, or that things could perhaps turn around. We are so far past that point. What is happening right now is absolute corruption at the risk of losing a fellow friend. ...

Right now [~2018-2020] it is easy for [some top GCx Board Leaders] to leverage financial support to churches in exchange for support of [a GCx leader accused by numerous women of harassing sexually inappropriate speech and behavior]. They are currently restructuring the whole organization so it's either put up and shut up, or have your support network destroyed.
-ReaperofGCM



I'm just starting the healing process after being at Walnut Creek [GCx Church] for 5 years. It sounds crazy and overly dramatic to me, but I really don't know how to adequately explain my experiences without calling it spiritual abuse. ...I started attending Walnut Creek in the summer of 2010. I was already aware of GCM's history but at first glance WCC seemed "normal". After 2 years I became a community group leader (aka bible study leader). I began to develop more and more angst over several issues (the lack of emphasis on spiritual gifts and the sovereignty of God being my biggest concerns) and had attempted several times to start conversations with other leaders. Over the course of the last year or so I attempted to have several meetings with D. & L. (pastors of the downtown location) in order to try and bring about change. It became incredibly obvious that any opposing views were simply ignored, and when they could no longer be ignored were castigated as "divisive".
-tjlyttle    [left ~ 2015]



After being kicked from my small group, I left the GC and later found the Statement of Early Church Errors in which GC leaders admit that the things I and my friends suffered from in 2009-2012 have been known problems to the leaders of the movement for 21 years!!!  And then I found this site: so many people with the same stories!  I'm truly not alone.
-2xA Ron



Former group members were understandably not impressed. So I can easily side with the thesis that the [Weakness Paper] statement was an effort at window dressing.
-exsheep



I read the statement of church error [which was issued back in 1991] in 2005, and found that it described much of what I was experiencing, and was shocked.

GC issued a statement of error in 1991, but I am pretty convinced that this was an attempt to ward off bad publicity rather than an honest desire to change. The timing is just too strange (the very month “Churches That Abuse” was written, being thrown off of a Toronto campus a few years earlier) and the modern day response/followup shows a lack of sincerity. Furthermore, I have personally witnessed too many of those problems firsthand, before even reading the statement, as have others. When I did finally read it, almost all of the items in it rang true with the exception of 1 or 2. This is no coincidence.

...If an organization is truly reformed and sorry about its past, its current leaders should not be denying what happened. I tried to confront a pastor (who has worked in multiple GC churches) about the inaccuracy of his “church history” sermon. He admitted he didn’t know much about the church history other than what he preached, but said because he respected Jim McCotter and HM [prominent leader’s name abbreviated] and knew their heart’s for God, he would not look at any negative information on them. It didn’t matter how well documented it was, he wasn’t interested, and this was a guy teaching others the “history of GC.”

...I listened to a sermon BK [GCx elder’s name abbreviated] gave a few months ago, and he pretty much summarized this belief. The idea that we are to submit to our "spiritual leaders" even when they are wrong. Even so far as to give control of our life to them (not God, but them).

...current members have attempted to talk to me about GCI [GCx alias] and the modern GC as if they were completely different organizations ("That was GCI! Not GCAC!"), when in reality many of the big leaders from back then (RW, DC, HM) are still around at the top of the leadership chain today, and many of the teachings are just the same (or in some cases, when they resurrect old materials, exactly the same).

A strange level of denial has happened in other incidents with other leaders, which points to a group who is not really sorry for their past, and a group that has little interest in attempting to keep themselves from falling back into their old ways. Another good piece of evidence is the people who were asked to leave or thrown out for bringing up church history and modern problems. An organization that cares about not repeating the past is not afraid to learn from it and admit it happened.
-puff of purple smoke



What GC thinks and does is deep in the DNA of the group. My guess is that leaders are for the most part too intellectually isolated, invested and steeped in their own teaching--and frankly at this point have too much to lose--to ever initiate such a reformation. My impression at the time we left GC was that (despite any apologies or corrective statements) those in power within GC had walked with their "apostle" founder and still loved pretty much all he believed and taught.
-TerryD



Our experiences with GC happened in 2007 and yes, it was just as heavy-handed, abusive, and un-biblical as it was back in the 70s an 80s as THE SAME PEOPLE are still involved. ...What is really shocking is just how much has not changed since then. The most powerful arguments I see on gcxweb [GCMWarning] are the taped conversations -- how can anyone refute this? ...how can you deny word-for-word documentation?  ...Same bondage, same arrogant attitude, same problems -- (at the time) same leadership -- they even quoted McCotter on occasion.
-boboso



Great Commission’s history fascinates me. Partly it’s because GC kept it hidden. Discovering Jim McCotter and the cult accusations was like finding a secret door in the house where you grew up. You never expected it to be there, but at the same time you always kind of thought the floor plan seemed wrong. Now that odd feeling about the size of the dining room suddenly makes sense. So, I guess this is why GC’s history really interests me. To what extent can one draw parallels between the GC of today and the GC of the 70’s and 80’s? I know in many ways they are very different organizations, and yet… and yet. Many of the same men and their handpicked successors continue to run things nationally and locally. Indeed, some have seen signs of a resurgence of “old” GC ways.
-Bertrand



When I said wait, here are some real problems that you all really do have - I did see amazing turn around there too.   Some of the healthier and not abusive leadership really changed things, and tried to shift the church as a whole into a more positive direction. ...Seeing the change, I stayed at the GCM church… [But the] leaders that made the changes into a healthier direction quickly left or were kicked out within the next year. ...The rhetoric hasn't changed that much from when I was there -how did I not see how messed up this is?
-512



...keep in mind that just because certain practices were not in place at your particular church does not mean that they were not/are not widespread in many other churches. If some/many churches did have these practices, GCM should keep closer tabs on things and know what the individual churches are practicing if things have indeed changed since the apology letter written by DB [GCx National Leader] was released. If the circumstances shared by the blog members are indeed...why hasn’t GCM done anything about it? If GCM as a whole has truly apologized/repented (and really believed there were major problems) of their former practices one would think they would be eager to purge the denomination of these old practices.
-Brigitte



Decades of abuse using scripture to convince people that all is as it should be. Decades of cover up by those who know that abuse is taking place. Decades of not being willing to acknowledge scriptural heresy but asking those who who bring up concerns to leave. Decades of this....decades. And an apology or repentance should be sufficient? Are you kidding me? ... B.K., M.D. and M.B. are unfit to be in a position of authority because they lack healthy boundaries and have a pattern of covering up sin that goes back decades!!!!!!!!! This entire GCx Evergreen "church" operates this way. The system is so sick how can it possibly become a healthy one? Disband and let people go find a healthy community if they so choose.
-OneOfMany



We had a copy of Larry Pile’s book, Marching to Zion in front of us and were puzzled that over the course of several months we could not get an Evergreen [GCx] pastor to EVEN LOOK at the book. We were actually hoping one would look at it and refute it.  So, we asked the pastor, “Why won’t you even look at this book?” The answer he gave was, “I don’t need to because I know the hearts of all the Evergreen pastors.” That was frightening. Who can judge someone’s heart? According to the Bible, God is the only one who can judge a heart.  ...I told him about how the plurality of elders thing can also work as a cover up group. The example I gave was how when this man gave a message at an all church gathering and referred to ECC church members by saying “you are my bride” not one elder called for a public correction… [though] three knew our concerns and agreed this teaching was “off”.
-MamaD


... The interesting thing I found is that GCx has been made aware of the practices for a long time, by many others and that they have disregarded and hidden the cries of others. It was interesting for me to find out (after I left) of the Statement of Weakness paper put forward years ago, where GCx had initially recognized their error. To my surprise, the same exact things which they claimed to have repented of as a movement were still being practiced.

...in Des Moines, they still try to control whom people date and when they can date them, they still ask for life time commitments to their church alone, they still counsel people to never move from Des Moines and leave their church, they still look down on other churches who "just don't get it", they still preach controlling messages from the pulpit...

I spoke with several former leaders of the church I was at who had left...they all said that they tried to help leadership (the ones given charge of protecting God's flock) see the misguided practices and weights and burdens they were putting on others. My point is that they have had ample opportunity to change.
-DevastedTC



The weaknesses paper that was done in 1991 really means nothing.  There has never been an official renouncing of the False teachings of Jim McCotter.  There has never been an official separation from the teachings of Jim McCotter.
-marie



I think the one I was thinking of was a main session where RW made overtures to Jim McCotter to come back and join them. This fact was denied and "spun" when I approached leadership. I would say that it is a fact that in 2004 there was no remorse for the practices supposedly apologized for in the weakness paper and I would say little had changed. ...

I met with leaders and told them what I saw happening that I felt was unbiblical and harmful to the sheep they were supposed to be leading. The result of me trying to be honest led to shunning (no, it wasn't in my head), my grievances being addressed and targeted from the pulpit and the pastor telling me that it was just me and nobody else had ever had the experience I had. When I left, I found out that there were numerous others who had the exact same experience I had. I felt lied to and deceived.

It is not changing. Everything that had been voiced publicly by...had been voiced by others before him, including myself. Leadership pretends to be sincere when listening to objections and pretends that they are unaware of them but they are not.

After, I found the weakness paper that came out in 1991 and realized that everything I experienced had been admitted as sinful years ago and since I was still experiencing it, not repented of. ... I do feel that the recurring issues that keep happening on this forum dating all the way back to the weakness paper in 1991 will not go away because they are related to bad theology.
-Outtathere



We asked one of our founding pastors and he deceived us by saying he vaguely remembered a statement of clarification. He offered to find us a copy and never did. We got our copy from Larry Pile. Furthermore, you can find notes to a RW talk where he suggests that maybe this paper was too strong and that it was an honor to be considered a cult back then. So, they sort of back down from the apology. Clearly, what is missing in this "apology", was public confession, correction of error, and accountability. Obviously, this was not so much an "apology" as it was a PR move to make them look humble and get them off of cult watch lists.

They never publicly corrected the teaching. This is what they do. They don't correct bad teaching. They merely remove it. I'm happy that those who started GCx library have these audio files.

I do not believe GC leaders have acknowledged their error, corrected error or, apologized for their error. Their behavior reflects their blindness. They haven't apologized because they are spiritually blind and cannot see. The GC way is the blind way. They sincerely believe they are right and we (people pointing out their error) are bad.

Clearly, we will know GC is on the right track when they 1) acknowledge their error (as often as necessary), 2) make public correction of their error, and 3) stop criticizing people who point out their error. As mentioned in caps in my post, THEY NEVER MADE A PUBLIC CORRECTION OF THEIR ERROR. That is huge and very telling.
-Linda



Yes, this has been my experience as well. They're sorry to have been caught. They'll do a quick, cold PR campaign and then it's back to business as usual. This behavior really concerns me because I believe that conviction from the Holy Spirit and true repentance is one of the main signs of one's salvation. I'm not God and it's not my place to judge whether others are saved or not, but it makes me greatly concerned when those who claim the name of Christ lack any semblance of real humility.
-TJ



Here is a very appropriate recommendation for churches whose abuse runs deep which after 50 years would be a fair and reasonable assessment for GCx.


”Be willing to shut down the congregation.

Shutting down your organization might seem wrong. How can you stop what you believe God started? But sometimes the cancer runs so deep that you “lose the patient.” There is too much history: too many memories tied into the life of your congregation. It might be better to call it quits and release the people to join healthy faith communities in the area. I realize this could feel like defeat, but don’t let your pride stand in the way. You can’t think about your reputation. You have to think about what’s best for the people.” (“Broken Trust”, Remy Deiderich)






« Last Edit: February 09, 2021, 08:33:17 am by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2021, 10:07:21 pm »



The fact that GCx, to my knowledge, had never publicly and humbly distanced themselves from McCotter and called him out as a false teacher is probably one of the single biggest red flags regarding the GCx movement. That alone is reason enough to leave this church movement in my opinion.
-araignee19

Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2021, 05:02:31 pm »

Think About It


...people have been pointing out to leadership the unbiblical applications of scripture within GC for 40 years and they haven't changed. In fact, Google "Great Commission Weakness Paper" (which I didn't know existed until after I left), and you will see the same practices which many currently abhor recognized as error 30 years ago by the same people who are still in leadership. The other thing which I learned after I left is that scripture is very direct about how to handle wrong teaching and practices from elders who misuse the Bible. In 1 Timothy 5, Paul instructed Timothy not to go to someone in private, but rather to bring it before the church if there were adequate enough witnesses. The reason is to protect God's flock from being mishandled. If you follow Matthew 18, you will never have 2 or more witnesses because they will do away with them quietly. Think about it.
-MarthaH


Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Vince Capobianco
Regular (15-99 Posts)
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 97



« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2021, 02:49:49 pm »

X
« Last Edit: March 03, 2021, 08:23:20 pm by Janet Easson Martin » Logged
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #4 on: March 25, 2021, 08:52:02 pm »

Flabbergasting Leadership



At the July 1991 meeting Herschel Martindale said something I will never forget — it was burned into my brain, I was so flabbergasted by it. He said, “Jim McCotter is the most godly man I’ve ever met.” How he could say such a thing is beyond me. If any of you have ever had the misfortune to work for Jim you know how callously he treats those under his authority. Some of this is brought out in “Marching to Zion” in the sections entitled “_Today’s Student_: The Rest of the Story,” “Slick 50 and L.E.I.” and “Back to the Future” (about Profit Group’s departure from the radio business and into the suburban tabloid business — till it went bust). It was also detailed in an article entitled “The Mysterious Citizen,” published in the New Zealand magazine _North & South_, and further in e-mails I’ve received from former employees of his ill-fated media empire in New Zealand, and also former employees of his Maverick Jets aircraft company (that’s another sorry tale!).

Bovenmyer, Hopler and company kept asking us what we thought they needed to do to convince us that GCAC has changed and is now a healthy organization. One thing I’ve repeated to them is that they need to make some sort of public or semi-public statement acknowledging the errors in Jim’s teaching and his abusive handling of people. Even though Bovenmyer, Hopler and Co. have said as much to us in our private meetings, they have consistently been unwilling to say so publicly. Could it be that they still revere Jim as Herschel does? Which also makes me wonder how far they have really distanced themselves in teaching and practice from Jim’s errors. The fact that Jim’s books are being republished, his tapes are being distributed, etc., seems to support the notion that GC has not really moved all that far from “the bad old days.” Either that, or it is moving back to those days and Jim is being “rehabilitated,” to borrow a term from the Communism of old.
-Larry Pile, 2007


« Last Edit: March 26, 2021, 07:12:39 am by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2021, 11:26:57 am »

God’s Word Calls for Confession



...Your lips have spoken lies,
and your tongue mutters wicked things
.
No one calls for justice;
no one pleads his case with integrity.
They rely on empty arguments and speak lies
...
They hatch the eggs of vipers and spin a spider’s web.
...Their cobwebs are useless for clothing
;
they cannot cover themselves with what they make.
...ruin and destruction mark their ways.
...there is no justice in their paths.
They have turned them into crooked roads;
no one who walks in them will know peace.

So justice is far from us,
and righteousness does not reach us.
We look for light, but all is darkness;
for brightness, but we walk in deep shadows...


So justice is driven back,
and righteousness stands at a distance;
truth has stumbled in the streets,
honesty cannot enter.
Truth is nowhere to be found,
and whoever shuns evil becomes a prey.


Isaiah 59:3-15



« Last Edit: April 13, 2021, 12:36:59 pm by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2021, 08:27:09 am »

God’s Word Calls for Confession



“For our offenses are many in your sight,
and our sins testify against us.
Our offenses are ever with us,
and we acknowledge our iniquities:
rebellion and treachery against the LORD,
turning our backs on our God,
fomenting oppression and revolt,
uttering lies our hearts have conceived
.”


Isaiah 59:12-13





Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2021, 07:12:09 am »

Though National GCx leaders claim their churches are “independent” as an excuse for why they couldn’t be aware of abuse or take action in its churches, the church below was run by a National leader and he was well aware of what was going on.  At least Christian Missionary Alliance didn’t shrug their responsibility when it came to one of their abusive “independent” leaders.  The obvious difference seems to be who you serve and answer to:  God or yourselves.  The destructive abuse below demonstrates GCx leaders’ sinful loyalties.


And let me add, lest anybody harbor any illusions about the sincerity of GCx contrition or reformation, that the 2005 letter of correction and rebuke was sent without our knowledge or permission to our young-adult children. It was a transparent and diabolical attempt to drive a wedge between parents and children and keep our kids on their team in spite of us. Right out of the old '80s GCI playbook. I am immeasurably grateful to God that they seriously underestimated the maturity of our children, and that today our kids are free and doing well.

Make no mistake, well into the 2000's, this group has not reformed and is still dangerous to the spiritual health of individuals and families.
-TerryD



« Last Edit: April 16, 2021, 08:22:33 am by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Vince Capobianco
Regular (15-99 Posts)
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 97



« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2021, 01:11:46 pm »

You continue to promote false stories amongst yourselves, yet you are unwilling to face Him publishing about these things?  What does that mean? Are you actually under the opinion that your constant slander and gossip is righteous?  If you want to be on the podcast you can prove yourself and your accusations once and for all!  When will you do the right thing on behalf of the many you have poisoned and been postponed by?  PROVE your accusations.  Jim is available.  Why are you hesitant?  If there's anyone actually still reading this stuff, don't you think these people should oppose Jim face to face?
« Last Edit: April 19, 2021, 02:57:09 pm by Vince Capobianco » Logged
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2021, 07:34:54 pm »


Fostering The Tragedy Instead Of Thwarting It



Top GCx leaders could likely have thwarted the tragedy of decades of spiritual abuse many years ago if they had listened to and feared God more than McCotter. They never fully exposed their spiritual abuse because they covered up the root of it, the main perpetrator - James (Jim) D. McCotter. He acted as the  “Grand Master” and essential founder. The GCx leaders only threw a few crumbs of wrongdoing out in “The Weakness Paper” as a public relations stunt when an author informed them he was about to expose them in his book “Churches That Abuse” (1991). That Paper never made it to most of their victims, probably because it only scratched the surface. They must have pulled the wool over this author’s eyes to persuade him they had repented and to include them in a positive light in his future book, “Recovering From Churches That Abuse.” It was their loyal practice to deceptively deny spiritual abuse of nearly any kind when confronted by its members. These leaders had been discipled under this manipulative founder who is a well confirmed master at deception. The only people who were not appeased or fooled by this “Statement of Error” were many of the victims. Like myself, they were rightly incensed by this insincere “Apology.”


Jesus also told them a parable: “Can a blind man lead a blind man?
Will they not both fall into a pit?
A disciple is not above his teacher,
but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher.

Luke 6:39-40
[/color][/b]


What should have been done instead is included is what Remy Deiderich describes in his book, “Broken Trust.” Here is a partial continuation of the portion excerpted in an above post from the Chapter Titled: ‘People Can Smell Spiritual Abuse A Mile Away.’



You can’t whitewash what happened. You have to own it and clean house.


The Scent is in the Air

What many spiritual leaders don’t understand is how sensitive and perceptive survivors of spiritual abuse are. They can “smell” abuse a mile away, even when others can’t. They hear it in the teaching and in the tone of a person’s voice. They see it in the subtle manipulations used and by what’s said, or not said. ...

Once you’ve been abused, once someone has forced themselves into your personal space without your permission, you never forget it. Not everyone will see what you see or hear what you hear. They might call you oversensitive and diminish what you sense. But you know you are right. No one can convince you differently. ...

These people know something you don’t: you haven’t fully rooted out the last vestiges of abuse.


Eliminating Every Trace of Abuse

It’s extremely important that you actively root out the false teaching and behavior used to control people and not merely downplay or ignore it. Respected teachers from outside of your organization should be brought in to reset the biblical compass. The errors that perpetrated the abuse need to be spelled out and fully exposed. Your people need to understand the threat these errors are to God’s glory and the purpose for his people. *



If the humble and sincere attitudes and actions were as those Remy admonishes above in top GCX leadership, they would have fully exposed McCotter and his teachings; and eliminated him and his teachings from the group and it’s “honored” history. With such commitment the tragedy of the perpetration of this abuse may likely not have continued. McCotter’s leaving in the mid 80’s in no way substitutes for repudiating his very inappropriate actions and his false teaching to the people he tragically harmed. He should have been publically put out of leadership along with his abusive “doctrine” and practices. Sadly, the damage had already been done to thousands of people’s concept of God, His will, and “church”. Deplorably, thousands more would be wounded in the years to come.

It is inexcusable to carry on unbiblical authority, commitment, intrusion, and isolation; and whitewash and deny it for 35 more years!


*Excerpted from my copy of the Kindle Book From Amazon.


« Last Edit: September 20, 2021, 07:51:16 am by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #10 on: August 19, 2021, 09:01:11 pm »


Deception, Denial & Dismissal Recounted by Former Members



GCx leaders were likely informed of it’s abusive teachings and practices by hundreds of its members or parents of its youth and college-aged members yet, most of them claimed they had never heard any such concerns of abuse. I, and I’m sure others, have personally heard them discussing these kind of complaints among themselves and laughing them off.

These leaders were perhaps so isolated from sound healthy Christianity and the Holy Spirit that they were spiritually blind. Maybe they were lying to protect what they’d convinced themselves was the greater good, but their slanderous (untrue) stories and implications to defend themselves were destructive to former members’ reputations and relationships. Possibly they were so brainwashed that they were persuaded that anyone questioning their methods was the enemy, an agent of Satan. More likely, they had begun to blindly serve an idol - McCotter or GCx itself - and no sacrifice including the truth was too great.

Nevertheless, it’s members received severe wounds to their mind, will, and emotions, not to mention their faith! If not before, at the Judgement of Believers those responsible will have to make account for their actions. Secrets and deception will be exposed. He will make it crystal clear in our presence the spiritual abuse they perpetuated and taught. If they know Jesus they will grieve much over their mistreatment. Then, he will compassionately wipe away every tear of their regret and loss, and they will mercifully enter his Glory and his Kingdom forever. But, there will be consequences from their choices. They will have lost a great deal of their abundant life here, and reward in the life to come.

This site has documented at least 45 former member’s encounters with deception, denial, and dismissal by GCx leaders when informing or confronting them with abuse. Each person writing here likely represents 100 more members who have had similar experiences. For example, the 2 dozen or so former members who told of deception and abuse on Leah Remini’s “Scientology and The Aftermath” likely represented way more than 100 people each who had similar experiences. The very small number of victims who initially came forward to speak up about Larry Nassar’s sexual abuse gave courage to 500 others later to speak up. God knows, but I would venture to say they spiritually abused 10’s of thousands of members over GCx’s 50 year history the claimed 40,000 members at one point in time after their organization already started diminishing (though GCx leaders have been known to deceptively exaggerate their “success”).  The specific abuses of these 45 former members’ encounters can be found on the link below. Their fuller stories along with others can be found throughout this Forum.

Too many of these unrepentant leaders still remain in positions of “pastoring” in churches today.



http://forum.gcmwarning.com/jim-mccotter-gc-history/colliding-with-deceptive-and-abusive-leadership-in-gcx-churches/


« Last Edit: August 20, 2021, 08:47:23 pm by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #11 on: August 31, 2021, 05:41:05 pm »


GCx Leaders Unrepentant

Members Continue to Tell Their Stories



1. Loyalty was misused. People were being asked to commit to one church (not the church universal) for life.
2. There was an elitism whereas we thought we were better than other churches/groups and were more committed to the spread of the gospel.
3. Believers were always told to seek counsel if they wanted to leave, but the counsel was always to stay and never to leave.
4. There was shunning that went on when people left the group, often being told they were not believers and not being told the true reasons why they left.

I finally brought these issues up to my Bible study leader and it took a lot of effort because when I did, I felt as if I was betraying God. Later, I found out that a sense of betrayal in bringing up concerns is one of the main indicators of being in a 'high pressure' organization and is actually a form of control and spiritual manipulation. My Bible study leader thought others were whispering in my ear and encouraged me to follow Matthew 18 and talk to a pastor. When I did, the leader acted very humble and thanked me for bringing the issues up and said they would try to address the concerns (they even kind of sympathized with me at the time). At that point I felt relief because I wanted to believe the best in my leaders. As far as I could tell at that point, I was the first person who had ever brought these concerns to their attention (however I wasn't and they never changed).

My experience after I spoke up was that I was being watched more closely, as if I had lost trust. I was passed over to lead a Bible study (which I'm thankful for in hindsight). Shortly after, there was a message from the pulpit on false teachers and slander. In hindsight, I noticed that they spend a lot of time on those subjects. Anyhow, I was afraid to bring things forward after that, but again, things never changed.
-MarthaH

« Last Edit: September 18, 2021, 09:01:04 pm by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2021, 09:37:53 pm »


GCx Leaders Unrepentant

Might They Be the Ones Who Are Unteachable?



The following review of GCx Culture is a perspective from a founding member of this site who has been quite supportive of ex-members writing here. Through their long season of activity here they have written some very helpful posts. Below are some excerpts from some earlier posts that help give us a perspective of GCx leaders —past, and present.


My church practiced “people as projects” and “people as tools.” Friendships were “investments in the kingdom.” Trust me it was not friendship evangelism. ... It is in my opinion [this is] yet another example of how GC has to exert control over the simplest areas of freedom… who you will speak to… how you will do it… and when you should.

I just keep looking back on my own college years and how influential they were in my life and how the “becoming independent” part has influenced me forever, and it makes me so sad for the people that went from their parents authority to a pastor’s or church’s authority.

It’s UnAmerican, it’s unhealthy, and it is weird to have to ask for permission. For people saved into GCM, I would like to reiterate… “In most churches in America, you do not need to ask permission for anything. This is not a mainstream behavior. [b{This is very unusual and you should be on the lookout for this.”[/b] ...

I too had a Stepford Wives feeling with my GCM church. It did seem that everyone had sublimated their own desires, goals, and lives to become the right kind of GCM follower. I believe that people have unhealthy attachments to the church. ...

I don’t think they want to change or maybe CAN change. I think as we’ve said before the problems are inherent in the DNA of the movement. And as we all know, When something is in your DNA… it’s everywhere and it’s unchangeable. You can only treat the symptoms. To have good DNA you’ve got to start with good raw materials before conception. Conception for GCM has come and gone and now we’re dealing with a complete entity.

We can HOPE for change. We can PRAY for change. We can SUGGEST changes as Sista has mentioned. Maybe something will happen. Who knows? But imagine your old GCM pastor. Imagine telling him what he’s doing is wrong and he needs to change. What is he going to say? First, he will probably minimize the problem. So you show him the evidence: writings, blogs, sermons, personal anecdotes. Then what will he do? Label it divisive and move on, probably. ...

To expose sin in the leadership is not only just, it is imperative so that the congregation is aware and on guard. And maybe, it might cause some in the congregation to get out of the same sin themselves. ...

So I guess what we have here is not “a failure to communicate” (Anyone notice my reference to Cool Hand Luke?), but instead we have a failure on the part of leadership to do what they demand of their followers: submit to someone/something outside of themselves– they are the ones who are “unteachable.” ...

-Agatha L’Orange



« Last Edit: September 21, 2021, 08:46:21 pm by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #13 on: September 21, 2021, 08:54:20 pm »


I wish GCM [GCx]would see past their pride and protective barriers they have constructed around themselves to what is happening in their churches. To see that yes, they are leading people to Christ, but not into Him. To see that yes, they are bringing people into community, but not into fellowship. To see that yes, they are offering hope, but only giving false facades of peace. To see that yes, there is much to be proud of and much that is good, but there is so much that is sick.
-sistanchrist



« Last Edit: September 22, 2021, 07:24:43 am by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #14 on: September 29, 2021, 08:06:12 pm »


GCx Leaders Unrepentant

Never Biblically Responding to McCotter’s Abuse





Here is the valuable and practical response from Larry Pile in December 1991 to the repeated request of DB, JH & co. as to how they could satisfy he and Paul Martin that things (Spiritual Abuse in GCx) are “different” now. Larry and Paul, both former members of GCx, became experts in field of “cult” abuse. Paul starting the Wellspring cult recovery center, and Larry joining him along with others to be licensed and trained counselors with the center which was the first of its kind, and became world renown.

Take note of the necessary steps he briefly outlines. Take note of the number of years they had to take these proper and biblical steps of action before they would disband later (as a National Administrative Board.) Was this EVER enacted? Would you consider this inaction regarding McCotter’s spiritual abuse among GCx repentant or unrepentant according to scripture?


But those elders who are sinning you are to reprove before everyone,
so that the others may take warning
. I charge you, in the sight of God
and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, to keep these instructions without partiality,
and to do nothing out of favoritism
.

1 Timothy 5:20-21



... I hope you will forgive me for stating the case bluntly, but if what Jim said is true, then ‘Dennis and many other men’ with whom Jim labored were never displeased by anything he ever did or said. Hence, if that’s true, there are many others now in leadership who must be regarded as participants in the things he did and said that were unethical, unbiblical, or hurtful to others, as well as in those things that were not. If, on the other hand, at least some of the men to whom Jim referred were displeased by at least some of his actions, then Jim was not being truthful when he made this statement and you brothers have to come to terms with the fact that he was prevaricating. In other words, to boil it down, either Jim was lying, or you brothers were his accomplices.

“It is conclusions like this that many people have made, and will continue to make unless the present GCAC leadership takes the difficult step of making a forthright and fairly public declaration acknowledging Jim’s wrongdoing, along with your/their own involvement and/or collusion in Jim’s blameworthy deeds. And this declaration must also be fairly specific–not just referring vaguely to ‘things that might have caused some people to be hurt,’ but naming names, dates, places, events, etc. After all, this is the sort of confession required of the numerous individuals who have been excommunicated from GCI over the years on charges of ‘faction,’ ‘slander,’ etc.

-Larry Pile, 2007


(From this thread: http://forum.gcmwarning.com/ask-larry-pile/some-mccotter-questions/msg8/#msg8)


« Last Edit: October 07, 2021, 08:07:25 am by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #15 on: September 30, 2021, 08:35:31 am »


Man-Made Requirements Nullify God’s Commands


Quote from RW, GCx Leader
Quote
Find a body of believers where we can “Plant our flag and die.

I believe this statement is wrong and dangerous. The Holy Spirit directs each believer. To suggest (especially to a young, new believer) that God desires every believer to commit to one specific group of people for the rest of his/her life is not something any human being has the right to say or demand. To suggest that "your leaders" know God's plan for your life is cult like. No one, except God, knows His plan for your life.
-Linda    [left~2005]



Here is a member of a GCx Church who heard such things as late as 2005. It seems the quote above is from a Faithwalkers Conference not too long before they left GCx. It was also a very common teaching in GCx Churches in general. This is one of the their unbiblical and unhealthy “commandments” taught to be a truly devoted follower of Christ. Sadly, the root of this requirement came from an ungodly ambition to keep captive those among them for GCx’s building of their image, financial gain, and preservation of their group. These all clearly made null God’s commandments to ‘Love God with all you have’ and ‘Love One Another’ (looking out for THEIR best interests.)



« Last Edit: September 30, 2021, 08:37:34 am by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #16 on: November 01, 2021, 07:48:52 pm »


Of course, the big question I have after reading the comment by Randomous is, "Why in the world is GCM reprinting McCotter books?" Obviously, the answer is they like what the guy says and they are trying to get back to the good old days.

... The point here is that after looking at the writings and legacy of the McCotter years it is surprising to me that GCx would want to reprint any of the past writings. ...

I also remember reading in earlier posts here that McCotter teachings were being shown to the GCLI guys in Ames in recent months. And, as far as I know McCotter also spoke in person at The Rock in Arizona in April of 2006 (I believe).
-Linda, 2007



Onto my personal problem with re-printing selected McCotter teachings....

I think everyone here agrees that McCotter said/wrote some wacky things, and that those things were used/abused (intentionally or not) to manipulate congregations/individuals, stifle dissent within the ranks, etc.  Like it or not, McCotter's special brand of vitriol HURT  a lot of people.

My personal opinion is that if the people responsible for re-printing/distributing this material had even the slightest modicum of respect or sorrow for the people who were victimized and hurt by McCotter, they'd never even consider re-printing the material.
-namaste, 2007


« Last Edit: November 01, 2021, 07:59:09 pm by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
PietWowo
Veteran (100-299 Posts)
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 263



« Reply #17 on: November 05, 2021, 09:55:01 pm »


Man-Made Requirements Nullify God’s Commands


Quote from RW, GCx Leader
Quote
Find a body of believers where we can “Plant our flag and die.

I believe this statement is wrong and dangerous. The Holy Spirit directs each believer. To suggest (especially to a young, new believer) that God desires every believer to commit to one specific group of people for the rest of his/her life is not something any human being has the right to say or demand. To suggest that "your leaders" know God's plan for your life is cult like. No one, except God, knows His plan for your life.
-Linda    [left~2005]



Here is a member of a GCx Church who heard such things as late as 2005. It seems the quote above is from a Faithwalkers Conference not too long before they left GCx. It was also a very common teaching in GCx Churches in general. This is one of the their unbiblical and unhealthy “commandments” taught to be a truly devoted follower of Christ. Sadly, the root of this requirement came from an ungodly ambition to keep captive those among them for GCx’s building of their image, financial gain, and preservation of their group. These all clearly made null God’s commandments to ‘Love God with all you have’ and ‘Love One Another’ (looking out for THEIR best interests.)





Obviously totally out of context. Rick Whitney was in Ames, then Gainesville, then Washington DC, then Colorado, then recently somewhere in the middle of the USA. I know Rick real well. That's way out of context. Trust me, I would know if he believed just that.
Logged
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #18 on: November 16, 2021, 11:30:35 am »

Sadly, McCotter often quoted this scripture in Isaiah 32:8, “But the noble man makes noble plans, and by noble plans he stands;” but missed out on the point as he did with many scriptures. He obviously did not practice noble character, nor plans, and so carried out many abusive deeds that were anything but. I feel verses 5-7 in Isaiah 32 more accurately describe his ungodly attributes.

Verses 3-5 below tell of those of who have repented of making an idol of such an ignoble man. This is a great prayer for those leaders of GCx.


3Then the eyes of those who see will no longer be closed,
and the ears of those who hear will listen.

4The fearful heart will know and understand,
and the stammering tongue will be fluent and clear.

5No longer will the fool be called noble
nor the scoundrel be highly respected.

6For fools speak folly,
their hearts are bent on evil:
They practice ungodliness
and spread error concerning the Lord;
the hungry they leave empty
and from the thirsty they withhold water
.

7Scoundrels use wicked methods,
they make up evil schemes
to destroy the poor with lies
,
even when the plea of the needy is just.


Isaiah 32:3-7


Rather than continue to exult this man or excuse his ungodly ways or even remain silent about him; God calls those leaders to action to expel him. That is- if they really care about the sheep.

Let’s pray for those men to be bravely obedient.

Pray for them to be Noble.




« Last Edit: November 17, 2021, 07:25:11 am by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
Private Forum Access
Household Name (300+ Posts)
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1161



« Reply #19 on: December 01, 2021, 10:16:51 am »


The weaknesses paper that was done in 1991 really means nothing.  There has never been an official renouncing of the False teachings of Jim McCotter.  There has never been an official separation from the teachings of Jim McCotter.  The GCM movement has claimed to be started by Jim McCotter, Dennis Clark and Hershel Martindale. ...

To me it seems like the loyalty and protection of Jim McCotter was put above loyalty to Jesus.  I believe that Jim McCotter was on a Pedestal that only Jesus should have been on?  I believe that He was an idol to many in leadership, and many church followers.

-Marie, 2017


Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  


Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC
SimplePortal 2.1.1