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Author Topic: Mark Darling & The "F bomb"  (Read 16867 times)
snoopy
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« on: March 17, 2007, 12:13:56 pm »

“My high school son and I heard Mark Darling use the F* word on stage, along with other less-coarse language, in the context of relating to the high schoolers (he wasn’t using the word as an example of what would be wrong to say).”



This is unreal. Things are out of control. Leaders can do anything and say anything and get away with it. This is frightening. May God open eyes and show people the deception and help it to be exposed.
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hope
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« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2007, 12:14:12 pm »

dear snoopy-



i have gone to gcm conferences and had funny feelings about the speaker’s character…but these were just my feelings and although i do not discount them- i don’t believe it is enough to call his character into question.



now your example of mark darling’s speech is an example of fact. and can definitely be used to call his character into question. its tangible (whereas a feeling is not.)



i think he should definitely be called on the carpet on this one.



i think that using the f word to relate to teenagers is wrong. but i’m not sure i have any specific scripture in my mind to support this view….



hmmm……now i am thinking hard about this one and trying to figure out what exactly is wrong about saying the f word. i know it “feels” wrong but perhaps i have just been conditioned by society to feel this way….it is just a word….hmmmm.



help? Smiley
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nateswinton
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« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2007, 12:14:29 pm »

Snoopy,

I know my pastor is very accountable to the church. 3 days ago he said something debatable at a leaders meeting. Tj (who also posts here some) and myself emailed him and said “I’m not so sure about that”. He listened with full humility, and changed his position to a more moderate, fair one on the topic based on what we said. He’s not out of control at all. He’s actually very reasonable.

What’s not fair is that GCM as a whole has a black eye when only a few individuals are behaving like that.

“Leaders can do anything and say anything and get away with it.”

Not necessarily true (though I’ll admit that Mark Darling scares me). Mark did and does get away with swearing. Leaders in general are very submissive to one another and the church in my region. I’ve always been impressed watching my pastors interract with one-another and other church members.
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puff of purple smoke
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« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2007, 12:14:47 pm »

What’s not fair is that GCM as a whole has a black eye when only a few individuals are behaving like that.

While it’s true that some churches seem to be better than others, there are quite a lot of people from a wide area of churches that are reporting the same types of problems, all very reminsant of the problems described in the error statement. I don’t think GCM’s “black eye” is the result of one or two bad egg pastors. It seems much more widespread than that.
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nateswinton
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« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2007, 12:15:08 pm »

Puff,

Have you read Pile’s documentation on what’s happened in the past?

Compare that to Mark Darling saying the “f word” and you’ll give Mark a hug. Serious. The apology was made because things were totally out of line. Things are still sketchy, no doubt. Some things are outright wrong. No doubt.

But that statemet was a clear turning point. That’s a historical fact. There might not have been a perfect purging that cleansed out all of the misunderstandings among the pastors and followers, and there is definately still echoes of the past. I completely admit with all my heart that GCM’ers still do some things that are questionable at best, and alot of those things are things that have already been apologized for. And that’s bad. I’m not going to argue with there, please see that I’m agreeing with you there.

But look at the number of pastors total in GCM and look at the number that we’re talking about. We’re comparing hundreds to maybe a dozen specific individuals. I’m just talking statistics here: The ones causing the outrage and outcry on this blog are in the minority.

Honestly, I’d love to do a GCM pastor survey and see what the general consensus believes and teaches on alot of these issues. That’d give us all a much clearer perspective, “from the horses mouth”. What do you guys think about that? Then we’d all have alot more facts to work with.
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Genevieve
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« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2007, 12:15:22 pm »

You might be right about us just talking about a few of the many, but, unfortunately, those few have A LOT of influence and visibility in their regions and nationally, so I think it’s okay to say GC believes this or teaches that because of a few very prominent pastors (Mark, Rick, etc).

If the organization as a whole rejected these teachings and practices, why would these pastors be allowed to have so much influence?
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G_Prince
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« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2007, 12:15:34 pm »

Completely agree Gen. If there are a few pastors who have gone rogue, then why aren’t they being dealt with? By doing nothing isn’t GCM ultimately condoning these practices?
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Here's an easy way to find out if you're in a cult. If you find yourself asking the question, "am I in a cult?" the answer is yes. -Stephen Colbert
melinda
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« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2007, 12:15:45 pm »

Have you read Pile’s documentation on what’s happened in the past?



Nate-



I want to read this. Is there somewhere online that I can access it? It’s 1am over here in Scotland so i really must get to bed soon….
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nateswinton
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« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2007, 12:15:57 pm »

Melinda,

Sorry about 1am. I had to go pick up a buddy and eat dinner, so you’ll probably read this tomorrow morning. Contact Paul Martin at Wellspring Retreat Center, and talk to him (he’s an ex-GCI’er), and get ahold of Larry Pile (Who has been frequenting this blog apparently, and recently retired from Wellspring). Paul will direct you to Wellspring. I’d post Larry’s email address, but I don’t know if it’s his personal one, and I’m not sure if that would be polite. But I’m sure they’d both be willing to talk to you.

Larry has hooked me up with an immense amount of documentation and literature on old-school GCI stuff.

The thing I remember when I read it is that most of it took place a few decades ago. He DID write a letter in March of this year though, which you can find at gcmwarning.com. In the letter you can see that some issues are not currently address to his or many other’s satisfaction. And given the evidence in the document, I’d have to agree.
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puff of purple smoke
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« Reply #9 on: March 17, 2007, 12:16:25 pm »

Have you read Pile’s documentation on what’s happened in the past? Compare that to Mark Darling saying the “f word” and you’ll give Mark a hug

Listen, I could care less that Mark used the f word, I didn’t bring that up. What I do care about is that he told Mamad and her husband to leave the movement if they were going to be trying to “change” things. I care about people I know in my own life who were told something similar by other leaders besides Mark Darling. I care that when I first read the error statement I felt like I was reading an almost topic by topic summary of my problems with the movement. So many others hear feel the same way, and that just isn’t a strange coincedence.

But that statemet was a clear turning point. That’s a historical fact.

The only “historical fact” is this: in 1991 they released an error statement. But, also of historical note: This was the same year (and month) that a book on church abuse specifically naming the movement was completed. It was also the same year that a master’s thesis on abberant Christian groups (with an entire section on the movement) was completed. If you read Marching To Zion and Larry Pile’s much more recent statement, he makes it quite clear that although things have gotten better, there is much that remains unresolved. Sure, the movement is better than it used to be, they aren’t excommunicating people by the hundreds.

Many of the old problems are still there, sometimes below the surface and not detected until after you’ve been there a while, but still there nonetheless.
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nateswinton
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« Reply #10 on: March 17, 2007, 12:17:22 pm »

I said,

“There might not have been a perfect purging that cleansed out all of the misunderstandings among the pastors and followers, and there is definately still echoes of the past. I completely admit with all my heart that GCM’ers still do some things that are questionable at best, and alot of those things are things that have already been apologized for. And that’s bad. I’m not going to argue with there, please see that I’m agreeing with you there.”

Puff said,

“If you read Marching To Zion and Larry Pile’s much more recent statement, he makes it quite clear that although things have gotten better, there is much that remains unresolved. Sure, the movement is better than it used to be, they aren’t excommunicating people by the hundreds.
Many of the old problems are still there, sometimes below the surface and not detected until after you’ve been there a while, but still there nonetheless.”

Are we disagreeing, or are we saying the same things, but “glass is half full” and “glass is half empty” version?
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puff of purple smoke
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« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2007, 12:17:39 pm »

You’re saying:

There might not have been a perfect purging that cleansed out all of the misunderstandings among the pastors and followers

I’m saying:

There was no purging, just a confession on paper and no action. If there was a “purging” why are so many of the same elders from back then still in power, and why have they never repented of the things they taught or publicly acknowledged that some of McCotter’s teachings were unbiblical? Who exactly was purged?
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puff of purple smoke
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« Reply #12 on: March 17, 2007, 12:18:02 pm »

Also, nate: you read Marching To Zion, didn’t you notice how many of the excommunication letters were signed by national elders still in the movement? Doesn’t that bother you? Who was “purged,” really?
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nateswinton
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« Reply #13 on: March 17, 2007, 12:18:22 pm »

Purging may be too strong of a word for what happened. There was a reformation that is still going on. I’m sitting here publicly confessing, even proclaiming that the refomation is not complete. I’ll even say freely that some people aren’t even aware of it. But it is happening behind the scenes. Just because you don’t know about it doesn’t mean it isn’t happening.

Why do you think mass ex-communications aren’t happening anymore? Why do you think we don’t have summers with 50+ church plants? Why do you think GCM has lost most of it’s exclusive, condescending nature? Why do you think the leadership is a team now, instead of single unilateral decision makers like McCotter?

The existence of problems means that the process isn’t complete. It doesn’t mean the process isn’t or hasn’t taken place. It’s plain to see that things have improved immensely. Can you accept that things are better?

I will gladly accept that things are not “really great”. I’ll do it with a smile.
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nateswinton
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« Reply #14 on: March 17, 2007, 12:18:48 pm »

Puff,

Read Simon and I’s comments in the other thread. Maybe a better question is “What was purged” than “who was purged”. Are any of them approving any excommunications now? Do you know when the last one was?
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The Clone
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« Reply #15 on: March 17, 2007, 12:18:59 pm »

Anon,

You said: Nor do I think it is right that we should use coarse language as I saw at a high school conference in Iowa where my high school son and I heard Mark Darling use the F* word on stage, along with other less-coarse language, in the context of relating to the high schoolers (he wasn’t using the word as an example of what would be wrong to say). I was disgusted.

I agree. Mark Darling should see Full Metal Jacket and see what the phrase: What is your major malfunction Private Pyle?

That man has gotten away with things that people can only imagine. Let me go into a school and say F this or F that so that I can win some for Christ. That is the most crazy idea. But M. Darling seems to get away with it all the time.

-The Clone
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The Clone
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« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2007, 12:19:10 pm »

Anon,

Not to push the issue into more satire, but Mark was wearing Gap when he said F this. So I guess they were more likely to listen to his religious banter. And they liked him!!!

-The Clone
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MarriedWomanPhD
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« Reply #17 on: December 12, 2010, 10:16:14 pm »

But that statemet was a clear turning point. That’s a historical fact. There might not have been a perfect purging that cleansed out all of the misunderstandings among the pastors and followers, and there is definately still echoes of the past. I completely admit with all my heart that GCM’ers still do some things that are questionable at best, and alot of those things are things that have already been apologized for. And that’s bad. I’m not going to argue with there, please see that I’m agreeing with you there.

I'm sorry to say that the Weaknesses Statement felt like a play-by-play as we encountered difficulty with our pastors. I disagree that it is a "thing of the past". The leadership of our church (and the other 3 GCAC/GCM churches I was part of in the past 10 years) still acts that way.
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blonde
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« Reply #18 on: December 13, 2010, 02:31:37 am »

Sometimes saying it so plainly really hits the mark....no pun intended here.  Thanks MarriedWomanPhD! 
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