Just a few minutes ago, Doug Johnson, pastor of the Cleveland, OH and Meadville, PA congregations, sent out a resignation letter. I don’t have permission to print it, so I won’t, and I’m not inclined to ask for that privilege. Let’s just say it was obviously a heart-felt and difficult decision for he and Janel to make. Unlike some other letters, there is no list of specifics, only that it is “the only honorable course I can see”.
Times are tough and turbulent. Stay close to God, and He will guide your steps.
Technorati Tags: cog,church of god,united church of god,ucg,ucgia,crisis,church splits,division
I met the Johnsons at a UCG Feast in Lexington, KY in 2004. We became rather close — as Janel needed me to sing special music twice during the Feast due to an unexpected problem with another performer, and Doug Johnson is a metro Kansas City native as I am.
They seem quite level-headed spiritually. So this is indeed sad to read.
Part of me says I should stop reading all these sad reports, because they're getting a bit numbing. Yet I suppose I need to know what's going on, for better or worse.
Mr and Mrs Doug Johnson are very decent and stirling example of God's people. Sad that they have to go through this trial and grateful that they did the only honourable course. We love and respect them and it's an honour to walk side by side with them.
Maybe the resignation will show up on ucgcurrentcrisis, since that is church of God, a worldwide association's website. Interesting they are Abigail Cartwright and have had that website up all this time, even while working for ucg. That's Godly??
Anonymous wrote: "Maybe the resignation will show up on ucgcurrentcrisis".
Actually, 1. It was there yesterday, 2. They all show up there eventually.
"since that is church of God, a worldwide association's website."
The first part has to do with the second part how?
"Interesting they are Abigail Cartwright and have had that website up all this time, even while working for ucg. That's Godly??"
OK, why not? If you are referring to conflict of interest, then it's probably about as Godly as sending Mario Seiglie to Chile to settle disputes with his in-laws.
That's the problem John.
If 'one side' does something 'unGodly' it in no way means the other side is justified in fillowing suite.
Does Satan sinning in any way justify God then going ahead and sinning? Obviously not.
Unfortuately both sides in this dispute have been guilty of some pretty flagrant ethical violations, when it is the ministry who should be in the forefront of NOT doing these things.
Would you please give the website address for COG AWA? Would you please tell me CLEARLY why people are breaking away from UCG? I've listened to the Hanisko Q&A and I don't think misconduct by the COE is reason to divide the church.
@Anonymous: I don't think they have a website yet. Of course, if it was really such an "organized effort" as some doves allege, then one would be up by now. 🙂
As far as why people are leaving, it seems that different people have different reasons. I have covered various aspects in various articles, so reducing it down to one blog comment will probably be an oversimplification.
Having said that, I believe they would all concur that it does all point back to the current leadership of UCG.
I would disagree that misconduct by leadership isn't a reason to leave an organization. Naturally, it depends a lot upon the type and degree of misconduct.
If there was just one "misconduct" charge, then it would be easier to understand. It would also be easier to brush aside, I suppose, but a few are:
* Firings of LA ministers (and others later) without due process
* Questionable papers that mention doctrinal items with conclusions that run against established positions (and, one of them even attacks the former administration without apology)
* Ignoring pleas to meet to talk about the issues, even to the extent of looking for technically legal loopholes to avoid such a meeting
* Breaking of procedure when it comes to meetings, resolutions and handling of affairs (all the while complaining that others are doing the same)
* A general atmosphere of lording it over others and telling them to be humble and submit all the while maintaining they are doing nothing wrong
I hate to disappoint you, but Dennis Luker was right when he said it was about control. The question each of us has to answer is "Who is trying to control whom, how and why? Do the answers reflect God's standards for leadership?"
While the breakaway group isn't exactly clean as the driven snow, I know several of them have tried to meet with Luker and have essentially been ignored.
@Anonymous: I've just been informed they have the domain name registered already, but the site itself is not yet up and running. They will announce on FB when it is. It will be at <a href="http://www.cogwa.org>www.cogwa.org</a> when it is.
Forgot a quote http://www.cogwa.org
Questeruk wrote: "If 'one side' does something 'unGodly' it in no way means the other side is justified in fillowing suite."
No, it just means that neither side should be throwing stones — especially "unGodly" stones. I have done my best to avoid using that particular word as well as some related ones in spite of my strong feelings on the subject.
Have you read "If You Take the Left, Then I Will Go to the Right" yet? I have no doubt that some of Lot's sheepherders thought Abraham was being unjust and unfair and vice versa. Hopefully, neither side thought the other was being "unGodly".
Furthermore, no one has proven that having the AC website is "unGodly", "unethical", etc., in the first place. It is another case of casting stones without merit.
In fact, it is probably time to write an unofficial history of the UCG Current Crisis websites (plural), especially for those who weren't around in the beginning of this on Facebook. A lot of doves are making some rather silly accusations, and people who weren't paying attention are gobbling it up out of ignorance.
They already have sites- YES JDC, that HAVE BEEN in the works, for instance: cogks.org
I personally know the person building the sites and they have been working on this for quite some time. I'm not into alleging, unfortunately I know straight from the horse. Also, let's not be naive- starting a business or organization takes lots of time and planning, it's not accomplished overnight.
Anonymous wrote: "Also, let's not be naive- starting a business or organization takes lots of time and planning, it's not accomplished overnight."
Yeah, that is right off the dove talking points. I'm living proof that you can get a business up and running with an ID and vendor's license in less than a month.
I built cogks.org and I was not planning it for months. I've been wanting to build a site to catalog sermons for years and finally after this past feast I started working on that project, but I didn't start thinking about cogks.org until after we split. I'm glad I started cataloging sermons early–I saved many that are now deleted. "Anonymous", if you know me, please contact me and I'll be happy to clear up any questions you have.
@Andy: Sounds like a worthwhile project! A site like yours would take some time to upload the sermons. Thanks for doing this.
It took me about 3 days to get my business site up initially, though. Most of that was deciding what navigation I wanted and a logo. Of course, it's never really "done".