After seven years, an innocent man, Paul Petry, is still being shunned by Mars Hill Church. This the second to last day of its existence as an organization and its leaders still refuse do the right thing.
Shame on the pastors that are still at Mars Hill Church or that are about to pastor in the “new” church plants. What heartless men that they have not demanded the removal of the shunning edict and called for repentance and restitution!
How can it be “All about Jesus” when this glaring travesty, which has brought dishonor to the gospel and to Mars Hill Church, still stands uncorrected?
18 men bore witness to the enormity of their own sin of participating in the firing, trial, disqualifying as elder, and the shunning of Pastor Paul Petry, and the firing and trial of Pastor Bent Meyer. These 18 witnesses have publicly acknowledged their participation in false accusations and slander against these two innocent men. These sins were as serious as the 18 witnesses describe. The sins were devastating not only to the Petry and Meyer families, but the to the church as a whole.
These 18 men bear witness to the sins of the five pastors mentioned above, who, by the very testimony of their colleagues, participated in these sinful acts.
The following men participated in the sinful and harmful acts of 2007, and had the opportunity to share in repenting, yet turned it down. Yet they continue to be considered qualified to be pastors!
Pastor Tim Quiring. Tim Quiring has returned to be a pastor of Mars Hill Church Everett, which, starting January 1st will be called Foundation Church. Of all of the elders that voted such harsh treatment for Paul Petry and voted in the bylaw change, Quiring had a solid Reformed background. He was one of the older men and his voice would have been heeded. Yet to this day, even in the face of 18 of his fellow elders repenting of the sins against Paul Petry and Bent Meyer, he still remains unrepentant.
Pastor Bubba Jennings. Bubba Jennings is the pastor of Mars Hill Church Tacoma, which, starting January 1st will be called Resurrection Church.
Pastor Tim Smith. Tim Smith is the pastor of Mars Hill Church Portland, which, starting January 1st will be called Redeemer Church.
Pastor Bill Clem. Bill Clem is a pastor at Rick McKinley’s Imago Dei Church in Portland. Clem does not reference his tenure at either Doxa (now Mars Hill Church West Seattle) or Mars Hill Church itself. Bill Clem was one of the older men in 2007, who was complicit in and participated in the sinful actions perpetrated against innocent men, and has gone on with ministry without addressing his actions of 2007.
Pastor Tim Belz. Tim Belz is the executive pastor of Sojourn Community Church in Louisville, KY. Belz does reflect his time at Mars Hill Church, and was in active executive leadership when Paul Petry was fired, tried and the new by-laws passed. Like Clem and Quiring, Belz was one of the older men in 2007 whose voice would have had some sway with the numerous young men who have since repented.
I mention these men because they are all continuing to pastor churches as if they had no responsibility for the sins that 18 witnesses attest to.
These men ought to step down from ministry and face just and reasonable church discipline over their well-witnessed sins.
Rick Warren, while encouraging the attendees of the 11 remaining Mars Hill Church locations, referred to them as “new trees” growing from the broken tree. Well, a good tree bears good fruit, and a bad tree bears bad fruit. So if the pastors of these “new” churches are the same men that threw Mars Hill Church under the bus seven years ago without a shadow of repentance, how will we see anything but the same fruit in their future ministries?
God is not mocked, you reap that which is sown.
Without repentance, Foundation Church in Everett, Redeemer Church in Portland, and Resurrection Church in Tacoma will find that the new tree will be led by the same poor leadership which planted the seeds of destruction that brought the broken tree, Mars Hill Church, to its knees.