Skip to comments.Breaking: Press release regarding Ted Haggard
Posted on 11/04/2006 2:16:36 PM PST by loreldan
We, the Overseer Board of New Life Church, have concluded our deliberations concerning the moral failings of Pastor Ted Haggard. Our investigation and Pastor Haggard's public statements have proven without a doubt that he has committed sexually immoral conduct. The language of our church bylaws state that as Overseers we must decide in cases where the Senior Pastor has "demonstrated immoral conduct" whether we must "remove the pastor from his position or to discipline him in any way they deem necessary."
(Excerpt) Read more at newlifechurch.org ...
Nice summary of the situation.
Well this article is fine and good but the unanswered question is how long did Bush and this administration know about this kook's indiscretions and why didn't they act on it when they first knew about it?????????? /sarc
They are probably focusing on it because the homo aspect to it makes it all the more unusual and worse than hetero adultry. They are reporting the news. This is news.
That's unfair. As a Catholic, I'd never heard of this guy, but by all accounts he was a reputable, decent fellow until the Devil got a hold of him. How many priests who underwent rigorous seminary training have turned out to be chicken hawking homosexuals? We should pray for Haggard, his family, and also especially his congregation. I know lots of Catholics who've had their faith shaken (look at what happened to Rod Dreher) by the slimeballs we've got in our hierarchy, and so here I go quoting Bill Clinton, "I feel their pain."
I hope this means he finally told the truth. I groaned when I heard his latest statement about phoning for meth, at least twice, and getting a massage and was tempted, but... Looks like he probably broke down and got honest with the Lord and his fellows. The church is doing the correct thing.
Yes, we all fall far short and are sinners, however, the Bible is pretty exacting about its leaders. If he hadn't been caught, (no matter what the circumstances, he is still to blame for his choices, actions and excuses) he would have hypocritically continued to preach while hiding his sin. In the long run, not getting caught would have been a terrible thing for him to do to himself and his church and would eventually bear bad fruit.
If I were a Colorado voter, it wouldn't change my mind one iota. Those who are for or against same sex relations/marriage won't be swayed. Somehow, I don't think there are that many undecided voters who would vote for it just because some foolish, prideful preacher got caught. At least I hope not.
Prayers for him, his family, and fellow Christians. It's a humbling experience for them (and me) no doubt about it.
It is very possible that attedance will increase as people hear of a church that will not put up with immoral behavior of their pastor and will expose the Pastor and the church in the public eye.
This church has integrity. They handled it perfectly.
Priests are naturally more detached from their parishoners because they are placed on a pedestal, they are set apart.
OTOH, a Protestant minister is very connected to his congregation. The first Church I attended following my break with Catholicism was a very tight, little Presbyterian Church. The Pastor and his wife invited me to dinner the first Sunday I attended. I never took advantage of their offer because I got caught up in doctrinal doubt, etc, and became paralyzed by it. In retrospect, I'm thinking it was normal to descend into that doubt, based on my particular situation. But, I'm sorry I didn't take them up on their offer to have dinner, because it probably would have helped me.
Anyway, here's a piece from Mark Driscoll's blog. This Pastor is an ex-Catholic, and he's had his share of controversy too, because he cusses a bit, and he tells it like it is. Those are not disadvantages to me, they are pluses (the tell it like it is part, anyway) and he's done a great job of planting Chuches. Here it is:
Of course the media is having a field day with the scandal, particularly since Haggards home state of Colorado is on the brink of a highly charged political vote regarding homosexual rights. It will likely take weeks to untangle the truth in all of this very devastating news. In the meantime, let us pray that his wife and five children will be loved and supported through this incredibly difficult time. The horror they must be experiencing is likely unbearable.
As every pastor knows, we are always at risk from the sin in us and the sinful temptations around us. Pastoring in one of Americas least churched cities to a large number of single, young people has been an eye-opening experience for me. I started the church ten years ago when I was twenty-five years of age. Thankfully, I was married to a beautiful woman. I met my lovely wife Grace when we were seventeen, married her at twenty-one, and by Gods grace have been faithful to her in every way since the day we met. I have, however, seen some very overt opportunities for sin. On one occasion I actually had a young woman put a note into my shirt pocket while I was serving communion with my wife, asking me to have dinner, a massage, and sex with her. On another occasion a young woman emailed me a photo of herself topless and wanted to know if I liked her body. Thankfully, that email was intercepted by an assistant and never got to me.
My suspicion is that as our culture becomes more sexually rebellious, things will only get worse. Therefore, as a means of encouragement, I would like to share some practical suggestions for fellow Christian leaders, especially young men:
The only way to stay away from sin is to stay close to Jesus. Colossians says that we are prone to making a lot of rules but that if we dont deal with the issues in our heart, we are fooling ourselves; holiness cannot be obtained by the sheer force of white-knuckled will power. More than anyone, a Christian leader needs time with Jesus in repentance, for their own soul and not just to make them a better leader or teacher. Death comes to every Christian leader who goes to Jesus and Scripture for purely functional and not relational purposes.
Most pastors I know do not have satisfying, free, sexual conversations and liberties with their wives. At the risk of being even more widely despised than I currently am, I will lean over the plate and take one for the team on this. It is not uncommon to meet pastors wives who really let themselves go; they sometimes feel that because their husband is a pastor, he is therefore trapped into fidelity, which gives them cause for laziness. A wife who lets herself go and is not sexually available to her husband in the ways that the Song of Songs is so frank about is not responsible for her husbands sin, but she may not be helping him either.
Every pastor needs a pastor. Too often the pastor is seen as a sort of little God and his wife as some glorified First Lady. Every pastor needs a pastor with whom he can regularly have accountability and the confession of sin. Every pastors wife also needs a godly woman chosen for her maturity and trustworthiness.
No church should tolerate sexual sin among its leaders. Christians cannot be guilty of playing plank-speck with non-Christians on matters of pornography and homosexuality and be guilty of going soft on sin in their own leadership. As Paul says, nothing can be done out of partiality or favoritism.
Pastors should have their office at the church and their study at home. There is no reason a pastor should be sitting alone at the church at odd hours (e.g., early morning and late evening) to study when anyone can drop in for any reason and have access to him. Instead, a pastor should come into the office for scheduled meetings and work from home on tasks such as emails, planning, studying, sermon preparation, etc. I spend the vast majority of my time working from home. Some years ago when I did not, I found that lonely people, some of them hurting single moms wanting a strong man to speak into their life, would show up to hang out and catch time with me. It was shortly thereafter that I brought my books home and purchased a laptop and cell phone so that I was not tied to the church office.
Pastors have the right to protect their own home. This means that if someone keeps dropping by unannounced and is unwelcome, or a flirtatious woman shows up to a Bible study at the pastors home, the pastor and his family have the right to request that they never return. The pastors home simply cannot be viewed as yet another piece of church property that is accessible to anyone who desires it. Rather, the pastors home must be a safe place for the pastor and his family without the wrong people rudely calling and dropping by.
Churches should consider returning to heterosexual male assistants who are like Timothy and Titus to serve alongside pastors. Too often the pastors assistant is a woman who, if not sexually involved, becomes too emotionally involved with the pastor as a sort of emotional and practical second wife. I have been blessed with a trustworthy heterosexual male assistant who can travel with me, meet with me, etc., without the fear of any temptations or even false allegations since we have beautiful wives and eight children between us.
Pastors need to protect their email and have it screened for accountability. For me, this means that no email but an email from one of our pastors comes directly to me. This also means that I leave my email account open at home and my wife regularly checks it to get schedule information, etc., because I have nothing to hide. I also do not have a secondary email account from which to build a secret identity.
Pastors need to carefully protect their cell phone number. If that private number gets out, too many of the wrong people have access to the pastor. Not only should the cell phone number of a pastor be given out to only a few people, he should also consider eliminating his voicemail and simply have calls forwarded to his assistant. In this way people will not become too informal with the pastor and if the pastor knows someone is trouble (e.g., a flirtatious woman), he can see that on his caller ID and simply refuse to answer the call or have to deal with a voicemail.
Pastors must speak freely and frankly with their wives about their temptations. Without this there really can be no walking in the light and sin always grows in darkness.
Pastors must not travel alone; the anonymity and fatigue of the road is too great a temptation for many men. A pastor should take his wife, an older child, an assistant, or fellow leader with him. If this cannot be afforded then travel should not be undertaken.
Any pastor who is drifting toward serious sexual sin should have the courage, love for God, devotion to his family, and respect for his church to simply fall on his sword and resign before he goes down in flames. He must get the professional help he needs without fear of losing his position as a pastor. It is much better to be an honest Christian than a wicked pastor.
Lastly, the big issue is a love and fear of God. Only a man really knows his heart and whether or not he loves and fears God above all else. Without this a man will fail to live for Gods glory, and it is only a matter of time. In conclusion, I say none of this as moralism. Indeed, this is a deeply rooted gospel issue. How can we proclaim that our God is a faithful Trinitarian community if we are not faithful to our marriage covenant and family? How can we say that the same power that raised Christ from the dead lives in us if we have no holiness in our life? How can we proclaim that we are new creations in Christ if we continually return to lap up the vomit of our old way of life? How can we preach that sin is to be repented of if we fail to model that ongoing repentance? How can we say that God is our highest treasure and greatest joy when we trade Him for sin that defiles our hands and defames His name?
I do not know the guilt or innocence of Haggard. But I do know that this is a sobering reminder to take heed of, lest we fall
The leadership here looks like its doing its job, which at this point, is the most important thing. The reason the Catholic church took such a blow to its moral authority during the pederast scandal has less to do with perverted priests mucking about, than amoral bishops who became prone and had no regard for the young males in their care. No regard whatsoever! That's what did them in; their willful attachment to the path of least resistance which allowed them to reassign these priests, and their stupid 'zero tolerance' conference following the outbreak of the scandal, so how you handle a situation like this really matters.
When all is said and done though, the theology of the Cross is where you should be at, and that includes this Pastor. To sin is human, to forgive enormously hard, but Divine, and it's what were called to do.
I live in Colorado Springs and have attended New Life on a number of occassions...the community here is reeling from this and the homosexual population here has been dancing a jig and attacking ALL Christians as hate-filled homophobic bigots...there is such a hurtful divide going on right now and I am DISGUSTED with Ted Haggard, just disgusted!
Money and crowd adoration. Anyone who has given a speech (even in a classroom setting) that won the crowd over to their way of thinking knows how very satisfying it can be. It must be very hard for pastors of mega-churches, who face crowds of thousands, to control the most human flaw of self-importance. Pride will eat you alive. King David did far worse. May he sincerely seek forgiveness, and be forgiven. He is diminished forever.
Did they need to point out that his sins were also of a sexual nature? I'm troubled by it. The man has a wife who's got to be hurting. Shouldn't it have been her decision to make the nature of his sins public? Wouldn't buying illegal drugs from a prostitute - information which was already public knowledge - have constituted sufficient grounds for his removal? Did they need to get more specific with their reasons for his dismissal?
I don't have the answers, I'm just putting the questions out there.
That process will begin immediately in hopes that a new pastor can be confirmed by the end of the year 2006. In the interim, Ross Parsley will function as the leader of the church with full support of the Overseers.
A letter of explanation and apology by Pastor Haggard as well as a word of encouragement from Gayle Haggard will be read in the 9:00 and 11:00 service of New Life Church.
There will be a big crowd tomorrow to hear the letter and apology tomorrow at church.
From what I know about these kinds of situations, this church will be divided by those with various opinions on what happened, what was done, and how Haggart (everybody drop the word "Pastor", please) should now be treated.
Churches split all the time over silly little things. I am skeptical this church will do well in absorbing this body blow. If I were the banker with this loan, I would be very worried.
Its the problem with celibacy. If only they would let them marry these sexual sins would not happen.
If this were the Episcopal Church, not only would they be unable to discipline him, he would probably be bishop material.
I'm with you. If you look at the church website, the band appears to be the focal point. Many of these churches seem to want to be clubs of some sort.....entertainment is what counts. Bring the people in, no matter what you have to compromise.
I agree. I do not like these "Six Flags Over Jesus" type of churches either.
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