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Saturday, November 17, 2007

Fired and Brimstone at Mars Hill Church

posted by on November 17 at 18:14 PM

Originally posted Friday at 6:45pm

In late September or early October, Mars Hill—the hipster yet ultraconservative church—fired one pastor and put another on probation.

In a letter to church members, Pastor Mark Driscoll—one of the cofounders of the church—referenced the church’s recent rewriting of its bylaws, and stated that the two men, “curiously were among the least administratively gifted for that task, and chose to fight in a sinful manner in an effort to defend their power and retain legal control of the entire church.”
Pastor Paul Petry, who preached at Ballard, was fired, while Bent Meyer, who preaches at the Shoreline location, was put on probation. The dramatic move caused quite a stir at Mars Hill, and members of the church aired their grievances in a long and lively thread on the church’s private online message board.

Things got even uglier in a September 30 sermon, when Driscoll—who’s been the face of the church since it was first established in 1996—stated, sternly referencing the two dissidents, that “There are a few guys right now, if I wasn’t going to end up on CNN, I would go Old Testament on ’em. There’s no, like, attorneys and blogging, just like I punched you in the mouth, now shut up. That’s clean; it’s simple.”

According to one former Mars Hill member, there are people rescinding their memberships because of the decision. Mars Hill currently has five locations—in Ballard, Shoreline, West Seattle, Redmond, and Wedgwood, with a new site replacing the Tabella Nightclub in Belltown on the way—and around 24 pastors.

Neither Petry nor Meyer would comment.


“Members’ Site Temporarily Shutdown Article posted on Friday, November 16, 2007

Dear Members,

Unfortunately an unidentified member of Mars Hill has been giving contact information and/or access to this site to those outside the membership including media representatives. Therefore, for the protection and privacy of our members we are going to temporarily suspend access to the site.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you in the meantime. If there are vital pieces of information you need from the site then we would encourage you to email Pastor Zack Hubert who can assist you. We know this is inconvenient and it is sad that someone has violated their membership covenant and the privacy policy of this site.

We encourage you to spend this time in prayer for your church.


The Elders of Mars Hill Church (posted by Pastor Zack)”

RSS icon Comments


I didn't know your first name could be "Bent." Unpleasant!

Posted by Matthew | November 16, 2007 7:09 PM

It's true though, isn't it? The only things separating us from savagery are attorneys and blogging. Take away the attorneys, take away the blogging, and we're right back in the Book of Judges.

Posted by elenchos | November 16, 2007 7:09 PM

what a surprise.

Posted by mike | November 16, 2007 7:29 PM

Power, politics and Christianity, it's a wrong combination and always has a tragic end! Uhh, like maybe because that is not what is supposed to be about.
But I am a woman so Driscoll would never listen to me. A penis makes you a superior being according to him. I never have understood all the fuss and worship of those things.
I wish somebody would apply old testament law to him... It would be fun to see.

Posted by mj | November 16, 2007 8:47 PM

Penis comment was a joke for people like Driscoll who think they make them superior.

Posted by mj | November 16, 2007 8:58 PM

How can anyone still follow this guy? What a joke. I'm drunk, so fuck him.

Posted by laterite | November 16, 2007 9:04 PM

I think the Mars Hill Book Club, if there is one, should take up "Elmer Gantry"

Posted by catalina vel-duray | November 16, 2007 9:30 PM

And, by the way, what's a nice neighborhood like Wedgwood doing with a church like Mars Hill?

Posted by catalina vel-duray | November 16, 2007 9:34 PM

How many boring old mainstream churches have their pastors threatening to punch people in the face?

Posted by Fnarf | November 16, 2007 10:11 PM

@7: I'm glad someone else out there has read Elmer Gantry. The book was published 80 years ago but the plot--a phony minister dupes the gullible into thinking he is God's mouthpiece--could have been written today. Who would Jesus threaten to punch in the mouth?

Posted by RainMan | November 16, 2007 10:57 PM

I don't know Fnarf. But I know a couple of boring old mainstream pastors who I'd like to punch in the mouth!
The boring mainstream guys are just as big creeps as the mega-chruch freaks. (I wonder where pastor Fritz of St. John's Lutheran Church is now? Probably hell if there is one.)

Posted by postergirl | November 17, 2007 8:11 AM

I think of 'goin' all Old Testament' on somebody more as incinerating the city they live in than punching them in the nose, but we may be working from different translations. I think he's reading the Marvel Comics version.

Posted by flamingbanjo | November 17, 2007 9:06 AM

@12 That is funny.
It could also mean just getting out some instruments and marching around them singing until the walls of their homes fall down!

Posted by mj | November 17, 2007 9:10 AM

I must say that I disagree with the characterization of Mars Hill as a "hipster" church. At best, these people are hipster poseurs: The kind that get tattoos because they saw someone on television with one.

Say what you will about hipsters, but I've never known one who was xenophobic and afraid of modern society the way fundamentalists are - and fundamentalist is what Mars Hill is, after all.

Posted by catalina vel-duray | November 17, 2007 9:13 AM

Um, wasn't the end of the world thing supposed to have happened? Why are all these religious nutjobs still around?

Posted by Jesus juice | November 17, 2007 9:24 AM

Where is the seattle PI article about this? They like to cover how cool and "hipster" this church is, but won't talk about how Driscoll gets violent when his ultimate authority is challenged. After all, he's the man in charge, and since he has a direct link to 'god' then who can question him...anyone who does should be punched in the mouth for sure. What a tool!

Props to the stranger for keeping on eye on this fool. The larger dailies are afraid to do anything but heap praise on this fanatical right wing cult.

Posted by Frank | November 17, 2007 9:27 AM

#14, thanks for saying it like it is. The people that fall for churches like Mars Hill are the types that can't think for themselves, so yeah, they've fallen for this so called "hipster" church because they think it's cool. I'm sorry, but their pathetic attempt to be hip strikes me as nothing more than just adopting another uniform. They are trying to fit in with the flock.

Too bad for them Heaven's Gate isn't around anymore, they had cool outfits too.

By the way, aren't tattoos considered a sin?

Posted by Todd | November 17, 2007 9:51 AM

too bad the Stranger has (again) misquouted, hacked into a private forum, and presented incorrect facts. whatever happened to real journalism?

Posted by Disappointed | November 17, 2007 10:00 AM

"Hipster" my inked ass. That church and its obviously closeted "tough guy" pastor can take a flying fuck off the Aurora Bridge.

They're about as "hip" as those fake full-page "boutique" cigarette ads in the Stranger.

I sure wish someone would start "Venus Valley" church...

Posted by ls | November 17, 2007 10:25 AM

Turns out Mark Driscoll is a big-mouthed, macho idiot. Wow, who would have guessed?

Posted by J.R. | November 17, 2007 10:27 AM

@18: It's too bad that Mars Hill constantly misquotes, misleads and misapplies theology to further its own ends, and has their tools (i.e. you) "hack" into a public forum to limply defend the indefensible and present a "man on the street" viewpoint that comes straight from the table of "Really, I'm Not Gay" Pastor Driscoll.

Whatever happened to real Christianity?

Posted by St Paul | November 17, 2007 10:29 AM

Driscoll isn't a hipster; he's a muscley thug.

Postergirl, I agree that mainstream church people can be assholes of their own particular kind, but you don't get the thick-necked Brownshirt types like Driscoll. Mainstream churches are a part of civilization. Mars Hill is against civilization.

Posted by fnarf | November 17, 2007 10:30 AM


I'm sorry you're disappointed and I'm the first to defend Christianity but the last to defend Driscoll.
He has made his own reputation.

I have him recorded publicly making fun of another minister and being a complete ass about it and even worse acting highly superior over a non issue.

He pushes the issue on women being silent or not preaching and I have a booklet right here in front of me confirming it.

He totally got in another ministers face when that minister chose to be accepting and loving to homosexuals. I also have that in writing.

Sorry disappointed but there is nothing hip about Driscoll. He is a macho, power hungry minister and if he feels so misunderstood maybe he should shut his mouth and show a little care and love.

Good grief the guy insinuated that Ted Haggard’s wife was not sexy enough and that is why Ted went to that guy. That is sick stuff.

What is hip about an all white , male dominated macho church? That is a place I would from.

I know what it is like to be
disappointed So I feel for you.

Oops... I'm not supposed to compassionate on slog. I got in big trouble for that the other day : )
So, suck it up Disappointed and get over it! ; ) xo

Posted by mj | November 17, 2007 10:56 AM

"hacking into a private forum"? If it's on the Internet somewhere, you can't expect it to be private. However the Stranger crew unearthed this info, congrats and keep it up. Perhaps this is part of the reason behind the recent switch to "video preaching" with only Driscoll himself delivering sermons, via video so he can be the omnipresent voice behind the curtain, while the "campus pastors" are just handshaking toadies.

Posted by lurk | November 17, 2007 11:00 AM

Video preaching, eh?

Sounds like someone has learned a good lesson from Marvin Sunk (aka, the Sun King.)

Click this link to see what the eventual result of THAT might be: Click!

Posted by pgreyy | November 17, 2007 11:35 AM

Christianity is a cult for sex perverts and idiots. It doesn't surprise me that Mars Hill is having problems.

Does anyone know of a good Hipster Temple on Capital Hill? My girlfriend and I are still looking for a Torah heavy Reform Temple and can't seem to find one like we had in New York.

Posted by Issur | November 17, 2007 11:39 AM

I think I would need a lot of explanation to understand how a rich brat wearing a trucker hat is more "real" than a rich brat in a trucker hat who thinks he is loved by an imaginary god. Pretending to be a hipster is like pretending to pretend to have your own personality. How can you fake being fake?

"Fake hipster" is redundant; "real hipster" is a contradiction in terms. It doesn't surprise me in the least that someone would decide that a church is as good a place as any to show off their tattoo and dis those who don't conform.

Posted by elenchos | November 17, 2007 1:49 PM

read the Bible, decide for yourselves

Posted by jimmy | November 17, 2007 4:35 PM

The Haggard comment begs the immediate question:

Is Driscoll's wife sexy enough?

Posted by Ted | November 17, 2007 4:39 PM

Shutting off access to the workings of the church website, eh?

How very Catholic of them. Keep the dirty laundry hidden, lest it affect the tithing.

They're really all the same, aren't they?

Posted by catalina vel-duray | November 17, 2007 5:20 PM

Oh, and the "We encourage you to spend this time in prayer for your church" is VINTAGE Catholic. Do you suppose Driscoll has a nun fetish?

Posted by catalina vel-duray | November 17, 2007 5:21 PM

I guess freedom of religion and tolerance for all people groups only applies to those who are not members of a church.

Where is the tolerance, diversity and acceptance that Seattle is known for? We must reject hate-filled comments and attitudes towards others, even if we do not understand them.

Catalina #30-31, do you hate Catholics? Christians? All people that are different than you?

How sad that the church had to shut down the private, password-protected website with personal comments to each other, prayers and information because someone is so hateful that they are allowing non-member access. Even the notice above was only accessible with a password by a member.

Only people with no one to love are as hateful as this.

Posted by Denny | November 17, 2007 5:48 PM

Let me paraphrase for Denny:

"WAAAH! Only the members of my secret cult should know what happens inside! WAAAH!"

Posted by A Non Imus | November 17, 2007 6:01 PM

This is starting to sound pretty cultist to me - the secrecy, the leaders who feel betrayed. Anybody remember The Peoples' Temple and Jim Jones?

Posted by Bauhaus | November 17, 2007 7:03 PM

Denny, dear - I don't hate Catholics. I was raised Catholic. My mom and sister are still devout Catholics, and I will probably go to mass with them on Thanksgiving, because I love and respect them, and it's important to them.

And I don't hate the wider community of Christians (although I think it's interesting you made a distinction between Catholics and Christians - that tells me a lot about you) I think that churches can, and do, do a lot of good for a lot of people. But I don't think they are infallible.

No one "forced" Mars Hill to shut down their website - just as no one forced the Catholic leadership to put the lid on child abuse. They did it of their own free will.

And please explain to me how shutting down a website can halt prayers, or even the sharing of information. Are you really that shallow, or that insecure in your faith?

Despite your nouveau victim claim in your first paragraph, you are still more than free to practice your religion, and we (the non Mars-Hillers) are more than tolerant of your faith. Being tolerant of something doesn't mean you have to believe in that something, and it doesn't make you untouchable.

I really think you need to search your soul to find out why you follow this pastor. If he has nothing to hide, why is he hiding it? Why are you wasting your talents, perhaps your very soul, following someone who won't be honest with the larger community?

Posted by catalina vel-duray | November 17, 2007 7:23 PM

Circling the wagons so soon? Any bets on when the first sexual abuse charge surfaces?

Posted by WenG | November 17, 2007 7:28 PM

COMMENT DELETED: False and potentially libelous

We remove comments that are off topic, threatening, or commercial in nature, and we do not allow sock-puppetry (impersonating someone else)—or any kind of puppetry, for that matter. We never censor comments based on ideology.

Posted by job | November 17, 2007 7:31 PM

@23.... you like left whole words out!

Dyslexic Twit!

Posted by mj | November 17, 2007 8:59 PM

Exactly, Bauhaus. Jim Jones is exactly who I thought of when reading this. As well as learning about the 'secret' website for church people. What these young 'hipster' fundies lack, besides functioning brains, is perspective on cults and control, both traits Mars Hills exhibits in spades.

And I graduated from fundie Bible College. I know this shit. Gives me the fucking willies. I would bet anything that Driscoll has some sexual shit he's covering up.

Posted by Lola | November 17, 2007 10:01 PM

So instead of keeping open a channel where they were fully in control of the message and discussion, they shuttered the "secret" website and scattered their flock to the four corners of the Internet to engage in hot church gossip?

Oh my god (pardon the pun). These people are idiots.

Posted by ddbb | November 18, 2007 4:47 AM

Catalina, you're nuts. You brought up Catholicism. Denny's distinction between Catholics & Christians in response is unremarkable.

Posted by daniel | November 18, 2007 9:11 AM

Mars Hill Church may not be hip, but that's what they're selling. Much like The Stranger. It's the Church of the Hippie Hating Hipsters.

I'm serious, read this stuff and tell me Marc Driscoll doesn't sound like The Stranger's new religion writer:

"Some emergent types [want] to recast Jesus as a limp-wrist hippie in a dress with a lot of product in His hair, who drank decaf and made pithy Zen statements about life while shopping for the perfect pair of shoes. In Revelation, Jesus is a pride fighter with a tattoo down His leg...

That is a guy I can worship. I cannot worship the hippie, diaper, halo Christ..."

Posted by george | November 18, 2007 9:14 AM

I love comments like @28. Many of us have "read the Bible and decided for ourselves". I just don't happen to have reached the same conclusion regarding its meaning as the religious-types.

Posted by Julie | November 18, 2007 9:29 AM

Like apples falling into our laps, Driscol, Hutcherson, Joe Fuiten, the RCC, just keep on supplying stories for Stranger staff and pin cushions for those of us in the Sloggerati. What would we do for amusement on a lazy morning without them?

Posted by ratcityreprobate | November 18, 2007 9:44 AM

Daniel, I compared Mars Hill apparent cover-up to the Catholic church, and their numerous cover-ups of child abuse.

Denny took that as a blanket statement that I "hated" all Catholics AND Christians (who are one and the same after all, despite what most fundamentalists say). Would you care to explain to me the rational behind that?

It sound like Christian persecution complex to me - and that's what these storefront churches sell. People come there wanting to be a victim, looking for somebody to blame for their shortcomings. Who better than a preacher to invent some scapegoats to make you feel better about your life?

And I'm the one who's nuts?

Posted by catalina vel-duray | November 18, 2007 10:05 AM

No, Catalina, you're not nuts. You're just getting backspatter from the continued disintegration of "muscular Christianity". Which is inevitable, since this kind of Christian, whether it's the hypocritical gay-bashing gay or the "pride fighters" threatening to punch people in the face, they are living a lie, and living in total opposition to their supposed Lord, whose teachings, whatever their merits actually are, certainly do not contain any of the hate crimes and lust for earthly wealth that these people revel in.

When you live a lie this way, your self-inflicted downfall is inevitable.

You are being accused of hate yourself because hate is, at root, the only weapon these diseased people have. They have a hammer, and you look like a nail to them. Everyone does. Hate and fear, that's what it's all about. How Jesus-like.

Posted by Fnarf | November 18, 2007 10:51 AM

oh, fnarf, i love you! i'd have your children if my uterus hadn't shriveled up and dropped out of my body long ago.

by the by, how's rob morgan? i remember the first time i met him, 1974, at a party at edmonds beach. is he still as attention-grabbing as ever?

Posted by scary tyler moore | November 18, 2007 12:48 PM

" oh, fnarf, i love you! i'd have your children if my uterus hadn't shriveled up and dropped out of my body long ago."

Fnarf, that has to be the sweetest and funniest compliment I have ever heard.
I love reading things like that because it keeps me giggling all day!

Posted by mj | November 18, 2007 1:09 PM

Have any of you ever even been to Mars Hill? Have any of you ever tried to listen unbiasedly? This kind of site is what makes my stomach lurch, atleast Mars Hill is ultimately trying to help people, whether they take the best route or not, atleast they aren't purely slandering for slanderings sake. It makes me sad that this, this site, is what you guys seem to wish the world was more like. As a young generation x-er, or what ever you'd call me, it makes me sad that this is where my world is headed.

Posted by innocent by stander | November 18, 2007 2:14 PM

I'm sort of picturing a very very very sad kitten with huge eyes and a little tear is welling up, because the innocent sad kitten sees that the world is turning into the Slog. It is sad, innocent kitten with big eyes. It's the saddest thing ever. But it would make a really cute felt painting. Don't you gen X kids go for that kitschy stuff?

Posted by elenchos | November 18, 2007 2:30 PM

Shorter I.B.S.-

" dirty hippies are hurting me and my church...STOPPPPPPPP!!!!"

Posted by Rujax! | November 18, 2007 2:30 PM

I see 49 has provided us with the standard Mars Hill approved retort. What took so long for it to show up? Guess it's harder to coordinate communication now that the Sooper Sekrit Website has been taken offline.

Posted by ddbb | November 18, 2007 2:48 PM

@49 I understand how you feel although I do not agree with you about Driscoll.
He is the one who came out swinging first and he throws dirty punches.
I'm sorry but he is a bully which you might be blind to because you like him.
The problem is he is a public figure and that opens him up to a lot of deserved of criticism .
I have heard him preach and I have read his stuff.

I guess you are young so let me give you a motherly tip : ) Don't come here to the Slog and expect ANY compassion EVER
if it concerns Driscoll and perhaps Christianity in general.
The Stranger is not Christian friendly!
The problem is we as Christians have not been friendly and the people in the public eye have been abusive with the exception of a few.
If you can recognize that Christianity can be as ugly as it is beautiful you will do yourself a big favor and don't hang around here because they will probably just offend the hell out of you.
Hey, if they offend the hell out of you maybe that is not a bad thing...
Ok, so now that I wrote this to you I thoroughly expect to get about five…. go worship your spaghetti God comments and all Christians are child rapists.. oh and how can you come here always trying to twist your moralistic values with the slog, and name one beautiful thing about Christianity…. Blah ,blah ,blah

BORING SO STFU in advance! : )

Posted by mj | November 18, 2007 2:56 PM

@49: I can't speak for anyone else on this board, but no, I have not personally been to Mars Hill. I have, however, known these people intimately since probably before you were born. I was raised in an evangelical church, graduated magna cum laude with a BA in religion from a red state Bible college (for what that's worth), received a Master of Divinity from an evangelical theological seminary whose name Mark Driscoll would no doubt recognize, and served as associate pastor of a Mars Hill-esque church. Twenty-odd years later I work in a completely unrelated field where few people other than my supervisor and my employer's HR department (who by definition require a copy of my resume) know about my past. So I think I am qualified to comment about churches such as Mars Hill.

The problem I have with Mars Hill and similar churches is their wish to control the behavior not only of their flock but of the society at large. Say, for example, that the leadership of Mars Hill instructed members to abstain from drinking alcohol (as many religious groups have done since time immemorial). Fine, that is their right, and members are free to respond in a number of ways: comply with this order, secretly disobey, debate this issue openly or privately with the pastor, or leave the church entirely if it becomes a problem. But when they try to force me, a nonmember of their congregation, to hold to their practice by seeking to change laws in order to make this behavior illegal, that crosses a line. Now as you undoubtedly know, the 18th amendment was repealed in 1933 and today is regarded as a miserable failure. But substitute reproductive rights, marriage equality for same sex couples, stem cell research, the teaching of evolution in public schools and a host of other issues that have been in the news recently and what we have is the evangelicals attempting to control the behavior of those beyond their own.

This is the entire line of reasoning from the religious right. America, they assert, was founded as a "Christian" nation but feminists, gay activists, Hollywood, liberal politicians, and all the other demons of their world have led this country down a road of degradation. Their solution is to elect "godly" men (not women, of course) to public office in order to restore "traditional values" to this country. In other words, change peoples' behavior not by appealing to their consciences, but by forcing it upon them through legislation. There's a reason why Dan Savage refers to the religious right as the American Taliban. Their methods are scarcely different from those used by Islamic fundamentalists in certain countries of the middle east.

I am old enough to remember a species that is now almost as extinct as the dodo bird: the apolitical evangelical. They were just as likely to vote Democrat as Republican if they voted at all, which many did not, believing that such worldly matters were less important than cultivating their own devotion to God. Yes, they did attempt to proselytize their friends and neighbors (they called it "witnessing") but did not seek to impose their values by force on others through legislation. In other words, they tried to change people from the inside out, not the other way around.

I remember a Sunday School song from my childhood: "I've got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart". Where is the joy among today's evangelicals? When I look at them I see little other than foaming-at-the-mouth rage at aspects of contemporary culture that annoy them. They cry persecution by the allegedly liberal media when anyone calls them on their un-Christian behavior. Watch in the next few weeks as they scream bloody murder when cashiers at Target wish them "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas", thus acknowledging that other religions exist in their supposedly Christian Utopia that has been hijacked by the usual suspects listed above. This is what the evangelical church has become: a bunch of whiny shrieking brats who can't handle the fact that other people disagree with their vision of society. I noticed this as far back as the mid-1980's and got out. I have no intention of ever looking back.

I have gone on for way too long. If you have actually taken the time to read this, thanks for listening.

Posted by RainMan | November 18, 2007 4:40 PM

Rainman, we must be in the same time era--that's when I left that brand of religion. Your post was eloquent and insightful. Thanks.

Posted by Lola | November 18, 2007 6:06 PM


Personally, I have been to Mars Hill. I don't need to list my credentials and I don't feel I have to have more degrees than Fahrenheit to comment on a church I've been to.

With that said, since when did you see Mars Hill Church in the political arena? I believe you are confusing Mars Hill with Antioch Bible Church. Ken Hutcherson and his flock try to force their personal convictions on society. The last time I checked, Mars Hill church 1) does not require it's members to abstain from drinking and 2) even if they did, they would not force it on the rest of society like Hutcherson and his gang. I want to make a clear distinction here: there is and always will be a difference between Ken Hutcherson and his hate group and Christians like the ones at Mars Hill.

Mars Hill has and I foresee never will be involved in politics. The apolitical evangelical that you remember is alive and kicking at Mars Hill. Any service you attend at any of the campuses will emphasize one thing and one thing only: Jesus. Mars Hill does not seek to impose their values on anybody else.

Ken Hutcherson, meanwhile, does. I have been having some e-mail exchanges with him and he is all for using the law to get what he wants. Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill do not do that. Since when did Mars Hill try to MAKE LAWS promoting discrimination? Not any time that I can recall.

And as far as Mark is concerned with his comments, if you watch some of the recent sermons, he has said he is sorry for the things he has said and has been very negligent with his speech in the past. But, it is not my job to defend him, so I digress.

Posted by Guy | November 18, 2007 8:32 PM

@49 and @54.

I have heard Driscoll preach. I have read his material.

People's dislike of christianity goes far beyond the current nutty evangelical right.

It starts with the history of the church, which twists facts and turns a humanist cult into a woman hating power hungry political power that slaughtered all opposition. Christians went on to burn scientists and other "heretics" at the stake, including women who wanted power (witches you know). The Christian church then supported slavery, fought against child labor law reforms during the industrial revolution, fought against women having the right to vote, opposed the legalization of mixed-race marriage, fought against minority rights, fought the ERA, supported the KKK, tried to keep African American musicians off of TV, fought to keep the evil Elvis and rock & roll off TV and radio, not to even mention the censorship of the PMRC, and now fights against environmental standards, equal rights for homosexuals, etc, etc, etc.

Throw into this mix a plethora of Christian leaders caught in sex and financial scandals, including a massive number of child abuse cases, rapes, and financial scandals, all while they make millions and fly private jets.

The myth of eternal hell doesn't work to scare people any more so now we get the likes of Driscoll using popular culture to lure the weak minded into giving him millions. He, Casey Treat and the like drive around in their Mercedes and fly their private helicopters while preaching oppression of women and homosexuals.

That's why many here don't like christians and why nationally and internationally you believers in little people in the sky are losing your political and social power. People are no longer afraid to speak out against the utter bullshit that is christianity. It is truly a religion for the weak minded and perverse. We know you, you know it, and finally people are no longer afraid to say it publicly. Which means that after the last 60 years of Christians taking us back to the dark ages, we've finally caught up with our founding fathers like Thomas Jefferson who said

"Shake off all the fears of servile prejudices, under which weak minds are servilely crouched. Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call on her tribunal for every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason than that of blindfolded fear."


"... the day will come, when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the Supreme Being as his father, in the womb of a virgin, will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter."

That day is finally here. Thank god.

Posted by tbf | November 18, 2007 8:50 PM

Can I just say that the most ridiculous things I have read in this comment string have nothing to do with Mars Hill and everything to do with the semantics over what does and doesn't qualify a "hipster"? Can we get our spandex leggings out of a knot and focus on the issues at hand, please?

Posted by jewritto | November 18, 2007 9:01 PM


I liked your post! The funny thing is that I might be about your age and have gone through a similar process although I might have come to a different

I understand that you simply listed your credentials to make the point that you have been there and done that. I found it quite interesting to be honest.

Actually if you remember a day of apolitical evangelicals maybe you are older than me. There are a few of us still around and many more emerging!

Posted by mj | November 18, 2007 9:25 PM

Where do I begin?

tbf @57: Are you addressing me in your post which opens with "@49 and @54"? I am the author of @54 and I thought it was clear that I have been an ex-evangelical for 20 years. I was puzzled at being referred to as a believer in little people in the sky. Perhaps you meant to address @56, the defender of Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill against my comments two posts back. I will assume this was a typo.

Finally, @56, thank you for taking the time to read my admittedly long winded post and taking it seriously enough to respond. First, I did not say that the leadership of Mars Hill preached against alcohol consumption. I honestly have no idea where Mark Driscoll or Mars Hill stand on this issue nor am I particularly interested in finding out. I used it as an example of how some religious people successfully imposed their values on the entire country in the form of a Constitiutional amendment once upon a time in our nation's history. As I said, Prohibition was repealed quite a long time ago and has not been seriously revisited since. Even the evangelicals of my day left this one basically alone, and I imagine the same is true today. But the other issues I mentioned such as abortion, gay rights, etc are on the table today among some self described evangelical politicians.

You describe Mars Hill as apolitical. I checked out the website and indeed, most of the content was purely theological. The church espouses the Apostle's and Nicene Creeds, holds to the inerrancy of Scripture and so forth. Fine, I will never argue theology with you, Mark Driscoll or anyone else. You can believe in the Easter Bunny for all I care. But I also looked at the church's positions on the role of women, homosexuality and evolution and can hardly believe that these have absolutely no bearing on what the church leaders would tell a parishioner who asked them for guidance on political issues that are in the news daily. Suppose I walked into Mars Hill church and mentioned that I fully support marriage equality for same sex couples or am planning to vote for Hillary Clinton (I am actually more of an Edwards fan, but that's beside the point. And I will probably end up voting for Hillary anyway in November 2008 regardless of who I like in the caucuses. But I digress.) Can you honestly, truly tell me that I would not be met with derision if not outright hostility? You mention Ken Hutcherson as one who really does want to impose his views on everyone through legislative means. In my humble opinion the only thing that separates Hutcherson from other evangelical leaders is that he is more open about the society he really wants.

You appear to object to my post opening with an account of my educational history. I did not list my degrees in order to show our fellow Sloggers how smart I am. In fact, I am the first to admit that my alma mater isn't exactly Harvard. But I attended Bible college in the early 1980's, at about the time the evangelicals were forming their own distinct subculture with their own music, publications, celebrities, cable TV networks and the like. Ronald Reagan was in the White House at the time thanks, in large part, to such outspoken religious leaders as Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson. Something about this marriage of right wing politics and evangelicalism rubbed me the wrong way but since I still at that time believed in the theological parts of this belief system I stuck with it and upon graduation went to a like minded seminary and did an internship at a nearby church. It was this experience that taught me that there is no way contemporary evangelicalism can exist in a political vacuum and the Republican party and conservative theology are now inseparable. So I stayed in seminary for the sake of getting my degree but immediately upon graduation dropped out of the evangelical world and pursued a career elsewhere.

It is too bad that this has happened. I think of the lovely Christian people of my childhood and teenage years who would never have dreamed of telling me that God is the exclusive property of the Republican party. These people have now either died, dug themselves into the evangelical world deeper and are now among George Bush's remnant 26% supporters, or have, like me, escaped.

It makes me sad to think of the church I once loved now destroyed by the rise of the religious right. I don't hold any lingering hostility to the church, however, I don't expect to be around long enough (Lola and MJ: I'm 45) to see the damage of the last 30 years since the beginning of this unholy alliance undone.

Posted by RainMan | November 18, 2007 10:59 PM

I've been to Mars Hill numerous times, have several close friends that are regular attenders and download Driscoll's sermons on occasion.

On numerous occasions I've gone over with my friends that attend Mars Hill why I won't take them up on their offer to become a regular attender. It mostly has to do with Driscoll and his inability to control his tongue. Without exception, all of my friends that attend the Hill always make excuses for Driscoll's remarks. "Well, we can't defend everything he says..." But then they do it! It's amazing.

Another reason I don't attend is I simply disagree with the church's theology. I'm not a Calvinist and much of that system of belief contradicts the nature of Jesus I have found in scripture. Until I meet a Calvinist who believes that she/he is not one of the elect I doubt I'll be changing my mind about predestination and election.

I don't mind being offended by folks and their beliefs. The great thing about the freedom of religion is I can simply turn you off or not attend your church. Driscoll and Hutcherson are two different pastors. As someone else pointed out, Driscoll has never, to my knowledge, pushed a political agenda. Hutcherson is an opportunist who is looking to get recognition.

Many of the Mars Hill folks I have met talk about the truth offending people and that isn't a bad thing but I hope that they will consider that it is one thing to be offended by the "truth" and another to be offended by an asshole with a superiority complex.

Posted by Lee | November 18, 2007 11:06 PM


preaching that homosexuality is a cancer that should be eradicated is a 'political agenda'.

If Mars Hill was a corporation selling soda, we would be boycotting it for the hate and bias it spews. But for some reason our society gives intolerance veiled in religion a pass.

People are entitled to believe what they want. That goes without saying. But as soon as a non-profit starts promoting oppression of women and/or homosexuals, they should lose there license to do business in our city, and for sure shouldn't be given a tax exemption.

As a society, we stood against similar oppression when it happened in South Africa, and we should do the same with companies like Antioch and Mars Hill.

Mark Driscoll is an asshole exploiting people who have real needs. We should drive the fucker right out of town. But I guess he's starting to do a good job of it on his own

Posted by tbf | November 18, 2007 11:53 PM

from a blog about a Driscoll sermon -

"Mark took us to Genesis 1-3 in order to look at our first father, Adam. The race is named man because men rule humanity."

What a fucking idiot!

And for all of you out there making excuses for Driscoll about his outward hate for homosexuals, excusing it by saying "hate the sin not the sinner". Driscoll himself claims Jesus didn't say this, Ghandi did. And that further God HATES the sinner and is going to make the rest of the sinners' lives very, very bad. And, by the way, we're at war.

Driscoll is a tool, and the more people realize it, the more scared we should be of him isolating himself and his followers as they will surely start striking back just as the christians did in the 80's when they blew up the federal building in Oklahoma City and assassinated doctors.

Posted by marksretarded | November 19, 2007 12:26 AM

@63: Right, all the Christians are going to go fucking apeshit and start blowing up buildings. That's it. I think you're confusing the word "hate" with "opinion". It seems to me that Christians' opinion nowadays is that homosexuality is a sin. Personally, I don't care much else. It's a secondary issue to me. To other Christians, it's a primary issue. I like how you say that other people should be accepting of your viewpoint but yet, if anyone throws another opinion out, it's hate speech and because I disagree with you, it means I'm going to blow something up. Grow up.

@60: There are so many different political viewpoints at Mars Hill. There are democrats, there are republicans, there are the other ones that don't know what party (if any) they belong to. Mars Hill (last time I checked) doesn't go out touting that they are republicans or democrats, or anything really. Dricoll even said himself (most likely jokingly) that during the last election, he literally voted for Jesus. He wrote in the name Jesus. Point being, Mars Hill is not republican or anything else. Not every single church has to be that way. I do feel as you do though, Rainman, that the damage done by churches that are this way has yet to be undone, and may take years to do so.

Posted by guy | November 19, 2007 12:43 AM

62 - As I said in my post, Driscoll says a lot of stupid and indefensible things and indeed we should stand against those things but please clarify how preaching that homosexuality should be eradicated is a "political agenda"? I don't follow you.

If we look at this like you're asking us to, boycotting it like we would a soda co. that spews "hate and bias", then most of us are doing just that by not going.

And pray tell, how are we supposed to "drive that fucker out of town"?

Maybe the invitation that someone like Driscoll offers to you and I is to cement why we believe what we believe and counter act the Hill's "gospel" with our own.

Posted by Lee | November 19, 2007 3:58 AM

What I think is interesting is what happens to these personality churches once the personality is no longer a part of the equation. How is New Life doing now that Haggard is exiled to the desert? How is Liberty University now that Falwell is no longer with us?

What is the shelf life of these storefront churches once their founders are gone? The ones down here in the Rainier Valley open and close in a never-ending cycle.

Speaking of that, why no Mars Hill in the Valley?

Posted by catalina vel-duray | November 19, 2007 6:25 AM

I've noticed that word "tolerant" on a lot of these posts (it's applied to a lot of things up here in the pnw) and I find it appropriate when applied to Mars Hill. To be tolerant means in essence that one "puts up with" something. I don't like churches like Mars Hill or Antioch Bible, but I put up with them because big picture I don't have a choice, but I don't have to accept them. Mars Hill seems to be headed Jonestown albeit a very white "hipster" version, but so be it. If the "members" of churches like Mars Hill and Antioch aren't strong enough to excercise free will and truly have a one on one relationship with God then that is their own failing. If following con men like Driscoll or Hutcherson won't be their downfalls someone very similar will, but the blame will always fall on to the "non-believers". Now that being said I can totally see Driscoll and Hutcherson doing a gay fisting porn together!

Posted by Josh | November 19, 2007 8:54 AM

please people, know the facts before you go running you mouth like you got legs for lips. Mars Hill is not a cult. They do not control people, they do not display any thing that would look like a cult. I think you folks have puffed too much weed, had one too many drinks and are honestly out of touch. The Stranger has been a liberal mouthpiece that spews forth misinformation and bogus propaganda that would further the escalation of hate and falsehood. From The Stangers "we're too cool for you and everyone who doesn't look like us, listen to our music, and live the lifestyle attitude" to their all out assault on anything that would be not alternative. You want alternative try this reading your Bible, getting the facts, stop doing drugs and grow up. Now that would be alternative. What the issue is is that what would happen if the so called self elect hipster eliete at the Stranger and the thier stooges who follow them actualy followed the Gospel as it is written is that they would have to change thier lives. They would have to take responsibility and accountability for who they are and what they do....and that is too tall an order for most.

Posted by zander | November 19, 2007 11:14 AM

Zander @68 your post is kind of confusing as there is very little in the bible that is actually factual. Therein lies the problem. Most churches like Mars Hill (and people like you) want to spread this message that people have to live by the bible as if it is all a great big piece of non-fiction. Well, it just ain't so and it sounds like there is one big tall order called life that you need to take and stop living it from behind some book that should only be interpreted and taken with a grain of salt.

Posted by Josh | November 19, 2007 11:25 AM

"Mars Hill has and I foresee never will be involved in politics. The apolitical evangelical that you remember is alive and kicking at Mars Hill."

Not political?

"In a husky voice, the 35-year-old pastor prays for the continuous fertility of his congregation. "We are in a city with less children per capita than any city but San Francisco," he declares, "and we consider it our personal mission to turn that around."

The way Driscoll sees it, the more babies his conservative Christian congregation can produce in this child-poor city, the more they can redirect local politics, public education, and culture in one of the liberal capitals of the world."

"Driscoll and his Mars Hills followers epitomize the mounting evangelical youth movement in America. Within this movement lies something as old as America itself, and as terrifying and alluring as anything Orwell predicted; something that is at once political, emotional, deeply anti-intellectual, and more galvanized than you can imagine. I call this population of fierce young evangelicals the Disciple Generation."

The Mars Hill women really need to get on having some more babies so they can over throw the way too liberal Seattle population STAT!

Posted by D | November 19, 2007 1:40 PM

@70: "The way Driscoll sees it, the more babies his conservative Christian congregation can produce in this child-poor city, the more they can redirect local politics..."

I like how a statement from the author is purported as fact, when the truth here is this statement is baseless. When did any of the Mars Hill leadership say that this was their specific mission? Show me quote directly from the source and I'll be inclined to believe you. Until then, that's the specific author's interpretation of what she sees.

Posted by Guy | November 19, 2007 1:47 PM

Josh - what are ur credentials that would lead me to believe that "very little in the Bible is actually factual" is a true statement? Are you a Biblical scholar?

Posted by Gooberman is All Across the Universe | November 19, 2007 2:16 PM

Mars Hill is biblically conservative, but not politcally conservative. The church has a diverse body of members that are Democrats, Republicans, and Independents. While all at Mars Hill agree on the basic tenants of the Christian faith, there is much disagreement on what political party (if any) can actually fix the world.

Posted by Mike | November 19, 2007 5:36 PM

A few guys messed up, lost their job, and it's news? WOW, good work, Stranger. What a HOT story you have. This is too exciting for me, I think I'll go watch CSPAN.

How did this even get on the subject of politics anyway? Oh yeah, it's Seattle-everything is political.

Posted by Are you serious? | November 19, 2007 6:37 PM

The reason they closed the site is also because there is a lot of personal information from the hundreds of members written on it. It is like personal emails that you send between members of your friends or family being published in the newspaper or online. Basically, take any email you've ever sent to an intended specific audience with personal information and imagine the possibility of it being published in the newspaper or online. Maybe then you could understand that is the reason for closing down the members site. Regardless of your personal beliefs, how ethical is it to release information from a site where personal information was intended for a smaller audience? (The only case would be for legal reasons whereby a court and judge would be given access to the site and the personal information would be dealt with according to legal process and not just insensitively released without care for issues of privacy.) If you've never sent private information over the internet and you believe the net is free-for-all, then maybe you have a case. But I think if you've sent anything intended for a small audience on the net, you should be slow to throw out insults.

Posted by N | November 20, 2007 4:14 AM

@75 I understand the pain and embarrassment but a couple points. Mars Hill boasts 2000 members, do you really believe that such information is going to always be kept private in such an enormous "family"? How does shutting the site down protect against it from happening again anyway? It simply looks suspect, as if there are things to keep hidden.

And that, sadly, is the truth, there is an abuse of authority going on in "the family", victims include pastors and numerous members who are wrongly being fired and disciplined for simply dissenting from Mark Driscoll's will. Calling legitimate dissent "sin" does not make it so. When abuse happens in a family, or in this case a church and it is not being dealt with from within, it is unhealthy to just keep silent for fear of embarrassment. Sometimes the healthiest, albeit difficult, thing to do is to reveal the abuse to those on the outside, so the abusers will be exposed for what they are doing and hopefully be persuaded to stop victimizing people.

Posted by BK | November 20, 2007 6:14 AM
Posted by curious | November 20, 2007 8:59 AM

@75 et al...

I'm not sure I've read any published reports that would indicate that "outsiders" had been granted access carte blanche. From what I read, it sounds like a few letters (two?), written "privately" to the congregation had been leaked.

Based on the scandalous nature of the this web site and others, had access been actually granted, I would think we would be seeing much more information being quoted as authentic from the the internal Mars Hill web board.

If that is true, (which I don't know is), then it seems like shutting down the site is an act of desperation and clearly indicates some form of culpability on behalf of Mars Hill.

Regardless, what is sadder still, is that apparently because of a faux pax of Mars Hill's leadership (perceived or real), most of the liberal, progressive, non-judgmental, open minded, free thinkers on this and other boards feel as though they now have license to impugn every Christ Follower in the entire world since Jesus walked the earth.

Reading this slog conjures up images of throngs of salivating Romans eating baclava and drinking Ale whilst watching Christians getting fed to the lions in the coliseum, or Nero et al engaging in a wild orgy by the light of Christians being burned alive in his garden.

You people have revealed a very scary aspect of post modernity that is very frightening indeed.

Posted by Gooberman is All Across the Universe | November 20, 2007 9:13 AM

@78: Get a grip. How many Christians have died in the US from persecution by liberals? Do members of Mars Hill feel unsafe walking to church on sunday because liberals in pickup trucks are circling the block trying to snag them and beat them up for loving Jesus? Compare to how many gay people have been attacked and/or killed for simply being gay. Shut the !@#% up, take your persecution complex and blow it out your ass.

Posted by boi | November 20, 2007 9:53 AM

@79...I rest my case.

Posted by Gooberman is All Across the Universe | November 20, 2007 10:11 AM

Oh God, how will these christians ever survive in such a hostile environment?! You're being fed to the lions left and right! Christians can't survive without playing up their persecution and victim status, it's almost cute. Someone tells you to shut up and you fall down and "rest your case" on their hatred for you.

Posted by poorbaby | November 20, 2007 11:45 AM

You know, as a Mars Hill member I am struck by the fact that I agree with #81 and #79. We Christians throw around the term persecution like it's going out of style. People telling you to shut up for pulling the "persecution card" is not persecution #78...not even close. They are not telling you to shut up for loving Jesus but because you whine about a little opposition.

Take heart and try to act like Jesus who did not grumble and did not complain when being beaten, spat upon, scourged and nailed to a cross by people He genuinely loved and who genuinely hated Him.

Do you have love enough for Jesus and people to simply let go of your own Christian ego and let God's glory be manifested as you face opposition with joy and genuine love?

Don't forget that Jesus washed the feet of Judas, His enemy, who betrayed Him and handed Him over to be tortured and beaten.

In short, you are not being persecuted so KNOCK IT OFF!!!

Posted by Mars Hill Member | November 20, 2007 1:07 PM

@81 and @82...I won't be drawn into a debate about what is and isn't persecution. But I will point out the vocal and printed hostility historically documented in the 10+ years leading up to the rounding up of the Jews into the Ghettos, and ultimately the holocaust. Some of things said/printed included Jews want to control your life, Jews are in collusion to ruin you financially, Jews are the source of all Germany's social problems, Jews are sexual deviants...etc...on and on. Sound familiar? Re-read this entire thread and substitute "your most cherished minority group" every place the word Christian or Believer appears and tell me its not, at the very least, prejudice. Do I feel my life is endangered? Not yet. No, not yet...

You may pretend that prejudice is not persecution, but we all know that is a lie. To impugn an entire group of people simply because they are Jews, Muslims, Christians, Gays, ...what ever... *is* persecution. period. The vile epitaphs and sick hate that has been spewed on this thread towards Christ followers is nothing short politically correct hate speech, apparently sanctioned by the PC police.

@82 - Look, put down the Kool-aid for a minute and riddle me this, Batman....

Why would the "leadership" of Mars Hill tell everyone who has a question to ask it, and then say that if you disagree with the "because I said so" answer to Leave? Would Jesus say "If you don't like what I say then just leave (go to hell)"?

Why would they have an "Ask Anything" promotion and then summarily shut it down when you did?

Would Jesus say "You better agree and be obedient or Ima gonna go Postal on ya - you wily wabbit you!"

Was it not Jesus who turned over the money changer's tables in the Temple?

Doesn't 1Peter exhort Pastors to "not Lord it over their flocks"?

After reading here, the times, and Joe's blog on, one *must* conclude that the superior and elite leadership of Mars Hill indeed has no need for the lowly proletariate and bourgeoisie which constitutes the Body at Mars Hill, Seattle - and wishes they would "disperse at once!"

This thread was supposed to be a discourse on a relevant issue - Is the biggest, and perhaps the most influential church in Seattle preaching God's Word or turning into "The Mark Driscoll Show"? Yet it almost immediately turned into a verbal stoning of anything and anyone Christian.

Perhaps the discussion can return to something more meaningful than verbally accosting someone for merely pointing out the obvious. The truth hurts. Wear it. Deal with it. Steep in it. Breath it in and accept it. Anti-Christian and Semitism is alive and well in the USA. To deny it is pissing in the wind, my brother.

Now, get on with it.

Posted by Gooberman is All Across the Universe | November 20, 2007 4:45 PM

Where did I deny that anti-Christian sentiments are alive and well in the USA? I simply pointed out to you that comparing the opposition on this slog to the persecution carried out by Nero against Christians was dubious and it appears whiney to make it sound like we are suffering while drinking our lattes just because people oppose us. I encouraged you to look to Jesus, that's all.

I'm not sure what kool-aid you are referring to. I hate kool-aid.

Posted by Mars Hill Member | November 20, 2007 6:30 PM

@84 Thanks for toning it down. I appreciate that. If you re-read the @78, I think you will be hard pressed to conclude that I was saying anything other than describing my perception of many of the anti-Christian rhetoric contained in the slog. It is quite a leap to say I was comparing our life of Riley to Nero's persecution.

In response to your initial query, there is quite a contrast to the general, yet uniformly derisive, gross characterizations of Christians and Christianity as a whole on this slog, and my subsequent comments on the same, to the deftness in which you joined in the attack on me as if I had claimed that I was personally being persecuted, which is most definitely absent from @78. Therefore I must conclude that you are either a) eager to please those who mischaracterize our common beliefs, b) simply slow on the uptake, or both.

The Kool-Aid is a reference to the Kool-Aid distributed by Jim Jones in the Jonestown Massacre, as analogous to the "party line" being offered by the elitists at Mars Hill. This lapse might indicate that "b" above is the correct assumption.

Posted by Gooberman is All Across the Universe | November 20, 2007 7:51 PM

It's a cop-out and a red herring to say, "See! All the liberals hate Christians!" That's not what this story is about. Non-Christians can't stand Mark Driscoll because he's an asshole. Lots of Christians can't stand him because he makes Christians look like assholes. It's just not okay to preach hate, prejudice, and chauvinism, much less in the name of Jesus. When are all the so-called loving people in that church going to stand up and take a stand for what's right? You know: kindness, compassion, fairness, and love? Mark Driscoll is very sure of himself and is obviously very proud of himself (just watch some of his sermon videos on the church's website), but I'd sure hate to be him on the "Judgment Day" he's sure is coming.

Posted by Fed Up | November 20, 2007 10:10 PM

@ 76

@75 I understand the pain and embarrassment but a couple points. Mars Hill boasts 2000 members, do you really believe that such information is going to always be kept private in such an enormous "family"? How does shutting the site down protect against it from happening again anyway? It simply looks suspect, as if there are things to keep hidden.

And that, sadly, is the truth, there is an abuse of authority going on in "the family", victims include pastors and numerous members who are wrongly being fired and disciplined for simply dissenting from Mark Driscoll's will. Calling legitimate dissent "sin" does not make it so. When abuse happens in a family, or in this case a church and it is not being dealt with from within, it is unhealthy to just keep silent for fear of embarrassment. Sometimes the healthiest, albeit difficult, thing to do is to reveal the abuse to those on the outside, so the abusers will be exposed for what they are doing and hopefully be persuaded to stop victimizing people.

Reread your first paragraph. You basically echoed my opinion with circular logic. First of all I didn't mention pain and embarassment. Second, you said, "Do you really believe that such information is always going to be kept private in such a family?" According to the last sentence of your 1st paragraph, "It simply looks suspect, as if there are things to keep hidden" ... The info to be hidden is the private info of MH members that was written on the site. If you really want all the inside info. about the pastors, go ask them. The members site is more of a place for members to dialogue. There is no secret pastor information on there. No brain washing, etc. If you really want access to the site, go through the classes to become a member and then the so-called secret pastor information will magically become yours... and you will be dumbfounded that the reason they closed the site is to protect member-to-member dialogue privacy rights.

As far as protecting information with hundreds of members having equal access, all members have always known that information could be given to a third party, and we all post with that in mind. But that does not logically mean that to share with a third party would be okay. The freedom of posting was more important than the security of its contents, but as soon as it becomes apparent that someone is breaking the rules, the site is shut down to protect privacy in as much possible, and then measures are taken to access the situation and then reopen the site when it is addressed.

But again you were right in saying that we can't expect that info. to be private. But we can give members the benefit of the doubt until they choose to go against trust. But seriously, if you really want to know the contents of the site that involved member to member, or member to pastor. Go ask a pastor if you are genuinely concerned for the welfare of those involved. If I wasn't in Europe, I would go to the office with you. I will resound what other MH people have said here. Instead of throwing insults from afar, go in person if you are trully concerned and see for yourself. Go through the classes to become a member and see what MH is all about. I can't convince you electronically from across the ocean, but I'm sure that you could take your independent mind there and make your own informed decision then.

Posted by N | November 21, 2007 6:58 AM

@86 & @87

Well put, especially 86. I want to state emphatically that my comments regarding religious prejudice was not meant to impugn all liberals or the whole of any one group, and apologize to anyone who me comments did not apply.

Posted by Gooberman is All Across the Universe | November 21, 2007 7:40 AM

The Kool-Aid question was an attempt at sarcasm...sorry for not making that more clear.

"After reading here, the times, and Joe's blog on, one *must* conclude that the superior and elite leadership of Mars Hill indeed has no need for the lowly proletariate..."

If this slog, Joe's blog and the Times are your sources for truth in this situation you are in more danger than I initially thought.

I'm out!

Posted by Mars Hill Member | November 21, 2007 10:31 AM

I have had personal experiences with both Paul Petry and Bent Meyer and I can tell you from first hand experience that these guys are pieces of crap who deserve to burn in hell.

Petry was my ex-wifes Divorce attoney (yes a pastor and divorce is that biblical in any way?)a few years ago and while representing my ex-wife he knew she was dating someone else but still thought it was okay to rack up both of our attorney fees by encouraging her to make me do all the filing for the divorce and trying to make her reconinsile our marriage when we were both adiment about getting a divorce. There is much moreI could say but I don't have the time right now.

And Bent Meyer he is worse than Petry. He also new that my ex-wife was dating someone else while we were still married and he did nothing to stop it...this is a guy who preaches the most about marriage and not getting a divorce and reconsiling at any cost. There is much more to that story as well but this should at least give you a little inside into what kind of "pastors" these two are. It's no wonder Bent Meyers son is a frickin drug addict...with that kind of a father i would need an escape from reality as well!!!

Posted by devodawg | November 21, 2007 7:57 PM

@89 - Believe me, I have other sources than these.

@90 - "...and trying to make her reconcile our marriage..." hmmm...sounds simply awful. How dare he? How un-pagan of him! I suppose you think it would be more biblical to provide services YOU solicited for free? ...and you know what he knows! Wow...are you the Amazing Kreskin? You sound a little bitter, devodawg. Here you are - baring your sins to all the world whilst pointing the finger at the attorney you hired! You should hire Petry for counseling services as well, you definitely need help...

Posted by Gooberman is All Across the Universe | November 22, 2007 9:19 AM

Petry was niether my attorney (he was my ex-wife's attorney) nor was he my counselor nor my ex's counselor!! And as far as baring my sins...until you know the full story of why I would divorce a bipolar, obessesive compulsive, child obusive woman...than shut you stupid mouth!! Oh yeah and bitter...I'm not bitter...I couldn't be happier that the Mars Hill leadsership figured out what I already knew about Petry and Meyer's...that they are huge pieces of crap...okay maybe i'm a little bitter, but only because i gave these two guys every chance to help protect my son from his mother and her obusiveness and they did NOTHING to help. I got full custody of my son now and they got fired so i guess in the end it all work out now didn't it!!!

Posted by devodawg | November 22, 2007 9:34 AM

I can not believe this blog is this long!

Posted by observer | November 22, 2007 8:22 PM

@92 - before you start calling people "pieces of crap"....smell thy own pants.

Posted by Gooberman is All Across the Universe | November 23, 2007 6:01 AM

maybe if some people would just read the bible and know marks heart. they wouldn't judge him. i am a mars hill member and a women, i feel more respect at my church then i do in a room full of girls. i wish people would not criticize what they don't know. i challenge all you "mark haters" to come to a service at the ballard campus and listen to our pastors heart, his respect for women and the gospel. and until any of you have done that. leave the church alone, for you speak from ignorance.

Posted by amanda | November 26, 2007 3:09 PM

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