Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Mark Tooley: When to Leave Your Church?

July 22, 2012

Saturday morning I was interviewed by Chicago-based Moody Radio on “Should you leave your church if it’s forsaking biblical orthodoxy?” The other guest was my friend, the always impressive Cherie Harder, who heads the Washington-based Trinity Forum, a thinktank that examines faith and culture.

Cherie talked about her own formerly Episcopal, now Anglican congregation, the historic Falls Church in Virginia, which recently lost its property after years of litigation with the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia. The over 4000 member church, which is mega sized by Episcopal/Anglican standards, quit the Episcopal Church in 2006 after the 2003 election of that denomination’s first openly homosexual bishop. Becoming part of the new Anglican Church of North America, the Falls Church continued to grow, even founding several thriving new congregations.

Meanwhile a shell congregation of the Falls Church that disagreed with the over 90 percent vote to leave the Episcopal Church has continued to meet and now possesses the large property. Reportedly fewer than 100 attend its services in a facility that once accommodated thousands. One of its recent preachers was a radical former missionary forced to leave Sudan because of her LGBT advocacy. So the shell congregation is marching in sync with the Episcopal Church’s national leftward, spiral. I predict that maintenance costs eventually will compel the small congregation to rent most of its large campus to another, much bigger church, likely evangelical. the rest image


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