Outspoken pastor Mark Driscoll says Christians need to be of stronger resolve because of "darker" days, and argues that "the church is dying," in a promotional letter for an upcoming leadership conference in Seattle.
"Four years ago, Newsweek magazine proclaimed 'The Decline and Fall of Christian America,'" Driscoll writes in the letter addressed to "Christian" on the 2013 Resurgence Conference website. "Their words, written on the cover in the shape of a cross, ring disturbingly true today."
Driscoll, who is the lead pastor of Mars Hill Church based in Seattle, Wash., is also a ministry leader among several pastors for the Resurgence movement, a resource for Christian leaders in discipleship and leadership training. more >>
Despite assurances from Ben Houston that the Hillsong LA church he feels called to plant in Southern California will not "build on anyone else's foundation," some observers are concerned that the popular Australian megachurch's expansion to the Golden State could mean a substantial loss of members for already-established churches in the area.
Hillsong Church founder and Senior Pastor Brian Houston shared in a blog post earlier this month, after making the announcement during weekend services, that his son, Ben, would be moving with his wife and three daughters at some point to begin tilling the ground for a new church plant. The ministry's only U.S. congregation is in NYC, led by Pastors Carl Lentz and Joel Houston, the the founding pastor's other son.
"I know there are a lot of questions out there after the announcement, but the truth is we don't really have the answers yet!" wrote Ben Houston in an update on the church startup. "We are still in the very early stages of planning. There is a stack of paperwork and immigration issues to sort through; and a lot to wrap up here in Sydney before we embark on this incredible journey." more >>
HOUSTON, Texas – Members of Pastor Joel and Victoria Osteen's Lakewood Church who have a calling for missions take part in a variety of local opportunities to serve their community, and many were volunteering their time and spiritual gifts on Saturday, wearing T-shirts that read "Serve God, help people, Isaiah 58" at Feed the Children food pantry, the Beacon, a support center for the homeless, and ministering through street evangelism outside a Harris County jail.
Those who want to get plugged into missions can give back through the church's annual "Servolution" program that provides a monthly service project the whole family can participate in, as well as volunteer opportunities at local nonprofit organizations the church has partnered with on an ongoing basis.
Sandra Harris and Irma Ferriz co-lead the church's volunteer efforts at Feed the Children and coordinate the 20 to 30 members who, in a three-hour shift one time a month, will package 800 to 1,000 boxes that are filled with food, and hygiene and Avon products that will be distributed to families in need. more >>
A Texas grand jury on Friday indicted Geronimo Aguilar, the founder and former pastor of Virginia's Richmond Outreach Center (ROC) megachurch, on two counts of aggravated sexual assault of a child under 14. The indictment reveals a graphic account of sexual abuse.
The first-degree felony carries a maximum punishment of life in prison, CBS 6 reported.
The jury also indicted Aguilar, who is married and the father of five children, on two counts of indecency with a child. The second-degree felony is punishable by up to 20 years in prison. more >>
"Preachers of L.A.," the controversial new docu-series airing on the Oxygen network, revolves around the ministries and personal lives of six influential Christian pastors in Southern California. Get a glimpse of the reality show with these 10 behind the scenes photos.
"Preachers of L.A.," airing Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET, follows Pastor Wayne Chaney, senior pastor of Antioch Church of Long Beach; Bishop Ron Gibson, pastor of Life Church Of God In Christ in Riverside; Deitrick Haddon, minister and contemporary gospel artist; Jay Haizlip, senior pastor of The Sanctuary in Orange County; Bishop Noel Jones, senior pastor of the City of Refuge Church in Gardena; and Bishop Clarence McClendon, senior pastor of Full Harvest International Church in Los Angeles.
According to Oxygen Media: more >>
A South Carolina megachurch will need to adjust its plans to build a 67,000-square-foot, 1,400-seat facility in Greenville after city officials denied the church's request for an exception to parking lot requirements, and while Clemson University argues against the church's use of the site.
"We are disappointed with the outcome of this vote but our team will take a further look at this and consider our options," Suzanne Swift, NewSpring Church communications director, told CP in an emailed statement. The church says it accepts the board's decision.
"We are dedicated to having a permanent campus in Greenville and we are looking forward to being great neighbors when we find the right location," Swift added. "Good parking capacity and access are critical to serve our members and guests well so we will continue to look for a situation that does that." more >>