Having a large church does not matter unless people are being discipled and growing with a purpose, said Rick Warren during a Hispanic pastor's conference, LiderVision, in Los Angeles Friday.
Warren, whose Saddleback Church boasts nearly 25,000 people, says having a mass following only counts if the church pastor has the right purpose and process and if they are the right person to lead.
"I'm not impressed with crowds, because a crowd is not a church. I'm not against crowds but you only turn them into a church if you have a process," he said. more >>
Pastor Mark Driscoll, facing an onslaught of criticism in the last several months for a myriad of accusations by former members of the Seattle-based Mars Hill Church, has issued yet another apology, this time over angry remarks he made under a pseudonym on the church's website 14 years ago.
The most recent controversy includes Driscoll's comments revealed under the name 'William Wallace II' posted in 2000. Opening with the words, "We live in a completely pussified nation," Driscoll (as Wallace) condemns the majority of Christian men for being "Promise Keeping homoerotic worship loving mama's boy sensitive emasculated neutered exact male replica evangellyfish."
He added, "It all began with Adam, the first of the pussified nation, who kept his mouth shut and watched everything fall headlong down the slippery slide of hell/feminism when he shut his mouth and listened to his wife who thought Satan was a good theologian when he should have lead her and exercised his delegated authority as king of the planet. more >>
A recent post appearing on the Joel Osteen Ministries Facebook page suggests that a Bible passage commonly interpreted as God's invitation to the Messianic King was also applicable to believers. Amid an overwhelming number of "amens," however, there were a handful of people who insisted that the popular passage had been taken wildly out of context.
The post that ruffled the feathers of a few Osteen Facebook supporters was centered on Psalm 2:8, part of a fuller passage that theologians interpret as applying specifically to the Davidic king, in this case, Jesus Christ: "Ask of Me, and I will give You the nations as Your inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth as Your possession."
According to the JOM Facebook page, which has more than 7.7 million followers: "God is saying, 'Ask Me for those hidden dreams that I've planted in your heart. Ask Me for those unborn promises that may seem unlikely to happen in the natural.'" more >>
Not wanting to remain "anonymous" as implied by Pastor Mark Driscoll, former members of his Seattle-based Mars Hill Church plan to express their frustration over the lead pastor's recent apology for his and his leadership team's transgressions at a "Peaceful Protest" at the church's main site on Sunday.
Earlier this month, Driscoll, 43, released a 30-minute long video where he acknowledged that under his tenure, church leaders had been dismissed from Mars Hill in a brusque fashion. Former church members, however, took umbrage with the megachurch leader's claims about what had stymied his response to criticism.
"One of the things that has been complex is the fact that a lot of the people that we are dealing with in this season remain anonymous," he said, in a video posted on the church website on July 21. "And so we don't know how to reconcile or how to work things out with people because we're not entirely sure who they are. And so that has made things a little more complex and difficult as well." more >>
Hope Hilley Carpenter, wife of Pastor Ron Carpenter, has addressed for the very first time their marital woes that were made public last year before the congregation she and her husband founded over 20 years ago. Mrs. Carpenter repented and apologized to members of Redemption World Outreach Center, but did not cite the specific sins or behavior she regards as stumbling blocks to her husband, family and church community.
This past Sunday, Pastor Carpenter took a few minutes before his wife joined him before the congregation to touch on his sermon series, "What Makes a Man?" Carpenter referenced Ephesians 5:25 and 1 Corinthians 13, the first a Bible passage that call on husbands to love their wives like Christ loved the Church, and the second a reminder to believers that love is the greatest virtue.
When Carpenter finally transitioned from his brief sermon to call his wife before the congregation, worshippers stood to their feet, many of them clapping and some of them hooting in joy, according to a video recording of the service. more >>
Pastor Kong Hee's City Harvest Church, one of the biggest megachurches in Singapore, has celebrated its 25th year anniversary despite the ongoing high-profile trial of Kong and five other church officials accused of misusing millions in church funds.
"Thank God for His faithfulness the past 25 years. Happy Birthday, CHC," Kong wrote on Twitter, posting a photo of himself and other CHC members, including his popstar wife, Sun Ho, blowing out candles on a large birthday cake on stage.
The Straits Times reported on Tuesday that the 2 ½ hour celebration was held at Suntec City Convention Hall, and the two services, themed "Because Of You" in honor of the church's members, attracted 18,360 people in total. more >>