Pastor Steven Furtick of Elevation Church in North Carolina remains in the media this week as the local television news station that previously disclosed the Christian minister's 16,000-square-foot home has obtained an internal report from his multi-campus ministry that shows the Charlotte megachurch has plans for further expansion.
WCNC-TV in Charlotte did not reveal how it obtained a copy of one of Elevation Church's internal reports, which reads on one page: "Prepared for the private and confidential use of Pastor Steven Furtick...Chunks Corbett [and] selected members of the staff." The information in the report includes data collected between Jan. 1, 2013 and Sept. 1, 2013. The report appears unrelated to the 2012 annual report Elevation Church made available (.pdf) on its website last week,
Below is some of the information revealed by WCNC-TV from Elevation Church's internal report: more >>
Author and former pastor Rob Bell's interview with Oprah Winfrey on her "Super Soul Sunday" program this past weekend featured aspects of the Michigan native's rise to ministry and his founding of a megachurch, to suddenly finding himself the subject of controversy and criticism over his 2011 book, Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived, and the adversity and pressure that eventually led him to depart from the faith community he had been leading for years.
"Love Wins held on the New York Times Best Sellers list for 24 weeks and helped usher in what some might call a new brand of Christianity...which didn't sit well with everybody, of course," states Winfrey in the narrated introduction to the interview. "Prominent conservative Christians called him a 'false prophet' and even...'a heretic.'
"The onslaught took its toll and Rob was shaken. He had never intended to become a polarizing figure. He says he just wanted to shine a light on the questions that many Christians struggled with in private." more >>
A half-dozen megachurch pastors, arguably at the top of the most recognizable names list within and outside the Christian community, are scheduled to discuss how believers can live out their faith in a culture that appears to be embracing biblical values less and less. Evangelical leaders including Rick Warren, Matt Chandler, Greg Laurie, James MacDonald, and Crawford Loritts will be joining host Mark Driscoll at the Resurgence Conference 2013 at Mars Hill Downtown Church in Seattle, Wash., Tuesday and Wednesday.
Driscoll recently told The Christian Post that he will open the conference by speaking about the changes in culture that he outlines in his book, A Call To Resurgence, as well as the obstacles and opportunities that are ahead of the church for the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
"I am asking the Holy Spirit to use the instructional and relational aspects of the conference to help leaders from various tribes waste less time fighting and more time learning so we can all invest our energy in evangelizing," Driscoll said. "I will close out the conference with the findings from a massive research project we have undertaken about the most common objections to Christian faith by the unchurched and de-churched ages 18-44 that is the basis for my next book due out next fall that I am currently writing as the follow up to A Call To Resurgence. The tentative working title is My Problem With Christianity. This is the biggest research and writing project I've ever been a part of and the findings are surprising and enlightening while also discouraging." more >>
Outspoken Pastor Mark Driscoll raises some challenging questions that should concern most Christians in his new book, A Call to Resurgence: Will Christianity Have a Future or a Funeral?
Driscoll makes the argument that America is quickly becoming an irreligious country – a post-Christian culture. He goes so far as to state that "Christendom is Dead," the subject and title of the first chapter in the book.
"The big idea is this: I don't know if you are aware of it, but Christendom is dead," he says during a recently released video promoting the book's theme. "The bus is no longer carrying us, it's running over us. Christianity is no longer popular and there are no social benefits to waving the Jesus flag. All you are going to get is persecution, opposition, and criticism. That's the day in which we live. The question is what will we do?" more >>
Seattle megachurch pastor Mark Driscoll takes a serious swipe at Barack Obama in his soon to be released book, A Call to Resurgence: Will Christianity Have a Funeral or a Future? by pointing to the president's questionable spirituality and often weak embrace of evangelicals as an indicator that born-again "Christians' days are getting darker."
"On January 21, 2013, Barack Obama placed his hand on a Bible he may not entirely believe to take an oath to a God he may not entirely know," writes Driscoll, as read in chapter one of an advance copy of the book given to The Christian Post. "Jesus alone will judge his soul one day, but in the meantime we are free to be confused by a man who says he's a Christian while ending his speech to America's largest abortion provider with, 'Thank you, Planned Parenthood. God bless you.'"
In the section of the first chapter (Christendom is Dead) subtitled, "One Nation, Under God?" Driscoll points out that one notable omission on the inauguration stage was Pastor Giglio, who was scheduled to give the inaugural prayer at the 2013 ceremony and then withdrew, while some say he was pressured to do so by the Inauguration Committee. more >>
North Carolina media have done several reports on the $1.7 million home being built by Elevation Church founder and Lead Pastor Steven Furtick and his wife, revealing among other things, that a group of overseers responsible for deciding the Charlotte minister's salary is made up of other well-known megachurch leaders.
Pastor Furtick reportedly has refused to disclose his salary to the Elevation Church congregation, as well as the general public, although the megachurch discloses in its 2012 financial report (read it here) how much it received in "average weekly operating offerings" ($391,299) as well as how much was given in the church's seven-year lifetime of ministry in local and international outreach ($2.5 million).
While the 2012 report does not provide information on Elevation Church's Board of Overseers, the Charlotte megachurch's 2011 annual report does. The document explains: more >>