Via William Throckmorton:
Dustin Kensrue, the worship pastor at Mars Hill’s Bellevue campus, has resigned. That makes four out of nine Mars Hill pastors and elders who signed a letter calling for Mark Driscoll’s removal who have either resigned or been forced out.
If you want a picture of what’s going on at Mars Hill, read the letter he shared on Twitter this week.
While the nine signers of the letter that was leaked last week have been met with gratefulness and an outpouring of prayer from the people of Mars Hill, internally we have been dismissed and defamed as “immature” among other epithets…
One pastor was already removed from eldership for his part in signing the letter…
As for the 5 the signers who were at Bellevue, it was made clear we weren’t going to be fired at this point (I am assuming for PR reasons) but it was also made equally clear to us where the door was, and that it would be just fine if we chose to walk through it.
What executive elder Dave Bruskas revealed about governance at Mars Hill in a meeting with Kensrue last week:
He went so far as to say that if 61 of 63 elders across Mars Hill all shared the same conviction that something needed to change, it simply wouldn’t matter.
On the consolidation of power in the hands of Mark Driscoll and a handful of his closest allies, which casts serious doubt on the ability of the church’s Board of Advisors and Accountability to investigate with any integrity:
In the last 2 major revisions of the Mars Hill bylaws, the ability for the FCE [Full Council of Elders] to do anything has been all but completely taken away. The two things that the FCE can still do is to approve a change to the MH statement of faith, and to approve the slate of nominees for the board of BOAA [Board of Advisors and Accountability]. The problem with approving the slate is that it provides only the illusion of accountability since the FCE cannot nominate people for the slate, and if they did choose to vote a slate down, the current BOAA remains in power until the FCE approve a slate that the BOAA provides. At this point, continuing to even call the FCE a council is essentially a ruse and a farce.
Power is consolidated in such a way that the government of MH can only be described as an oligarchy which does not reflect the mutually submissive view of elder governance in provided in the Bible. And this theological shift points to the likelihood that this consolidation of authority through the revision of the bylaws is not, as it has been presented, an oversight or an unintentional byproduct of solving some other set of problems, but rather a deliberate and deft grab for power.
On the powerlessness of pastors and elders to lead Mars Hill out of this morass:
So, what’s the answer to the question “what can your elders do?” Simply put, sadly not much. This is why we’ve looked pained when you’ve have asked us what we are going to do about all of this…
Your pastors, who are on the ground with you, who know you, who care for you, who pray with you, and in whom you trust—these men have essentially no voice and no vote in what happens with your church as a whole, and the leadership is actively trying to limit the voice that they do have.
Read the rest here.
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