Note: My former pastors/elders at Grace Bible Fellowship of Silicon Valley use undue influence on church members, complete with threats in meetings that church members are ordered to, demands for “obedience” to a senior pastor (Cliff McManis) with FAKE degrees incluing a FAKE Ph.D. from a diploma mill, excommunications and shunnings of church members who used an iota of critical thinking skills, and outright lying. NeoCalvinist churches like GBFSV and other high-control groups/authoritarian groups are notorious for whipping their members into obedience via undue influence.
Undue Influence is widespread in today’s world, and our goal is to proof society against undue influence in all its forms.
Source: Undue Influence and its Widespread Use • Open Minds Foundation
A pastor ponders life, death, hope, despair, theology and the nature of God
Source: Five Signs that a “Membership Covenant” = “Cult”
TGC and BFFs may be contributing to ongoing child sex abuse problems in TGC churches.
via A Gospel Coalition Church, Agape Bible Church, Covers Up a Pastor’s Teen Sex Abuse. Why? —
by Velour/MtnShepherdess ©
My comment to Roger Olson: Thank you for the education about classical Calvinism which I did not know. When I saw the t-shirt I roared with laughter and promptly ordered one. I had a “tour-of-duty” of a NeoCalvinist church (eight years), complete with excommunication and shunnings for any reason, the most threatening was being a Berean and using critical thinking skills. (A woman in finance, a doctor, and then me.) The pastors/elders told church members that dissenters weren’t “one of us” and were “destined for Hell” and were to be excommunicated and shunned (“keyed out”). NeoCalvinist churches seem very authoritarian, brutal, and frankly vicious. I believe they are practicing the 1970’s heavy-Shepherding Movement’s tactics, whose founders repented. I will wear my t-shirt with pride, opposing un-Christian authoritarianism.
Roger Olson’s [theologian/professor/author] response to me: Fortunately, not all Calvinist churches are like that. That sounds almost like a cult. My Calvinist friends would not condone such behavior (even if they would probably restrict leadership to Calvinists).
©by Velour/Mtn Shepherdess
I was kicked out of the authoritarian, legalistic, heavy-Shepherding church Grace Bible Fellowship of Silicon Valley two years ago on a trumped up charge, like the doctor before me in his 70’s, and the woman before him (middle-aged in finance).
The first weekend after my excommunication/shunning, I took a breather and listened to The Blues, which I have always loved and had to listen to in secret before. I am so glad to be out of such a toxic, unhealthy church that did so much damage to so many peoples’ lives. My sister and friends say that they’re glad I’m out and that I’ve changed for the better.
Here is eight-year old Quinn Sullivan (he’s now a teenager) playing with Buddy Guy. I listened to this openly – and smiled – the weekend I was kicked out of church.