Guest / Limited Access /

Radio teacher Skip Heitzig has returned to lead the church he founded as a small Bible study in 1981, then left in 2003. Heitzig resumed his role as senior pastor of Calvary of Albuquerque, with a weekly attendance of 14,000, months after he and the church board became embroiled in accusations about accountability and conflicts of interest.

Despite leaving in 2003 for Ocean Hills Church in Southern California, Heitzig remained chair of the board of directors at Calvary of Albuquerque (CA) while Pete Nelson, his chosen successor, took over at CA. Nelson resigned after two years as senior pastor. In his resignation letter, which was leaked to local media last February, Nelson accused Heitzig of stacking the board with people who didn't attend the church. When Nelson complained about the issue, he said Heitzig threatened "to take over as senior pastor."

Heitzig admitted he made mistakes during the transition, but rebutted Nelson's charges.

"Some of the things that he mentions or allegations that he brings he himself voted for in board meetings," Heitzig told CT. "When Pete Nelson resigned … I had a level of responsibility as founding pastor."

ca affiliates with Calvary Chapel, a network of 1,300 U.S. churches. The group began as an outgrowth of Chuck Smith's ministry to hippies during the Jesus Movement. At CA, as with many other network congregations, church bylaws make the senior pastor chair of the board of directors with the sole authority to nominate board members. CA, like many Calvary churches, does not have members, only people who attend.

Following the CA turmoil, Calvary Chapel Outreach Fellowships (CCOF), an organization formed to maintain accountability for Calvary Chapel pastors, looked into the controversy. CCOF ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

From Issue:
Read These NextSee Our Latest
RecommendedJames MacDonald Asks Forgiveness for Unbiblical Discipline of Harvest Bible Chapel Elders
James MacDonald Asks Forgiveness for Unbiblical Discipline of Harvest Bible Chapel Elders
Megachurch pastor confesses board slandered three elders as 'false messengers' last year.
TrendingLecrae Brings Reformed Rap to Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show
Lecrae Brings Reformed Rap to Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show
(UPDATED) Performance with The Roots was the first by a Christian rapper on late-night TV.
Editor's PickWhy ISIS Must Be Stopped
Why ISIS Must Be Stopped
But no special pleading on behalf of Christians is required.
Comments
Christianity Today
Calvary Reunion: Skip Heitzig Returns to N.M.
hide thisOctober October

In the Magazine

October 2006

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.