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Update: Rob Bell to Move to L.A. and Launch a Tour

The pastor who ignited a debate over heaven and hell has announced his departure from the church he founded.

Rob Bell has decided to leave Mars Hill Bible Church, the Grandville, Michigan, megachurch he and his wife founded 12 years ago, to focus on a broader audience, the church announced today.

Flickering Pixels author Shane Hipps will take over for Bell during spring 2012 after Bell finishes his series on Acts in December.

Update 9/25/2011:

Rob Bell told Mars Hill today that he will leave for Los Angeles to follow a “calling to share God's love” in new ways, WZZM reports from Grand Rapids. He will move with his family to California to continue writing books and speaking on national and international tours, but he will not start a new church, he said.

Bell will launch his "Fit to Smash Ice Tour" in Canada in November and continue the tour in the U.S. "We serve a big God and none of this is shocking to him,” WZZM reports Bell said during his sermon. “All we can do is embrace a future that is going to be brilliant."

Bell continues to promote his bestselling book Love Wins, and David Vanderveen announced ...

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