Patton Dodd's article on New Life Church offers caution and hope. Having served in two megachurches, I am reminded that while entrepreneurial talent is a volatile ingredient in the personal chemistry of a lead pastor, it is usually a necessary one. Yes, Ted Haggard eventually made destructive choices. But many of his choices were good, and New Life's current leadership is now pressing on to prayerfully pursue God's next chapter.
If the megachurch movement is to be an ongoing blessing, we cannot let the occasional train wreck force us off track. Entrepreneurial talent, like any other endowment from God, must be completely and surrendered to the lordship of Christ.
Pastor of Pastoral Care, Fairhaven Church
Editor's Note: CT's desire is to nuance every story as accurately as possible within our space constraints. To this end, we include excerpts from two letters about our report on South Sudan. An updated version of the story is at ChristianityToday.com.
Barnabas Fund would like to clarify some points from the article:
1. There are no payments to "third parties." Almost all our support has been used to charter planes and hire buses and trucks. We are not paying slave-traders.
2. There is no danger of culture shock on arrival. They are leaving an alien culture (Arab and Islamic), and returning to their homeland (African and Christian).
3. They will not need "very long-term" support after making their journey. Both the South Sudanese government and the Africa Inland Church have programs to provide short-term care for the returnees, who then join their relatives and are re-absorbed into their old ...1
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