Josh’s Apology

May 24, 2011 in Sovereign Grace Ministries

Several readers emailed me yesterday and asked that there be a new post where Josh Harris’ apology to Covenant Life Church could be discussed.  A few were also curious to know my own reaction.

I don’t have a ton of time right now to respond, but I can sum up my thoughts as follows:

  1. It’s nice that Covenant Life Church has decided to admit and apologize for some of their faulty practices and teachings.
  2. Until SGM leaders recognize and repent of the root causes of these faulty practices and teachings – SGM’s incorrect beliefs about pastoral authority without accountability to the people, and SGM’s pyramid-style polity – these sorts of tearful family meetings aren’t much more than cosmetic PR.

Tight (practically paranoid) pastoral control permeated every aspect of this entire process, from the by-invitation-only guest lists to the venue (Josh Harris’ own house) to the continued commands for people to bring all their questions to their pastors.  While it’s great for Josh Harris to recognize that he and the other leaders should continue to solicit feedback from their people, the fact that he has to beg for it and provide assurances that there will be no recriminations – well, isn’t that a sign that something foundational is STILL not right?  Isn’t that a sign that SGM’s entire governance set-up needs fixing?

To the Covenant Lifers reading this – I would suggest that while it’s nice to celebrate a long-awaited public admission of wrongdoing, you need to continue to press for real change.  Continue to push for a complete overhaul of the mentality that enabled these problems in the first place.

Until that happens, even gallons of tears are not really that meaningful.

© 2011, Kris. All rights reserved.