WARNING: Rebecca D. shows flagrant disregard for the rules of punctuation... She uses ellipsis with wild abandon... Punctuation interventions have been done to no avail... If you are offended by such irreverence to the rules of grammar... The very glue that holds our society together... STOP READING NOW... Move on... There is a little button at the top that says "next blog"... You would be well advised to use it... You were warned...

The Punch Line...

Friday, May 18, 2012

 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free  John 8:23

Yesterday we finally got to meet with the pastor and a couple from the leadership team at our church. (If you are not up on the youth group/church drama we are dealing with you can catch up here.) Earlier today I posted the letter we sent to them and now I will share (as Paul likes to call it) the Punch Line... (This is gonna be a long post... sorry!)

We got to our 7 AM meeting having just prayed together before going in. We got there and the pastor prayed then immediately told us "I'm sorry, clearly you guys come from a different biblical point of view and are accustomed to a different structure of church government then we embrace here at CLFC and I should have never allowed you to take a position of leadership here at CLFC. That is my fault and I take the full blame." We just kind of didn't respond to this very much. These kind of sweeping statements are how he likes to operate and they are his way of directing the conversation. Plus there was so much wrong with that statement we could have spent the whole meeting debating the merits of it, and never focused on the point at hand. (This could have been his goal now that I think about it.)

Thankfully the couple who are part of the leadership there took control of the meeting and we got down to brass tacks. Paul told them we still didn't know for sure what we were being accused of, and he produced a list the pastor had given him (and the entire leadership team) of accusations against us. A two page list! And quite frankly when he started reading it out loud, in the context and language it was written in it were quite damning. We came off as sounding like out of control people, and he only read about a third of the list. It was a horrible and confusing moment. Until we started going through the items we were accused of item by item... A lot of them were either so out of context it was crazy, a few of them were out right lies based on a tiny thread of truth, and at least one of them was a comment made by Paul to the pastor in our meeting with him. (How is something he said in confidence in our meeting with him in any way hurtful to the whole youth and how did it end up on his list of accusations against us?) The problem with "the list" is that it didn't indicate who accused us of saying it and/or when we were accused of saying it... (We never actually saw a copy of the list either.) And since these things were supposed to have done and/or said were not actual quotes and had no context, it took a while for us to figure out if they were blatant lies or based on some thread of truth. (None that were named we actual and whole truth and none on their own merit should have been acted on in the way it was.)

There was the initial accusation that was named in the middle of the list... The one that we had heard about through gossip, but were unable to verify until yesterday.  This was a huge misunderstanding, something I said twisted way out of context and repeated in a hurtful way as gossip by a teenager. We would have liked to clear this up over two weeks ago when it occurred, but nobody would talk to us and this has been allowed to fester and now it has taken on a life of it's own. That is a whole separate issue at this point, and we do intend to try to have someone mediate a meeting with this family to try to clear up the issue. I do fear so much time has past we may never be restored in their eyes, but I know all things are possible with the Lord and we plan to try either way. 

As we talked more, the items on the list started to come up one by one and as we went through the ones read to us we were able to start shedding light on what can only be described as an all out attempt to attack us. Let me give you an example of one of the most outrageous accusations:  Accusation: Rebecca asked a girl in front of the whole youth group if she was pregnant. Truth: At a lunch after church with a visiting pastor that the youth group were invited to he (the visiting pastor) asked how Katy and Jed met and started dating. They told him the story of how when they came to us at dinner time last summer to ask if they could date they were nervous and started the conversation "We have something we want to talk to you about." and I jokingly asked Katy "Are you pregnant?" and that broke the ice, we all laughed...They asked us their real question... end of story... Jed told this story at the lunch... Yep... You read that right, the accusation was based on a funny family story shared over lunch! I didn't even tell the story.

It became abundantly clear that someone was out to smear us and our names and that person looks to be the pastor. When asked why he didn't bring these accusations to us as they came in, he claimed most of them just came up in the last two weeks... A lot of them were about things that happened months ago, when asked about this he claimed that people were afraid to come forward until now. He also claims these come from more then the two families who have continually had issues with us since taking over this position. Since we have been contacted by all the families except those two offering their prayers and support, either we have a bunch of two-faced families OR this was based on a lie.

Here is the thing, there were at least two other bold faced lies uttered by the pastor at that meeting. One about something Paul said and when he said it, and the other about the name of a church in Bangor (such a weird thing to lie about, but he was cornered answering a question that made him uncomfortable.) There were numerous other half-truths  told, but I don't even know what to do with those. I don't take calling someone on lies lightly... There have been plenty of times when I said things I thought were true and later found out differently, I have always counted on grace in those situations. In fact there have been several things said to us by him in our meetings in the past or things he has claimed and/or stories he told that we have questioned, but we have always decided to come at it from a point of grace and give him the benefit of the doubt. There is no way to sugar coat what was said yesterday.

We have as a family had about as much of this as we can take. Our final decision is that even though we believe the Lord called us to this church to work with the student ministry, because of the actions of man we can no longer be effective in that role. Even though the leadership who were there yesterday were trying to figure a way for us to remain in that role, without the support of the pastor we didn't see how to make it work. Also, there is no way for us to sit in that church week after week and not to become more jaded towards the pastor, and eventually become a source of division. So we have decided (for now at least) to leave the church. Sadly when we made this announcement yesterday in the meeting the pastor actually smiled... I don't know why... Were we such a thorn in his side that he takes joy in our departure? We did promise the leadership not to make any "final" decisions until we met with them further, and we will hold to that.

So, how do I feel it went? I actually felt good when we left. The pastor did make some attempts to apologise to us as we were leaving. I don't think he sounded overly sincere, but I don't know his heart and if he wants to meet with us in the future and seek forgiveness we are open to it. For now we will be working with the leadership to resolve the few issues that have some truth to them. These are with those two families who have continually not supported us, so I have doubts as to how effective this will be and one of the families have had so much fuel poured on their fire, I don't even know what angle we will approach it from. The biggest challenge is how to proceed from here? How do we move on with this cloud of suspicion hanging over us? Everyone believes we did something wrong. With the exception the leadership who were at that meeting with us yesterday... It does feel good when you finally get to speak and people acknowledge the truth when they hear it. So, do we have to tell everyone the whole story? How do we clear our names without causing division in that church? Do we just have to live under this dark cloud that has unfairly been cast over us? You see, I can tell the whole story to you my bloggy friends, since only one local friend reads my blog anyhow. (And she already knew the whole story.) But if I were to put a link to this post on my Facebook page, all you know what would break out... Pray for us that we know how to proceed from here. Also pray for Katy and Jed's wedding, this will surely effect it greatly.

Thanks for listening,


  1. Church people know how to hurt us the most. Unfortunately, I understand how you feel. But I will pray for resolution for you, your family and all involved.

    1. Praying for you all.

      Praying you can somehow set it all aside for a joyful wedding day :D


  2. These are always the worst situations. And I know how you feel...having been there. You want people to know you didn't do anything wrong but you also don't want people to think you're trying to divide a church...and speaking out will do that.

    Of course knowing that this WILL be discussed on judgement day in front of EVERYONE makes me feel better for you and me. :o) I know that's horrible to say but this whole thing reeks of "setup"

    I'm praying for you all to find a resolution that glorifies God AND that everyone will relax and enjoy the wedding. Maybe God is giving you this extra time (because you're not working so much with the youth) to just enjoy the last few days you have with your daughter under your roof. That would be a huge blessing...I'd think.

  3. Oh girl, I am so sorry. I don't even know where to begin. It's all very hurtful. I'm so disappointed in the pastor. Actually kind of want to punch him in the face. Very amazed and respect the way you are handling all this. Very disappointed with the way I apparently would handle it. Ahem.

    I would take the same action, and quietly leave as well. I know this causes you pain. I hope in the end someone comes to their senses. I'm kind of disgusted by the whole misconstrued pregnant story. So disappointing in other's behavior.

    I sound negative. I'm sorry. You are doing a GREAT job. HUGS. I know the wedding will be a beautiful and serene event.

  4. Praying the wedding and the days leading to it are filled with joy!

  5. came to your blog via hodgepodge - but loved the warning about your over-use of "..." (me too!!!!) so I thought I'd check your blog out - and came across this post - and wow - let me tell you, we are dealing with something SO similiar. Well, I don't know all your story - but ours in short is: my husband is/was the administrator of a Christian school for 7 years - and this year the pastor has given HIS SON many of my husband's duties, meanwhile, telling half-truths and spinnning things so no one will think anything of my husband being totally disregarded. We resigned in January to be done at the school in June ... and the more we've watched this situation pan out, the worse it gets, the more jaded (you used that word too) we get toward our pastor, and the more damage we see his son (who is 10 years younger than my hubby & has ZERO leadership experience) destroy our school and the relationships we've built there. :( I can't blog about it because church members do read the blog - and we are attemping to leave the church/school without causing division (and believe me, we could; we have had so many people ask us what happened or tell us they don't agree w/ what our pastor did!!).

    Wow, sorry to dump that - but maybe you'll understand - and say a prayer for us!! I'll follow your blog and keep up with your story now too - praying GOD gets all the glory!!!! :)

  6. :( Something Like this happened to my family in 2009, except we were told we were not allowed back into the church or on the property. :/ Its a slow fade when they give themselves away (Anyone). :( Praying for you! I know how bad that hurts... and It does take a while for things to kind of blow over... You have to forgive otherwise it will just become a bitter seed inside of you...


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