Calgary Centre Street Church, withdraws partnership with Prairie Bible Institute

Centre Street Church has withdrawn it’s support as an independent 3rd party to Prairie Bible Institute. The church was chosen in lieu of requests by PBI abuse survivors requests for G.R.A.C.E., a USA based organization which investigates allegations of abuse in church and para church organizations.

On December 16th 2011, Prairie Bible Institute announced it was going to support former students and staff kids who had come forward alleging abuses at the 90-year-old institution.

PBI President Mark Maxwell included the following in his statement naming Centre Street Church:

1) Alumni: We have a truly amazing group of Alumni around the world. Many of them have offered to help in any way possible. A dozen of them have committed a great deal of time to working with those alumni who have stories of pain and injury. This group cares about Prairie as well as the need for the injured to find healing. Their efforts may include raising funds to help cover some of:

• the costs of travel if someone would like to come back, either to share with us or the third-party group; and

• the costs related to reconciliation and healing.

Subject to legal constraints, Prairie will allow these funds to pass through the school so that donors can benefit from a tax deductible receipt. Those who would like to share their stories of pain and injury are invited to contact this team…

2) Independent Third Party: We have been in contact with Centre Street Church in Calgary, a prominent Canadian church with professional counselors on staff. This church is not conflicted by virtue of any relationship with Prairie. Centre Street offers a safe and secure place for injured people to be heard and given professional advice on steps to move forward, including directing individuals to the appropriate authorities, referring them for additional counselling or bringing them to the appropriate parties at Prairie. The contact person at the church is Dr. Miriam Mollering…

On February 14th, PBI board chair Bruce Miller repeated the choice of Centre Street Church as an independent party for abuse survivors:

Members of the Facebook site asked that another option making use of professional expertise in the Christian community be available to provide a safe and professional place where their stories could be told. In response to this request, Prairie asked Centre Street Church (CSC) if they would be willing to offer that safe haven and were grateful for their positive response.
The PBI board is pleased that Centre Street Church of Calgary has offered “to provide that safe place to be heard” with a team of professional counselors led by Rev. Miriam Möllering, PhD. Dr. Möllering holds the position of Pastor of Life Care Ministries at CSC and brings significant counseling expertise to the role. She is well-qualified to work with individuals in an understanding and professional way.
Working with Centre Street Church provides a neutral place for those uncomfortable sharing directly with Prairie.

Centre Street Church has chosen to remain professional in announcing a severing of ties with PBI as of April 15th, notifying abuse survivors who contacted the church prior to any public announcement by the church or PBI.

At this stage, all that is left is speculation on why professional abuse counsellors would take this step.  I think some of it has to do with what Mark Maxwell placed first in his December announcement – alumni. I have been understandably critical of a group of alumni  called themselves The Survivor Fund Project, recently re-naming naming themselves the Healing Team.

The group has been soliciting funds, which are managed and distributed to the alumni in the group to cover their expenses.  They are not trained, and one of the key goals of this group has been to take survivors back to PBI for ‘reconciliation’, a process counsellors of abuse victims (emotional, mental, physical, , spiritual & sexual) caution strongly against.
I’ve written about The Survivor Fund Project here, here and here.  The origins of the funding of these alumni have not been addressed by PBI. Upset and angry alumni have been verbally abusive to survivors online, and one alumni possibly connected with the original funding of The Survivor Fund Project is under investigation by Concord SC police for online behavior.  That a group of alumni would be permitted to undermine the role of chosen professionals has been a concern for survivors.   Given the existence of The Survivor Fund Project,  the difficulties in communication with PBI, I believe Centre Street Church severing ties as 3rd party is wise. It is unknown how many survivors will be affected by this decision. Sources tell me that the decision to end the Centre Street Church role as a safe place for survivors to tell their stories and receive referrals for counselling was mutual.

As well, Bruce Miller and alumni online have been saying that abuse survivors are to contact the Three Hills detachment of the RCMP, despite a clear statement from the RCMP that a trained party in the Calgary detachment (Const. Mark MacDonald) had been specifically assigned to the PBI abuse allegations investigation. Constable Mark MacDonald:

“Hopefully I can clear up the concerns that have arisen. This investigation began with the Three Hills RCMP when the first person came forward. Almost immediately it was reported that there were between 80-90 victims of abuse that were willing to come forward with their stories. A file of that magnitude would overwhelm a small detachment and therefore my unit was brought in to assist Three Hills with the investigations. I was assigned as the primary investigator when my unit began to assist because of my experience conducting large investigations such as this. Three Hills is still actively involved in this investigation and I can tell you that there is absolutely no conflict between Three Hills and us.

As for reporting, upon my assignment to the file it was decided that my name would be used as the contact person for the investigation to minimize confusion. However, victims are welcome to report their story to whoever or where ever they please. The files will still filter back to me. Reporting to me just saves a few steps.

This is because in most cases, the investigating agency is the police detachment where the offence occurred (Three Hills) and they would likely have no knowledge of the magnitude of the file and the assistance being provided by our unit. This file is unique and therefore is slightly different.

As for an official statement, the media coverage from the RCMP from the onset of this investigation has been crystal clear. If you were the victim of any form of abuse at the Prairie Bible Institute or anywhere else in Canada, we want to hear from you.

This is some of what has been posted by a FB administrator on a Prairie Facebook page:

Unfortunately, under the present circumstances, the only way for victims of abuse to receive financial assistance with abuse recovery therapy would be to go through the Healing Team, or possibly the Center Street Church. What this means is that PBI is only willing to provide this level of assistance to individuals who go through one of their chosen, unofficial channels, in a manner that they deem acceptable and in-line with their model of how abuse should be dealt with in a Christian environment. Given that PBI is being investigated for failing to properly deal with abuse, it would be difficult to suggest that they can suddenly be fully trusted to know how to deal with it now. This asymmetrical approach is flawed in fairly obvious ways and will need to be addressed going forward – for the benefit of all parties. There are people continuously working behind the scenes to address these ongoing concerns.

No doubt more will be forthcoming soon from PBI.

Update: Prairie Bible Institute pr April 2, 2012

On December 16, 2011, Prairie Bible Institute announced that it would be working with Centre Street Church (CSC) in Calgary, AB to provide a safe, neutral and independent environment where any abuse victims could tell their stories. The church’s mandate was to hear from and direct these individuals to speak with the police or to pursue further professional counselling.

While some people approached CSC, we have been advised that interactions have dropped off significantly over the last several weeks. In light of this, and at the request of the church, we have mutually agreed to end this arrangement effective April 15, 2012.

We are pleased that CSC has been able to step up for us and are very grateful for their team of professional counselors led by Rev. Miriam Möllering, PhD.

Centre Street Church has provided a summary of findings and recommendations to PBI, which the leadership team is currently reviewing. It is our intention to combine CSC’s recommendations with our own policies, and the best practices in higher education, to ensure a safe environment that is vigilant against any form of abuse. We continue to believe that the Christian community should be a safe place for all to find healing and forgiveness, as well a place where justice prevails within an environment of grace.

Even though the formal arrangement with the church will conclude, it is important to note that several avenues continue to remain in place, those being to contact the police or the Alumni Healing Team, a group of committed alumni who can be reached at prairiealums.healing@gmail.com. While these are our recommended avenues, the school continues to be available to hear from any who wish to contact us.

We want to take this opportunity to thank the many people who have advised us over the past few months as we have worked our way through this.

Sincerely,

Mark L. Maxwell
President
Prairie Bible Institute

About Bene Diction

Have courage for the great sorrows, And patience for the small ones. And when you have laboriously accomplished your tasks, go to sleep in peace. God is awake.
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94 Responses to Calgary Centre Street Church, withdraws partnership with Prairie Bible Institute

  1. It was obvious to even the most casual observer that this 3rd party arrangement was not being whole-heartedly supported by PBI. The ONLY reason CSC was ever involved was because PBI was forced to find a 3rd party by the survivors who were speaking out.

    PBI always wanted to handle this abuse scandal in-house and it is my belief that they subtly sabotaged the success of CSC by deliberately favoring the Healing Team over CSC. PBI was well aware that the arrangement with CSC did not adequately meet the requirements of what the survivors were asking for. We have made it very clear that we want more than just a place to tell our stories. We want a means by which to have the perps investigated and held accountable for their crimes against children. There are many perps who will never be held accountable because the survivors will not contact the RCMP for a variety of reasons. There are also cases where perps engaged in behavior that while not illegal certain was unethical (e.g. having sex with a 16 year old, pornography, etc.) These perps still need to be held accountable for what they have done.

    The survivors agreed to work with CSC and accept them as the 3rd party even though there were pieces missing to the process. We did this in good faith. I am thoroughly disgusted that not only were we not informed by PBI about the dissolution of this partnership with CSC, but we are now back to square one. Not only that but we are actually in a worst place then when we started. Why? Because now there is a PBI-sanctioned solution called the Healing Team. They are made up of non-professional alumni, many who have shunned the survivors by blocking them on Facebook or refusing to respond to their emails. The more PBI says they are independent, the more evident it becomes that they are anything but. This Healing Team clearly is the favored choice that PBI wants all survivors to take. They are clearly not impartial and independent. These healing team members all have close ties to PBI, most of them are hostile to many of the survivors from the WE group, they favor forgiveness and reconciliation at all costs and they clearly like to operate secretly, refusing to answer the tough questions posed to them. This is akin to asking rape victims to contact the mother of their rapist to get their support seeking justice. This does not foster any trust with the survivors and pushes us further apart. There are many survivors who are not interested in reconciling with the school but they still want to be heard. They do not believe in God anymore and don’t want to have the “religious” aspect applied but still want to be heard. Let a survivor like this try to get assistance from the Healing Team and see how far that will get them! NOWHERE!

    The hidden message in all of this is that in order to get help a survivor has to “be a good little girl or good little boy” and come to PBI with humility and accept the inadequate support they have to offer. This is not acceptable. Mark Maxwell still doesn’t get it – he doesn’t realize that he is perpetrating the abuse by his harping on the abuses being “decades old cases” and by distancing himself and the school from the survivors by telling the media that the abuses were not the responsibility of the school, blah, blah, blah… This is precisely what makes this situation worse. When is Mark Maxwell and PBI going to understand that they need to look at themselves in the mirror and realize how bitterly they have failed the children in their community. They need to humble themselves before God and the survivors and plead for forgiveness. They need to allow a bright light to shine on the perps and expose the heinous evil they have perpetrated. They need to censor these perps and rebuke them publicly. Instead, all we see is protectionism, elitism, and more minimizing. Enough already!

    And once again, PBI doesn’t have the courtesy to let us know ahead of time – we read it in the media just like everyone else. Pathetic!

  2. Doug Warkentin says:

    Just a couple of points of clarification.

    “I have been understandably critical of a group of alumni who call themselves The Survivor Fund Project, recently re-naming themselves the Healing Team.”
    This group you refer to has never called itself The Survivor Fund Project! Others have used names for such but this was not one they used. Prairie began a fund that has been referred to as a survivor fund project (http://www.facebook.com/groups/2220955063/doc/10150465151065064/). Jim Crites brought together a group of caring individuals who were willing to help wounded individuals and from their beginning called themselves the Healing Team! I am not on that team but believe they have stepped forward to do a wonderful thing and have filled a need that no one else has done yet.

    And “one of the key goals of this group has been to take survivors back to PBI for ‘reconciliation’” is a definite misconstruing of the situation and the facts. In the document posted on the FB Alumni group (http://www.facebook.com/groups/2220955063/doc/10150493960625064/) the goals or roles of the Healing Team are laid out clearly. The three stated options at the top point the survivors to Center Street Church and the RCMP. In the explanations following, “There may be survivors who want to tell their story to a staff member or power that be directly “at PBI.” We are not “at PBI” nor part of PBI. In that case, we would probably forward their email to someone at PBI and ask them to respond. How they do that would be up to them. On the other hand, if a survivor with whom we are walking decides that another step in the healing process is to contact PBI and wants our support, we’ll do our best to go with them, set up a conference call, or whatever is practical.”

    Can we please stick to the facts here instead of misleading people?!

  3. The Lord Ben Chung says:

    Pathosis, and pathetic!

  4. Thank you Doug Warkentin for your gushing report on the Healing Team. While you are straightening us out on the facts will you please answer one question for me? How can you have a healing team when half of the members of the team have either blocked the survivors in the WE group, lashed out at them in hostility or confronted them on-line? What would compel a survivor to seek help from this group?

    You and I both know Doug that this is just another attempt by PBI to control the process of how survivors will be heard and acknowledged. I insist that all voices be heard whether they are friendly with PBI or not. Many of the survivors I represent can’t even post a comment on a group wall without getting lambasted. Either they swear too much, don’t believe in God or aren’t “spiritual enough”. PBI has proven that they can’t be trusted to handle this. Just last week President Mark Maxwell was still harping on these being “decades old cases” and distancing himself and the school from a rape victim by trying to pass the buck between PBI/PCA. Where is the leadership that is willing to stand up and call this sin of abuse what it is. It is rape, not consensual sex. It is the rape of children, not “something that occurs in the privacy of people’s homes.”

    This continual minimizing is like the dripping of a faucet. At some PBI is going to have to take a stand and so far no one has the guts to do it. They can pray for the blessings of God all they want but God doesn’t bless a place where sin is covered up and the cries of the hurting are silenced. I am not interesting in spraying perfume to cover the rotten stench, let’s get out the disinfectant and scrub this wound till it is clean. Then and only then can true healing come.

  5. Tez says:

    If you try to handle stuff like this in house, you’re going to have a bad time.
    Prairie doesn’t need the survivors to want to “take it down”, it is doing a FINE job of that themselves under the leadership of Maxwell and his Dougs, I mean, drones.

  6. fjc says:

    I would ask Doug a few questions:

    1. What professional qualifications do any of the members of the Healing Team have in the area of assisting victims of abuse. For that matter, is there anyone at PBI who possesses the recognized professional credentials and experience in this area?

    2. From the little that I have read on the subject, it appears that taking victims back to the scene of the crime so to speak, is absolutely a bad idea from an abuse healing perspective. Does Doug feel that any members of the Healing Group have the professional background to accomplish this in a manner that would be beneficial to these victims?

    3. Is PBI reluctant to engage professional assistance for the abused victims? Is this a monetary issue? At the very least, has PBI engaged a professional in this area to understand what the focus framework should be and what the healing steps should be? If so, was a written report commissioned and will it be distributed beyond the Board and the Leadership team.

    4. Other than alumni donations raised by the ‘Healing Team’, has PBI actually earmarked or budgeted any monies towards assisting the victims or any put into reserve any monies for legal contingencies?

  7. Great questions fjc….

  8. fjc says:

    I think that most people would agree that these questions are quite straighforward and should be very easy answer.

    I would expect the responses to be the same. They are almost yes or no questions. I would expect that the responses would not require a great deal of fluff….notwithstanding that we have an election in Alberta and fluff appears to be the order of the day.

  9. cric says:

    When are the survivors going to get a decent lawyer? Haven’t you been through enough already?

  10. Bene D says:

    Hi Doug:

    “Can we please stick to the facts here instead of misleading people?!”

    Agreed.

    “This group you refer to has never called itself The Survivor Fund Project!”

    Well…

    Jim Crites labelled his first January announcement “Survivor Fund Project”
    http://tinyurl.com/83f3o49

    Jim Crites labelled his second January announcement “Healing Team.”
    http://tinyurl.com/7zenjj6

    In the March 2012 appeal for funds the team reiterated donors direct their donation to The Survivor Fund.
    http://tinyurl.com/blphur7

    “If you feel compelled to help survivors in this way, please send your donation to Prairie Bible Institute and note that it’s for “The Survivor Fund.” You can donate online at http://www.prairie.edu. Select “other fund” from the dropdown list of potential funds and type in “Alumni Healing Fund”. Receipts are provided for both Canadian and US donors.”

    Survivor Fund Project/Healing Team. Survivor Fund. Take your pick. Jim Crites is a team member, take it up with him. This team can call themselves sky blue pink with purple poka dots – won’t change what they are doing.

    “And “one of the key goals of this group has been to take survivors back to PBI for ‘reconciliation’” is a definite misconstruing of the situation and the facts.”

    Let’s check.

    Mark Maxwell December 2011: Point #1 of three points (alumni, Centre Street Church, RCMP)
    http://tinyurl.com/7zqqywq

    1) Alumni: We have a truly amazing group of Alumni around the world. Many of them have offered to help in any way possible. A dozen of them have committed a great deal of time to working with those alumni who have stories of pain and injury. This group cares about Prairie as well as the need for the injured to find healing. Their efforts may include raising funds to help cover some of:
    • the costs of travel if someone would like to come back, either to share with us or the third-party group; and
    • the costs related to reconciliation and healing.

    The Ken Sandes course is taught at PBI. Part of the Peacemakers concept is reconciliation, which is applicable to church conflict between peers, not for an unbalanced power relationship.

    CH 625 Interpersonal Com. and Conflict
    Management
    Textbook: Ken Sande The Peacemaker A Biblical Guide to Resolving Personal Conflict 3rd edition

    Jim Crites January 2012:

    “On the other hand, if a survivor with whom we are walking decides that another step in the healing process is to contact PBI and wants our support, we’ll do our best to go with them, set up a conference call, or whatever is practical.”

    Survivor Fund Project announcement March 17, 2012:
    http://tinyurl.com/blphur7

    “Some survivors have chosen to travel to Prairie campus as part of their ongoing healing journey. If you feel compelled to help survivors in this way, please send your donation to Prairie Bible Institute and note that it’s for “The Survivor Fund.”

    PBI accepts donor funds and administers expenses as requested to the alumni on the team, which makes PBI reponsible under CRA regs, doesn’t matter how distanced the paid friends of the team feel they are.

  11. The Lord Ben Chung says:

    I will make a point here. I love Sister Wanda, although she is not perfect, but she has been with us on this journey all along, and so is Brother Armbruster. THey may not agree with us, but imagine how much time it took Brother Armbruster with all his very long comments. And even though we may not appreciate all of his contents, but he is here, and he prays for our victims. We also have atheists, agnostics and Deist (like myself). Sister Wanda made a few comments and she found a way to still communicate with Carmen, Jordan and Elisa. I always believe there is a beautiful side to her, others may not see that, I do believe there has to be something in her that keeps her going. I appreciate her much, and although she may not always make the kindest comments. In my book, both are fine. At least they try.

    The different picture is painted with our current administration. I do believe as the story unfolds, I am afraid to say that many alumni here have given the president of Prairie, Mark Maxwell, far too much credit. Maybe he has not got a heart? Maybe he is inept, or he plainly does not care (I could swore, but let that go). I place this squarely on his square shoulder, and judge him far harshly than any other people. It is about him and Bruce, the two unholy married couple, they have led the school into this wilderness.

    Come out of your bunkers, you sinners~! Come and stop praying! If you sexually molest a child, come now and make it right and turn yourself in. The Lord is lenient with confessed sinners, he damns those who refuse to d so. And for the bunker dwellers, there is a bunker buster coming that you will be busted soon. Remember my words, you creepy creatures, ye prairie dogs, and unless you come forward now, there is no turning once the whole thing goes in the wrong direction. You are gods, but like men you will all die, exercise justice and act righteously, Mark Maxwell!

  12. Wanda Janz says:

    Dearest Ben,

    I would like to state again that I am NOT part of PBI, nor am I part of the Healing Team. I have survivors come to me (even though I am fallable) because I am human first. I know what it’s like to be kicked around. And perhaps, because I too make mistakes, they can see that I also say sorry which is something that is missing from ‘others’. And that may be the biggest difference of all! I am forgiven by the very ones I have injured. That says a lot about them and also about me. Makes my heart glad to see that although we may make mistakes along the way, that we each get a second chance. That is what I believe about PBI, the Healing Team, and some of the ones from “WE”. Those offering second chances are the ones who are truly healing. The ‘others’, well they are in a much worse place and no amount of ‘help’ will see them through any time soon.

    Thanking GOD He is in charge,

  13. Elisa Humphreys says:

    Regarding Ben and Wanda’s comments above… I do not want to defend Wanda in any way because she was truly terrible to us… but what I do have to say… is that some of us may know people… wonderful people… who we like and enjoys spending time with… but who we know are bitpulls if you get on the wrong side of an issue from them.. this maybe the case with Wanda… certainly we all make mistakes… (hopefully not as terrible as what Wanda did)… but Wanda did appologize for offending us… and provided some kind of an explaination… that she knows the family and had information that made her feel that Carmens account we not true… hopefully the information provided to her from Carmen, Jorden and myself has served to better inform her of the facts of the case… although we cannot expect her to take our word for these things, I hope that she will at least be truly impartial rather than just claiming she is.

  14. You are so gracious Elisa. God bless your kind and caring heart. We are surrounding Carmen with our love and support. Love you both!

  15. Wanda Janz says:

    Elisa,

    Both my husband and I are trying to figure things out on our own. It has been very enlightening to us both that you and Carmen, Jordan and others, have wanted to relay information to us. I was trying to piece things together (going on the ‘innocence’ of PCA) as both my sons attend there. And that we were ‘friends’ with the parents. My tone was extremely harsh towards you and for that I AM truly sorry. It is the ‘others’ who cannot get to me that want their ‘evil’ heard and that is where I erred. I was getting angry and took it out on you. Again, I am sorry. As I have said before, my husband and I are now looking at the school differently than I did the day before yesterday… much differently. Your opinion DOES matter to us both… we are so very sorry for what you and your daughter have gone through in regards to how you were treated. If you and I had not ‘hashed’ it out, my opinion would have remained the same. So thank you for your compassion in the heat of our exchange. You are to be commended for it.

    I listened to Ben when he pointed out my behaviour as I respect him a lot. He is a very calming influence to me. I was also touched by your comment and Jordan’s. I appreciate the time you took to explain things to me. That, in and of itself, speaks volumns. I will only respond to you and to Ben as you are the only ones, so far, worthy of my time. Thank you for your second chance.

  16. Elisa Humphreys says:

    Dear Wanda, Please forgive, apologize and make ammends with other who are posting here… they were only defending us… they already knew our story too well because we are mutually members on a closed facebook site and they had previous access to our information. I was able to handle your affront better than they were because we have heard this garbage before from others… (those who have originally slandered Carmen) ….it was unfortunately a shock to some on this site who could not imagine why we should be doubted or attacked… they were defending us and you all got equally heated with each other… everyone should make ammends and let a better dialogue continue between all people… not just those who feel like acknowledging each other… but between everyone… this is how we make progress with these issues… as is exampled by your gracious acknowledgement of our pain.

  17. Doug Warkentin says:

    Since my comments were to Bene here I respond to Bene:
    Sure Bene let’s look at your blog the same way as you’ve assumed to look at Jim’s posts. You post about Sound Doctrine Church/WinePress Publishing and then you blog about Parents speak up about Mercy Ministries, etc. Which one are you about? Should we name your blog after your first blog name? This is not sound reasoning, no? In Jim’s first post he was informing us all about the fund raising and chose a topic name. He did NOT name a group that name, did he?! In the second one he was talking about a totally different topic, the group that came together and chose the name Healing Team. Go figure!

  18. The Lord Ben Chung says:

    The sacred words of the holy scripture: from the Gospel of John 15,

    “Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’[b] If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. 21 They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the one who sent me. 22 If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty of sin; but now they have no excuse for their sin. 23 Whoever hates me hates my Father as well. 24 If I had not done among them the works no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin. As it is, they have seen, and yet they have hated both me and my Father. 25 But this is to fulfill what is written in their Law: ‘They hated me without reason.”

    And the word for those who attack Bene here: “They hated me without a reason.”

  19. fjc says:

    Ben…..are you able to answer my 4 questions above or do you plan to ignore them in the hope that they will somehow go away.

    If you do not plan on answering, just say so. Otherwise it really becomes a credibility issue doesn’t it?

    I am certain that other folks in PBI leadership are monitoring this site. If you are out there, perhaps one of you could answer these simple questions. Thank you.

  20. fjc says:

    Sorry, I should have said Doug, do you plan on answering those four simple questions???

    My question was NOT directed to Ben.

  21. Doug Warkentin says:

    In short fjc (whoever you are hiding behind this), I have already answered your directing this at me. I am not (that means not) on the Healing Team, nor am I working for or answer to PBI. I have nothing to say in this regard as I really know very little about it.

  22. Bene D says:

    Doug:

    Call the alumni team whatever you want. I call epic fail.
    This isn’t about me or this blog Doug, stick to topic please.

  23. fjc says:

    Thanks, your answer speaks volumes.

  24. Roger Armbruster says:

    Ben, thank you for your kind comments. I have been away for three days, having flown out to Montreal to be with my grandson who has just had a very serious surgery on his right foot, and unfortunately, the only computer that I had at the Montreal Children’s Hospital would not allow me to make a comment on this site. They called it “X-rated,” or “Adult Content,” or something like that!

    I can see that a lot has transpired over the past three days. One thing I can say is that nobody on this site is a “pushover,” because nobody has been “pushed over.”

    I wish that in some of these cases where the public does not know the facts on a personal level, that we would allow the police to do their work. When we go to the media, the public does not have enough facts to know the truth, so let the police do their work. This has now become a media circus, which does not help the police in their search for truth, because I do not believe that the media, in many cases, wants the truth as badly as they want a news story.

    Having said that, for those who do not believe in divine justice, what do we do when the courts fail us? Just yesterday, we had another case which must make the victim wonder if it is worthwhile going through all of the public exposure, and then end up feeling that justice was still not done.

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/story/2012/03/27/bc-teacher-sex-trial-verdict.html

    In the meantime, until the police do their work, and the courts give their verdict, the problem that we face on blogs such as this is that it becomes impossible for us to fully resolve these questions here and now, because on a blog discussion, due to its public nature and the fact that the conflict rarely stays between two people, there are too many opinions, and too many judgments before we even know the facts. This is folly.

    If a comment thread is becoming destructive, it is usually best to take the discussion to a more private setting, or allow feelings to cool down until we can give each other sufficient space to calm down, and to approach the interaction more peacefully, as Ben has done.

    Elisa and Carmen have nothing to prove to me, and I pray that they will find justice, but it would be foolhardy for the public at large to make a firm decision when they know nothing about this, and simply want to allow the police to do their work.

    Of one thing I am confident. I have a belief system that at the end of the day, justice will be served, even if it is not served by the secular courts, and that we can do nothing against the truth but only for the truth. The truth will always stand on its own two feet, and we live in a world where a lie can spread around the world while the truth is just putting on its boots.

    Until the whole truth comes out, our personal opinions about a topic we know nothing about firsthand mean very little. May justice for all prevail.

  25. Elisa Humphreys says:

    FJC… thank-you for your excellent questions… as no one here appears able to answer them, I hope you don’t mind that I posted them on the open site with a link to this blog… hopefully a discussion of the issue will ensue.

  26. fjc says:

    No issue Elisa. I am a fairly simple person and I like dealing with facts.

    I have a feeling that the only time that we will see facts is through an Examination for Discovery in a civil action or in court transcrips from a criminal action. Either or both will require some brave soul to come forward and act accordingly in order to help him/her self other abused victims flush out the truth so that they can move forward to a better place.

    Truth appears to be another victim of this situation.

  27. Benny Himm says:

    All truth is God’s truth. Darren and Bene act as one. Children need protection. When men of “the cloth” overlook the sins of adults, they fail God and others. Forgiveness and restitution are not possible usually. Healing will be different for all affected by the malicious acts of others. Take little stock in the punitive words of those harmed by others. Be gracious. Take a deep breath, let it out. It is normal for those grieving and abused to want to lash out at others ignorance. Embrace their ignorance with love, not correction. They have been wronged terrible, they can be wrong. (We can all be wrong. But we must seek to not harm others.) When they feel love, and hope without fear they are quick to seek forgiveness for the small or large fault they have caused. The Healing Team Seeks Healing. Bene and a few others seek to throw mud from time to time, it is like they are running a political party. It is their issue why this is true not anyone else’s. The Healing Team might help one person, this will be a great thing. The RCMP may help 10, I hope they do. Who are you helping by spreading hate against one other person? If leadership at PBI is malicious sue them, they have legal responsibilities. Darren has no obligation to speak the whole truth and not pervert the truth, keep in mind though Bene is fighting perversion. The weapons of our warfare should be love, truth, grace and we should expose the sins that darken the lives of those in our midst. It will be messy, I am amazed at the near saintliness of people trying to help Like Ruth and Catherine D I cannot think of an unkind word. I forgive all unkind words by those seeking to defend children, its hard to understand how you can forgive those defending an institution, although in many ways an institution is defenseless and should be defended. I know many people have said things to purposely do harm, they failed when they did this, regardless of whether they were on the right side. They should not be “defended” but “accepted”, they can be wrong and they can be loved. There are fewer and fewer people playing the social media fight, the Spirit draws his children away to help those who are in need and leaves those who seek to proof something in the court of public opinion to proof themselves worthy of his Spirit. ((every word in this post may or may not be true, and do not represent the opinion of anyone dead or alive in their entirety, but at least 5 of these words could change your life and make you a better person))

  28. Elisa Humphreys says:

    Dear Benny Himm, Interesting comments…. but what if the Healing Team in dealing with victims actually does more harm than good… to even one person or maybe ten… what then. Keeping in mind that victims need to be handled professionally and with care.

  29. Doug Warkentin says:

    You are right Bene. And I am sticking to topic – truth. You have not given full truth here on this blog and that’s what I’m asking you to do, along with everyone else. I have only given truth here, posting only what has been spoken by the Healing Team and not reading into what they have or have not said.

  30. Benny Himm says:

    Elisa, it is a danger we all face in trying to do good, what happens if we harm someone. It is easy to judge/misjudge ourselves in our ability to to the right thing. How foolish we are when we attack others who seek to help. If they are not effective at helping, but we are better, rather than attacking them, we improve what they do when we come alongside them with our insight. When we attack them, rather than “guiding them” we alienate them and other become fearful of entering in the role of helper.
    I dnk why Center Church backed away, but there has been a lot of animosity dished out by everyone, when we should be humbly seeking to work together. I believe in an almighty Eternal God who will be glorified in the end. Linda, her dad, me, you, Wanda, Ben C, Mark M. will all be crushed if we stand in his way. I believe most of us are missing the point in seeking to be ministers of the God we know cries when we lash out at each other. He is quietly waiting for us. Linda and her father may never be reconciled on the earth, but they can seek to show great love for someone loved by God. (Bringing others to justice is a great form of love, and very painful). People who have been harmed on Bene’s blog by each other trying to be more right than the other, will in their flesh struggle to make and accept amends. (And we will always have our flesh with us). But we do need to find a means to put aside our hurts, and ask how we can help others deal with their pain. Maybe the healing team could include you? The greatest leader is the one who follows and supports those in need so that they can succeed.
    PS i know the RCMP process will hurt everyone, but that does not make it wrong sometimes healing is a pain. We all need different forms of healing. I do not know that the pain I have will ever be gone, I need someone to wipe away my tears, but I know I am healed with no reconciliation. But I look forward to a different day of getting to know someone once their brokeness is taken away. Would’nt it be great t see Mark and Linda leading a healing team together in a waywhich showed love for their differences.

  31. The Lord Ben Chung says:

    Brother Benny Himm:

    “I When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.”

    And I used to read CS Lewis, he had a similar comment that some thought it would be possible to work just a little harder, and try a little more, and one could turn hell into heaven. So he wrote the Great Divorce. Our salvation is not dependent about trying harder to make things right, but to go back to the very start, “We are not living in a world where all roads are radii of a circle and where all, if followed long enough, will therefore draw gradually nearer and finally meet at the centre: rather in a world where every road, after a few miles, forks into two, and each of those into two again, and at each fork you must make a decision.”

    William Blake may be a genius when he write the “Marriage of Heaven and Hell,” but I think otherwise, there is the Great Divorce here. Brother Mark and his school is but one person (US Laws, a corporation is but one person), but they refuse to offer the help our survivors need. They perhaps thought all roads lead to the same destination: some would try the Healing Team, some try ‘Forgiveness poison-Koolaid’ some would come to Abbot Mark and seek forgiveness, and others try CSC. All roads lead to Rome?? WRONG! Every road forks after awhile. Every decision we make leads a bit further from destination or towards it, but never the answer itself.

    Simply asking our survivors’ blindly trust if we come together with Abbot Mark, and let him guide the way, that would be the answer. I think when I became a man, I put away childish things. Our salvation is dependent on the fact that we go back to the very beginning of the abuse, hold those accountable, work through the insular environment and teaching of the Old Prairie. The school has to come tot the table, open its books and assist to hold those animals down or put them down. Whatever it takes, to make sure there is justice.

    To do so without going back to the very beginning of the abuse, and to have those held accountable, is like proposing a marriage between heaven and hell. I only see the Great Divorce here, and if Linda’s father is in heaven, and I were Linda, I would rather go to hell, since a God so unjust cannot be true, and simply to hold this thought, is odious to me. Nantucket Indians asked the same question, but after the English missionaries told them that their ancestors are in hell, but they can all go to heaven trusting this Christ. They merely reply, we are not going to a place without our people.

    Keep your faiths to yourselves, I say. But while we are in the world, at least respect the laws of the land. If rape occurred, let the perpetrator be held accountable. If the school acted as but one corporate person, let the school be punished for this if it refuses to be part of the solution. But a metaphysical answer, the Koolaid, that is fine, but keep that thought personal, and within thy bosom. It is not the gospel truth, and if Jesus taught to forgive these perpes this way, perhaps he is wrong. He has exgetically done the wrong passage and he is wrong. Perpetrators cannot be freed of their cells, without first change and come to the table. After all, not all leads to Rome. Those who did the wrong, and hid the wrong and now roam about free, will find the final fire at the end. No matter of what prayers they pray, or imagine, be not mocked, sexual immorality cannot inherit the kingdom of heaven.

    I have said this many times, Abbot Mark, your time has come, the end is near. Repent and believe the gospel. The ax is laid on the root, if the fruits of repentance do not come forth, you will be cut down. Mark my words, Abbot Mark. These words are from your own bible.

  32. Getting back on topic. I think there is more to this story about CSC and PBI ending their partnership then we have been told.

    There are a few things that I think are important for everyone to know. One is that there were a number of survivors who came forward and had their stories heard and the reality of their pain and trauma validated by Dr. Mollering. This should put to rest any notion that there are just a few isolated cases of “alleged” abuse.

    I think that one of the reasons for the drop in survivors coming forward in the past 3-4 weeks is due mainly to the rhetoric coming from the administration that seems to want to continue to minimize old cases of abuse, critique whether the stories are “real” and distance themselves from the responsibility for the crimes that have been committed on children in their community. This posturing naturally leads the survivors to take a “wait and see” approach. I know there are many more survivors who have not come forward and whose stories have still not been heard.
    We know of a survivor who was not able to access funds for therapy due to them not going through the Healing Team. This disturbs me because it reinforces my belief that survivors who go through the Healing Team are treated much more favorably than those who do not. This is totally unacceptable.

    Mark Maxwell sent me an email indicating that the partnership with CSC and PBI was ending. In that email was the statement “ Centre Street Church has provided a summary of findings and recommendations to PBI, which the leadership team is currently reviewing.” I wonder if this information will be shared with the survivors and alumni?

  33. Doug Warkentin says:

    It sounds like grasping at straws and lots of speculation based on … nothing. Just wait until the full information from the emails is displayed for all to see about what really took place in the joint work between CSC and PBI. I understand information has been sent to you about this for clarification as well Linda. Are you willing and daring enough to share it here?

  34. Elisa Humphreys says:

    Dear Benny Himm… You are right when you say it is foolish to attack those who try to help others. But I think the issue here is to ensure that people who are trying to help do not have a hidden agenda, do not represent those who caused the offense or are biased towards them, and that they are professionally capable of dealing with serious issues like sexual assault and the manipulative nature of those who abuse. From our experience dealing with the larger community at Prairie, there is great deal of ignorance towards the issue of sexual assault. People seem prone to believe those who slander victims, and give perpetrators a free pass. Working with a Healing Team who was professionally qualified or who was lead by a professional and followed specifically set out guidelines could in some instances be okay… but I do not think this is the case here. I suspect these well meaning individuals are just going with their hearts and flying by the seat of their pants, but this is not sufficient. Also given that Center Street Church is now bowing out… possibly because the Healing Team was problamatic, makes me leary as to whether I would subject my daughter to their help. As a parent I would rather be “better safe than sorry”, and would prefer that my daughter deal with a professional third party. As for you suggesting I join the Healing Team… I do not consider myself qualified… other than to perform simply intake tasks… these theraputic counselling duties would normally be preformed by a Psychologist or a Social Worker with a Masters degree, even in Pastoral settings. Please excuse these critisisms but I feel it reasonable to ask “who what where when and how”… before considering an option such as the Healing Team… for me the stakes are too high considering my daughters well-fair… excuse my protectiveness… but if you look at the attack she recieved from Wanda… on the earlier Bene Diction Blog… please do look by scrolling through all comments… click older comments and newer comments… you will see how terrible this attack was…. and although Wanda has apologized and I have accepted… but my daughter and even myself are still shell-shocked from that attack as it represented the greater opinion of many at PBI/PCA… So Benny I have questions about the Healing Team and about why Dr. M. has quit… and she didn’t quit for lack of victims… there was some kind of problem… I need answers and I need to know more about the Healing Team… questions like why they didn’t ask Dr M. to provide her professional leadership or expertise to them… rather than criticize those that ask reasonable questions… why not seek to know the answers?

  35. Just a question Doug…we were blessed not to hear from you for months and now all of a sudden you are inserting yourself into discussions about the survivors. You have clearly said that you are not with the healing team and know little about it. So what is your role here? Are you really that concerned about what happens to the survivors or are you merely replacing Fred Whaples as an impediment to the process? I just would like to know because the similarities between you and Fred are striking.

  36. Elisa Humphreys says:

    Okay… I am not trying to attack anyone here… I just think my questions are reasonable…

  37. MEC says:

    Linda, Doug sure doesn’t know you very well or else is baiting you to ask if you’re ‘willing and daring enough to share it here’. What an ass he just made of himself.

  38. Wanda Janz says:

    Reading all the above posts I just cannot understand the ‘people’ representing ‘victims’. Everyone wants answers but only a select few are allowed to ask for them. Funny you have a double standard for anyone who does not agree with you mightly. Both my husband and I have spent long hours weighing the pros and cons of sending our boys to PCA and have come to the conclusion that sending them there is the absolute right thing to do. We believe them to be upright and sound in their teachings. And we will continue to support them as both of us have seen nothing here that has changed our minds and that PCA is more than deserving of our support. Thank you for making it all the more clearer to us… we appreciate it.

  39. Roger Armbruster says:

    Yes, I am thankful that there is such a thing as freedom of choice, where we each can choose our course of action, and what is right for us and our children.

    My own daughter-in-law has made similar choices about what is right for her and her children, and just last evening she was honoured as as one of Winnipeg’s most beautiful women, understanding true beauty as that which comes from within, from the deep heart.

    http://www.winnipegwomen.net/features/1423-beautiful-women-jocelyn-armbruster

    The church that she goes to has a strong emphasis on combining worship with justice, and their whole focus, like mine, is to reach out to the poor and the broken.

    Peace!

  40. Elisa Humphreys says:

    Dear Wanda… My son had had 3 good years a PCA and that is why I sent my daughter there… when my daughter was raped it was year 5 for us a Prairie. However because of what happened to us, I would not suggest that anyone send their daughters there, particularly to live in the dorm if Sheila remains the Director of Girls Residence, and until such time as we are sure that policies have been put in place. Probably your two boys are okay there, and in fact if these problems are solved, I would even recommend the school to other families.

  41. Roger Armbruster says:

    Elisa, your perspective is very understandable, and very fair.

    Even in the residential schools, people had many different types of experiences, and while some were positive, there were a lot more negative ones there than I think (and correct me if I am wrong) ever happened at PCA.

    Even to this day, there are many of the residential school survivors who feel that the Prime Minister’s apology, and even the cash payouts, were not enough, but there are some who found the grace to respond differently, and who wanted to communicate that they were ready to release forgiveness. I realize that not everybody is ready for that, but it should be a valid option for those who are ready and able to do it.

    Here is how some, including Elijah Harper who is no pushover, responded exactly two years after the PM’s apology.

    http://www.canadaawakeningministries.blogspot.ca/2010/06/one-groups-response-to-prime-ministers.html

  42. I think the crux of the whole issue about CSC leaving is did they get the full support of PBI or not? I think the answer is an emphatic “NO”. There was a definite distinction in the way survivors who used the healing team were treated versus those who used Dr. Mollering. I saw it first-hand. Did PBI pay for therapy for those who used the healing team but NOT for those who used Dr. Mollering? That is what I want answered.

    Anyone can spin the information to their liking but if you follow the money you generally get to the heart of the truth.

  43. Wanda Janz says:

    Elisa:

    Yes I do agree that my boys will find a much different time there. I hope that things change for you in that you find closure for this.

    Roger:

    I liked what you said – ‘release forgiveness’. I believe that is what I did after the abuse. It took many years and many heartaches. Blessings to you and those you comfort.

  44. Doug Warkentin says:

    So what give one the right to assume and make speculation and claim or act like it is truth?! “I think the answer…” does not cut it for truth anytime. And if anyone can spin information then how can one believe one claim of “I saw it first hand?” You see you still cannot have it both ways. Either the same rules of truth apply to everyone or they don’t.

    Thanks for sharing the one tidbit from the email you got from Mark. Is this all he had to say? Why not share all or most of what he had to say? Let’s not be afraid of the truth for it will set us free!

  45. Truth Comes Out says:

    That is apparent.

  46. Doug, Mark’s email was a feeble attempt to spin the story in PBI’s favor. I was not impressed. I am curious if you are not on the healing team then how do you know so much about Mark’s email to me? Sounds like there is a direct pipeline from the administration and the healing team/friends of PBI. Not real independent is it? Again, as I said a long time ago when you were in the WE group. The survivors do not want you, they do not like your interference and they would prefer that you take your self-righteous attitude down the road. You, like Fred do nothing to promote progress in this situation.

  47. Fred Whaples says:

    Based on honor, truth, compassion, transparency, Christ-like characteristics, and every fruit of the Spirit that I, in a brief amount of time, obeserved through Doug Warkentin’s life, I am humbled and honored that I would be seen in the same light and spoke in the same breath. What was meant for Doug’s dishonor has become a blessing to me. Of all the people Doug could have been compared to .. that my name was the one. Doug, the Lord be with you… especially since we own our humanity and both GLORY in HIS perfection!!

  48. Roger Armbruster says:

    It might interest some of us to know that the healing of the soul is closely connected to the healing of the soul, and that healing of the broken-hearted is a key to the healing of broken relationships, which is a key to the healing of the land which has become polluted and defiled by human beings.

    The following interview was on CBC North radio, recorded in Iqaluit, Nunavut, a community that has known abuse and injustice unparalleled anywhere in our land.

    http://www.canadaawakeningministries.blogspot.ca/2009/12/interview-with-roger-armbruster-by.html

    Heal our land, O Lord! Heal our land, O Lord!
    We stand guard and pray in the power of Your Name,
    Heal our land, O Lord!

    Stir up repentance, and bring true forgiveness,
    Heal our land O Lord!
    For you have called us from across this nation
    To be a people of prayer in this broken creation,
    We come in humility, and pray for Your mercy,
    Please healing our land O Lord!

    Bind up the wounded, comfort the broken,
    Heal our land, O Lord!
    Cleanse us from sin, restore us again,
    Heal our land, O Lord!

    People and land our connected, and we both live on the same land, so it is vital that we find a way to reconcile, which does not happen without conflict, honesty, confrontation, and then finding out at a deeper level, that we may really want the same thing. Let us not be afraid to get deeper, and the truth will ultimately speak for itself. The truth is that we are fellow human beings, and deep down, we do want to be understood, as well as to understand.

    Come, now, let us reason together. In all conflict resolution, what has become as clear as the day is that there are usually three sides to every conflict. The solution is usually somewhere in the middle.

    Resolution and justice and clarity can normally only be achieved when we allow each side’s dignity to remain intact. Once walls between us come down, we can feel safe in being honest, and in sharing our hearts fully, without fear of backlash or blowback.

    In the meantime, conflict can be a good thing. After having expressed our hearts, and having not only expressed but even exploded at one another, that will at least reveal whatever is on the inside, and that is a good thing, albeit painful in the short-term. Grieving is a necessary part of healing. In the biblical world, people were allowed to grieve for a definitive period of time, but not to allow one’s life to become obsessed with the past to the point where the grieving only gets deeper and deeper, and never gets healed for the rest of one’s life. Life is too short for that.

    What we are all learning is that “communicating” by expletives, swearing, cursing and releasing of the F bombs, may give us a temporary sense of relief, it will not help us in communicating with the public at large who do not know the truth that we may know. There are times when it is better to hire a spokes person to present our case publicly in a way that the public at large will be influenced and impacted. Sometimes, that may mean awaiting our day in court. Preferably it could happen when two people in a conflict get together to talk about their differences peacefully, away from the public glare.

    On the issues being discussed, I do not know where the truth lies, because it has not yet come fully to light, but I am convinced that in due time, not only will the truth come out, but that each one will reap whatever they have sown. That is justice. That is resolution. That is clarity.

    After some of the most recent court rulings, if I did not believe in the ultimate law of sowing and reaping, I would have little hope for ultimate justice indeed. That is just my personal faith, a faith that I am not willing to impose upon anybody else.

    Peace be with you all.

  49. Roger Armbruster says:

    My apologies, that first line should have read, that “the healing of the SOUL is closely connected to the healing of the SOIL.” Our bodies came from the dust of the earth, so the two are connected.

  50. Doug Warkentin says:

    Didn’t answer the question. What else did Mark say? Let us all here be the judge of this.

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