Rick Joyner downsizes, Todd Bentley upsizes?

By Rick Hiebert. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission

Excited e-mail from Todd Bentley on the morning of May 8, as he is starting up his new-to-him revival center with a little conference this weekend, to be broadcast live over the internet.

The location? In Fort Mill S.C. at an address…

“on the same property as Morningstar “. Stay at the Heritage International Ministries Retreat Center

So, is Todd picking up Rick Joyner’s mortgage for this particular piece of proprerty? Is it a part of the old PTL property that Joyner doesn’t need, which would mean that Joyner would be Bentley’s landlord? (Or maybe things have really gone pear-shaped for Joyner and he sold out to someone who will let him him borrow his old facility back?)

Well, at least Bentley isn’t going right to subscriber-only content. But donations will be needed to cover this weekend’s events.

Todd and Jessa had mentioned wanting to have their own kids in addition to Todd’s starter kids, so perhaps this is a model that will allow Todd to do that. Jessa puts her foot down–look you’re not going to be on the road all the time.

UPDATE: This tends to be confirmed by a May 14 e-mail. Part of his latest hand out appeal is a request for money for huge video screens. Bentley’s idea is that he will stay at home and the video screens will be set up in places like India for major crusades overseas. Bentley will stay home and preach at a camera, and the camera will send a signal overseas for the people there to react to.

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“A revival [will] hit your land [Canada] that will be a hundred times more powerful than all historic revivals put together.”

By Rick Hiebert. All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission

Since April of 2013. Faytene Grasseschi has felt led to boost the idea of a great Canadian revival. One so great that it will spread worldwide until the “return of Jesus”.

It’s a bit of a meme among a certain group of charismatics. But although this idea seems to be something that is widely spoken out loud in an auditorium, finding the tracks of the idea, online, seems to be a bit of a task.

But we need to offer thanks in advance for Canadian evangelist/activist Faytene Grasseschi, who has done a nice jobs of reporting for us as part of a Halifax N.S. sermon that she preached back in April 2013 as part of the Miracles in the Maritimes. conference. [Sermons by her which are not behind subscriber walls are increasingly hard to find.]

But as I mentioned, we owe her thanks for passing on what she learned. In the sermon, she explained that her purpose was to encourage he listeners to be hopeful for revival, as she had been feeling led by God to spread the word about upcoming revival, according to several prophecies that she cites.

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Senator Don Meredith and Charles McVety’s California State Christian University

A few years ago,  I wrote about the unaccredited ‘university’ that Charles McVety had in California. The issue of some evangelicals who give themselves or each other fake academic credentials through money grabbing diploma mills, or through bastardizing the practice of granting their buddies honourary degrees.

In the case of Senator Don Meredith, his Masters in Religious Studies from the unaccredited California State Christian University is being questioned by the Senates top Tory Claude Carignan; and rightfully so.

A Conservative senator earmarked as one of the Senate’s top spenders holds a master’s degree from a school whose phone number directs calls to a customer helpline for a website that sells iPads and printers.

Senator Don Meredith, a Toronto-area Pentecostal pastor, has a master’s degree in religious studies from California State Christian University (CSCU) – an unaccredited and unregulated private institution that has shifted addresses at least four times within the last ten years.

It’s an academic claim that has caught the attention of the office of the top Tory in the Senate and triggered a request for Meredith to provide details of his credentials, more than three years after his appointment to the red chamber by Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

Meredith also belongs to a Canadian Christian Clinical Counsellors Association, Inc., (another McVety offering (business?) out of Calgary - Burlington – incorporated in 2001.

Canadian Christian Theological Seminary (CCTS) is a registered training institution of the CCCCA, which holds letters patented with the Government of Canada. It is recognized and affiliated with Christian International School, Canadian Theological Education Association, Order of Certified Pastoral Counselors, and Canadian College Russia.
CCTS offers theological degrees in a wide variety of genres through the CCCCA. All programs are module structured to fit the student’s schedule.
Many graduate Colleges & Universities accept CCTS credits toward further graduate degrees, including, California Christian University & School of Biblical Theology in Los Angeles and San Francisco, The State University of St. Petersburg (one of the top 10 Universities in the world), The VBCI College of Calgary, Montreal School of Ministry, The Tae Han Theological Seminary of Seoul Korea and Tokyo, Japan, and The Dae Han Theological College of Venice, California.

Inserted:  From Corporations Canada, Canadian Christian Clinical Counsellors Association, Inc. registration.

The Canadian Christian Clinical Counsellors Association, Inc., is connected to The Evangelical Order of Certified Pastoral Counsellors of America and shares the same Burlington address.  (Dr.) Stephen Hambly is a director for both organizations. According to Postmedia News, this honourary degree under question was granted in 2011 by CCTS at Crossroads Christian Communications in Burlington.

 Whats a few degrees between friends?

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More problems for proposed Trinity Western University law school

The Law Society of Upper Canada (Ontario) and Nova Scotia Barristers Society have voted on whether future graduates of the BC evangelical university which recently received permission from BC to form a law school will be able to practice law in their provinces. The Globe & Mail:

Nova Scotia’s law society has voted to approve accreditation of Trinity Western University law school, but only if it drops the controversial policy prohibiting same-sex intimacy that some say is discriminatory.

Ten members of the council of Nova Scotia Barrister’s Society voted to conditionally accredit, while nine voted against allowing graduates from the faith-based Trinity Western University to practise in the province.

The decision follows that by Ontario’s law society to refuse to accredit the new law school.

The Law Society of New Brunswick will be voting in June.

This is the reaction of the Trinity Western University President:

“We are very disappointed,” said Trinity Western University president Bob Kuhn in a statement.

“These decisions impact all Canadians and people of faith everywhere. They send the chilling message that you cannot hold religious values and also participate fully in public society.”

…But Kuhn told the panel that treating the university’s alumni different from graduates of other schools would be prejudicial.

Kuhn, a long-time lawyer, said he was offended by any suggestion that religious beliefs would prevent students from acting professionally and ethically in their duties as lawyers.

TWU does not receive public funding. The law school, scheduled to open in 2016 would take about 60 students. The school  got into a royal battle in the 1990′s with the BC College of Teachers.

In the late 1990s, the British Columbia College of Teachers blocked Trinity Western from granting teaching degrees in light of its policies related to homosexuality. At the time, students were required to sign an agreement not to engage in activities that were “biblically condemned,” including “homosexual behaviour.”

The case went to the Supreme Court of Canada, which overturned the college’s decision.

As well TWU made news a few years ago because of a charitable tax scheme involving TWU parents and students.

There is no such thing as a Christian lawyer, which is what I hear TWU attempting to promote. There are lawyers who are Christians. In fact there are many in Canada, all of who went to law schools which did not require signed covenants  promoting institutionalized discrimination. None of those lawyers are any less Christian, are they?

The five page TWU covenant requires students  refrain from, “sexual intimacy that violates the sacredness of marriage between a man and a woman” and the covenant promotes ‘healthy sexuality’, which, “according to the Bible, sexual intimacy is reserved for marriage between one man and one woman, and within that marriage bond it is God’s intention that it be enjoyed as a means for marital intimacy and procreation.” 

Potential law students in a same-sex marriage need not apply.
While opposition to same sex marriage is a default response in some conservative evangelical corners, it is not the only response of evangelicals.
No doubt there are gay Christians who would be openly willing to abide by an abstention rule, having grown up with that belief.
I wonder how many GLBT students at a school like TWU remain in the closet out of fear. I have as much of a problem with a culture of shame and fear around sexual orientation as I do with blantant discrimination against same sex married couples. And I have little patience with Kuhn’s belief that people of faith are under any kind of chill or attack. Seems to me his comment is a direct insult to every lawyer who is a Christian practicing in Canada.  The chill I feel as a believer is from fellow evangelicals demanding signed covenants and openly demanding the right to discriminate against a minority.

A petition by a BC lawyer has garnered double the number of signatures required to force a general meeting of the BC Law Society within 60 days to review the decision to accredit a law school at TWU.

Trinity Western University is signalling that they will pursue their goals aggressively through the legal system.

Neil Godbout at The Prince George Citizen speaks more eloquently and sufficiently than I have. What would Jesus do? 

All law students are taught that the law must be paramount over personal beliefs or religious values for democracy to exist and justice to be served.

Kuhn is free to demand his students sign the behaviour covenant but law societies across Canada are free to oppose that demand and reject the school’s graduates, on the grounds that they’ve been taught that their religious values are greater than the law and that they condone prejudiced behaviour against homosexuals.

There is a simple resolution to this problem. Trinity Western needs to look no further than the words of Jesus Christ to know how it should proceed.

“Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s,” Jesus told his followers in the book of Matthew, chapter 22, verse 21. It was Christ’s advice for those wanting guidance on what to do when conflict arises between the laws of humanity and God’s commands. It seems clear that Jesus said that in matters of the law, the law takes precedence, so long as it doesn’t interfere with worship. Christians can remain true to both human law and to God’s word without sinning or condoning sinful behaviour.

There is no need for Trinity Western to have its students sign the behavior covenant. Devout Christians wanting a faith-based education could rightly refuse to sign the covenant on the grounds that it is God’s judgment, not the school’s, that is paramount. A written declaration to the school about following Christian behaviour holds no water when the only judge that matters is Christ himself.

Kuhn’s faith in God needs to be matched by some faith in his students. By enrolling in Trinity Western, his students have put their faith (and their time and money) in receiving a post-secondary education at an institution that values the Christian beliefs they already hold more than what is available at other colleges and universities. Kuhn and Trinity Western’s leadership should return the faith placed in them by their students by trusting them to continue to embrace the words and the example set by the Saviour.

Doing so would allow the university and its students to follow both Canadian law and God’s words. It would also allow law societies across Canada to recognize the school’s graduates as competent lawyers who understand the separation of church and state.

Update: Trinity Western U is suing Ontario and Nova Scotia law societies and will be part of the lawsuit in BC which is challenging the schools right to have a law school.

Update: BC lawyers vote against Trinity Western Law School

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Two odd things about Bob Jones visiting from heaven

By Rick Hiebert. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.

Bobby Conner believes that the late “prophet” Bob Jones visited him in a vision. I’d suggest there is reason to go “I dunno” in response. Perhaps even two.

Conner, using The Elijah List, excitedly shared his experience yesterday [April 23] by e-mail. You may read it here.

He states that he is well aware that Jones has passed away. But he passes on what “Jones” has to say for encouragement, namely that there is a big revival coming. Conner grants the message great credence and validity.

Let’s grant, for argument’s sake. that Christians can have heaven-related experiences and should seek them. [I know that many do not agree. But, I hope to suggest that even by Conner's own standards, there is reason to wonder.]

Conner’s description of “Jones” may puzzle. He writes (emphasis mine):

Bob simply stepped into my study. I did not need to open the window, he just walked right in. His appearance was incredible: He was firm and fit, and he was dressed in a wonderful, soft, beautiful, elegant, white robe past his waist down below his knees, like a long shirt. His hair was extremely white and glistening. I was amazed at his skin: It was without blemish, white and soft, and his smile was truly radiant and beautiful. His eyes were bigger than normal and extremely clear, sparkling like that of an excited child.

In various accounts where people say they have visited heaven, they say that the people therein are in the prime of their life, say in their late 20s or ealy 30s, in perfact phsyical shape. Colton Burpo, subject of Heaven Is For Real. met his great grandfather in heaven, an the great grandfather appeared to be around 30 years old in appearance.

It would be logical, if you discount Burpo, to assume that the “you” in heaven would be a perfect, adult “you”.

Well then, why does “Jones” have “white” hair like the Man From Glad? If he still old in heaven?

I’m also reminded of the Biblical example of The Witch of Endor’s encounter with Samuel, called back from the afterlife. Let”S assume The Bible means what it say and says what it means here.

Let’s note 1 Samuel 28:15, where Samuel complains to Saul: “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?”

Evidently Samuel was called away from a very pleasant place,wherever he was. He had been “disturbed” by being called away to answer a whiny, doomed king.

Let’s compare that to the reaction of “Jones” in Conner’s vision.

I was so excited to see my dear friend, I said, “I’ve been expecting this meeting! And looking forward to it.” He quickly replied in an excited tone, “Me too!” His next words were, “You are doing fine!” And he said, placing both hands on his chest, “And I am doing wonderful.”

Samuel, in the Biblical account, is perturbed. “Jones” is “looking forward” to being called away from the pleasures of heaven like a waiter at a diner with an eagerly awaited overdue order of cheeseburgers.

If people I know and love are in heaven, I’d understand if they were not bothered in order to cater to me.

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Todd Bentley: I need $10,000 NOW!

By Rick Hiebert. All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission

Well, perhaps it wasn’t stated as bluntly as in my headline. But Todd Bentley put on the pressure a couple hours ago by e-mail. And he only has about 45 hours to go.

Is he paying a ransom to kidnappers? Owe 10 large to gangsters? No. he’s trying to meet a deadline for a down payment on an “apostolic kingdom center” If he can come up with $10,000 US to meet the 48 hour deadline, he can have the facility, complete with 300 seat sanctuary.

Thus the e-mail tonight. He’s quite excited about the possibilities.

Bentley, we may recall, has been under the mentoring of Rick Joyner since the collapse of Lakeland. Bentley writes in the e-mail that he has been waning for several years to have his own facility eith offices, etc., so he coud hold events in Charlotte, N.C. etc.

If Joyner’s Morningstar holds the mortgage paper that Bentley would be assuming, that would be one thing. And that I do not know. But, after being helped by Morningstar for years, this facility would offer Bentley total defacto independence. Depending on what you think of Joyner’s mentoring, that could be an ominous portent.

I think that a little of Bentley’s excitement may be joy at the prospect of being able to snap his fingers at everyone, if he so chooses.

Let’s see how it plays out. Certainly, if he pulls it off, he will have to end his sabbatical to pay this mortgage. Whether he is ready or not to do so.

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Blogging at BDBO to be light that week. :)

By Rick Hiebert. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission

Reporters were watching The 700 Club broadcast on Monday, where Pat Robertson broke the news that a huge asteroid will hit the earth, and perhaps destroy it, as soon as next week.

The San Antonio Express-News is on the story this morning as I write:

“So, hey, just get ready,” Roberston said. “Get right. And stay right with the Lord… It could be next week, it could be 1,000 years from now. But nevertheless, we want to be ready whenever the Lord says, ‘I’m wrapping it up, and it’s time to come home.’ ”

Robertson was careful to qualify, but the paper was savvy enough to notice that Robertson was promoting his book The End of The Age.

Also, john Hagee, who has been talking about the evil portents of an astrological coincidence of a series of “blood moons”–which started April 15–also has a new book out.

Who woulda thunk it?

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Former MK speaks out – New Tribes Mission ‘retires’ abuser

8 years ago in 2006, Lori, a wife and mom living in the US,  and a former missionary kid (MK), wrote New Tribes Mission.

In 1981-82, I was 10-11 years old and a resident of the Earl Dorm at the New Tribes Mission base of Numonohi, Papua New Guinea. The Earl dorm parents were Gary and Annie Earl, and the dorm was called the Hibiscus Dorm (located in the far right front corner of the base). It was a small dorm: there were 7 dorm children (ages 8-17) and I think by then there were 4 Earl children (all under age 6).

One evening, I was outside playing on the base’s swing sets when one of the little children of my dorm came and told me to go back to the dorm. I went into the dorm and was alone in the house with the dorm dad, Gary Earl.

He said that his daughter, a 1st grader, told him I had not swept the floor that evening, as was my work detail assignment. I said that I did sweep the floor, but I admitted that I had not turned on a light to do it (because I was in a hurry to play!).

He became visibly angry at me and told me to go to his and Annie’s bedroom. I cannot, because of the trauma of the event, give you a dialogue of our discussion. I remember his red, angry face, his very loud booming voice, how huge he was, and that he began to spank me with a board -about 2′ long, 6″ wide, and 3/4-1″ thick -on my bottom and upper thighs.

After many strikes with that board, I thought the spanking was done, but he told me to stand up and asked me again if I swept the floor. I said, ”Yes, I did. I won’t lie.” He said I was lying, yelled at me to lie face down, and hit me over and over again.

Again, I had to stand up, answer if I swept the floor or not, and then lie down again because my answer was not right. I remember asking him at one point, in a respectful manner, if he wanted me to lie to him; is this what he was asking for? He told me he was to break my will. He told me that I was a liar, I could not possibly be a Christian, and did I know where the Bible says that liars go? They go to hell.

Over and over again, up and down, up and down. He screamed so loudly at me that I remember his spit. As time went on, I was too weak to get up and down. He grabbed me to stand me up to yell at me, and then pushed me to lie me back down.

In writing this, I cannot make you understand how long this event took, or how hard his strikes were. I remember looking at the digital clock on their bed’s shelf, and thinking, “This can’t go on forever. It isn’t possible for it to last forever.” I remember wanting my Daddy, who had given me a good many spankings but never one with a board, and never one that bruised (I had lived with my parents my first 9 years, in the States at language school).

I remember also that there were two occasions when he had to grab me from the bed and physically hold me in order to stand me up. I’m not sure but those two blackouts may have been times when I fainted. I had a heart murmur as a child, and at the time, I would often faint if crying hard.

As time went on, I remember thinking, “I don’t think he will kill me. I hope he doesn’t kill me.”

I remember running out of tears.

Lori was beaten bloody, and a fear took hold of her that day that still holds her in its grip. The physical scars of that beating will always be visible. The emotional and spiritual beatings left different scars.

For all of the years since then, until I graduated in 1989, Gary Earl always seemed to have something against me.

He often searched for me around with a flashlight, catching me in dark places. He belittled me, telling me once that I couldn’t sing well, and another time that I was not a Christian. He told me I would never be successful. He did not ever strike me again. He did yell at me one time when I sassed Annie. She intervened. In 1988, he kicked my brother, Calvin, and me out of his dorm. There was no explanation given to me. Even if others did not get into trouble, I did from him. This can be verified by many others.

You may be wondering why I never told anyone. For one, even to this day, I am absolutely afraid of that man. He had been a police officer prior to coming to Papua New Guinea, and he liked to tell his police stories. I had no doubt that he could kill me. He was a huge man; bigger than every other man I remember on the Numonohi base.

In breaking her silence in 2006, Lori began to deal with her childhood abuse on the mission field, and in telling her story she didn’t realize she’d face another kind of abuse that survivors aren’t prepared for – obfuscation, institutional incompetence and silence. She was 35 years old, the mother of four, and her story landed on the desk of New Tribes Mission lawyer Scott Ross in February of that year.

Scott Ross got back to her in August 2006, “I do want to follow through with your case.  It is very important and as you know, Gary is pretty influential so I want all my i’s dotted as I approach him.”

Then there was silence.

In 2007, another New Tribes Mission executive let Lori know Ross was busy, and would she meet with execs to discuss missionary boarding school abuse?

In July 2007, a meeting with Gary Earl and lawyer Scott Ross which was supposed to happen, hadn’t. Lori was told a child abuse investigative policy was being worked on.

Again, silence.

In January 2008, Lori was told Gary Earl had been approached and that he had written a letter of apology, “expressing his deep sorrow and sadness for what he did to you. He seems very sincere and heartbroken.”
Lori decided not to receive Gary Earl’s letter. It is still on file.


In 2010, Lori again wrote New Tribes Mission asking about the Child Protection committee and the Earl letter. By this time the G.R.A.C.E. (Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment) report on New Tribes Fanda Missionary School abuse was out. Evangelical media had picked up the story of abused missionary kids.

More silence.

It was now 2013, and Lori hadn’t heard another word from New Tribes Mission about the abuse she had reported.

In July 2013, investigative firm Pii International contacted her about the abuse at the New Tribes Mission Papua New Guinea school. Lori writes:

July – August 2013
Pii continues to email me, and I allow them to send questions, but after receipt of the questions, I felt that Pii was insensitive in how they asked for information from me. And since I only knew of my story with Gary Earl, and since I did not request they reopen my “case,” and since I had previously been disappointed by NTM’s lack of action, I did not respond to Pii.

I am also wary of Pii because they were hired by Scott Ross and are located in his geographical area. Scott Ross, in my previous experience, collected information only to protect New Tribes Mission. I didn’t feel like Pii would produce a report like GRACE did for the Fanda Eagles.

In December of 2013, Pii International sends Lori a Statement of Finding. (I find it interesting Pii International did not get much co-operation from survivors, nothing close to what G.R.A.C.E. had with the Fanda investigation.)

1. Affirmed: Based on all of the evidence considered by Professional Investigators International, including the credibility of the witnesses interviewed, it was determined that there was Clear and Convincing Evidence to find that Gary Earl engaged in physical misconduct. There is Clear and Convincing Evidence that Gary Earl engaged in misconduct in violation of applicable NTM-USA policy.

For the first time, Lori learns that others suffered physical and sexual abuse at her childhood school. In January 2014, Pii International informed Lori their report would not be released by New Tribe Mission.

Last month Lori again asked for communication from New Tribes Mission about the Pii International findings.

Brian Coombs, recently appointed New Tribes Mission Director of Personnel informs Lori that Gary Earl was asked to retire, and that his sending church in the USA had been informed, “Gary was found, in 2 separate cases, to have violated NTM’s child protection policy in regards to physical abuse.”

Lori writes New Tribe Mission headquarters again, saying she requires two things from them:

“To be clear: I want two things from NTM and that is all. 1) I want Gary Earl exposed in a statement* to all of NTM and all Earl supporters. 2) I want Gary Earl terminated from New Tribes Mission, no longer able to represent the thousands of good missionaries in NTM.”

Earl and his wife headed back to the Papua New Guinea school in December 2013 to ‘pack.’ They are still there, and sent out a letter to supporters in January informing them that, “As we retire from overseas in PNG and NTM, we have been asked to continue full-time with ROCK International ministries.”

New Tribes Mission tells Lori,”Gary is not allowed to volunteer with NTM, is not allowed to represent NTM in any way, and his retirement was not celebrated. This was/is a form of forced resignation that allowed Annie to continue with insurance since she is dealing with cancer. The benefits that were allowed are because of Annie, not Gary.”

Lori, shaken, scared and hurt, started posting her story of abuse and the  years of stonewalling by New Tribes Mission online March 26th, in the Fanda Eagles MK NTM boarding school abuse forum.

On March 28th Brian Coombs of New Tribe Mission sent out a confidential email to New Tribes Mission USA members informing them of Gary Earls retirement. Among other things this was said:

We are also aware that a former MK has posted documents on the internet. This MK had told us in advance that she would do this unless we acquiesced to two demands she had of us. It is our intent to take action and publish appropriate notifications in light of policy and best practice standards and not because of demands.

Let’s look at Lori’s ‘demands’ again, and why she requested this support from New Tribes Mission.

“To be clear: I want two things from NTM and that is all. 1) I want Gary Earl exposed in a statement* to all of NTM and all Earl supporters. 2) I want Gary Earl terminated from New Tribes Mission, no longer able to represent the thousands of good missionaries in NTM.

I don’t request revenge, money, court, counseling, publicity, vacation … I only want the two things above. They are easy; they can be done quickly.

My reasons:
Sin can only thrive in darkness; it cannot survive in light. Since NTM won’t expose Gary Earl, I will. This puts me in a vulnerable position, and makes me have to relive the horror, but SOMEbody has to do it. I believe his employer, New Tribes Mission, should do this. But if NTM won’t expose Gary Earl, I will, and in doing so, I will have to also expose NTM.

Exposing Gary is necessary in three ways: it will be more difficult for him to find a future victim; it will let other victims know they are not the only one; it will give Gary an opportunity to seek rehabilitation. As long as his sin is in secret, he will never be free of it or able to be begin rehabilitation.

New Tribes Mission may want to call Lori’s needs ‘demands they won’t acquise to’, but to their credit, once MK Safety Net send out a press release four days ago regarding New Tribes Mission handling of abuser Gary Earl; ROCK International acted swiftly.

April 6, 2014: ROCK’s Response to recent press release:

TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: Gary Earl is neither employed by nor associated with ROCK International. He had applied to serve in the administrative side of ROCK beginning in the fall of 2014. He has withdrawn that application.  —ROCK International Board of Directors 

Lori has received over 200 messages of support since she went public 2 weeks ago.

New Tribes Mission has gone silent again.

MK Safety Net press release is below the fold: Another missionary with New Tribes Mission guilty of abusing children.

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