Weird suspicions I posted yesterday on "reasons why I left" are not from the mouths of people at my church, but from others.
Let me tell you a story. One of my friends in the congregation of Rothesay Vineyard went to a local mall with his kids recently. The mall was busy. Every once in a while someone would say, "Hey! How are you doing?" And they would have a little chat and move on. His kids would ask, "Who was that Dad?" He'd say, "Oh, that was someone that used to go to Rothesay Vineyard!" This happened several times during the evening. Finally, one of his kids said after another encounter, "And who was that Dad? Oh, never mind. It was someone who used to go to our church. Right?"
You see, hundreds of people used to go to our church. Literally. And hundreds have left. Most in a messy manner. Our church used to be the one who hosted all the conferences and renewal meetings. Actually, I kid you not, but thousands of people have been affected (infected?) by our church. And, as some of my peers have said, I am a provoker. I am a s**t-disturber. A s**t-magnet. Controversy swirls around me, and I have therefore embroiled Rothesay Vineyard in controversy just by being its pastor. So it isn't my immediate community, as far as I know, that are spreading the malicious rumors, suspicions and hunches. There are hundreds of people who have a not-so-rosy opinion of me and Rothesay Vineyard.
It is my sincere hope that by me separating myself from this community, it will enjoy a new and long overdue season of good favor.