Monday, November 11, 2013

Vision Forum Ministries Closing

Today it was announced on Vision Forum Ministries site that in light of the Doug Phillips scandal that the ministry would be locking the doors and shuttering the building. They are completely shutting down. Here's what they've posted on the Vision Forum Ministries site.
The Closing of Vision Forum Ministries
In light of the serious sins which have resulted in Doug Phillips’s resignation from Vision Forum Ministries, the Board of Directors has determined that it is in the best interests of all involved to discontinue operations. We have stopped receiving donations, and are working through the logistical matters associated with the closing of the ministry. While we believe as strongly as ever in the message of the ministry to the Christian family, we are grieved to find it necessary to make this decision. We believe this to be the best option for the healing of all involved and the only course of action under the circumstances.
Say what?

My first reaction upon hearing the news was 'oh holy *expletive*' Could not believe it, First Baptist Church and Hyles-Anderson College didn't close when either Jack Hyles or Jack Schaap were outed as adulterers. Jimmy Swaggart has been caught with nasty cheapo hookers more than once and he's still on the air touting his special blessed Bibles and other religious geegaws as it only ever temporarily slowed him down. Oh Lawd, oh how the money still rolls in!

I could just be engaging in idle speculation but this makes whatever it was that Mr. Phillips did or didn't do much worse than his published confession on the website of 'emotional infidelity'. VF has stopped taking ministry donations. When the money stops rolling in it sounds like something more serious. Could be there were other improprieties going on that haven't hit the press yet.

If I were a betting woman I would say it's likely some financial 'situation' has taken place and someone is nosing around the ministry's books. I suppose we'll find out soon enough.

Wonder what the staff at VF is going to do? The loss of jobs has to be heartbreaking to those staff members that believed they were helping do the Lord's work, had nothing to do with the scandal and are now facing unemployment at a time when the government has made serious curtailments to unemployment, food stamps and other assistance programs. They are being punished and have done nothing to deserve it.

Mrs. Doug Phillips and assorted little Phillips are being punished by this by no fault of their own.
But the ones I feel the worst for are the thousands nationwide that supported this ministry financially. They've been fleeced for years by someone that cannot even practice the same things he insists on from everyone else.

I'm of two minds about all of this. Glad that this means that Doug Phillips will no longer have a public bully pulpit to spread his warped ideas of what following Jesus means and unhappy for all those people that are humiliated, losing their livelihood or being punished in any way by the ministry closing.

Who will the Botkin Sisters follow now?

Tell me what you think about this sudden and unexpected news.

1 comment:

  1. Calulu, this is my favorite post on this subject to date.

    I'd disagree with only one thing, you've said, however. If behind every good man, you'll find a good woman who helped him become who he is, then over time, E. Beall Phillips wasn't entirely without fault for the Vision Forum mess itself (but not the infidelity). She's a law school grad just like her husband, and she chose to yield to these things and to who he became over time. In high demand religion, there are always moments of confusion and moral pricks, and we who get culled into these systems make hundreds of choices to go along with things. But most people find that these things pile up over time.

    Someone with the International Cultic Studies Association once said that you put these doubts and confusions and things that you choose not to think through on a shelf while you keep on functioning in the group as if nothing is wrong. For everyone at some point, the shelf breaks. Some take responsibility for giving into the deception and make the most of what they can do to make things right, and they get out. And some just let the shelf fall, realizing that they need a pile upon which to heap all of the things that they continue to ignore. The shelf is not enough. In leadership, it's not only their duty to keep on piling up and on, they're also entitled to do this because their moral disengagement. They're not at fault if they're serving the mission. For women, the moral fault falls to the husband because he must have done something wrong.

    You don't get this far along in leadership without moments of moral crisis. I am grieved for Ms. Phillips, but she had her moments of opportunity to change things and to do what she could to influence her husband. The two of them become one, after all. But then again, those Confederate Presbyterians claimed that marriage was just like Adam reabsorbing his rib.

    >>>>Pg 102-103
    The woman, by the law of marriage, is reintegrated into the man, from whose side she was originally drawn. She never exists afterward as an independent person. By her voluntary act she is merged, civilly and legally, into the man. With her office in the household perfectly defined, her status in the same is determined by her relation to her husband. All her privileges and rights flow from her association to her head. It is demanded of her, therefore, a blending of the will, which shall, so to speak, make the two organically one. There must be, on her part, a cleaving to him, which shall, in some sort, mingle together their distinct personalities.<<<

    The Visionary Daughters will keep on following Daddy Botkin, following his vision. Maybe he'll go back to the Great Commission group? But I think that he's enjoyed too much success with Vision Forum, so he very likely won't reconcile with his own former cult leader, Jim McCotter. Or perhaps he'll sweep in and save the day for people by offering the former VF followers new salvation?