RUN PHOENIX, RUN!
Oh dear… I feel like I need to warn all of the good people of Phoenix, Arizona. Unfortunately, your fine city has been chosen as the unlucky recipient of a brand new church spearheaded by Pastor Mark Driscoll and his wife, Grace. I’m warning you because Mark and Grace’s last church spawned an enormous “faith”-based mess in Seattle. Honestly, “mess” doesn’t even begin to tell the godawful story because it involved fear, manipulation, church abuse, misogyny, spiritual abuse, emotional abuse, slander, homophobia, excommunications, lying, misappropriation of funds, publishing scandals, denial, and the list goes on and on…
Now, you’d think that Mark and Grace would have learned a thing or two from that clusterfundamentalist of a church they created in Seattle. But by all accounts, they haven’t learned anything. In fact, not only have they not apologized or even acknowledged wrongdoing toward the thousands of people whose lives they infected with their brand of bible-wielding god abuse, they actually pretend to be victims.
Now, I have no doubt that their lives have been utter hell since their shit hit the fan a few years ago. But that’s not surprising. And it’s nobody’s fault except Mark and Grace’s. When you use “God” to hurt people and then you’re unwilling to admit that you hurt people, life is going to feel like hell for awhile.
But don’t you worry about Mark and Grace. These two are bible-based stormtroopers. They know how to survive the pain they inflicted upon themselves. They’ve perfected their ability to deflect and deny any wrongdoing. They packed up their kids and Bible and dog and they moved far far away from Seattle and the people they abused. They found a brand new city chock full of new fresh and perhaps naive people looking for a place to worship.
The name of their church is The Trinity Church. In the video at the new church website, Mark and Grace still continue to act like panic-stricken victims who have no idea why God would allow them to suffer in the emotional and spiritual wilderness.
So let this be your warning, Phoenix. Do not be fooled into visiting Mark and Grace’s new church. Don’t go. Make sure your friends don’t go. Keep your kids far away from the influence of Mark and Grace.
Why? Because Mark is a charmer.
I’m telling you to stay away because over the years I’ve interviewed quite a few of the charter members of Mars Hill church, people who joined Mark and Grace close to the very beginning and helped them start their church in Seattle, Washington. There was one thing that every single person I talked to said about Mark.
He was charismatic.
One member said, “he was a master at first impressions.”
Another noted that “he had me at hello.”
One person called him “charming.”
Mark and Grace didn’t grow a 15,000-person church in Seattle by telling the people they met, “hey, we abuse people” or “you’re going to HATE us 6 years from now.”
No, this isn’t Mark and Grace’s first Jesus rodeo. They aren’t stupid people. They play coy and act like they’re not organized or prepared for what God’s calling them to do. But that’s all apart of the narrative they’re writing, the story they’re helping God write about them, the one that will no doubt be something like “the Second Coming of Mark and Grace”! But they don’t want to make you think they’re overly prepared for all that God’s got in store for you, Phoenix! Trust me, Mark has been working like a fiend on outlining all that God is going to do in your lives over the next few years.
Nobody needs Mark and Grace’s “God.” Trust me. You don’t need it. And if you give Mark and Grace a second of your time, YOU could likely fall for it. And if you do… I promise—I’ve seen it over and over and over again—You. Will. Get. Burned.
Because Mark and Grace’s “God” hurts people, empowers “yes” men, keeps women “in their place,” and start to turn on you as soon as you start asking questions that “aren’t any of your concern.”
Don’t be fooled Phoenix.