Pastors Request Mark Driscoll Resign for Year, Christian University President Keeps Job

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Here’s what you need to know in news for Aug. 29:

1. Some Mars Hill pastors asking Mark Driscoll to resign for a year

Nine Mars Hill Church pastors are calling for Mark Driscoll to step down for a full year rather than just the six weeks already planned.

“It is time to take responsibility for our church, regardless of how much our current bylaws prevent us from exercising that authority,” they wrote in a 4,000-word letter (full text at bottom). “It grieves us that the only voice that has never been heard in all of this is the voice of the current elders.”

The letter came a few days before Driscoll announced that he would step down while the church investigates charges against him.

Mars Hill’s structure is governed by a board of advisors and accountability, but the Mars Hills elders, as they say, “are called to lead our people and the church from a position of truth and love,” and consequently the pastors “do not believe that looking for answers, asking questions, and trying to discern the truth is a divisive or sinful thing.”

2. Georgia church refuses to take down lighted sign

A church in Georgia could face a lawsuit for violating a local ordinance with their LED-lit sign.

Fellowship Baptist Church in Grovetown has refused to remove the 19,000-bulb sign, which was installed last week on the church property.

Sonny Serigney, pastor of Fellowship Baptist Church, and mGrovetown Mayor George James III met late this week to discuss the violation.

“Basically, I think that the city and the mayor are looking for an amicable compromise that would help this city and also help us as well,” Serigney said.

Serigney said the compromise “would entail would be moving the sign” about 130 feet so that it “is actually out of the city limits and into the county.”

Serigney added that he will bring the proposed compromise before the congregation this coming Sunday.

3. Christian university president will keep job despite divorce proceedings

The president of Texas college Abilene Christian University will keep his top post despite being in the midst of divorce proceedings.

The trustees at the college decided that Phil Schubert will not lose his job even though his wife Jamie has filed for divorce.

Schubert was named president of the school in 2010. He and Jamie have been married for 22 years and both attended Abilene Christian University.

Jamie filed for divorce in July, citing “irreconcilable differences.”

“The Board of Trustees is deeply saddened about the situation and its effect on their family,” chairman Barry Packer wrote in an email to faculty and staff. “We believe the covenant of marriage is created by God. We also believe strongly in the power of grace in a broken world and the call to be peacemakers.”

4. Police find body of missing American in Jerusalem

Israeli police said this week they have found missing American Aaron Sofer’s body.

Sofer, 23, was a Yeshiva student studying in Israel. He went missing last Friday during a hike near Jerusalem.

Police are working to determine Sofar’s cause of death, but no foul play is suspected.

“There is some closure to the fact that this may very well have been an accidental death as opposed to their son being abducted,” Meir Lichtenstein, friend of the family, said.

 

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