Letter from Indiana Ministries Board of Directors

March 20, 2024

In early June of 2023, Indiana Ministries wrote a response to ChogAffirm. Days earlier, ChogAffirm launched a website advocating for full acceptance of LGBTQ+ behavior. ChogAffirm asserts that such behavior is completely compatible with Scripture, meaning such behavior is God ordained and God blessed. ChogAffirm also advocates for radical theological change in the Church of God that would result in the inclusion of practicing LGBTQ+ individuals into all levels of church leadership and vocational ministry. The board of Indiana Ministries authorized the response from IM published last June and we stand behind that statement.

Being ordained through any regional assembly of the Church of God—including Indiana Ministries—is not a right, it is a privilege. Those that hold credentials or are seeking credentials through Indiana Ministries agree to be part of a covenant relationship. That covenant requires a level of moral/ethical alignment that is commonly understood in Scripture.

For example:

Section 2.1.2 of the Credentials Manual (Standards for Credentialing Vocational Christian Ministers, Moral and Ethical Qualifications) states:

  • “Credentialing for vocational ministry requires that the personal conduct, value system, and lifestyle of candidates be consistent with the standards and disciplines of the Bible as generally understood in the teaching heritage of the Church of God.” 

Section 2.1.3 of the Credential Manual states:

  • “Although the Church of God honors theological freedom within the bounds of biblically based belief, those to whom vocational credentialing is granted are expected to hold persuasions that are in general agreement with the teaching tradition of the Church of God.” 
  • Furthermore, “The candidate for vocational credentialing is expected to understand and affirm: (1) the historic theological traditions of the Church of God; (2) the moral/ethical stances included elsewhere in this Credentials Manual (sections 2.1.2. and 7.3.3); and (3) all related matters affirmed by the direct action of the General Assembly of the Church of God.” 

Section 7.3.3 of the Credentials Manual (Circumstances Justifying Counsel or Discipline) states:

  •  [Credentialed ministers can face disciplinary action when] promulgating or espousing a teaching or practice contrary to the Word of God as commonly understood by the Church of God (see section 2.1.3). This includes the performing of same sex marriage ceremonies and the offering of church facilities for such ceremonies.  

Indiana Ministries is following through on their commitment to investigate every Indiana Ministries credentialed minister that indicated their support and advocacy of ChogAffirm through their signing the petition on the website. Those investigations are occurring through IM’s Department of Ministry Service (DMS). DMS began formal investigations earlier this year and will continue with the goal of completing their work before the end of the year. DMS is carefully and intentionally following the process prescribed in the Credentials Manual.

Some may believe we are focusing solely on this issue when it comes to investigations. At any given time DMS is involved in investigations that have nothing to do with this issue. The reason the board of Indiana Ministries is responding publicly is because those promoting this change in theology and practice have made their views public. They are using public forums (including social media) to voice their objection to DMS’ decision to pursue investigations related to ChogAffirm. Therefore, we felt a more public response was necessary.

The Indiana Ministries Board of Directors gives its full support to DMS as they lead with both truth and love throughout this vital process. The board also lends its full support to our State Pastor Jeff Matas, Associate State Pastor Mickey Foley, Director of Thrive Carl Addison, and the staff of Indiana Ministries. We are thankful for their leadership.

Stuart Kruse (Chair)

Aaron Perry (Vice-Chair)

Dawn Walker (Co-Vice-Chair)

Terry Blackford

Amanda Daniel

Lendell Hood

Kerry Robinson

Nabil Safi

Holli Wilson 

Indiana Ministries | 13300 Olio Road, Suite 303 | Fishers, IN 46037 | 317.773.6477