The Ex-Catholic Journal 


Spiritual Abuse by the Village Idiots




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[This is the sixth in a series on improper submission: The first article ( link) covered the similarities between Roman Catholicism and Islam, and mandatory submission. The second article ( link) introduced improper submission that often occurs in evangelical churches. The third article ( link) discussed the role of integrity (or lack thereof) in submitting to fallible creeds. The fourth article ( link) warned about making rash oaths in submitting to church membership. The fifth article ( link) described the problem of elders acting as overlords rather than as loving teachers. This article is the first case study involving spiritual abuse based on a signed church covenant.

Case Study: The "Penitent Pedophile"

Abusive Church Covenants

The Village Church in Dallas, TX is a 9Marks and Acts 29 megachurch that requires members to subscribe to a church covenant. Here is one portion of the covenant:

I will seek to preserve the gift of marriage and agree to walk through the steps of marriage reconciliation at The Village Church before pursuing divorce from my spouse.

Jordan and Karen Root were members of The Village Church, and both agreed to sign the church covenant. One problem with taking vows is that we do not know what the future holds. When it comes to restrictive church covenants, buyer beware. Please click on the links below to read about the saga of Karen Hinkley.

The story: click here
Personal background: click here
Chronology of abuse: click here
Pedophile restored, victim disciplined: click here
The Victim's response: click here
The Pastor apologizes: click here

Have there been any other instances of abusive of authority at The Village Church?: click here

I share this with you not to denigrate a particular church or group of elders. It is my belief that churches that come from a "Father-rule" mindset like The Village Church are ripe for abuse. Where legalism exists, abuse is never far behind.  

In Christ,