Jump directly to the content
Willow Creek's Hybels Retires Amid Allegations
Elders of the megachurch promise to examine reports of unwanted sexual comments and advances.
PAGE 1 of 2Single Page

Megachurch to Investigate Allegations Against Founding Pastor

"[On April 10, Bill] Hybels retired six months early after 40 years as leader of Willow Creek [Community Church], calling recent allegations [of unwanted sexual comments and advances] against him a distraction for the megachurch and its ministries. Hybels denied any wrongdoing. He did admit regretting that he first responded to the allegations with anger. [Then on April 20,] the elders similarly expressed regret in the way the church handled the allegations. 'We have at times communicated without a posture of deep listening and understanding,' they wrote [in a letter to the congregation]. 'We are sorry that at times our process appeared to diminish the deep compassion we have for all those involved in these matters … . Bill acknowledged that he placed himself in situations that would have been far wiser to avoid … . We agree, and now recognize that we didn't hold him accountable to specific boundaries.' The elders also said they wished they had worked harder 'to collaborate with all parties,' and promised to 'methodically examine our church culture, enhancing policies and informal practices that support healthy and valuable working relationships between men and women.' … [T]he elders will be examining reports that Hybels made unwanted sexual comments and advances to several women, including 'allegations that have not been previously investigated by the Elder Board'" ("Willow Creek Promises Investigation Amid New Allegations Against Bill Hybels," ChristianityToday.com).

Texas Appeals Court Rules Against Break-Away Anglican Group

"In The Episcopal Church v. Salazar … a Texas state appeals court issued another ruling in a long-running dispute over ownership of property of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth. In 2008, the Diocese voted to disaffiliate from The Episcopal Church and to become part of the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone. In 2009, The Episcopal Church sued, claiming ownership of the Diocese's property. The litigation has moved up and down the Texas court system, including to the Texas Supreme Court, ever since. In [a recent] opinion, the state Court of Appeals reversed in part a trial court decision and held that control of the property resides in the group that remained with The Episcopal Church under the leadership of Bishop Scott Mayer, rather than with the break-away group led by Bishop Jack Iker" ("Break-Away Texas Anglican Group Loses in Latest Round of Long-Running Case," Religion Clause).

From Issue:

Subscribe

If you found this article helpful, subscribe to ChurchLawAndTax.com for access to more articles like this one.

View All
from our store
Church Governance

Church Governance

What leaders must know to conduct legally sound church business
Pastor, Church & Law, Fifth Edition

Pastor, Church & Law, Fifth Edition

Learn which local, state, and federal laws apply to religious organizations.
Planning a Church Building Project

Planning a Church Building Project

Learn about zoning laws, property sales, church construction, financing, and more.
Mandatory Child Abuse Reporting Laws

Mandatory Child Abuse Reporting Laws

Did you know pastors and other church staff may be required by law to report child abuse and that laws on this vary state by state?

ChurchSalary

ChurchSalary

Experience a whole new way to set compensation. Eliminate the guesswork – get access to detailed compensation reports in just minutes.