Wednesday, July 2, 2008

MOP Comments (Page 10)

I am reposting a comment by Lynn Hutchinson on July 1st 2008 (2 days ago). For some reason it would not allow me to post it and finally today when I got it posted I realized she had commented on page 8 and not on page 9. I am turning the page and reposting her comment.

Sorry about that Lynn. Not sure what happened but glad you commented.

Cris

141 comments:

Cris Aguilar said...

----- Reposted due to being accidently posted on page 8 instead of page 9 ----


Hello...I just came across your blog this morning and wanted to respond.

I found you as I was doing what my friend calls an "ego Google," looking up an old friend from Mosaic, curious what he was up to in the world. And the reason I no longer know firsthand what he is up to is that I, too, had an unfortunate departure from Mosaic about four years ago.

As I've moved on and healed quite a bit from the experience, I'm on the fence as to whether sharing my story again would help or hinder. But I must say there is a part of me that is sadly relieved to know that I, at least, am not alone in my disappointment.

For what it's worth - a few thoughts I came to realize in sorting out the situation...

How we choose, as humans, to make religion happen (I know "religion" is a highly unpopular term at Mosaic and similar institutions. But it is, to me, the rules and regulations set forth by any spiritual group as to how they believe one gets access to God...be it through community, through self, through rituals, etc.) is a choice. It is a selection. And these days, there is a boundless array of varieties from which to choose.

Mosaic adheres to a certain brand of Christian practices. One that can inspire creativity, community, and personal improvement on a variety of levels. Those, in my opinion, are its strengths. And seven years ago, they are what drew me to Mosaic.

However, Mosaic is a place of definite boundaries. What may be considered grey areas to many seem to be hard and fast black and white to Mosaic.

I can't speak to any recent accusations regarding abuse of financial resources or other issues that have been mentioned. But I can speak to a seemingly uncharacteristic, nearly inhumane relaying of a message to me about the clearly "unacceptable behavior" of falling in love with a Jewish man.

I have replayed the scenario a thousand times in my head. Only two weeks after meeting this man and realizing that I wanted to get to know him better, I arranged a meeting with one of the pastors to discuss it. I anticipated being challenged - which I had hoped would help grant me clarity on the topic, one way or the other. I wanted to share my joys and - at that time - fears about the situation above ground. I didn't want to sneak around behind closed doors about this relationship. (Man, these notions all seem so archaic to me now...something out of the Dark Ages. Why on earth, would anyone feel ANYTHING but joy about meeting someone as loving as this man I met?)

But what I didn't anticipate was, two months later to show up for a rehearsal only to be told to pack up my instrument and not bother to show up to play that Sunday morning. I was no longer "fit" to share my gifts in that way. I was now "a bad influence on the daughters of the church." (Sadly, it was a friend of mine who was put in place to be the messenger of this little piece of information. He wasn't the decision maker. Just the poor guy who had to tell me about it.) (As a side grievance, that was a really awful position to have put this man in. The pastor should've dealt with me directly. I hope he took this guy out for a big fat lunch or something...)

After much thought about how to respond, spinning through almost every emotion in the book, I decided to show up the following Sunday at the morning service. My Jewish boyfriend went with me, determined - in spite of the hardships of the previous days - to support me in my decision to remain in the community. We sat in the second row, not hiding from anyone. Ironically...EXTREMELY ironically...the message was about how there really isn't any reason for Jews and Christians to not be friends.

As Erwin said: "After all, Jesus was a Jew..."

Blah, blah, blah.

(No offense, Erwin...you said many good things that morning. A very good sermon. But it all sounded like bull, after what I had experienced the days before.)

I attended one more service on my own after that. No one approached me with the usual hugs and hellos those two Sundays. Not one. It seemed that I had fallen outside of grace.

I was connected to many leaders of the church at the time, believing them to be my friends. But the saddest part of it to me was that no one...not a single member of the leadership team...contacted me in the weeks / months that followed to check on how I was doing. After what was an emotionally agonizing two months, I emailed one of these friends, asking why this had happened in this way. Adding insult to injury, he responded by sharing HIS disappointment with ME, that I would choose to leave the church.

To his great credit, I did have a good conversation with David Arcos around that same time. I was extremely blunt about how destructive the lead team's decision and the way they carried it out was to me and to many...MANY...non-Christians around me (after hearing about my experience, imagine explaining to a descendent of the Holocaust how, exactly, my church wasn't Anti-Semitic). David was receptive to what I said and, although he couldn't apologize on behalf of the Lead Team, he apologized for failing me as a friend.

As months and years passed, I have remained in touch with a few of the musician friends I made there, as well. They shared in my sorrow of my departure and supported me joyfully as that Jewish man and I got married.

I have no grievance against Erwin. I thoroughly enjoyed my conversations with him and was enlightened by what he had to say many times over.

But as for the team that he undoubtedly led, I'm not really certain what happened behind closed doors. Why my heart, my friendship, and my countless hours of service to the Mosaic community didn't seem to register when they made such a blunt move against my decision to question the black and white is a mystery to me. There was no attempt to meet with my now husband and me (he was even coming to services with me up until I was "fired"). There was no option laid out to me. Just walking papers out of the blue. Pure and simple.

I will have to address the damage Mosaic did to my husband's family's understanding of Christian love for the rest of my life. That's the consequence of my decision to have invested so deeply in being a part of Mosaic.

So, at the end of the day, what have I concluded for myself?

I now have a very deep-seeded opinion that any label that one chooses to put on...be it Christian, Jewish, Muslim, black, white, American, whatever...that triggers something in his/her brain that says "this one belongs, but that one doesn't"...Any label that creates an Us versus Them scenario has great potential for destruction.

Clearly, my decision to love someone who didn't fit in the box made ME someone who didn't fit in the box. (And, to be accurate to the story, I not only received grief from Christians in this scenario...A few of my husband's family members also had trouble accepting someone outside of their own box. Sadly, there seems to be a pandemic of fear-based exclusions residing in many religious institutions. It's tragic. Humans made religion. We create God in our own image everyday. And that one dares to justify punishing and judging others with "God-sponsored" reasons is despicable to me.)

All that being said, going back to the notion of selection...

Mosaic's is a certain brand of Christian religion. It is one that encourages "this is right...and that is wrong. And if you choose outside our lines, there will consequences...even before heaven and hell." For example, there was a Right and Wrong way for me to find a soulmate. It just so happens, my perfect mate was from the "Wrong" camp.

That kind of thinking really works for a lot of people. Truly. To learn a structure of how to think of themselves, God and others so that they don't have to sort through the grey matter of the world. It's a very comforting and protected place to be. You become insulated from assimilating to those you don't know or understand. You don't have to deal with the complicated, often discouraging aspects of human behavior. Someone is instructing you how (and how not) to handle yourself.

And in some periods of a person's life, I think that is a justifiable and self-preserving place to be.

Although I may be doing a miserable job of expressing it and I myself can't sign up for it, I genuinely don't begrudge those for whom it does work. I walked willingly into Mosaic, looking for something. No one held a gun to my head and said I had to buy their brand of belief. A classic case of "Buyer Beware." Mosaic has spread a lot of love and joy and personal honesty into places and people who were filled with darkness. And I still find myself dancing to the music in my head that used to fill my Sunday mornings in those years.

But clearly, Mosaic is not a place I would ever choose to be again. I know this now. Mosaic's penchant for black and white doesn't work for me and my world view. I can choose to be somewhere else and let those for whom Mosaic DOES work to live in peace.

And in that revelation, I found MY peace.

For any of you out there who have been outcast like this, I feel for your pain. I know what that is and I'm sorry you've gone through it. But I'm hoping it has made you a stronger, more loving being on the other side.

For those of you who are seemingly really angry about Erwin's success, keep in mind that he is very good at what he does. Like the leader of any successful business, he is focused, gifted, passionate, and frankly...well-marketed. Last time I checked, those things aren't sins. Now, I don't happen to be interested in what he is "selling," and if you're upset by what he's up to, I'm guessing you aren't, either. In my opinion, there are far worse crimes in the world than to capitalize on your skills as a communicator to get folks going to church. Even one that is self-serving on occasion. Erwin and Mosaic offers a certain thing that is good for certain people.

Allegations of immoral, untruthful or illegal behavior, of course, is something else. And I'm still trying to understand the stories behind where those accusations come from. So, no comments from me on that.

As for any Mosaic lead team members reading this, I hope you will sift through whatever false accusations you might come across to find the nuggets of truth that tug at your heart. I understand that you feel the need to draw lines in the sand. Fair enough. It's your church and you are free to view your purpose as you wish.

But I hope in recent years you have reconsidered the means and methods with which you imbue your message.

Wishing peace to all,
Lynn Hutchinson

Christine said...

WOW, thank you Lynn for having the courage to write and post such a heartfelt comment.

I hope that others understand your point, right on.

Anonymous said...

wow cris page 10...

Anonymous said...

Hi Lynn,

We have never met. Yet, I feel a certain affinity to your experience at Mosaic. I have not posted here in a long time, but I believe a response to your honest and straight forward comment lends towards, or even invites responses.

Ironically, the “unequally yoked” approach to dating and marriage was practiced at Brady as well, probably even more so. Whether one agrees or disagrees that a Christian should date/marry a “non-believer” or not, is something that will be divisive and probably debated until Jesus returns. Understandably, churches are compelled to have positions of doctrine and “rules” of acceptable behavior for their members. My disappointment with the church's leaders is how they choose to enforce those rules and codes of behavior.

The Church is supposed to be a picture of our Lord for the world to see. Unfortunately, in America, it all too often is a place for leaders to become “personalities” for the national stage instead. These popular pastors write their books, enjoy their speaking trips (with the adulation they receive from such) and find themselves put up on a pedestal as the model Christian, or at least the Christian leader that can tell the rest of us how to do it “right”.

Pastoring hundreds, or even thousands of people, has to be a full-time job. In actuality, it is probably one of the hardest, if not most demanding jobs possible. So, when a pastor that should be prayerfully considering how to deal with one of their flock that has “gone astray”, finds themselves the celebrity guest speaker or on tour selling their latest book; well, that pastor needs to implement some type of management guidelines and rules to keep their own masses in line. Lest, their church become disarrayed and disorderly, and that pastor’s reputation for being the super leader becomes tarnished. In short, we are all disposable when the church builds its popularity and successes around celebrity leaders. - There is a major conflict of interest with all of this in my opinion.

As a part of the Church in general, the one that Jesus is the leader of, I grieve when I think about how you and your (now) husband were treated. Since Mosaic, a group that came out of a church I once belonged to (Brady) dealt with your situation so poorly, I feel the need to extend an apology.

[Yes, Mosaic members, I know, Matthew 18: 15-17 says we should treat those that we think are in sin as “pagans or tax collectors”. Unfortunately, far too many Christians want a black and white approach to conflict resolution, using this passage as a means for rejecting the individual rather than loving them like Jesus does. After all, wasn’t Matthew a tax collector; and how did Jesus treat him?]

Lynn, I am glad you found this site, I am sad there is a need for such, but maybe it can help the individuals that assumed there was something wrong them, when in reality they were rejected simply because the group no longer had use for them…

Eddie Marshall

Anonymous said...

for the record:

http://soundchick.typepad.com/blog/2004/12/mosaic_a_conver.html

Anonymous said...

On Yvonne W's blog "Solid Foods" she lists some budget numbers from Mosaic's Mailer:
"Mosaic: a LOOK BACK on 2007 and a LOOK AHEAD to 2008"


On the same page is a pie chart demonstrating Mosaic's"2007 Budgeted Expenses $3,977,782."
The pie chart is divided into:


52% Mission Support (Wages and Benefits)


24% Rents and Leases


21% Operations/Departmental Expenses


3% Awaken Humanity Giving


The troubling part of these numbers for me: 52% Mission Support (Wages and Benefits)

At first glance one might think, "Wow Mosaic gave over $2 million dollars to missions in 2007!"

NOPE. This is a little word game McManus likes to play. "Mission" - not "missions". Mosaic says, "Mission is why the church exists." They are not talking about "missions" - more that they are on mission.

In the year 2007 that mission cost over 50% of their budget in salaries and benefits to Pasadena Mosaic staff.

Wonder how much of that went to McManus?

Anonymous said...

Yvonne W's entire article, "Awaken Humanity's Slice of the Mosaic Pie" can be found here:

http://solidfoods.blogspot.com/2008/02/awaken-humanitys-slice-of-mosaic-pie.html

Anonymous said...

Very crafty. "mission support" - that might even border on disingenuous when a non-profit is reporting their yearly costs and expenses.

Concerned Observer

Anonymous said...

Found on McManus' personally maintained Wikipedia page:

"In Recent years he has also founded Awaken[11], a collection of poets, artists, film makers and humanitarians whose stated goal is "maximizing the divine potential" in every human being."

Er...ummmh, our "divine potential"?

Okay, I was skeptical when many of you here on MOP were saying that McManus was off on his theology, but NOW I'm a believer!

Anonymous said...

The theology is just the start of it...we can go on and on...well we have...Another MOP member

Anonymous said...

I must confess that I agree that some financial misdealings are going on at MOSAIC Pasadena. They are paying 52 percent of their total church budget to salaries and benefits for "mission" but in reality most "missionaries" raise their own support for their work whether it be foreign or domestic in its location. Typically, a missionary only raises a small percentage from a particular church organization or church denomination and most of their support comes from individuals (friends, family, individual members of their church).

So if MOSAIC is spending over $2 million of its budget per year for "mission" salaries and benefits that it is going toward its bloated staff and/or bloated salaries for particular members of its large staff. I personally ran into Pastor Ralph Neighbour around October 2008 outside MOsaic Pasadena on a Sunday morning. He shook my hand and introduced himself to me after he parked his brand new Mercedes sedan outside Mott Auditorium.

It seems like MOSAIC LA is rewarding Pastor Neighbour quite well for his incompetence and negligence in running the former Chino Hills church ("Inland Community Church") that Mosaic forcibly took over with Neighbour's inside help. Under Neighbour's poor to hazardous leadership, that Chino Hills Church prior to the Mosaic takeover, had a child abuse lawsuit filed against it regarding some its church staff's alleged treatment of children. That lawsuit stemming from the hiring and supervision of the church staff and their alleged molesting of these children caused a near financial bankruptcy and collapse of that church, to the extent that it was ripe for Mosaic to takeover with its decreased membership and huge church building mortgage of $700,000. It is distressing to see that Neighbour is still the pastor in charge of this Chino Hills church location and that Erwin himself if raking in not only book royalties but a huge undisclosed salary from being a part-time speaker at Mosaic (aka part-time pastor).

Anonymous said...

Actually, being a Southern Baptist Church Mosaic would give a percentage of its tithed income to the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) for missions - and many of the Mosaic missionaries are SBC. So, they do not have to raise their own support. However, that amount that is given from Mosaic to the SBC is probably only a couple percent. So, that means the other 50% that they would want us to believe goes to "missions" really goes to their "mission" or leaders/staff pockets. Which is fine, just be a little more honest about that.

Anonymous said...

This is SHOCKING! Doesn't any of the leadership at Mosaic have anything to say about these allegations?

I have to seriously rethink my involvement there.

Anonymous said...

My friends,
Any one with some degree of spiritual discernment and strong foundation in the Christian faith, smells a rat when it comes to Erwin at Mosaic.
This man destroyed the Church on Brady in East L.A. so he can create a money-making Mosaic franchise for himself and his family and his crony friends, out of marketing his own self-help books and self-help speaking seminars. He markets himself with people who help him profit financially from his speeches and books like Rick
Warren. Both Rick Warren and Erwin have their books published by the same book publishing Company which is owned by Rupert Murdoch.

Rick Warren has been criticized for not condemning Murdoch who attends his church, for Murdoch making hundreds of millions of dollars each year from cable TV porno channels and adult entertainment channels, etc.

In January 2008, Erwin was one of the main speakers along with Murdoch at the RETHINK Conference staged at the Crystal Cathedral in Orange County. I believe that Christian believers should RETHINK their support and association with Erwin given the financial cover-up at Mosaic, etc. etc.

Anonymous said...

Oh I forgot to give you the link to that news story on Rick Warren and his failure to reprimand Rupert Murdoch who owns the book publishing company that prints all of Warren's books and also all of Erwin's books.

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/
news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=55616

Cris Aguilar said...

Yeah... that is an interesting article. It reminded me of when the Muppets had "Snoop Dogg" do a cameo scene in one of their movies a few years ago. Snoop Dogg had just quite drugs! Great! But he had also started working in Porn. How could a clearly children’s program include someone that was so clearly not kid friendly? The Jim Henson Company did end up pulling his scene after some talk radio hosts started a campaign against the company. They didn't admit anything but the quietly pulled the scene. They got it, I think. Strange that they even thought to include him.

Warren & McManus seem to come from the same type of thinking.

The snippet below sums it up.

"...Warren was asked about pastoring a man who publishes tabloids featuring topless women. He responded: "I don't have to agree with 100 percent of what another person does in order to work with them on the 20 percent that we do agree on."


How should a pastor treat one of his flock knowing he is in this type of business? How does that look?

Correct me if I am wrong. According to Matt 18 we should confront those (believers) that are in sin in hopes of winning them over. If after one and then two and then the church all fail to win him over then The Church should treat him as a non-believer. As we all know Jesus reached out to the non-believers. I think that the church fails on that part. I think we often don't follow the steps as prescribed especially the last one. Jesus loves the non-believer. We as believers should be loving the non-believers. We need to shift gears. I think because we look hateful at times and this hurts The Church.

Again:
We must NOT skip any parts of this passage. Confront the sin. Take a brother or two to get to the bottom of things. Take the issue to the church. If the person is not won over then treat them as a non-believer. This does not mean to kick them out of the church. It simply means for us as a church is to challenge that person to confess their sin and reconcile their relationship. This all works properly when all the steps are taken. I don’t mean everyone confesses. It simply means everyone understands where everyone is on the matter. It is all above board.

I think because this is a weakness in The Church we have created an environment where some pastors can teach the type of message that says "your ok, I'm ok" and forget about sin, because we are all ok. Honestly, sometimes that feels a lot better. Who likes confrontation? Who likes telling others they are in sin? It is simply easier to cover it up and move on. Problem is this causes major issues in our homes and churches.

Once again I think the main problem is how we treat the non-believer. Jesus was not rebuking the sinner but the rather the . I don’t think we take proper steps as scripture teaches.

Have I got this wrong? Any thoughts?

Article Link:
Murdoch pastor gets heat
for mogul's porn channels



.

Anonymous said...

"...Warren was asked about pastoring a man who publishes tabloids featuring topless women. He responded: "I don't have to agree with 100 percent of what another person does in order to work with them on the 20 percent that we do agree on."

Knowing Erwin fairly well, I think he would agree with Warren on this.

In short, what both men (Warren & McManus) are doing, is compromising their values when it comes to M O N E Y.

Anonymous said...

At the staff retreat this week, Erwin has said some head-scratching things. For example: “We think we have to tone down the Gospel to attract people to Jesus, but we actually need to elevate the understanding of the Gospel (to where Jesus intended) to offer life-transformation to those out there who are looking for meaning.” This is a strange comment from the man who seems to be toning down the gospel with seemingly endless personal stories from the pulpit, Myers-Briggs personality tests for his strategy, and a very man-centered theology in his teaching. Erwin, did you know that many people from your own congregation thinks you are doing precisely what you are warning about: “toning down the Gospel?”

He also said: “We need to initiate relationships and conversations with the people others see as invisible.”
You seem to have down a wonderful job, Erwin, with initiating relationships with artists and industry types, but lots and lots of people are feeling left out of the picture. A lot of the “invisible” non-industry types.

Anonymous said...

Chris,

I totally agree with you on Matthew 18.

em

Anonymous said...

Someone made a funny but insightful comment on 9/21/07 about Erwin on the blog for the Dallas Daily morning news website about the "Lead Like Jesus" seminar that Erwin spoke at in October 2007 in Dallas , Texas.

Wondering where your part-time pastor Erwin was in October 2007 ?? He was one of the main speakers at that Dallas seminar where you could get in to hear him speak for only $25.00.....

Here is a portion of that funny comment on that blog:

"......I also checked out McManus on the web. He describes himself as a futurist. He sells lots of books. He has a jazzy style. He makes the round of SBC seminaries doing his thing.

I think the sticking point is that Jesus in not at all into being a "leader," or training "leaders." He is quite explicit that he is a suffering servant, and was trying to impress on his followers that they too must become suffering servants to participate in the kingdom of God.

If that is what Blanchard and McManus are up to they do a damned good job of disguising it, from what I have seen.

I think the kingdom of God would be better served by giving my $25 to help the poor rather than these successful hucksters....."

Here is the link:

http://religionblog.dallasnews.com/
archives/2007/09/
lead-like-jesus-seminar
-featur.html

Anonymous said...

You know, I got to give credit to McManus and company. They do produce this product that really sells. The product of self-help and self affirmation with splashes of current christian theology. People at Mosaic seemingly for the most part are happy, happy probably because they have all been brain-washed and reprogrammed. Well, maybe ignorance is bliss, and/or happiness is a state of mind. But yeah, I do doubt Erwins's
spiritual sincerity, I would not donate a dime to him or his causes anymore, why, I think at this point he has plenty of them already.

And about all that Erwin had done in the past to the Brady congregation and to Thomas Wolfe, there is one thing Erwin should had said to them after when it was all said and done, is this, check mate!


Willis Quan

Gal 5:15 said...

Sigh....

At this point posting here is an exercise in futility, but I'll give it a shot anyway.

Firstly, on the subject of $2M going to paid Mosaic lead and support staff... you guys do know that Mosaic has at least 40 people on paid staff, right? Divide $2M by 40 people, and you get an average of $50K/salary for each person -- and that doesn't even take into account the cost of insuring them, which lowers the actual salary considerably. Now I'll grant that that's a median -- some people get paid less than that, some people get paid more -- but no one's getting rich. And those 40 people support six services around the L.A. area, lead missions trips around the world, minister to and coordinate a network of missionaries and church planters around the globe, etc. Mosaic is able to accomplish far more with 40 people than many churches do with far more people...and, incidentally, much higher giving.

On the subject of cursing Erwin's phrase of humans having "divine potential." Can someone please explain to me what "being made in the image of God" means? Because to me, these two concepts seem to jive just fine side by side. I understand objecting to language, but let's actually think about what the words mean for a second before we start throwing out babies and bathwater.

I actually laughed when somebody said that Jesus didn't care about leadership development. Have you read the New Testament? Half of the Gospels are about Jesus teaching his disciples to go out two by two, training them to preach, teach, cast out demons, etc. The whole point of having disciples was to teach them to lead -- which, incidentally, they did all through the first century.

On the whole "Rick Warren/Rubert Murdoch/porn" thing: I'm curious, do you guys know where the money in your wallet came from? Do you know who may have handled it before you? Because if it came in any way by dubious methods -- even if you were in no way involved -- you should probably tear it up. (And, by the way, an issue with Rick Warren is an issue with Rick Warren. Quoting Rick and trying to tar Erwin with the same brush is apples and oranges.)

The issue of Ralph Neighbour/Inland is far more complicated, and I'm not going to comment on issues I know very little about -- but I do know that Ralph came to Erwin and Mosaic and asked them to step in, because he was going to step down. Mosaic agreed to step in, but only if Ralph wouldn't step down -- the idea being that he needed to lead the church out of the situation. They would work with him, give him support and resources, and try to lighten the load, but they weren't going to give him an easy out. And they haven't...

There you go -- have at it...

~ Gal 5:15

Anonymous said...

Erwin McManus has ZERO desire to notice the "invisible" or the underdogs of society. He is far too concerned to have his place at the front of the table in life. All of you at Mosaic KNOW this. Have you ever once seen him truly serve? Do the dishes, pick up the trash, put others before himself outside of his stories or messages? He loves to talk about it, but it is impossible for him to do any of it - he is above the rest of you.

Observe him a while, you will clearly see the truth.

Anonymous said...

"I personally ran into Pastor Ralph Neighbour around October 2008 outside MOsaic Pasadena on a Sunday morning. He shook my hand and introduced himself to me after he parked his brand new Mercedes sedan outside Mott Auditorium."

I am all for the truth here. But, for the record, Pastor Neighbour drives an old Hyundai Elantra. The Brady church plant "Inland Community Church" where he pastored was not in Chino Hills. And, Ralph was found to have no fault in the lawsuits in question.

If we are going to make anonymous accusations, let's make sure we hold to the same standard of truth that we are asking Mosaic to have.

Anonymous said...

Welcome back Eric

Anonymous said...

Eric,
I'm confused. Is it futile posting here because most of your comments in the past have been off the mark or are you frustrated because you don't know some of the answers or refuse to address issues brought up here or see Mosaic with Rose colored glasses? What is it? Because you confuse me Gal 5. You might want to start addressing the questions that have been brought up here in the past year in a half. Your current take I'm sure we'll get some response, but you disappeared for awhile and your frustration is quite bizarre. But I'm sure you'll begin to clarify the other issues brought up here at MOP. Remember the MOPPERS know their stuff. You know who we are and of our character. And those who have read here know the jig is up.

Gal 5:15 said...

>Hi Eric
>Welcome back Eric

My name's not Eric. Or Scott. Or SiR. But hi back anyway...

>Is it futile posting here because most of your comments in the past have been off the mark

I last posted with some real frequency well over a year ago on Easter weekend. Some good fruit seemed to come of that, based on the post Jay Parker wrote. (He actually went to Mosaic that Sunday and said he had a good time.)

>are you frustrated because you don't know some of the answers or refuse to address issues brought up here or see Mosaic with Rose colored glasses?

Would you like to respond to any of the things I said? Or would you prefer to lash out at anyone who tries to be constructive in this conversation? Anyone who knows me knows that I don't have rose colored glasses about Mosaic, or any church. (There is no perfect church.) But I ask questions, and have answers. Sorry if that's inconvenient. Read my earlier post again.

>You might want to start addressing the questions that have been brought up here in the past year in a half.

When you guys just go around the same stuff over and over, there's really no point. There are answers and truths available, but you're very selective with what you want to say and hear. That's fine, it's your right, but let's not pretend it's a quest for truth.

>Remember the MOPPERS know their stuff.

Like math? $2M divided by 40 paid staff is how much again? I guess I missed the millions you guys accuse Erwin of getting rich on. Or the BTI money that went back to those who asked for it. My annoyance is with those who seem hell-bent on sticking with MOP party-lines, even after the truth has come out.

>You know who we are and of our character.

Said the anonymous poster.

Anonymous said...

no, I'm not Eric. I left Mosaic Inland a year ago. We had a few issues with the new format, but mostly because our friends were attending Calvary Chapel. Our kids are still with Mosaic Inland. I still love Ralph and Pam very much. Sorry for the confusion.

In His Service,
Megan

Yvonne W. said...

Hello all,

Erwin McManus was just on Praise the Lord promoting his new book,

Wide Awake: The Future is waiting within You.

According to Erwin McManus, the book comes with a short video promo of the films produced by "Awaken."

NEWS FLASH!

I just checked with the California Business portal at:

http://kepler.ss.ca.gov/list.html

(Enter "Awaken" in the search field.)

. . . and found out that "Awaken" (the corporation which lists Erwin's publicist, Sealy M. Yates, as the Agent for Service of Process) is now under a SUSPENDED status!


So here is a revised (but correct!) history of the numerous "Awakens" under Erwin McManus:


Awaken Center for Creativity
Corporation created 2002
Current status: Suspended


Awaken International
Corporation created 2003
Current status: Suspended


Awake
Corporation created 2005
Current status: Suspended

Awaken Humanity
Corporation created 2007
Current status: Active

Is it just me or does anyone else notice a disturbing pattern here?

I've been away from my computer for several weeks so I don't know exactly when this latest suspension occured but the last time I wrote about Awaken's corporate status was in December, 2007 when it was still listed as "active."

Erwin McManus: Awaken 2008
http://solidfoods.blogspot.com/2007/12/erwin-mcmanus-awaken-2008.html

This latest suspension took place sometime within the last 6 months.

Remember, according to the California Business Portal, a "suspended" status means:

The California corporation has lost all rights and powers for failure to meet statutory filing requirements of either the Secretary of State's office or the Franchise Tax Board.

If this trend continues, I wonder what, if any, "future" awaits Awaken Humanity?

Yvonne W.

Anonymous said...

Wow, 40 people making 50k a year, that's very fair and socialist like of Mosaic. But, in reality, we know that it is more like 10 (part-timers) making 15k a year = 150k. 20 making 30-40k a year = 600-800k. 7 or 8 staff making 60k a year = 500k'ish. That leaves a nice fat six figure salary for the CELEBRITY PASTOR. Doesn't that name just sound a bit oxymoronic?

Anyway, that wasn't the point, the point was the use of the word, "mission" to make it look like that money went elsewhere. Gal 5, you're good, very good. You know what they say, as the leader goes...huh?

Anonymous said...

Gal Five,

When you start admitting that your pastor is a Machievelli in sheep's clothing. Then we can talk.

Cris Aguilar said...

Ok... lets all take a breath before this goes wrong again.

First. Gal 5, thanks for commenting. I really do mean that. I have no idea who you are and have no idea why some think you are a particular person but I do respect the fact that you are trying to set some things straight. You may think I just want to bash but I don’t. I do wish you would use your name but I understand and for now Gal 5 is better than nothing. It is clear we are seeing things very different but I do appreciate your willingness to discuss the issues.

Second, let's all try to speak with in a way that would be honoring to Christ. I know that tempers flair but please keep yourself in check ESPECIALLY if you choose not to use your name. I have written at least one time when I was very angry but I did use my name so I own what I said. In the end there is no hiding so let's keep it civil. (Yes I am mostly speaking to the MOP supporters on this point, we tend to tackle the person instead of tackling the issues). I have mentioned this before but obviously it needs to be said again. If you use your name then speak freely. Just because you don’t use your name doesn’t mean Jesus doesn’t know who your are.

Last, both sides seem to be making some good points. Please stick to that instead of making snide remarks. I want the truth to come out and if we are wrong on something then lets state that and move on.
I know on our side (MOP) there has been great hurt and pain. There is a major lack of trust. I know this is difficult. Let's stay on track and try to get through some of the issues. I believe what those that argue on their side of the argument is that we see the patterns of abuse. They don’t see it. When I was apart of Mosaic it felt really good to belong. I didn’t want to deal with some of the issues I did notice. I did start to notice some things early on (Robbie can attest to this) but when you belong blinded me, although I do believe that was a choice on my part. Let’s have some patience with them as they simply don’t see our side of the argument.

Anonymous said...

My Christian and non-Christian friends,

I have read many of your comments and I see the multiple points of view. I hear the grievances, I feel your pain, I see the wounds that only Christ can heal for you....I see the sins that have been committed, the sins which can only be forgiven by God;

I have been a Christian for more years than most of you have lived on this Earth.....I have seen much in my life. I have seen the Darkness and the Evil which grips the hearts of men and women; but I have also seen goodness and Light from God which shines upon people to cleanse their hearts and souls.
I have seen the spiritual wars and fights at various churches.

My suggestion is to lay down all your shields, bucklers, swords, daggers, spears, axes, etc. ; lay them down at the foot of the Cross all you MOP members, pro-MOP sympathesizers, MOSAIC members, MOSAIC leaders, MOSAIC sympathesizers, etc. Lay down your weapons and feel the blood of Christ on the Cross and seeping into the ground. Look at the suffering servant King who died with only the clothes on his back, no home, no car, no pension plan, all his friends had abandoned him. He died alone for you and for me.

After you look at the crucified Christ then look at your foe, your enemy, your friend, your wife, your husband, your child, your neighbor, yourself.

Gal 5:15 said...

>When I was apart of Mosaic it felt really good to belong. I didn’t want to deal with some of the issues I did notice.

Cris, I think some of the "issues" are preferences of style. I don't think of Erwin as my pastor, simply because Erwin really is an apostle -- he has an apostle's vision (the world reached for Christ) and an apostle's heart (primarily focused on people who are not followers of Christ). As such, his sermons try to be accessible by both/and. Do some people fall through the cracks? Certainly. But most churches err on the side of either evangelism or discipleship. There are a number of great churches in L.A. focused on discipleship. I would rather see mature believers connect to a different church where their needs are met, rather than see Mosaic become like so many other churches who can't, don't, or won't focus on those outside the bounds of a relationship with God. Mosaic is an alternative, one among many. The church we now refer to as Mosaic was in fact started as an alternative to the Brady service. Being alternative/outside the box is in its DNA (a strand it actually inherited from Brady). As a result, you will rarely -- if ever -- hear anyone from lead team criticize another church, in part because Mosaic merely serves a different visio in the greater Body of Christ/Kingdom of God.

Apostles are strong at many things -- they tend to be effective communicators, they tend to gather people around them, they tend to be visionaries. By function or design, their strengths don't tend to include shepherding. It's a different gifting, which Ephesians 4 clearly delineates -- "some are called to be apostles, some pastors," etc. So even though Erwin's title is "Pastor," his calling and his role really is that of "Apostle." (However, pastoral care is administered by others, most notably Dave Auda, Goodie Goodloe and Rickey Williams, all of whom have tremendous pastors' hearts and make it a point to connect relationally with the people in Mosaic.)

It's not surprising that Erwin has hurt people at the interpersonal level. He's an introvert who's great at vision but not always great at one-to-one relationships. But at the same time, has anyone on this board *not* hurt someone? 1 Timothy 3 clearly lays out the calling of leaders -- nowhere does it say "don't hurt people." Particularly in confronting sin/brokenness, there are times where pain is an uncomfortable part of the walk. I am not familiar with all the stories of MOPers, but I suspect that there have been more than a few people here who had to be taken out of leadership/ministry in Mosaic for significant issues. (Some of them have posted.) These situations are always painful and never easy, but I would rather be part of a church where difficult issues are addressed -- even poorly -- than be part of a community where secrets are merely swept under the rug.

Other issues, particularly in terms of Awaken, can (and are) summed up under the common knowledge that Mosaic isn't great at administration. That's a spiritual gift that is sorely lacking in the community, though those who serve on support staff work really hard to try to iron out as many kinks as they can. Particularly this year, Awaken has not been as much of a focus, since Mosaic (like most other churches in the country) are wrestling with depleted resources in the wake of the economy. I don't see the huge conspiracy that Yvonne does -- but then, Yvonne seems to have taken up the bazooka on behalf of her dad. While I understand her frustration, we all have glasses we see the world through. What we see is not always what is, on all sides.

~ Gal 5:15

Anonymous said...

Jay Parker actually did not have a good time at that Easter service. Sometimes irony gets lost on message boards, and that is understandable. For the record, Jay was very concerned about the service that Sunday.. Re-read his post that weekend or just call him or email and ask him about what he thinks of Mosaic.

Anonymous said...

Cris,

I agree, we need to be respectful and show restraint, however, it is quite condescending of Gal 5 to start off their post with a "sigh". As if they have to come in and school us on the way things are.

It really doesn't matter if the person is Eric, Scott, SiR or whomever, so long as they will be serious and honest with the situation.

Eddie-m

Cris Aguilar said...

Eddie,

I agree with you but I am asking that we be not necessarily overlook that but to address it without being mean or condescending in return.

It is also frustrating to be treated as though one day we just woke up and decided to throw up a site to blast Erwin or Mosaic. A lot of us have followed the biblical model and have been rejected all the way through. Nobody cared and it's fairly evident that they still simply don't care. It is also FUSTRATING when we have to repeat ourselves and they come back with the same type of response as those we don’t get it. Well, I stand on the belief that they don't get it and for now I will keep trying.

Let's try and remember to keep our cool. I am not saying to not be angry but to stay on course with where that anger goes.

Cris Aguilar said...

Gal 5, once again I appreciate your comments but this is why our side of the argument is frustrated. You as others in the past have simply put the issues aside and have given us staments/answers that simply don‘t address the questions or issues we have presented.

I dont have the time today or Sat. to address your statements so I am hoping someone else can do so.

Anonymous said...

Galatians 5:15

My response within your text below - inside of the [brackets].

The church we now refer to as Mosaic was in fact started as an alternative to the Brady service.

[Correction. Mosaic is what Erwin called the church that systematically took over Brady.]

So even though Erwin's title is "Pastor," his calling and his role really is that of "Apostle."

[Gal 5, you are correct in this assertion. I agree with you, his strengths are more of an Apostle. And, this is probably the number one problem that many here at MOP have with what transpired back in the 90's. A man came on as a "pastor" with little to no intention of fulfilling that role. And he pushed out a pastor that had a pastor's heart. Sad day.]


It's not surprising that Erwin has hurt people at the interpersonal level. He's an introvert who's great at vision but not always great at one-to-one relationships.

[Gal 5, you are correct again.]

But at the same time, has anyone on this board *not* hurt someone? 1 Timothy 3 clearly lays out the calling of leaders -- nowhere does it say "don't hurt people."

[Nor does it say they should not rob, steal, kill, etc... It's sort of a given that a man of God should be compassionate and caring for those entrusted to him. "Don't hurt those you lead." That would be a bit unnecessary.]


Particularly in confronting sin/brokenness, there are times where pain is an uncomfortable part of the walk. I am not familiar with all the stories of MOPers, but I suspect that there have been more than a few people here who had to be taken out of leadership/ministry in Mosaic for significant issues. (Some of them have posted.) These situations are always painful and never easy, but I would rather be part of a church where difficult issues are addressed -- even poorly -- than be part of a community where secrets are merely swept under the rug.

[Gal 5, now you are getting WAY off the thread of truth here. I am not sure if this is out of your not understanding the situation or just plain malicious on your part. The hundreds that have been driven away from their one time church (Brady) were not done so out of their sin or wrong behavior. More because their church was taken away. As a matter of fact, I know of no single member that left because they were asked or told to because of their sin, or any behaviour on thier part that caused them to leave.]

Other issues, particularly in terms of Awaken, can (and are) summed up under the common knowledge that Mosaic isn't great at administration.

[Oh, well that excuses any and all improprieties, of course.]

That's a spiritual gift that is sorely lacking in the community, though those who serve on support staff work really hard to try to iron out as many kinks as they can. Particularly this year, Awaken has not been as much of a focus, since Mosaic (like most other churches in the country) are wrestling with depleted resources in the wake of the economy.

[Your point is?]

I don't see the huge conspiracy that Yvonne does -- but then, Yvonne seems to have taken up the bazooka on behalf of her dad.

[Nice try, but it is clear that in the case of Yvonne's inquiry into Mosaic's questionable finances; where there is smoke, there is fire.

For many the problem with Mosaic is that it needed to kill a church (Brady), one that many of us called home, in order that Erwin could have a have a jump start at creating his legacy.]


Eddie Marshall

Yvonne W. said...

To Gal. 5:15: (Or shall I call you Megan?)

For the future, I ask you to kindly address your comments about me or my research directly to me

You wrote the following:

Other issues, particularly in terms of Awaken, can (and are) summed up under the common knowledge that Mosaic isn't great at administration. That's a spiritual gift that is sorely lacking in the community, though those who serve on support staff work really hard to try to iron out as many kinks as they can. Particularly this year, Awaken has not been as much of a focus, since Mosaic (like most other churches in the country) are wrestling with depleted resources in the wake of the economy. I don't see the huge conspiracy that Yvonne does -- but then, Yvonne seems to have taken up the bazooka on behalf of her dad. While I understand her frustration, we all have glasses we see the world through. What we see is not always what is, on all sides.

~ Gal 5:15


Alright, I'm going to extend to you the benefit of the doubt and try to explain the LEGAL differences between Awaken and Mosaic one more time . . .


Under California State CORPORATE LAW:

Awaken - is registered with the California Business Portal as a SEPARATE, LEGAL, entity. This means somebody at Awaken took the time to file the legal paperwork to INCORPORATE Awaken as a legitimate BUSINESS (whether for profit or as a non-profit.)

Mosaic - is also registered with the California Business Portal as a SEPARATE, LEGAL, entity. Again, somebody took the time to file the appropriate paperwork with the state of California to incorporate Mosaic. In Mosaic's case, since it is also a CHURCH which meets the definition of such under IRS regulations, it is recognized by the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT as a valid TAX EXEMPT, 501c3 organization.


Awaken and Mosaic CAN NOT be seen as the same thing!!!!!!!!

Under both state and federal law, Awaken and Mosaic MUST file SEPARATE tax returns.

Is this clear to you now?

When you try to explain Awaken's problems by writing that "Mosaic isn't great at administration" my answer to you is,

"MOSAIC (as a CORPORATION) should not be involved in the administration of AWAKEN (as a corporation.)"

Mixing the two together is what is known as a CONFLICT OF INTEREST.

The only people who should be "administrating" Awaken's corporate interests are the administrators of Awaken, NOT Mosaic!

This doesn't mean that a person (such as Eric Bryant) cannot wear "two hats" [Eric is both the Executive Pastor of Mosaic AND the Vice President of Awaken]

BUT . . .

things get really sticky when you have two separate corporations working together on such an intimate level because again, you MUST take measures to insure that there is no conflict of interest.

Be EXTREMELY CAREFUL when you write words such as these:

. . .those who serve on support staff work really hard to try to iron out as many kinks as they can. Particularly this year, Awaken has not been as much of a focus, since Mosaic (like most other churches in the country) are wrestling with depleted resources in the wake of the economy.

"SUPPORATE STAFF" from Mosaic SHOULD NOT be involved in the administration of Awaken!!!! This could be construed as a definite conflict of interest and could lead to Mosaic LOSING it's 501c3 status!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Under corporate LAW, Awaken and Mosaic are BUSINESSES and must be operated as such. This has absolutely nothing to do with "spiritual gifts."


Gal 5:15, when you write that Mosaic is facing "depleted resources in the wake of the economy" my first thought is; what has that got to do with Awaken?

Isn't Awaken being funded by it's own resources?

What about all the films that Awaken holds the copyright to?

What about all the book sales that are handled by Awaken? The speaking engagements for Erwin McManus that are handled under the Awaken brand name? The numerous conferences?

Why would Awaken be affected by anything that happens to Mosaic????

I haven't even touched on the topic of whether or not Awaken is a for profit business or a non-profit, charitable organization.

Erwin has said it is a non-profit but I have found absolutely NO EVIDENCE to back up that claim. If Awaken is a non-profit, then it's records would be subject to public scrutiny at both the state and federal level.

If Awaken is a for profit organization, then it is subject to state and federal tax laws just like any other business and must be filing the appropriate tax forms.

In either case, can somebody at Awaken please explain to me why the State of California has SUSPENDED it's corporate status???

Gal 5:15,

I don't see any huge conspiracy here. All I see is a sad, legal and financial mess created by a group of well-intentioned but woefully ignorant "entrepreneurs" who wanted to "create" something good but lacked the legal expertise (or at least the good sense to hire an actual lawyer!) to see it through.

How else can you explain what has happened to the following corporations?

Awaken Center for Creativity
Created 2002, Corporate status - suspended - corporation apparently abandoned

Awaken Internation
Created 2003, Corporate status - suspended - corporation apparently abandoned

Awaken
Created 2005, Corporate status - suspended - Future?

Gal 5:15,

I hope you can see now that this isn't about my dad.

As for Awaken, you don't need a bazooka to blow down a house of cards.

I'll end my remarks with your words:

. . .we all have glasses we see the world through. What we see is not always what is, on all sides.


Yvonne W.

Yvonne W. said...

Hello all,


I have posted my latest article at Solid Foods,

Wide Awake or Why Wake?
Is Anyone Awake at Awaken?

http://solidfoods.blogspot.com/2008/07/wide-awake-or-why-wake.html

Yvonne W.

Gal 5:15 said...

>this is probably the number one problem that many here at MOP have with what transpired back in the 90's. A man came on as a "pastor" with little to no intention of fulfilling that role. And he pushed out a pastor that had a pastor's heart. Sad day.

It is pretty clear that Bro. Thom and Erwin had divergent visions of what Brady could/should be. Both were men of vision; both were men of God. One had been effectively leading the church in one direction for many years; one had been elected by the church to bring the church into the future. One had the support of long-time members; one had the support of long-time members and new members. What was the right thing to do? In essence, Brady endured a church split at that point. These things are painful, no doubt about it. But where you guys see a black-and-white situation, I see a situation where two good, Godly men had two good but different visions for a church, and they were irreconcilable. There was no easy way out. People on this board still seem to harken back to that situation as the key moment. This pain is understandable, but at a certain point, what do you do? You have to demonize people in order to create more drama than is there, and I don't think it's necesary.

At one point Erwin even asked the church elders to send him out on a church plant rather than continue to serve at Mosaic. They were the ones who said he shouldn't. So the situation is a bit murkier than it even appears at first glance...

>It's sort of a given that a man of God should be compassionate and caring for those entrusted to him. "Don't hurt those you lead." That would be a bit unnecessary.

Yes, but at the same time, the biggest problem with Mosaic of Pain is there is no mitigation of "pain." Pastors are clearly called both to encourage AND admonish. One person's "abuse of power" is another's "calling a person to accountability." I can't speak to all the different levels of pain here. Different people have posted different issues. Lynn Hutchinson's situation is very different from some others on this board. Some pain is legitimate; some is more questionable, but only the naive would assume that all pain is equal.

>The hundreds that have been driven away from their one time church (Brady) were not done so out of their sin or wrong behavior. More because their church was taken away.

Again, it's pretty clear from this board that there is a variety of pain here. People are angry because "their church was taken away," and I suppose that's understandable -- though I would say based on the church's history that the church moved in a different direction than some people wanted. It's the same pain, but directed in a different way. Starting a church in a nightclub in downtown L.A. sent the church in a whole different direction. It's interesting that the alternative service was started not by Erwin, but was initiated by people in the church. So when you say this:

>For many the problem with Mosaic is that it needed to kill a church (Brady), one that many of us called home, in order that Erwin could have a have a jump start at creating his legacy

...your ire should be directed not just at Erwin, but at those who broadened and stimulated his vision, and the thousands of those who have followed it since...

BTW -- just so you guys know, my name's not Megan either...

Anonymous said...

Hey Anonymous who posted on 7/11/08 at 10:31 am,

I totally agree with you that the MOP crowd and the MOSAIC crowd should both chill out.
It is not cool what MOSAIC and Erwin have done but we all need to forgive one another.
Everyone should be cool and just chill out.

Anonymous said...

BTW -- just so you guys know, my name's not Megan either...

Again welcome back Eric. The gift that keeps on giving. Well not really a gift. Sometimes ignorance is bliss...Just a little hint. This could all be solved. If you want to look at character and what it can display take a gander at a sporting event hosted by Mosaic. If you want to see an interesting display of behavior take a look at Erwin's behavior playing basketball or soccer. Not a pretty site, don't get in his way, that's my piece of advice...But other than those displays of pure nuttiness, he's a great guy. Geeze

Anonymous said...

I am curious, for those of you who are MOP supporters, I do understand what was done to Brady was not a good or Godly thing, but that had happened probably more than a decade ago. Me being former a Brady member, even got baptized by Robbie Sortino at Brady, I understand the lost that happened when Erwin made the killing stroke. I imagine that everyone if not most of the writers in this forum are attending some church organization. And what I got to say is that to make the most of being in those churches, move on, can't resurrect Brady, there are too many current supporters of Erwin's Mosaic now. I used to attend Mosaic, I stopped attending several years ago, visited it here and there along the way since then, can't say it is the ultimate and completely right on Christian church to be at, but it works for many, but not for everyone. I believe Erwin is more of a good business person than a good pastor, which is tragic if not wrong, but hey, Erwin is not the first to be like that and definitely not the last. The ending of Brady was wrong and tragic, but life goes on, there are plenty of opportunites to invest in when being in other church organizations, not talking about the financial opportunities but in the Godly opportunities. But of course, if it is vengeance towards Erwin and company is what you want, can't stop you guys, but is that what Jesus Christ would support?


Willis Quan

Anonymous said...

One Poster wrote, "It is not cool what MOSAIC and Erwin have done but we all need to forgive one another."

Another, "I do understand what was done to Brady was not a good or Godly thing, but that had happened probably more than a decade ago."

While Gal 5 wrote, "Again, it's pretty clear from this board that there is a variety of pain here."

First, we are not in a position to "forgive" a church that believes it has done no wrong and does not ask for forgiveness. But, probably even more important; what if we just give up and go away and this church truly does have a pattern of abuse. Wouldn't it be wrong of us to let that abuse continue?

Many of us would like to move on, but God has convicted us to not just let Mosaic walk away from their behavior.

This is not about "revenge", it's about justice.

MOPmember said...

The idea that as Christians we are not suppose to have any problems, and we should never let the world know that, is absurd!

Of course there are problems within Christianity. As a matter of fact, it's probably the only religion that allows, even advocates, the open air discussion of such.

If you don't believe me, read the Bible...

Gal 5:15 said...

Anonymous had said:

>Again welcome back Eric.

Not Eric, but nice try...

>If you want to look at character and what it can display take a gander at a sporting event hosted by Mosaic. If you want to see an interesting display of behavior take a look at Erwin's behavior playing basketball or soccer.

Not sure what you're talking about here. I have played basketball with Erwin and watched him play. A couple years ago at a Highlander weekend, the game got pretty rough. Erwin (who was not playing) came over and told everyone to calm down, and got pretty annoyed at some guys who were taking the game a little too seriously. So I'm not sure what you're trying to infer...

~ Gal 5:15 (not Eric, Megan, Scott, SiR, etc)

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Well Gal 5,
Its interesting that Erwin told you to calm down after some b-ball. Sounds like where the leader goes there goes the flock. Anyone who really knows Erwin knows his intensity on and off the court. Maybe your not Eric. Because Eric knows. Sounds like you got it real bad.

Anonymous said...

"First, we are not in a position to "forgive" a church that believes it has done no wrong and does not ask for forgiveness. "

remember that part in scripture where it says to only forgive if someone realizes they did wrong and ask forgiveness? I love that part.

Anonymous said...

"First, we are not in a position to "forgive" a church that believes it has done no wrong and does not ask for forgiveness."

remember that part in scripture where it says to only forgive if someone realizes they did wrong and ask forgiveness? I love that part."


Actually, yes I do:


Luke 17:3

"If your brother sins, rebuke him, and IF he repents, forgive him.


Emphasis, obviously added.

Anonymous said...

>>>remember that part in scripture where it says to only forgive if someone realizes they did wrong and ask forgiveness? I love that part.


Even prisons understand this simple concept. If a convicted felon does not confess to his/her crime they can not be eligible for parole. No matter how much good behavior they display.

This is not rocket science people. Read the mission statement for this blog, again. REPENTANCE, Resignation and Restitution...nothing less, nothing more.

Anonymous said...

Gal 5 you've made some pretty bold comments here. They have been addressed, and all you can do is respond to the basketball thing?

How about the claim you made about members being asked to leave Mosaic because of being confronted about sin? Or, the one where you attempted to excuse away the poor handling of donated money with, "...Mosaic isn't great at administration."?

What of Yvonne's replies to your accusation about her motives for looking into Awaken's sordid existence?

If this is going to be a dialog and you plan on coming in here and making your statements, and expect our replies, then let's hear your responses to those replies.

Otherwise you are simply tossing red hearings here and there. And we all know where that type of reasoning comes from and leads to.

Gal 5:15 said...

>How about the claim you made about members being asked to leave Mosaic because of being confronted about sin?

Do you know the individual beefs that each person who has ever posted here has with Mosaic? As I said, Lynn Hutchinson's situation is very different from someone else's. I didn't say that everyone who has beef with Mosaic was involved in sin. What I said was that everyone's issues are different issue. Lynn's situation was a bit clearer in terms of Biblical issues, both because of where she wanted to go, as well as the fact that she was operating with greater influence within Mosaic. Others of you anonymous posters may be in similar situations. Again, like I said, one person's "abuse of power" may be another person's "calling one to accountability." Without full disclosure, how is anyone to know the difference? Posting anonymously and one-sidedly without context and full disclosure is a convenient breeding ground for misinformation.

As far as Yvonne goes, despite her assertions to the contrary, for-profit corporations are indeed legally allowed by the IRS to operate under non-profit organizations. *shrug* The inability of some on this board to accept that fact doesn't make it less so.

Have at it...

~ Gal. 5:15

Gal 5:15 said...

>The idea that as Christians we are not suppose to have any problems, and we should never let the world know that, is absurd!

>...If you don't believe me, read the Bible...

Luke 6:36-38:
"36Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. 37 Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. 38 Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you."

All I'm sayin'...

~ Gal. 5:15

Yvonne W. said...

Gal. 5:15 wrote:

As far as Yvonne goes, despite her assertions to the contrary, for-profit corporations are indeed legally allowed by the IRS to operate under non-profit organizations. *shrug* The inability of some on this board to accept that fact doesn't make it less so.


Ah ha!

It never ceases to amaze me how the so-called defenders of Erwin McManus/Awaken/Mosaic usually end up making things worse rather than better!

So Gal. 5:15, is your statement above an admission that Awaken is a "for profit" organization?

Since you assert that Awaken (a for profit) is legally allowed by the IRS to operate under Mosaic (a non-profit) does thia mean Awaken is:

. . . an INTEGRATED AUXILLIARY of Mosaic????

What about Awaken Center for Creativity?

Don't forget Awaken International.

Oh yeah, one more, Awaken Humanity.

Are ALL FOUR of these registered corporations "integrated auxilliaries" of Mosaic?

And by the way, do ALL FOUR of these corporations have SEPARATE EIN's (Employee Identification Numbers) on file with the IRS????

(I've been informed by a LAWYER who specializes in federal 501c3 tax law that such corporations MUST have separate EIN's.)

If in fact, Awaken (or any of the other "Awakens") is indeed an integrated auxilliary of Mosaic, has Mosaic been reporting the UBI (Unrelated Business Income) on it's yearly tax forms?


I'll be waiting for your answers.


Yvonne W.

Ruben said...

Gal. 5:15, Hello. Remember you wrote the following: "I am not familiar with all the stories of MOPers, but I suspect that there have been more than a few people here who had to be taken out of leadership/ministry in Mosaic for significant issues." I want to point out that there are people who have posted on these boards who are not anonymous and were not removed for any reasons, certainly not "significant issues." I know you wish to remain anonymous, and that is fine, but statements like yours seem hurtful, especially to those who have gone on the record, and left on their own accord. From reading your comment, it would appear to those not familiar with Mosaic/Brady that these posters are merely the rants of those who have mostly been fired or dismissed. When you and I both know that this is simply not true.

Anonymous said...

Gal 5,

Excuse me..?

What does this imply:

"Particularly in confronting sin/brokenness, there are times where pain is an uncomfortable part of the walk. I am not familiar with all the stories of MOPers, but I suspect that there have been more than a few people here who had to be taken out of leadership/ministry in Mosaic for significant issues. (Some of them have posted.) These situations are always painful and never easy, but I would rather be part of a church where difficult issues are addressed -- even poorly -- than be part of a community where secrets are merely SWEPT UNDER THE RUG."


"I didn't say that everyone who has beef with Mosaic was involved in sin. What I said was that everyone's issues are different issue.

YOU CERTAINLY IMPLIED IT.

- emphasis mine -

MOPmember said...

Yvonne,

You go girl!

Anonymous said...

Gal 5,
Hey wouldn't it be a great witness if Erwin apologized and made amends to those he hurt. And wouldn't it be splendid if he had someone on staff who knew tax law. And wouldn't it be great if he focused on getting his house in order (Mosaic) before he writes another me-centered theology book. Gal 5 it sounds like Erwin needs a brother right now and less followers. Matt 5

Gal 5:15 said...

Yvonne:

>And by the way, do ALL FOUR of these corporations have SEPARATE EIN's (Employee Identification Numbers) on file with the IRS????

(I've been informed by a LAWYER who specializes in federal 501c3 tax law that such corporations MUST have separate EIN's.)

Yes, Awaken has a different EIN than Mosaic's -- though since Awaken has never turned a profit, it's probably hard to term it a "for-profit". And as you have so exhaustively pointed out, the former Awakens are no longer operating, replaced by the one that is. So I'm not sure what your point is...?

Ruben:

>I want to point out that there are people who have posted on these boards who are not anonymous and were not removed for any reasons, certainly not "significant issues."

Yes, of course there are. There are also many anonymous posters who seem to have jumped on the bandwagon and swung away. As I said before, it's problematic to sort out what is truth and what is merely hate when there is no way to differentiate between those who have legitimate issues and those who don't. As I said in one of my earlier posts, I'm willing to bet you guys don't know the beefs of the anonymous posters who seem to delight in slinging mud, anymore than I know the names of the people who claim to be members of Mosaic who jump on here to sling mud back....which is part of why I continue to monitor this board from time to time -- to try to engage in rational conversation and calm some of the more ridiculous assertions and attacks that people are making (on both sides).

And Yvonne's posts -- whatever their motivations (again, she only started posting after everything happened with her father last year) -- did cause Eric and Erwin to focus on getting Awaken's house in order. So in a strange way, good did come of it. So there you go...

~ Gal 5:15

Yvonne W. said...

Hhhmmm. . . .

Gal. 5:15 wrote:

Yes, Awaken has a different EIN than Mosaic's -- though since Awaken has never turned a profit, it's probably hard to term it a "for-profit". And as you have so exhaustively pointed out, the former Awakens are no longer operating, replaced by the one that is. So I'm not sure what your point is...?


This is nteresting information.

Let me see if I have this straight -

According to you . .

Awaken has a separate EIN from Mosaic but . . .

. . .is stillunder Mosaic?

My "point" is this:

I noticed that you didn't use the LEGAL term "integrated auxilliary" to explain the relationship between Awaken and Mosaic.

And then you wrote this little gem:

. . . since Awaken has never turned a profit, it's probably hard to term it a "for-profit".

Do you honestly believe the local district attorney, the franchise tax board or the State Attorney General would agree with your ternminology?

Then you really stuck your foot in your mouth when you wrote this:

And as you have so exhaustively pointed out, the former Awakens are no longer operating, replaced by the one that is.

When I asked if Awaken had a separate EIN, it was a trick question; one which you nicely fell for. You see, if it's true that Awaken has a separate EIN from Mosaic AND that . . .

"the former Awakens are no longer operating, replaced by the one that is"

. . . this would verify my suspicions that Awaken has been doing EXACTLY that.

You are incorrect when you assume that because the other "Awakens" are under a suspended status and appear to be abandoned that this means it is okay to forget about their existence. Non-profit corporations must file the appropriate paperwork with the state in order to be legally DISSOLVED. Included in this paperwork are financial statements verifying that the corporation's assets have been distributed to another (legitimate) non-profit, charitable organization.

YOU CANNOT simply "replace" one non-profit with another one!!!!!!

EACH of the "Awakens" must have a separate EIN, and because of this they are NOT INTERCHANGEABLE!

Just because they all share one word, "Awaken", in their names doesn't make it LEGAL to "move on" (including shifting all the assets) to a new corporation when something goes wrong with an older version.

One last thing:

And Yvonne's posts -- whatever their motivations (again, she only started posting after everything happened with her father last year) -- did cause Eric and Erwin to focus on getting Awaken's house in order. So in a strange way, good did come of it. So there you go...

What? If Eric and Erwin are so intent on "getting Awaken's house in order", then why is it NOW too under a SUSPENDED status?????


Gal 5:15,

I STRONGLY advise you not to write any more nonsense about Awaken. If what you have written is true, then you are the one making things look a whole lot worse for Erwin McManus, Mosaic and "Awaken."


Yvonne W.

Anonymous said...

Yvonne, Ruben, Cris, and the other MOPs - I would say from my reading is their about 12 of you guys in all? How about everyone make a profile with name and describe in detail all your pain & hurt that you have experienced at Mosaic. I understand Yvonne has already done this in detail. But it would be good to have this, then as future Mosaic members leave they can post a profile. A church Mosaic's size should have many people leaving the church every month, along with many joining every month. We did this at my home church and it really cleared up all the gossip. Some church's even have a link from their main site to the former members rant page. I think it is healthy for a church and the pastor/ staff to have all types of corrections, criticism, insults, etc in a public forum. It actually makes existing members say I don't want to sound like them or become like those old jaded members.
A site like this brings greater unity to Mosaic and an appreciation for what the pastor and the leadership have to deal with. There is simply not anything being said on this site that is not said about any other church or pastor in the whole body of Christ, by former members. "The pastor loves money, he is power hungry, he is abusive, the church is not for mature Christians like myself, the church feeds everyone bad theology." The old song and dance goes on across the country and around the world.
So if I was in Mosaic's leadership I would suggest they add a link to their main page of this site - but come on lets document each individual by name and story of the pain & hurt.

Anonymous said...

Yvonne,
Gal 5 seems to be on staff. He admitted that you've helped w/ Mosaic's "house getting in order",he seems to be under the assumption that you started writing after your father was dismissed. Is this accurate and why are its leaders so indifferent to Robert and you? Sorry just scratching my head.

Yvonne W. said...

To the Anonymous poster of July 16, 2008 8:28 AM :

If you meant to be "helpful" with your suggestions then you really ought to be careful about using phrases like this:

We did this at my home church and it really cleared up all the gossip.

Some church's even have a link from their main site to the former members rant page.

I think it is healthy for a church and the pastor/ staff to have all types of corrections, criticism, insults, etc in a public forum. It actually makes existing members say I don't want to sound like them or become like those old jaded members.

That particular remark had me scratching my head. As written, it sounds like you're saying it's "healthy" to post "corrections, criticism, insults, etc in a public forum" BUT . . . then you dismiss that statement by saying existing members will see this an a NEGATIVE example they won't want to follow.

Huh?

To continue . . .

A site like this brings greater unity to Mosaic and an appreciation for what the pastor and the leadership have to deal with.

This statement expresses concern for what "the pastor and leadership have to deal with" but what about the things the members have to deal with?

There is simply not anything being said on this site that is not said about any other church or pastor in the whole body of Christ, by former members. "The pastor loves money, he is power hungry, he is abusive, the church is not for mature Christians like myself, the church feeds everyone bad theology." The old song and dance goes on across the country and around the world.

Anonymous, while it is true that all churches have their internal problems, how many churches can are dealing with the specific problems that have been addressed here at MoP?

How many other churches have a celebrity pastor who publicly slams his former coworkers IN WRITING? I'm referring to Bro. Tom and Rbbbie Sortino.

How many other churches have FOUR "non-profit" corporations associated with their lead pastor? To be even more specific, how many churches have FOUR "non-profit" corporations associated with their lead pastor and THREE of those corporations have had their corporate status SUSPENDED by the state?

Add to this the mystery surrounding
GLOBAL IMPACT and the unnamed "non-profit" Erwin McManus mentions in his latest interview with Christians in Cinema,

http://www.christiancinema.com/catalog/newsdesk_info.php?newsdesk_id=666

. . . and you'll have a possible total of SIX alleged "non-profits" all together!

It is illogical to compare the problems Mosaic, Awaken and Erwin McManus are experiencing to "other churches." It simply doesn't make sense.

Your suggestion that we should:

. . . document each individual by name and story of the pain & hurt [sic]

. . . sounds very much like "fishing for information" when it comes from an anonymous outsider. The people who are comfortable with using their real names have already done so and as for the rest; I won't blame anyone for being cautious when it comes to Mosaic. After all, I don't think anybody would find it pleasnt to see the police arrive on their doorstep late at night because they were sent out by Mosaic to investigate a "possible threat" to the church.

That is exactly what happened to Robbie Sortino's family.


Yvonne W.

Yvonne W. said...

To the anonymous poster who wrote:

Yvonne,
Gal 5 seems to be on staff. He admitted that you've helped w/ Mosaic's "house getting in order",he seems to be under the assumption that you started writing after your father was dismissed. Is this accurate and why are its leaders so indifferent to Robert and you? Sorry just scratching my head.

July 16, 2008 12:06 PM



I don't know the identity of Gal. 5:15 but this person does write as if he/she is a staff member.

I often receive emails and materials from CURRENT and former members of Mosaic who wish to support my efforts to expose the truth. I've heard from these contacts that changes have been made at Mosaic and Awaken in response to the things I write about in my blog but unfortunately, these changes appear to be mostly cosmetic in nature.

As to the timing of my writings:

I didn't even know the original MySpace page "Mosaic of Pain" started by Robbie Sortino's son even existed until after my father knew he was facing dismissal from Mosaic. That was when I heard from friends and other family members that there was such a thing as "Mosaic of Pain."

So I guess you could say I didn't start to write until sometime around the time my father left Mosaic but that's because until then I didn't know there was a Mosaic of Pain.

I started my own blog, Solid Foods, so I could post longer responses to the things I was learning about Erwin McManus, Awaken and Mosaic.


As to the question, "Why are its leaders so indifferent to Robert and you?"

Well, those leaders made my father sign a non-disclosure contract when he left Mosaic.

For me, being treated with indifference is preferable to
having the police show up on my doorstep in the middle of the night but if that ever did happen, it would be the subject of my next post at Solid Foods.

I hope this answers your questions.


Yvonne W.

Gal 5:15 said...

Yvonne:

>Let me see if I have this straight - according to you...Awaken has a separate EIN from Mosaic but...is still under Mosaic?

Yes, Yvonne. They did it just so you can stop fretting about whether Awaken dotted its i's and crossed its t's.

>I noticed that you didn't use the LEGAL term "integrated auxilliary" to explain the relationship between Awaken and Mosaic.

"Integrated auxilliaries" as defined by the IRS are non-profit charitable organizations under the umbrella of other non-profit charitable organizations. Awaken primarily serves as the distribution arm of Mosaic's resources, just like many other large churches that have bookstores. Because they are involved in selling goods, they have to be organized separately from Mosaic.

Yvonne went on to say:

>And then you wrote this little gem:

"...since Awaken has never turned a profit, it's probably hard to term it a 'for-profit'."

>Do you honestly believe the local district attorney, the franchise tax board or the State Attorney General would agree with your ternminology?

Would I expect them to take seriously a facetious comment made on the Interweb about the fact that Mosaic's bookstore doesn't actually generate a whole lot of revenue? No, I wouldn't.

>When I asked if Awaken had a separate EIN, it was a trick question; one which you nicely fell for.

Oh, how you hath outsmarted me.

>Non-profit corporations must file the appropriate paperwork with the state in order to be legally DISSOLVED. Included in this paperwork are financial statements verifying that the corporation's assets have been distributed to another (legitimate) non-profit, charitable organization. YOU CANNOT simply "replace" one non-profit with another one!!!!!!

Whoever said Awaken is a non-profit, charitable organization? Just because it doesn't HAVE any profits doesn't mean it doesn't want to.

Now there IS a ministry called Awaken Humanity which is squarely under Mosaic oversight, and is currently run by Janice Sakuma. THAT Awaken is responsible for partnering with various non-profits and service projects around the globe. You can read about it here: (http://www.mosaic.org/awaken-humanity)

Now, back to the playground...

~ Gal 5:15

Ruben said...

Gal. 5:15, hello again. You mentioned that you continue to monitor this board from time to time -- to try to “engage in rational conversation and calm some of the more ridiculous assertions and attacks that people are making (on both sides).” I am sorry, correct me if I am wrong, but when have you tried to calm some of those ridiculous assertions from your side. Now I haven’t read every single comment, but I just don’t remember you doing that. Now, I know there have been some harsh things on both sides (some comments of which I have taken down from my blog) but I have only seen you try to calm down MOP. Again, correct me if I am wrong. Second, though I am not a fan of anonymous postings, remember, some people feel as if they are going to be blasted in some way if they put their name on the record criticizing Mosaic. Who wants to go through what Lynn Hutchinson went through? Who needs it? So that is why some feel to go anonymous. I am not saying I like it, though I do understand it.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous Poster (July 16, 2008 3:51 AM)

You are correct, many of these complaints have been stated and re-stated over the years. And, it has helped to have a voice over the centuries to point out the greed and ego of far too many church leaders, through the Church's two thousand year history. One very good example of an individual that "ranted" would be Mr. Martin Luther.

Anonymous said...

This site is great. I agree with the "tongue-in-cheek" poster that believes every church should be subject to such.

It is time for a major house cleaning within the materialistic/greed based American church!

Anonymous said...

If your church does you wrong or does your daddy wrong leave it. Hop to another church and when they do you wrong leave it and hop to the next one. At some point you might to decide that I need to start my own church, so start a house church. You could even do like some and say you are too good for church, "all churches are corrupt and I am so perfect that I just hang with God in the woods now" - mentality. Who knows anything has to be better than being the Mosaic church morality police. It has to be hard for Erwin to be happily married, loving father with great kids, a big church of people that love him, he travels all over the world preaching the gospel, and on top of everything he seems to be wealthy. This has to drive each of you crazy to relive that moment 10 or more years ago when Erwin became the pastor and your world came crashing down. It seems the most healthy thing to do from this point is to move on. Erwin or no one at Mosaic can heal you, no matter what they say or do. May each of you find healing in your own journey with God.

Gal 5:15 said...

Ruben:

>You mentioned that you continue to monitor this board from time to time -- to try to “engage in rational conversation and calm some of the more ridiculous assertions and attacks that people are making (on both sides).” I am sorry, correct me if I am wrong, but when have you tried to calm some of those ridiculous assertions from your side. Now I haven’t read every single comment, but I just don’t remember you doing that. Now, I know there have been some harsh things on both sides (some comments of which I have taken down from my blog) but I have only seen you try to calm down MOP.

I've made concessions in places where we agree -- you can see my back and forth with Eddie Marshall if you'd like. We both agreed that Erwin is an introvert -- not, by the way, something Erwin denies. We both agreed that Erwin operates apostolically -- but while others make sarcastic commments about the "drive-by/part-time" pastor, I point out that Rickey Williams, Marcus Goodloe, and Dave Auda all function pastorally in a way Erwin does not. And I agreed with you guys that the Brady split was a painful moment -- but while others see conspiracy, I see a painful situation where two Godly men wanted to lead the church in different directions, but only one had been empowered to do so. So I'm willing to agree with you guys on some points; I just find your conclusions unsupportable.

And I won't stand idly by while anonymous posters make baseless claims about Erwin and his cronies getting rich off the back of Mosaic. Nor will I accept baseless comments about Mosaic's doctrine being New Age. (Again, once we get past the bathwater of language, "Divine potential" and "made in the image of God" are two perfectly reconcilable Biblical concepts.) Nor will I stand by while the uninformed question Awaken's finances and try to find something that isn't there.

Evaluate my tone vs. the tone of those who come here ranting and raving about how "Mosaic is the future, you losers are the past" etc., and I think you'll find that while some of those people seem content only to start fires, I'm trying to actually address issues and deal in facts. I thought my conduct was enough to show that I'm trying to distance myself from the brawlers, but if you'd like me to both denounce and repudiate obnoxious comments from Mosaic posters, consider it done.

~ Gal 5:15

Yvonne W. said...

For the record:

I am not playing games.

------------------------------


Source: http://www.irs.gov/charities/churches/article/0,,id=155750,00.html

"Integrated Auxiliary of a Church" Defined

The term integrated auxiliary of a church refers to a class of organizations that are related to a church or convention or association of churches, but are not such organizations themselves. In general, the IRS will treat an organization that meets the following three requirements as an integrated auxiliary of a church. The organization must:

Be described both as an Internal Revenue Code section 501(c)(3) organization and be a public charity under Code section 509(a)(1), (2), or (3),

Be affiliated with a church or convention or association of churches, and

Receive financial support primarily from internal church sources as opposed to public or governmental sources.

Men's and women's organizations, seminaries, mission societies, and youth groups that satisfy the first two requirements above are considered integrated auxiliaries whether or not they meet the internal support requirement.

Source: Publication 1828, Tax Guide for Churches and Religious Organizations

Date posted: March 28, 2006



Source:
http://www.irs.gov/publications/p557/ch03.html#d0e4423

Integrated auxiliaries.

An organization is an integrated auxiliary of a church if all the following are true.

The organization is described both in sections 501(c)(3) and 509(a)(1), 509(a)(2), or 509(a)(3).

It is affiliated with a church or a convention or association of churches.

It is internally supported.

An organization is internally supported unless both of the following are true.

It offers admissions, goods, services or facilities for sale, other than on an incidental basis, to the general public (except goods, services, or facilities sold at a nominal charge or for a small part of the cost).

It normally gets more than 50% of its support from a combination of governmental sources, public solicitation of contributions, and receipts from the sale of admissions, goods, performance of services, or furnishing of facilities in activities that are not unrelated trades or businesses.





Yvonne W.

Ruben said...

Gal 5:15, what you have done is attempt to clarify what you believe are misconceptions about Erwin, but you have not calmed down “ridiculous assertions and attacks on both sides.” In other words, when there has been bile targeting my blog coming from Mosaic supporters, you’ve written nothing. When there are anonymous postings about how Erwin has hurt people or declared false theology, you’ve got something to say. When there are anonymous postings describing MOPer’s as “crybabies,” “Nazis,” and “demon-possessed,” you’re silent (I guess that is not ridiculous enough for you?) but when someone is anonymous and writes that Erwin was out of control on a basketball court, well, that’s crossing the line. Your statement about how Erwin is an introvert and perhaps that is why so many are hurt is not an apology from Erwin, it’s just an excuse from you. It also is an incorrect reading of Myers-Briggs (Oh my gosh, I actually know something about this. It got drilled into my head for so many years). Being an introvert has nothing to do with how you treat people, in and of itself. It simply tells people where you get their energy. Introverts from within, extraverts from people. (Although what an odd excuse, being that it was drummed into our heads for years that Erwin was an ENTP). There, I hope I never have to write about Myers-Briggs again. Finally, when you wrote that the Solid Foods blog helped your staff administer finances better, well, that is simply a confirmation of the power of that blog. But don’t you think it is a shame that a blog had to help keep your house in order?

Yvonne W. said...

Quotes from Erwin McManus regarding
"Awaken."

Source:
Bethel Seminary's Transformational Church Series, 2005, http://www.bethel.edu/alumni/HeartMind/06spring/transform-church-series.html

On Thursday, October 13, the seminary hosted "The Transformed Heart," a day of spiritual formation, with Erwin McManus, lead pastor of Mosaic in Los Angeles, presenting the keynote address. McManus is the cultural architect of Mosaic, a multisite church in Los Angeles, and founder of Awaken International, a non-profit organization that unleashes human creativity. He is an internationally recognized speaker on globalization, leadership, cultural transformation, post-modernism, and church growth. Author of several books, including Seizing Your Divine Moment; An Unstoppable Force; Uprising: A Revolution of the Soul; and The Barbarian Way, McManus also serves as Bethel Seminary's own distinguished lecturer and futurist.

Source:
Interview with Erwin McManus, Infuze Magazine, 2006

"We created Awaken as an organization to focus on unleashing the potential in every human being. We didn't want to be resisted by people saying, "You're a church. You can't come into these institutions. You can't come to these organizations. You're not allowed in this arena." So we created a non-profit organization that focuses on unleashing the creative potential in every human being and we help people without God begin to see how they're uniquely designed. And we're so convinced that if we can help people see that they're created in the image and likeness of God, they will be drawn to relationship with Him."

Other "official" information regarding "Awaken":

Source:
The Awaken website:
http://awaken.org
see subtitle: Awaken Humanity, http://awaken.org/awaken-humanity

*All donations are tax deductible. Please make checks payable to "Awaken" and indicate "Awaken Humanity" on the memo line and send to the Awaken offices at:

Awaken
1443 E. Washington Blvd. #659
Pasadena, CA 91104-2650
*Note this is a mailing address and not an office address.


Source:
Email from Eric Bryant (Executive pastor of Mosaic and Vice President of Awaken)
Received on 4/27/07

Awaken is a registered 501c3 under the name Awaken Humanity. We just received our paperwork recently. The Secretary of State should be updating their website soon. This summer we are registering for tax exempt status. Currently, Awaken is still a subsidiary of Mosaic until we finish this paperwork.


Yvonne W.

Yvonne W. said...

Gal. 5:15,

Whoever said Awaken is a non-profit, charitable organization?

ERWIN MCMANUS and ERIC BRYANT.


Yvonne W.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Gal 5,
I do respect your willingness to speak out, even though your arguements at times seem a bit confusing, there are few from your organization that will stick up for Erwin. That says a lot about you and sadly it says alot about Erwin. pEACE

Anonymous said...

"It has to be hard for Erwin to be happily married, loving father with great kids, a big church of people that love him, he travels all over the world preaching the gospel, and on top of everything he seems to be wealthy."

Oh, we believe all the above. That does not change the fact that he got there with deception and misdeeds.

Anonymous said...

So Erwin deceived his wife? Did he trick her into the marriage? Is he deceiving his own kids - they actually are good kids that brag about their dad. Don't you think you MOP's should find his kids and set them straight before they go to hell. Their blood will be on your hands, if you don't point out the deceit. Do you think the hundreds of thousands Mosaic members world wide have not heard countless rants about Mosaic being evil and the sign of the antichrist. But they remain deceived all over the world. This should light your fire. Face it the rest of your life you will be trapped fighting Erwin & Mosaic. Your whole life, dreams, and destiny lies in this war. It must consume you. You must make Erwin pay for his sins. Heaven & Hell can pass away, but Erwin & Mosaic will be brought to justice no matter what the cost. Just think God created you to make Erwin & Mosaic pay for their sins. Make them pay at any cost for their hurt, pain, & abuse.

Anonymous said...

Let's all remember-

James 3:9&10

With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God's likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be.

Gal. 5:15 said...

Yvonne:

So let me get this straight.

By your own admission, a integrated auxiliary must:

1. Have its own EID;
2. File government paperwork as a non-profit;

And what we have proved is that Awaken:

1. Has its own EID;
2. Has filed government paperwork as a non-profit.

So congratulations -- you cracked the code! Nice work! I guess things are well and indeed sorted after all! Good work guys!

But I'm willing to bet dollars to donuts that's not the real issue, is it...

>That does not change the fact that he got there with deception and misdeeds.

It's abundantly clear that people are going to believe what they want. The myths created and perpetuated by Mosaic of Haters will continue regardless of anyone who tries to create any kind of dialogue. And those who try to create such dialogue will themselves be shouted down.

So believe what you want, but let's not pretend that it has anything to do with truth or reality.

I'm out.

~ Gal. 5:15

Anonymous said...

You know I know a mormon (well I know several, good people), who believes in the sanctity of the book of Mormon and the prophet Joseph Smith. However, once I brink up historical record on the "man" he backs off. He tells me he's going to believe anyway. His whole family believes. So you see MOP you may put a mirror to the face of Mosaic members but they don't see, they're just going to believe anyway...

Anonymous said...

James 3:9&10

With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God's likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be.


And this is reference to...that reminds me this friend of mine who's a mormon knows scripture, doesn't always know the context, but knows where to find scripture. HMMM

Anonymous said...

So you say that people will believe what they want to believe, is that right Galatians 5:15? Well, would you believe that Erwin demanded the resignations of all the elders last year? Are you going to deny this? And tell me, when is it ever a good idea for a pastor to dismiss elder accountability? Galatians, level with us. And please don’t ignore this question. I’m not shouting, I’m not insulting anybody, I’m just asking: Why did Erwin attempt to fire all his elders?

Anonymous said...

So Erwin deceived his wife? Did he trick her into the marriage? Is he deceiving his own kids - they actually are good kids that brag about their dad. Don't you think you MOP's should find his kids and set them straight before they go to hell. Their blood will be on your hands, if you don't point out the deceit...

It's abundantly clear that people are going to believe what they want. The myths created and perpetuated by Mosaic of Haters will continue regardless of anyone who tries to create any kind of dialogue. And those who try to create such dialogue will themselves be shouted down.

I think I'm going to pout for awhile and say some nutty things and then take my ball home because you guys don't listen to me. wawawawa

Yvonne W. said...

Gal 5:15,

You wrote:

Yvonne:

So let me get this straight.

By your own admission, a integrated auxiliary must:

1. Have its own EID;
2. File government paperwork as a non-profit;

And what we have proved is that Awaken:

1. Has its own EID;
2. Has filed government paperwork as a non-profit.

So congratulations -- you cracked the code! Nice work! I guess things are well and indeed sorted after all! Good work guys!



Are you serious?

I'll have to dissect your response into two parts in order to address the confusing issues you have raised.

Part One: Integrated Auxilliaries

First of all, it's called an Employee Indentification Number (EIN) NOT an EID!

I have no idea if Awaken(s) has/have their own EIN's. This point hasn't been "proven."

(As far as I know, an integrated auxilliary uses the EIN of the parent church because it IS a part of the church, however; since all of the Awakens are registered as separate corporations though, I'm not sure they would be allowed to do this.)

When I cited the IRS regulations regarding integrated auxilliaries it was to show that in order to qualify as such, an organization must meet the definitions set by the IRS to qualify as a -

501c3 AND

one of the following types of public charities:
509a1, 509a2 or 509a3.

Do any of the Awaken's meet those two criteria?

Part Two: Non Profit Status

Don't confuse "non-profit" with "tax exempt."

An organization can be a non-profit and still not be tax exempt if it hasn't filed for that status from the IRS. By law though, it cannot tell it's donors that their contributions are "tax deductible."

This is why it's so important to clear up the confusion about whether or not Awaken is an integrated auxilliary of Mosaic or a valid TAX EXEMPT organization on it's own.

If it is either of the above - then it can claim that donations made to it are tax deductible.

If it is NOT an integrated auxilliary of Mosaic NOR a recognized tax exempt organization - then it is violating the law by claiming that donations made to it are "tax deductible."

So which one is it???


Gal 5:15, you wrote that there is "proof" that Awaken "has filed government paperwork as a non-profit."

I'd like to see that "proof."

The California Business Portal doesn't provide informaton on whether a corporation registered as a "for profit" or a "non-profit", it only lists all corporations registered in the state.

On the other hand . . .

The STATE ATTORNEY GENERAL does have such a listing!

It's called the Attorney General's Registrar of Charitable Trusts.

http://justice.hdcdojnet.state.ca.us/charitysr/default.asp

According to the Calfornia State Attorney General:

California law requires charities and commercial fundraisers to register with the Attorney General's Office and to file financial disclosure reports. All charities must file the Annual Registration Renewal Fee Report, and those with gross revenue or assets of $25,000 or more must file annual Form 990 financial reports with the Attorney General's Registry of Charitable Trusts. Since 1965 nonprofit schools, hospitals, and churches have been exempt from the law’s reporting requirements.

Again, we go back to the question of whether or not Awaken(s) is/are covered under the exemption for "churches."

There is NO listing at the Registry of Charitable Trusts for any of the "Awakens."

Then there is the IRS publication 78 database of 501c3 (tax exempt) organizations:

http://www.irs.gov/app/pub-78/

None of the "Awakens" show up on this list either.

So . . .

Is Awaken(s) an integrated auxilliary of Mosaic or not?


So believe what you want, but let's not pretend that it has anything to do with truth or reality.

I'm out.

~ Gal. 5:15



Goodbye Gal. 5:15


Yvonne W.

Anonymous said...

"It's abundantly clear that people are going to believe what they want. The myths created and perpetuated by MOSAIC OF HATERS will continue regardless of anyone who tries to create any kind of dialogue. And those who try to create such dialogue will themselves be SHOUTED DOWN."

Wow, and with that little name calling rant, Gal 5 is off again...

Anonymous said...

"So believe what you want, but let's not pretend that it has anything to do with truth or reality.

I'm out."


Jimmy, whenever you get the need to vent and just sort of feel supreme, we're here for you.

Anonymous said...

MOP does NOT want dialog. It wants - Repentance, Resignation and Restitution.

No more, no less.

We will tolerate the inquiries of the curious and the serious, but that is not what this site is about.

Anonymous said...

I'm still pretty new to Mosaic, so I can't really speak to all of the many grievances listed here. I believe your pain is real, and that your intentions are good. I am no stranger to leaving a church on bad terms that left me in pain for a really long time.

But I also know what I see in the community of Mosaic, and it's good. No, it's not a traditional church, but it's reaching out to people who have been turned off of "church" and it's changing thousands of lives for the better.

I'm not saying that to diminish your very real pain. I'm saying maybe it's time to let go. It sounds like a LOT of your grievances happened more than a decade ago.

"And you shall know them by their fruit."

Look at the thousands of people who find community and growth at Mosaic. Look at the fruit.

Look at the arguments and accusations and hurt being flung back and forth and all around by the dozen or so people on this message board. Look at the fruit.

Again, not trying to diminish the hurt of anyone here. But, I held on to the bitterness and the need to let the world know how horrible my church and pastor was... and it didn't lead me to anywhere good. I let go and moved on and found healing and an amazing community of believers who continue to challenge me to grow every day.

-M

Anonymous said...

M,
Thank you for your sincere post. It did make me think about the church and religion as a whole. I think we can both agree that the Islamic faith and Hindu faith are very successful. There are over a billion muslims all over the world? Lots of fruit. But have they found the truth? The only truth according to Jesus. Mosaic does a lot of good things. But cleaning the house is a good step forward in the right direction. It's refreshing. The good news Mosaic has made some strides regarding their financial status according to Jimmy. We can only hope they can continue or they'll be like all those other religions with their fruit. A MOP MEMBER

Anonymous said...

M,

You challenged much of my thinking as well. Probably the one thing that keeps us up here is a desire to help put a stop to any future pain that others might experience. As well, I know that when I heard I was not the only one that was treated this way (there were many many more) it was healing in its own way.

It is one thing for a church to cause pain to some of its members, but when a church flat out says, "If you don't like it, go else where." Something is seriously wrong. We are suppose to love and encourage one another, not despise and reject.

And, that is how McManus operates. He despises those that are not of his desired demographic. E.g. young, hip, cool, edgy, trendy, etc...

Anonymous said...

How can you say Muslims or Hindus have a lot of fruit? I guess the world (secular society) has a lot of fruit in your mind?
Mosaic does have real fruit defined by the scriptures. Mosaic leads and disciples hundreds of thousands to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as their Savior & Lord. I began to follow Jesus Christ after reading "Chasing Daylight" and later got baptized at a Mosaic church I joined here in Austin,TX. I now have been a disciple of Jesus Christ for 8 years and very thankful for Pastor Erwin McManus & Mosaic.
Many people in leadership at all Mosaic church's around the world know about your website. Mosaic Alliance leadership actually puts out a list of hundreds of websites & articles that are totally more hateful towards Erwin & Mosaic than even this site. Mosaic certainly doesn't hide they have their critics and persecution. It helps give a new leader in Mosaic a glimpse of what they might have to face in the way of hate. It gives me pause to think my wife, kids, and others I love could be exposed to the hate I have seen on this site. Honestly I'm grateful to Mosaic for being open and honest about the persecution you could face for being a follower of Jesus Christ. I pray that the group behind this site will find their healing in Jesus Christ, it will never come from a man or a ministry.

Yvonne W. said...

To M -

Thank you for your polite response. Unfortunately, not all of the grievances expressed here at MoP happened a long time ago. Some of the things discussed on these pages happened just a few years ago. That is why this site continues to exist.

As to the issues I have raised regarding Awaken and Mosaic, those problems exist right now and if they are not dealt with properly and in a timely manner, they could lead to serious penalties for both of these organizations.

Even if you feel the other issues are not important enough to deal with I urge you to hold your leaders accountable to be good stewards of God's money.

Yvonne W.

Anonymous said...

"It gives me pause to think my wife, kids, and others I love could be exposed to the hate I have seen on this site."

Maybe you could find some of those "hate" postings, or even phrases, or words that you have seen on this site and list them for Chris (the blog monitor) and he can take them down.

Note: I know there are uncomfortable things listed here, but I have yet to find any "hate" from MOP's side.

Anonymous said...

To the person who said they came to Christ through Erwin's book Chasing Daylight.

1) How can you claim that Erwin's book Chasing Daylight lead you to follow Christ and that you have been a follower of Christ for the past 8 years because of it? The book was published in 2006!!! Did you build a time machine out of a DeLorean and jump into the future?

2) How can you claim Mosaic has discipled tens of thousands?!? The LA Mosaic has about 2,000 at best and that is all services combined (BH, Mayan, Pasadena). Where are the tens of thousands? They might have planted a few churches but the majority of the churches in the "alliance" are small churches that previously existed who joined the alliance or changed their names to Mosaic (ie your church in TX). That is not organic growth but rather church acquisition.

3) You also said Mosaic has real fruit as defined by the scriptures. Ok, let's layout the fruits of the spirit and check off the ones that are displayed by Erwin (love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, long-suffering, faithfulness, kindness, and self control). The only one I can see demonstated on a consistent basis is long suffering and that is because of this site!

Marty McFly, you need to open your eyes. These MOP guys have a legitimate gripe. I agree that a lot of these MOP people really need to move on but you cannot dismiss what they are saying as lies or half-truths. Marty, you represent the scarest type of Mosaic follower, "The Erwin Super Fan". But take it from some of these old veterans who use to be fan's themselves, he is not a good guy. He has a lot of people telling him on a daily basis that he is brilliant, amazing, talented, kind, generous, etc. I think this is why he cannot admit wrong. He actually believes everything he hears about himself EXCEPT for the negative.

Kevin

Anonymous said...

No time machine here. "Chasing Daylight" is just a renamed with new introduction for the book "Seizing Your Divine Moment" which not sure when it was published but I do know that it changed my life in 2000. I just refer to it as "Chasing Daylight".
Mosaic does have hundreds of thousands of followers of Jesus Christ all over the world. I personally have been to the Mosaic in Tokyo for all 6 services that meets in the biggest club in downtown, with an average estimate of 22,000. I have been to the Mosaic in Charlotte, NC where they have easily 5,000 in attendance. I vacationed in Chattanooga,TN this summer and visited Mosaic at one of their Sunday morning services where they had seats packed at 1,400 and had to turn people away and say come to the next service. They were celebrating their third year where they started with 20 people and this was a brand new Mosaic church plant(so was Tokyo). Keep in mind Chattanooga is a very small city. In Chattanooga they were teaching about the soul environments that make up Mosaic's core values. And my Mosaic in Austin,TX is not to shabby either. It is really nice that it seems no matter where you travel on business or vacation there is a Mosaic community thriving you can worship at while out of town. If I was you guys I would be happy that your past church on Brady has now planted church's around the world.

Anonymous said...

"Seizing Your Divine Moment"

Publisher: Thomas Nelson
(November 5, 2002)

Anonymous said...

"If I was you guys I would be happy that your past church on Brady has now planted church's around the world."

I do not think Kevin attended The Church on Brady - he is most likely from the Mosaic generation.

Anonymous said...

"I personally have been to the Mosaic in Tokyo for all 6 services that meets in the biggest club in downtown, with an average estimate of 22,000."

The largest night club in Tokyo could not hold more than 500 people. If it were filled to capacity all six services that would be 3,000. Where did the other 19,000 attend? What was the name of the club?

I did a web search for "Tokyo Mosaic", certainly they should have some sort of web site with a church of that size, nothing.

Anonymous said...

Tokyo Mosaic meets in the night club called Velfarre and it is laughable to say this place only could hold 500. So I guess you think all the clubs are so small in Tokyo that none of them could even hold 500 people? The Mosaic in the little town of Chattanooga, TN meets in the largest night club in that town and it has a 1,400 capacity - for the record that club is called Fathom. I'm don't even want to debate where my Mosaic in TX meets or how many people attend - I'm sure I will be told we don't exist or there is only 100 people or that might be to many how about 10. i was at a Student Life conference and saw Erwin McManus speak for the first time and they handed out copies of "Seizing Your Divine Moment" and it was the summer of 2000. I guess you don't want to believe that Mosaic has healthy church plants all over Europe, Asia, Africa, & America? Lets just pretend they don't exist.

Anonymous said...

"I guess you don't want to believe that Mosaic has healthy church plants all over Europe, Asia, Africa, & America?"


It's just that facts are important when trying to discern what a person is saying.

Velfarre Club is in Roppongi, Japan. It can hold up to 1,500 people. That times 6 services can equal 9,000. You wrote, "Do you think the hundreds of thousands Mosaic members world wide..."

http://www.tokyojapanguide.com/velfarretokyo.php



And you went on to support that by saying, "...with an average estimate of 22,000." in Tokyo.

Let's go with the 22,000 in Tokyo, where do you get the other 80,000 to end up in the "hundred thousand" area?

Nobody is saying that Mosiac is wrong, right or indifferent based upon how many members it does or does not have. We are mostly saying it all started off on the wrong foot. If you want to say the one with the most members wins, then let's just give it to the Mormons.

Anonymous said...

Watching what happens on this site I notice that every now and then someone from Mosaic gets on here and uses the "g" word. Saying that this site is filled with hate, but I do not see any here.

Still waiting for the Poster to repost the "hate" posts, sentences, words from MOP that he/she finds on this site.

Agreed, this site is confrontational, but I do not see any "hate" here.

Makes one wonder what some at Mosaic are afraid of, or have to hide when they get on here and make unfounded accusations like that.

Yvonne W. said...

To the anonymous poster of July 23, 2008 5:58 AM who wrote the following:

"If I was you guys I would be happy that your past church on Brady has now planted church's around the world."

Anonymous,

Have you read any of my articles on the history of the Church on Brady at Solid Foods?

http://solidfoods.blogspot.com/2007_03_11_archive.html

What about the article on Mosaic at Wikipedia?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mosaic_Church

Quote from Wikipedia:

In the early 1990's the "The Church on Brady" was responsible for more missionaries than any other church in the International Mission Board, regardless of size. Dr. Lyle Schaller states, "The Church on Brady tenaciously and persistently pursued the perennial apostolic paradigm of church ... multiplication rather than church maintenance." The Church on Brady started many new churches both locally in or near Los Angeles and internationally.


As you can see, The Church on Brady was already doing exactly what Mosaic is now taking credit for pioneering.


As for the other Mosaic churches you mention, here is what I found on the internet:

Mosaic Tokyo, Velfarre nightclub

Velfarre http://www.tokyojapanguide.com/velfarretokyo.php

The club holds 1,500.

I have not been able to find any further information on whether or not a Mosaic church plant uses this facility on a regular basis. This seems a bit odd, I was expecting to at least find some type of promotional advertising but I'll keep looking and report back.

Club Fathom (Chattanooga, Tenn) contains link for Mosaic
http://www.clubfathom.com/
http://www.mosaicchattanooga.com/

It looks as if this nightclub has been wholly taken over by the Mosaic church that now occupies the space.

At the Tennessee Secretary of State website, I found the corporate listing for Fathom which is listed as a non profit. Mosaic Chattanooga's pastor TIMOTHY W. REID is listed as the registered Agent.

The address for Mosaic Chattanooga and Club Fathom are the same.

Below is the web address for Mosaic Austin, Texas
http://mosaicaustin.org/

Texas does not require non profit organizations to register so I have no further information about Mosaic Chattanooga.

California however, DOES require non profits to register with two separate, state government agencies:

The California Business Portal (to obtain corporate status)

and

The State Attorney General's Registrar of Charitable Trusts.
(to ensure that all charities meet the reguirements of California's Non Profit Integrity Act.)

The above is why I am so concerned about the confusion surrounding all these "Awakens".

Anonymous,

My concerns are for Mosaic L.A. and all of the alleged "non profits" that have sprung up around it.

Please, stop muddying the waters by trying to bring in all these other Mosaics that are not the topic of discussion here at MoP.

Yvonne W.

Cris Aguilar said...

Let me add concerning the "hate" comments. I do my best to keep the hate comments off the site. If I missed something please let me know. There have been some comments that were over the top hateful that make it sound like they are representing MOP. There comments are anonymous and so I don't put them up. We have also had some weird comments and a few of those I put up and a few I didn't. I am trying to be a little more selective but if you feel like I missed something please let me know.

Jose Arroyo said...

I have been a frequent visitor to this site for the past year and a half, but have never posted before. I’ve learned a lot from the stories shared in here, primarily pertaining to situations that occurred at Mosaic prior to my joining them in Spring of 2006. A little over a month ago, I chose to leave Mosaic after finally coming to terms that its “community of faith, love and hope” didn’t embrace me fully as a human being. While the reasons for my departure are not in any way like the ones described in this site, nevertheless the pain and hurt experienced in the process of leaving is. I’m also quite familiar with the duality of Erwin’s personality (on stage vs off stage). That in itself, made me weary of him a long time ago, though I did fall victim to his charming persona in the beginning. There are a lot of things I’m grateful to Mosaic. First, I came to Christ while at Mosaic. Also, it provided me with the opportunity to meet some quality human beings. In the two years at Mosaic, I managed to get involved at different levels by serving in several ministries such as the film team and forge (it’s men’s ministry). I created and maintained several of their websites and assisted with their podcasts. I was incredibly touched by the community at Mosaic’s servant heart, though once I became an official member, I became disillusioned with the idea that from then on, I would no longer be a recipient of their love and support, but instead I was required to serve others. Eventually, my need for more in depth discipleship was a contributing factor for my departure, since it became clear that discipleship was not a priority at Mosaic. I was never involved with the numerous Awakens in existence at Mosaic, though I knew some of their key people in positions of leadership at it. Having been a product of organized religion in the form of the Catholic church growing up, I have always been leery of any funds given to the church and how they were utilized. I remember when they decided to move their headquarter offices to William Carey from their City of Industry location. Something that struck me as odd, was how much money was put into furnishing their new offices. Each department were given stipends to design and furnish their offices and the results were anything but spartan in decoration. However, most of the paid staff that I knew were not being paid too well and most of them as a result had to resort to other jobs outside of Mosaic in order to live. So I always was concerned about where all the money would go. Even those members who would choose to join a short mission trip, were required to foot for everything out of their own pocket or expected to raise funds via fundraising.
In any case, I also wondered why the key people responsible for maintaining and regular posting to this site have not made serious efforts in contacting the newspaper media to bring attention to the allegations being made here. This is after all, Los Angeles, and there are plenty of avenues to get your agenda out in the mainstream and be heard. If anything, learn from the master at it, Erwin himself. Confront him with the same tools he uses to spread his agenda.
I also have to wonder about the regular posters in this site and their emotional health. This is not meant to come across as being disrespectful. However, it goes without question, that when someone spends a tremendous amount of energy in a task, it eventually affects their sense of objectivity. For some of the people in here, they have been breathing and living this pain over and over for ten years or more, and at some point I believe they should take better care of themselves and recognize when its time to move on or risk losing themselves in a sea of resentment. I’m not trying to diminish their experiences or their causes, but is this how most of you want to spend ten or more years of your lives? As I said in the beginning, I was a victim of Mosaic as well. When I chose to leave, I had my period of mourning, but then it was clear to me that it was up to me to move on with my life and find another community that would serve my spiritual needs or choose to drown in an atmosphere of resentment and bitterness. This is why in my opinion some of the regular posters in here don’t understand when others while acknowledging their painful experiences, suggest that they work on healing and moving on. When you are and have been surrounded by an environment that only continues to feed, rehash and maintain the same message of pain and hurt, you are bound to lose perspective on the rest of your lives. It is evident from the postings in here that the majority of the regular posters in here are very intelligent and can express themselves eloquently. You have made your points, you have made a difference. Perhaps its time to move on and use your great gifts that God has given you in a more positive manner. This is of course, my opinion. I thank you in advance for allowing me to express myself in here and I pray for all of you and your families well being.
in Him,
Jose Arroyo

Yvonne W. said...

Dear Jose Arroyo,

Thank you so much for your well thought out and well mannered response.

You asked if anyone here has considered contacting the mainstream media.

I am currently wrestling with that very thought in regards to the questions I have concerning Awaken(s).

I have not tried to contact the mainstream media because I sincerely wanted to give the leadership of Mosaic and Awaken(s) a chance to clean up their acts without involving the secular media or authorities. Please understand, I used to go to The Church on Brady/Mosaic: I've known most of the people in leadership there, three of my relatives used to be on paid staff there, I was married there, my child was baptized there and I still have friends who attend this church.

I have absolutely no desire to "hurt" the church, I've only wanted to help.

This is the reason why I haven't contacted the mainstream media.

Jose, I could have contacted the media a long time ago but I deliberately chose not to.

I've had the email address of a high ranking person in the media here in L.A. sitting amongst my gmail contacts for more than a year now. It was given to me soon after I started my blog, Solid Foods.

Several of my readers have suggested that I contact Ministry Watch and I also have their contact information in my gmail account.

I also have the contact information for the Better Business Bureau and information on how to send a formal complaint directly to the California State Attorney General's office.

I'm still hoping that the leadership of Mosaic and Awaken(s) will take action on their own but that hope is starting to wane.

My little blog doesn't compare to the Los Angeles Times but it is still being noticed, at least by other christians.

In my posts at Solid Foods I've focused on issues involving factual information rather than theology yet I was still contacted by Campus Crusade for Christ and have their written permission to say so. I was happy to answer the questions I was asked.

Jose, my "emotional health" is just fine. I do in fact, have a very fulfilling life away from my computer

At this point in my life though, I have a lot of free time on my hands but even so, I really don't expend a lot of effort on these issues. God gave me a talent for writing and research and the things I post on line represent just a small percentage of how I use those talents.

Thank you again for your post and I hope you find a place where you can get the discipleship you need.


Yvonne W.

Anonymous said...

Jose,

Not to dismiss your comment, but what you are writing about is that you no longer felt like Mosaic was the place for you to be in attendance, and that is fair and good. However, this site is about a few hundred people that were displaced from their church. Many of them were told to leave when they simply asked questions once Erwin took over. This isn't about hurt feelings or disappointments, but a cry for justice.

May you find the right church for your future needs.

Anonymous said...

Hey Anonymous

Not to stick up for Jose but this site is about a few hundred Church on Brady folks who invited Erwin to become pastor of their church in the first place. You are the ones who didn't do the necessary background check to screen this guy before letting him into your fold. If he is truly a wolf, then you have lead him directly to the sheep. I think everyone who was part of that time at the Church on Brady should apologize to the rest of us who were hurt when we came AFTER. If this site is about responsibility, you and the rest of the old school MOPers should accept your part for everything that has happened since. I did a thorough background check including fingerprinting, criminal background investigation, and reference checks before I hired a nanny. Shouldn't the same care be given before hiring a pastor!? Did anyone checkout his stories about working with the inner city poor in Dallas? Did anyone check out his theological beliefs? I have a feeling that he has always had these whacked out beliefs but no one ever asked him the right questions!

Also, I find it hard to believe that a few hundred were displaced. First of all, Brady only had a few hundred during that time. Am I to believe that when you all left, Mosaic was comprised of a few dozen people, Elders, and Erwin? You make it seem like a hostile takeover but you guys were sitting in the pews and you did nothing. At least, you didn't do enough!!! You guys let Erwin in the door and when he started to assert his dominance, you all tucked tale and ran! Did you ever consider taking your hundreds and storm the office at Brady and demand to be heard? I think you guys should apologize to us!!! You have given him the platform to launch his books, tapes, etc.

You cry for justice but it is too late! Just admit your cry is for vengence. The statute of limitations has run out for justice!

Kevin

Anonymous said...

Kevin,
no vegence here. Brady/Mosaic did have about 800 by the time Erwin came to the fold. About taking blame. Well, he is a great speaker. But I plead guilty. I don't want to speak for anyone, but I know a number of brothers and sisters approached him and staff. Maybe it was too late. Kevin its never too late to make things right. Not tucking tale now. Thanks to Cris, Yvonne, Eddie, Frank and the others. I find it funny how some Mosaic members like to share from time to time how Mosaic has a lot of people speaking out against them and that the alliance has a list. But why does this site pinch a nerve. Maybe its because these are the people who know Erwin and its church. Sometimes its the one's closes to you that can make a difference. Mosaic didn't try to close down any other group. But the police were called on to stop this group. Interesting. Very Interesting. This site has even helped get Mosaic's house in order. Thanks for that Jimmy. Thanks MOP keep it up. A loyal reader

Jose Arroyo said...

To the "Anonymous" that addressed me on my posting, I am quite aware that my experience and hurt with Erwin and Mosaic may be different in the logistics and in fact, if you care to read again, you will see that I say so. I also mentioned that nevertheless I could relate in what the feeling of betrayal and the pain experienced caused me. You don't know the details of my experience, and that doesn't give you the right to sum them up and minimize them. As a frequent visitor to this site, I never got the impression that only people who were part of the experience at Church of Brady were the only ones qualified to post in here.

Anonymous said...

This group has never been investigated by the FBI as many of the other hate groups that make threats against Mosaic. So I would say one police visit is pretty mild compared to those. Also to give you guys credit, this group doesn't seem to be as violent as many of the other hate groups. It seems you want to keep your hate to words and not physical actions or stalking. So I think everyone at Mosaic appreciates your more civil approach.

Anonymous said...

Jose,

Not to minimize your pain and suffering at all. Just an observation, based on what you wrote, that your situation is a bit different, thus, maybe your solution may not apply as simply.

God's speed to you and yours.

Anonymous said...

"...the Church on Brady should apologize to the rest of us who were hurt when we came AFTER."

Maybe speak with those Brady members who have stayed at Mosaic, and not spoken up publicly to challenge Erwin and his actions. I.E.., Dave Auda, Janice Sakuma, Enrique Monreal, Rick Yamamoto, etc...

Many, many of us approached Erwin and his staff. And, even though it is portrayed differently, the vote to bring Erwin on staff was NOT unanimous.

My apologies for any pain and anguish that this man might have caused you and your loved ones.

Anonymous said...

Jose,
Your correct. This site is not only for members from the Brady days. Actually many of the readers and members of MOP came after the name change.

Anonymous said...

Jose,

I know you well from our time at Mosaic. It really hurts me that you would write these things. Hundreds of people love you (present tense) at Mosaic, and have always loved you. That love never stopped and probably never will. People here still miss you and feel your loss to this day. Please do not confuse people not loving you with people not willing to give up their theology in order to accept certain lifestyles. We wish you all the best, and our prayers are with you as you journey to find another community. I just don't know how you could say those things about so many people that care for you

Anonymous said...

People here still miss you and feel your loss to this day. Please do not confuse people not loving you with people not willing to give up their theology in order to accept certain lifestyles.

Its difficult to do church. When a church puffs out its chest and forget those in the body who need to be discipled. Hey why doesn't Erwin do a book on discipleship. The disciples evangelized, but they also discipled because Jesus discipled them for 3 years. How could a church who proclaims to do church so right get it so wrong. Is it a surprise that there isn't enough people capable at Mosaic to reach out and guide these brothers and sisters. Jose, go and find a church that will love you but also willing to spend the time to work with you. I've been a christian for years and I still need guidance and help. Alot.
Matt 5

P.S. That last post was the ugliest one posted on this site Cris. Poison. An ugly glimpse and reminder of some who attend Mosaic. Blinded Blinded people

Jose Arroyo said...

While tempted to want to address whoever this person that claims to know me well, and feels hurt by my comments posted here, I won't bother. If you know me so well and really care to discuss your feelings, then you know how to contact me. Otherwise, as long as you so cowardly choose to hide behind "anonymous" your identity and words mean nothing to me. I, on the other hand, have nothing to hide and can sign my name next to my comments.

Anonymous said...

One of the things that bother me about Mosaic is when they push their propaganda about their community being about love. Jose, in my opinion you have justifications for moving on to another church. I don't believe your personal assessment about Mosaic is unfair or wrong, I believe you called it as it is. I think if anything is going to be said by anyone about Mosaic that will make Mosaic look like it is not the ideal Godly community, then someone from Mosaic will step in to do damage control. I believe Mosaic is pretty arrogant about themselves, always pushing and puffing up their virtues. Makes me sick!

Willis Quan

Anonymous said...

"I know you well from our time at Mosaic. It really hurts me that you would write these things. Hundreds of people love you (present tense) at Mosaic, and have always loved you. That love never stopped and probably never will. People here still miss you and feel your loss to this day. Please do not confuse people not loving you with people not willing to give up their theology in order to accept certain lifestyles. We wish you all the best, and our prayers are with you as you journey to find another community. I just don't know how you could say those things about so many people that care for you"

A perfect example of what we are talking about on this site.

Rather than go to this brother in Christ and have a coffee or just show some real love, the poster chooses to imply that Jose left because he is in some kind of "lifestyle" sin. Leaving everyone on here to imagine the worst. Either that person is malicious or completely ignorant to the subtilties of relationship.

You know what they say, "As the leader goes..."

Anonymous said...

I personally choose to embrace my brother in Christ, no matter his choices and "lifestyle" decisions, rather than some petty theologies or assumptions of what is right and wrong.

Sorry, but I would rather follow Jesus on this one.

Eddie Marshall

Anonymous said...

"Hundreds of people love you (present tense) at Mosaic..."

With friends like this..?

Anonymous said...

>This group has never been investigated by the FBI as many of the other hate groups that make threats against Mosaic.

Same tactic that Erwin & Eric tried when they called the police on David for starting MOP. The police laughed it off as Church politics.

Maybe you can copy and paste in a new comment all the "hate" comments and "threats" you have found on this site.

If you do not, we can safely assume you are just following in the footsteps of your leaders - Church politics.

Anonymous said...

Jose you've just been moppedized

Anonymous said...

"Jose you've just been moppedized"

No idea what that means, but I can only assume it means that Jose has been publicly honest with his experience with a less than Christ like church (similar to Paul in dealing with the church of Corinth).

Anonymous said...

Jose is a proud homosexual. Mosaic loves & accepts homosexuals but does believe it is a sinful lifestyle. Mosaic does not see it as a relationship vs. a theology choice. The church desires to have relationships with all types of people - drunks, thieves, liars, etc. All types of people are welcomed and will be loved at Mosaic. But through the teaching & washing of the Word - Erwin and the small group leaders will teach that your life will be more beautiful if you choose to leave some of these lifestyles. So I guess if you have a problem with this - the MOP's could surely point you to a more "loving" church that will just accept you as you want to be.

Anonymous said...

Amen

Cris Aguilar said...

I didn’t want to post the comments about Jose above considering it was so off point and was obviously meant to let us all realize how “sinful” Jose is and how because of his sin we need to put him over to the side and discount what he has written. They first mentioned his “lifestyle” and now a few posts later come right out and let us all know he is a “proud homosexual”. This is so sad on so many levels.

Jose mentioned concerns such as being disillusioned after the requirements of serving vs. being loved and the low level of discipleship as well as how they spent their funds (specifically furnishings at their Pasadena Headquarters). They didn’t write about those issues but they wrote about how hurt they were considering how much they love him. Yeah, many of us have experienced that kind of Mosaic love, which happens to also be known as Mosaic of Pain. They just forgot to write their name along with that I love you as Jose mentioned above. What about the issues he wrote about?? How about calling him?? How about not treating him poorly along the way especially when he is saying he needs discipleship and he has/had concerns about finances. What else can you ask of a young believer?? Oh, yeah, I guess you guys want the type that will just shut up and serve. Been there, done that but at some point someone it simply doesn’t jive.

MOP is practically on autopilot. I do almost everything via cell phone and I also have two others that help me keep up with the comments if I get behind. Most days this takes very little of my time. Today is the exception. I have had several calls to others trying to decide if I should let these comments go up as well as thinking and praying about this.

In the end, the main reason I decided to go ahead and post the comment is because of Jose’s own words. He wrote in his first comment above that he has followed this site for the last year and a half. Considering this, then he understands how muddy and cruel some have been. He also has a blog and understands the workings of the blog world and how public it is. Jose was willing to use his name and tell us his experience and with that comes the risk of someone being hurtful. To be honest I am often surprised how hurtful some can be knowing that a person has already been hurt.

Where’s the love?

Anonymous said...

He is hurt because his spiritual family at Mosaic loves him but does not accept homosexuality. Mosaic has great small groups that are all about discipleship. Now Jesus in those three years of discipleship asked his disciples to feed the poor, clean up after them, do manual labor, travel long distances, and a number of other serving type activities. Serving others is part of discipleship. Long all night talks about your life around the scriptures and prayer on the front porch at a Mosaic small group is also part of discipleship. Mosaic to me has a good balance in their discipleship. If Peter would have decided his sin of denying Christ was a acceptable lifestyle, he could of ended up like Judas. Even jesus had disciples that left feeling they were not accepted & loved.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

He is hurt because his spiritual family at Mosaic loves him but does not accept homosexuality.

You know an apology would be suffice.

Anonymous said...

"He is hurt because his spiritual family at Mosaic loves him but does not accept homosexuality."

Come on Mosiac, you guys know you are homophobic, just like 99% of the church today. When an earlier post went up talking about Rupert Murdoch you guys had all kinds of excuses to defend the greed and power hungriness of this man.

But, oh the mention of homosexuality and you start talking about "lifestyle", "love the sinner, but reject the sin".

Be honest, this is the one sin that the American church (not Jesus) can NOT tolerate.

I began to think that Jose "left" Mosiac, now that I know he has a struggle with homosexuality, I KNOW he was pushed out.

Jose, welcome to the hell known as Mosaic of Pain. A place very similar to the Twilight Zone, but far more real and painful.

Anonymous said...

>He is hurt because his spiritual family at Mosaic loves him but does not accept homosexuality.


Do you guys accept gluttons? How about all the fat people still there?

Do you guys accept substance abuse? How about all of the alcoholics and prescription drug addicts that every church has?

Do you guys accept sexual immorality? How about the pre-marital sex going on in your youth group and singles group? (it happens)

Do you guys accept liars? How about all the little white lies and blatant lies that happen daily in every church?

Does Mosaic tolerate the sin of pride? - Okay, the answer to that one is obvious.

You reject the homosexual because you are afraid and ignorant of this sin. Not because God wants you to.

Agreed, the Bible does not support homosexuality, but why are you so selective in what sin is worse than any other? Can you answer that question?

Anonymous said...

I have a question. Why is it always, "Erwin and the small group leaders will teach that your life will be more beautiful if you choose to leave some of these lifestyles."

Why isn't it Jesus and the small group leaders? Or, Jesus teaches etc...

You guys sound a bit like the cult of Erwin, no?

Anonymous said...

Here is the deal the MOP heads will say everyone in leadership at Mosaic is prideful, drunks, liars, etc.
Despite that will be the reaction to the post, I will still try to bring some light to the situation.
Yes, no one at Mosaic is without sin.
There is a difference between "Hey I lied, it was wrong, God forgive me, I do not want to be a liar" vs. "Hey I am a liar, I was born a liar, don't be so liarphobic, stop picking on liars, accept us as we are."
It is not that being a homosexual is worst than a liar, or a drunk, or a greedy person.
it's the fact the greedy, liar, or drunk will admit it is a sin and they want to stop/repent.
The homosexual in this situation feels it is not a sin and it is acceptable in God's eyes.
Mosaic still loves & accepts people who embrace their sin and excuse it. The only problem comes when these people hear their sin in small groups or at the main gathering being told what it is - sin.
They then feel rejected, but no one has personally rejected them - it is just the conviction of the scriptures being taught.
Hope that clears it up - and yes we know Mosaic leadership is not without faults & sin.

Anonymous said...

Actually, nobody at MOP believes, "...everyone in leadership at Mosaic is prideful, drunks, liars, etc."

We believe they are redeemed and growing believers just like the rest of us.

The question is, Do the leaders at Mosaic think they are beyond reproach?

And, just as the homosexual feels, "it is not a sin and it is acceptable in God's eyes."

That is the essence of this blog when it comes to the prideful leader of Mosaic. He feels his ego-centered ministry is not a sin in God's eyes as well. Why is he still accepted?

Anonymous said...

Outside Looking In Says,

sounds like this Jose guy didn't get much discipleship. just converted and told he should be different now.

don't you people over at Mosaic know that it takes years sometimes to overcome certain sins?

maybe you should slow down on the worldwide expansion and take care of your house here at home. sounds like you are sort of coming apart at the seems here.

Anonymous said...

Here is the deal the MOP heads will say everyone in leadership at Mosaic is prideful, drunks, liars, etc.

...uhhh please document. And once again an apology would suffice.

Cris Aguilar said...

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