Terry Virgo of Newfrontiers thanks Mark Driscoll

Thanks Peter for noticing and commenting on this: Terry Virgo of Newfrontiers thanks Mark Driscoll – Gentle Wisdom.

Adrian has written a blog post on the thanks to Mark Driscoll Terry Virgo on the reverberations of Mark Driscoll’s visit to TOAM.

After recent criticism of my coverage of Newfrontiers I would be very grateful for any pointers to something somewhere by someone connected with Newfrontiers that addresses the problems that are busy reverberating around the world regarding Mark Driscoll (for that matter also relating to CJ Mahaney).

16 thoughts on “Terry Virgo of Newfrontiers thanks Mark Driscoll

  1. Bene D

    Sigh. I take it you aren’t holding your breath Dave.
    I’m not going to keep posting about CJ Mahaney – the board came out today with a predictable statement of resolutions.
    Translation to the twisting they did: We’re of Mahoney, you are either for us or against us.
    Sad stuff.

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  2. Dave

    BeneD,
    No I am not holding my breath. I am praying that one day Newfrontiers will acknowledge the issues with some of the people who have influenced and shaped their views.

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  3. Blue, with a hint of amber

    I heard some of the issues with Driscoll and Bill Johnson discussed from the platform at a newfrontiers gathering this year.
    There is an implication we sit around clapping like seals in approval and blindly accept every single aspect of every speaker who speaks at our conferences.
    I doubt 50% of my Church would know who Mark Driscoll was.
    I suggest the reason for silence this week in particular is that most people are in Brighton and very busy at a conference.
    I doubt you will see/hear much about CJ Maheney because so few people would know him or his Churches as they’re all in the US. The last time he spoke at a newfrontiers conference must be nearly a decade ago.

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  4. Chris E

    “There is an implication we sit around clapping like seals in approval and blindly accept every single aspect of every speaker who speaks at our conferences.”
    That said, the only grounds on which Mark Driscoll’s thoughts were actually substantively critiqued were where they diverged from Terry Virgo’s vision for the future of the movement.

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  5. Blue, with a hint of amber

    That said, the only grounds on which Mark Driscoll’s thoughts were actually substantively critiqued were where they diverged from Terry Virgo’s vision for the future of the movement.
    Because that is what he discussed at the conference: hence that was the subject being discussed.
    I have heard other clear critiques in other settings.

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  6. Chris E

    “I have heard other clear critiques in other settings.”
    It seems to me that unless the critiques are aired as widely initial set of messages the danger is that mixed messages are sent out.
    To a certain extent that’s going to be inherent in a ‘movement’ as opposed to a denomination. But there are ways of mitigating it.

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  7. Dave

    BWAHOA,
    “I have heard other clear critiques in other settings.”
    If you give me links I will happily read them. I have seen none.

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  8. Blue, with a hint of amber

    You won’t find any public statement from newfrontiers being overtly critical of named others.
    One or two blogs take that tone at times, sadly.
    This was from the platform of a national conference, and looking at what we appreciate from several high profile ministries and the aspects of what we do not appreciate, or where we do things differently.
    You would agree Dave that newfrontiers and the Methodist Church would have quite a few areas of disagreement. Neither will you find a public newfrontiers statement on the ways we disagree with Methodists.

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  9. Dave

    BWAHOA,
    “You won’t find any public statement from newfrontiers being overtly critical of named others.
    One or two blogs take that tone at times, sadly.”

    This is disingenuous.
    Adrian Warnock’s blog is as close to official as you can get. He regularly gets exclusive interviews with the Leadership of Newfrontiers and is used to present new policies/strategies.
    Look at the consistent attacks by him on Steve Chalke and Rob Bell as two examples. He had made several very specific accusations of Blasphemy and of Heresy.
    As for the national platform stuff. Mark Driscoll was deliberately chosen to help Newfrontiers look to the future. A hugely high profile role which has been lead to this new structure.
    The timing that tweet of thanks to Mark Driscoll from terry Virgo is either incredibly naive or very committed to Mark Driscoll.
    As for the disagreements with Methodists I have mentioned before sitting in a National Conference on Church Planting where a senior Newfrontiers pastor told the Methodist Church that it’s time was over and we should give them our buildings so they could do mission because we weren’t (this was after our General Secretary had given the keynote and to an audience that was at least 1/3 Methodist as we had all our District Evangelism Enablers at that conference plus others like myself).
    There are many women in positions of leadership in the Methodist Church who have stories to tell of their ministry being attacked, belittled & ignored by Newfrontiers. While I welcome the occasional glimpses of something better that you talk about on your blog that is absolutely not the general experience.
    Oh and don’t think you have got off lightly with the change in structure that means Newfrontiers now has Apostles as it’s leaders but at the same time ignores Scripture by saying that Apostles have to be male. I’ll be looking at that nonsense.

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  10. Chris E

    BWAHOA -
    How many people in NFI who heard the Mark Driscoll keynote speeches would be also aware of the critiques that went beyond ministry style.
    Similarly, how aware of the critiques of Bill Johnson would the average NFI member be – who may well attend a church which pushes the Bethel School of prophecy or spiritual treasure hunts etc.
    Just saying.

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  11. Dave

    BWAHOA,
    To pick up an earlier comment from you
    “I doubt 50% of my Church would know who Mark Driscoll was.”
    I wonder how happy they would be if more in the congregations did know who Mark Driscoll is and what he teaches about violence and submission!
    “I doubt you will see/hear much about CJ Maheney because so few people would know him or his Churches as they’re all in the US. The last time he spoke at a newfrontiers conference must be nearly a decade ago.”
    It is only a couple of years since Adrian Warnock was enthusing about Mahaney’s ideas about arranged marriage for Christian women. Is arranged marriage something that is popular with young women in Newfrontiers? If is isn’t why are Newfrontiers not distancing themselves from this lunatic fringe of Male Headship control freakery?

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  12. Blue, with a hint of amber

    And yet again you are linking Adrian Warnock’s blog with newfrontiers in a way that does not hold any water.
    Adrian Warnock’s blog is not “used” to present new strategies. He reports what he sees and hears at conferences.
    He is friends with many people in newfrontiers who do interviews with him. They would do interviews with anyone else if they had the inclination or equipment.
    I would be fascinated to know the name of the person who spoke at the conference you keep on referring back to?
    I have absolutely no idea what you are talking about with arranged marriage. I don’t have to distance myself from something I, my Church, and anyone I know are miles away from.
    Take the Rob Bell example: you quote Adrian but not Phil Whittallhttp://www.thesimplepastor.co.uk/2011/04/do-i-disagree-or-denounce-rob-bell/ myself http://theroadtoelderado.blogspot.com/2011/03/rob-bells-new-book.html or Liam Thatcher http://liamthatcher.wordpress.com/2011/02/28/love-wins-an-incognito-sheep

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  13. Blue, with a hint of amber

    Similarly, how aware of the critiques of Bill Johnson would the average NFI member be – who may well attend a church which pushes the Bethel School of prophecy or spiritual treasure hunts etc.
    There was a seminar at the Brighton conference, soon to be available for free download, which is an overview and discussion of Bill Johnson’s two books on healing.

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  14. Charity

    BWAHOA, you say:
    “And yet again you are linking Adrian Warnock’s blog with newfrontiers in a way that does not hold any water.”
    From the link to Adrian’s blog on the TOAM website it certainly looks like Adrian’s blog is some kind of a mouthpiece, if not for Newfrontiers, then at least for the conference.

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  15. Sam

    Hi Dave
    I’m not sure your tone reflects Paul’s encouragement to us to maintain the unity of the Spirit. I attend a Newfrontiers chuch and was at the conference last week but am a lover of Jesus first, as I trust you are too. If you’ve had a bad experience with a Newfrontiers leader then I’m deeply sorry but it seems a bit unfair to speak about the entire Newfrontiers family as if we’re pro-domestic violence and arranged marriage (which just confuses me I’m afraid)!
    Adrian Warnock is a blogger within Newfrontiers with a significant following but is hardly ‘the official Newfrontiers blogger’ – as you’ll see from this website http://newfrontiersbloggers.blogspot.com/
    I’d also check your facts before claiming some pretty significant things – you said above that Mark Driscoll was chosen to speak at the conference ‘deliberately…to help Newfrontiers look to the future’ – have a listen to Terry’s response at the beginning of the next year’s conference and you’ll hear Terry say that Mark was not aware of the discussions that had already started around handing over leadership – the recent changes will I’m sure have taken into account wise advice taken from several sources, but Mark’s encouragement to ‘name Terry’s replacement’ was more corrected than underlined the following year.
    In terms of where this post started (your issues with male headship) I’d suggest that again you check your facts. Newfrontiers hardly believes in headship because Mark Driscoll says we should, we believe it because God does. Let’s start with 1 Timothy 2:12.

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  16. Dave

    Sam,
    You are welcome here.
    The post is quite straightforward so I don’t know what your comment relates to.
    If Newfrontiers is against violence in the way Mark Driscoll teaches it then Newfrontiers should say so. To praise Mark Driscoll when he is embroiled in controversy over a hateful facebook status without any criticism is a problem.
    If you look back over the last 7 years or so you will discover that I know very well who Adrian is. He is clearly more “official” than any other blogger as he is the only one apart from Terry Virgo with a link from the Newfrontiers website. See http://www.newfrontierstogether.org/Group/Group.aspx?ID=102585.
    Whether Newfrontiers expected Mark Driscoll to say they needed new leadership to take over from Terry is irrelevant. TOAM is all about the vision and future of Newfrontiers so clearly all the speakers are there to help Newfrontiers look to the future, it was just you didn’t expect the way he did it.
    I have not said Newfrontiers believes in Male Headship because of Mark Driscoll. I have said that he teaches a particularly harsh & violent version of Male Headship and that it is worrying that he has an influence on Newfrontiers.
    1 Tim 2:12 does not support Mark Driscoll’s style of teaching. Search here (or just read my latest post) for plenty of problems with the use of Scripture to support male headship.

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