Decided to Emigrate

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Decided to Emigrate

Post  emigration on 02/03/10, 01:26 am

Emigration: To leave one country or region to settle in another. That is how I would describe leaving Saskatoon Christian Centre.
Leaving SCC is likened to leaving a culture, a small country, a region occupying 102 Pinehouse Drive. You can leave your country but it remains a part of you. It has left its imprint on years of your life. Consider your emancipation a time to heal, grow and move on. Christian Centre will be part of your story, your history. what makes you unique. It has both helped you and messed up your thinking. You can leave that culture and start to search for Christian that is the THE REAL YOU.

SCC has many good qualities or no one would stay. Christian Centre builds the hardiest of Christians. There is honour of the Bible. One can learn to have a disciplined life as a disciple of Christ. It is a place that some of the finest Canadians attended church or still attend there. A Christian can have a wonderful life experience there.......for a time. Eventually, it seems, everyone emigrates. In the same church that a wonderful life can blossom is the mixture of diabolical evil. No matter what the benefits are to belonging to Christian Centre, the negative side is so rotten in leaves it's ex-patriots abused and hurting. I am glad I don't live in that country any longer.

Members of SCC often develop a distorted view of reality, distrust everyone, and suffer from stress, fear, and depression. Some former members even continue to experience these things after leaving the community of Saskatoon Christian Centre.
Staying at CCM may increase the risks of damaging your family relationships and multiplies the likelihood of losing your God given perspective.

A central feature of this abusive church is the control-oriented leadership. The leader in this abusive church is dogmatic, self- confident, arrogant, and the spiritual focal point in the lives of his followers. The leader assumes he is more spiritually in tune with God. The leader's position and beliefs cannot be questioned; his statements are final. He has his 2 sons and elders to keep the church buzzing with his agenda. To members of SCC , questioning the leader is the equivalent of questioning God. Although the leader may not come out and state this fact, this attitude is clearly seen by the treatment of those who dare to question or challenge Mr. Johnson. Individuals hearing from God on their own must first " get confirmation on their personal word from God" with someone higher up. This makes followers become dependent on the Pastor and Elders.
The Bible does tell believers to seek Godly counsel. But at CCM , ultimately, Mr. Johnson hears from God for you. He will tell you over and over and over how he knows best. He will tell you ad nauseum his "amazing track record". It is a story that is holier than Swiss Cheese.

In the hierarchy of SCC, the leader is, or tends to be, accountable to no one. There are elders on board, wholey made up of men who are loyal to, and will never disagree with, the leader. This style of leadership is not one endorsed in the Bible. According to Scripture all believers have equal access to God and are equal before Him because we are made in His image, and we are all under the authority of the Word of God. In 1 Thessalonians 5:21 believers are directed to measure all teachings against the Word of God. Acts 17:11 states that even the apostle Paul was under the authority of the Bible, and the Bereans were commended because they tested Paul's teachings with the Scriptures. Mr. Johnson , the Elders and congregation alike are to live according to Scripture.

Another characteristic of Christian Centre is an abusive church is that they are characterized by the manipulation of their members. Manipulation is the use of external forces to get others to do what someone else wants them to do. Here manipulation is used to get people to submit to the leadership of the church. The tactics of manipulation include the use of guilt, peer pressure, intimidation, fear, embarrassment and threats of divine judgment from God for disobedience. From the pastors pulpit discipline is carried out publicly to promote ridicule and humiliation. From the Reverend Johnson's own mouth he has told many people, "I will do whatever it takes to take you down if you speak against me or this church."
Over the 25 plus years he has ministered in Saskatoon how many spiritual sons has this pastor gone through? But that is NEVER spoken about. He cannot keep friends or Christian associates. He somehow disintegrates them all.

Christian Centre would like every member to be personally accountable to another more experienced person. To this person, one must reveal all personal thoughts, feelings, and discuss future decisions. This personal information disclosed, it is thought to help the member. In reality it controls the congregation member. Any disagreement is taken to Reverend Johnson. (On playgrounds it is called "squealing".)

Another means of control is isolation and shunning. This abusive church may suggest cut off contact between other SCC members and their family, friends, and anyone else not associated with SCCM.
How different this style of leadership is from the leadership of Jesus, the Good Shepherd who lovingly, gently, humbly, and sacrificially leads His sheep.
I am quite sure Reverend Johnson has been legitimately a good shepherd at times throughout his career, but his mixture of shepherding and brow beating has left many people hurt. In the end, when a person leave Christian Centre and has a hurt or an offense it is always about The Reverend,not doctrinal issues about Christ , it is always how The Reverend (or his elders) hurt them and B.S.'d them. Yes, deception, lies, division from the top down.

Christian Centre is full wonderful, God loving , and BOUND Christians. Rigidity is a natural result of the leadership style. Rev. Johnson requires unwavering devotion to the church from its followers. Allegiance to the church and "God's appointed man" has priority over allegiance to God, family, or anything else. You do not have to give in to this rigidity but you will be marginalized by Rev. Johnson and the Elders. You will be discussed (i.e. gossiped about) by the staff and their families.

How many times are people at SCC pressured to attend church meetings, rehearsals and Bible studies up to five (plus) days a week? There is a requirement to do so or be marginalized. Members of this church have dropped out of higher education, quit full time employment , or neglected their families to do the work required by the church. There are also guidelines for dress, dating, finances, and so on. Such details are held to be of major importance in these churches. The pressure to perform and look happy doing it is definetly felt from the young children to the adults. Shame is the name of the game.
Conformity of the outside is more important than the believers inside. People begin to lose their personal identity and start acting like programmed robots. Life can be divine if you live like a robot at SCCM. The vacuum it causes can be seen in many of the eyes of the congregation at SCC. Many times, the pressure and demands of churches like CCM will cause a member to have a mental health issues, fall into depression or crushing low self esteem. There are many books written on how The Word of Faith Movement and "Shepherding" causes mental health problems. I think of Jesus' words concerning the Pharisees who "tie up heavy loads and put them on men's shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger" (Matt. 23: 4). What a contrast from the leadership style of Jesus who said, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. . . .For my yoke is easy and my burden is light" (Matt. 11:28-30).
The fruit of Christian Centre is rotten. The people are not rotten, the death and discouragement of their God given dreams is what stinks.
No one can measure up to the standards Mr. Johnson and elders have put in place.

Counsel is given by the pastor, elders, elder's wives, veteran Christians who have no credentials to handle the life issues the congregation are having. Those receiving counsel are given Scriptures aimed at solving their problem, which is proper but some problems people need to be walked through with a fellow Christian and a qualified ,trained professional. Going for help "to the world and it's knowledge" is frowned upon. Odd since the counselors at CCM can't seem to help you

Mr. Johnson sees himself as spiritually elite. Christian Centre members believe that they alone have special revelation and assignment. Most other churches are impotent,corrupt , without revelation or direction. Therefore, they do not associate with other Christian churches. If you care to, see what kind of reputation Rev. Johnson has in Saskatoon. There is a sense of pride in this abusive churchs because members feel they have a special relationship with God and His movement in the world. Many past members of Christian Centre have discussed and articulated, "Although we didn't come right out and say it, in our innermost hearts we really felt that there was no place in the world like our assembly. We thought the rest of Christianity was out to lunch. We thought our church was The Flag Ship for God."
However the Bible makes it clear, that there are no spiritually elite groups or churches. Ephesians 4:3รพ6 states, "Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope, when you were called, one Lord, one faith, one baptism; One God and Father of all."

The Christian church universal is united by the same God, the same Holy Spirit, and the fundamental beliefs of the Bible which include such things as the Trinity, authority of the Bible, the death and resurrection of Jesus, the deity of Christ, justification by faith alone, and so on. In these central truths we stand united. A church which believes itself to be elite and does not associate with other Christian churches is not motivated by the spirit of God but by divisive pride.
Mr. K Johnson has refused to be in any association with fellow ministers in Saskatoon. His pride is suffocating.

Leaders and members of SCC might see themselves as elite, they expect persecution in the world and even feed on it. Criticism and exposure by the media are seen as proof that they are the true church being persecuted by Satan. However, the persecution received by abusive churches is different from the persecution received by Jesus and the Apostles. They are persecuted because of their pride, ignorance and lack of love. Mr. Johnson thinks he is being attacked by the enemy, a pack of ex-SCC wolves and the evil spirit that leads us. In actuality, his judgmental manner and arrogance have brought persecution. Mr. Johnson does not need satan to attack him. Rev. Johnson's own poor conduct brings attack,his negative press is by his own actions.

Another terrible characteristic is a painful and difficult exit process. Members at SCC are afraid to leave because of intimidation, pressure, and threats of divine judgment. Sometimes members who exit are harassed by church leaders. The majority of the time, former members are publicly shamed and humiliated before the church, and members are told not to associate in any way with any former members or at least avoid them if at all possible. This practice is called shunning.

Many who leave SCCM, because of the thorough intimidation and brainwashing, actually feel they have left God Himself. None of their former associates will fellowship with them, and they feel isolated, abused, and fearful of the world ( and going to a new church). One past member of Christian Centre said, "If I leave without the leadership's approval, condemnation and guilt are heaped upon me. My pastor told me he thought it was satanic for me to leave and wondered if I could continue my salvation experience." He told me it was a divorce and I was out for satan to pluck off since I was "out from his pastoral covering"." This pastor must think very highly of himself and very little about God's boundless mercies.

What can I do for my friends and family who are still making Mr. Johnson their god and want out because they know the man is a fraud and their devotion to him is sinful? First, we must begin with prayer. Witnessing to those brainwashed in CCM is often intimidating and difficult. Often CCM leaders will not allow an individual member to meet with an outsider unless accompanied by an older, more experienced person who is trained in debating and/or intimidation. Mr. Johnson has his 3 elders under control to do his dirty work. He even gets support staff, his children and his wife to do his bidding. Possibly he is too insecure to do so himself when he isn't in his office. Therefore, we must pray for a chance to speak with the individual and that he would be open to what we have to share.

Second, lovingly confront the person and surface some biblical issues. Christian Centre has some bizarre teachings and theological errors that can be pointed out. If they would even listen to their own church website and hear how RIDICULOUS the messages can be. Rev. Johnson has dropped the ball on so many prophesies and strange teachings based on his claims of extra-biblical revelations from God. Pointing out errors, inconsistencies, and bizarre beliefs may open the individual's mind and prompt him to begin asking questions.

The key is to get the individual to start asking questions and research answers for himself. Tell him to test everything with the Scriptures and not to be afraid to ask questions. If the leader is afraid or hesitant to answer a member's honest questions, the maturity of that leadership may be suspect. Many people that are left at CCM want to leave but stay because of fear or spiritual laziness to hear from God on their own.

Jesus, however, said that truth is a means of freedom, not bondage. He said, "You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free" (John 8:32).

In reality SCC is about 300 or so people who are in their own bubble. The 7 billion others on Earth don't know they exist.

God loves Keith Johnson, his wife, his sons, the elders, the staff, the members. We all need to be changed, have our eyes opened and find out about the God who cares for us so deeply. No one needs Him more than me! I just decided I had to emigrate. I am one voice of many hundred.

emigration

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Post  thankGod on 02/03/10, 12:39 pm

Thanks for sharing the in-depth info. It is nice to be reminded that the SCC congregation and leaders are just people with problems like us. We were one of them at one point, and were just blessed to step out to see some things more clearly. God loves and extends His mercy to all of us equally. I expect we all will be together beyond this life. Regardless of differences, we all are doing our best to follow Christ. We should certainly pray for them.

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Re: Decided to Emigrate

Post  Enlightened on 04/03/10, 11:37 pm

Wow, this is so good. Thank you for posting...

Enlightened

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Re: Decided to Emigrate

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