Francis Chan ‘unloaded his heart’ at Tulsa Workshop
“I believe we want the same thing,” Francis Chan told a packed arena at the Tulsa Fairgrounds in Oklahoma. “I see this fire coming from this denom — do you even call it a denomination?”
“No,” came scattered shouts from the crowd, assembled for the annual Tulsa Workshop.
A few moments later, Chan asked the crowd what they call themselves.
“Church!” they yelled back.
“OK, yeah!” Chan said, enthusiastically. “That’s a good word!”
Chan, a California pastor, sought-after speaker and bestselling author of books including “Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God” was the March 21 keynote speaker at the Tulsa Workshop. He speaks again at 11 a.m. Friday, March 22.
The Thursday keynote was “simply Chan-tastic,” said Terry Rush. “He packed the place last night — and then unloaded his heart.”
Rush, the workshop’s director and minister for the Memorial Drive Church of Christ in Tulsa, told the crowd that credit for booking Chan went to Wes Woodell of Campus Ministry United. Woodell met Chan while working with the Lake Merced Church of Christ in San Francisco.
(Read Woodell’s blog post, titled “A Tremendously Blown Opportunity to Work with Francis Chan,” and Bobby Ross Jr.’s feature on Woodell from 2009.)
Chan covered topics including egos, honoring elders and baptism. He said he enjoyed the a cappella worship (“man, this is really cool … I like just voices”) and respected Churches of Christ for their emphasis on biblical truth.
He related his own experience with a Church of Christ group while he was attending seminary in southern California. A member of the group asked to disciple him. Chan agreed. Later, he told one of his classmates at seminary, “When I read the Scriptures, I feel like they’re doing it better than we are.”
Then the man discipling Chan told him that he needed to be re-baptized. Chan parted ways with the group. (I conferred with Woodell after Chan spoke, and he said that the group was part of the Boston Movement, later named the International Churches of Christ.)
As for Chan’s own thoughts on baptism, here’s a video from 2011:
Are you attending the Tulsa Workshop? What did you think of Francis Chan’s keynotes? Please share your thoughts here or send me an e-mail. Please include your full name and home congregation.
FeedbackThere are capable speakers among the Churches of Christ. Why would the program director spend money to hear this speaker? He supports baptism? Good. Many preachers outside of the faith have similar positions to those in the Churches of Christ. Why would the organizers of the workshop choose to spend money to bring in a speaker from outside the fellowship?Jason GoldtrapMarch, 22 2013Francis Chan is a man who has an incredible passion to allow God to transform us to be the followers of Christ that we should be bringing the message of redemption to a fallen world. There are many people around the world at this point such as Francis who could care less about supporting a denominational stance and instead want to see the church become focused on creating disciples of Jesus Christ. This is incredibly similar to the dynamic that existed in the early 1800’s when the Spirit led many people from a number of denominations to unite together to work not for their own group but for the good of the Kingdom of God in what we know as the Restoration Movement. Sometimes the Spirit brings people together from various backgrounds to produce something new to the glory of God.Tim S.March, 22 2013I was blown away be Chan’s admission to the work of baptism. Holy cow! When people like Francis Chan come near, we should push him away. We have nothing to learn from people who are not of our tradition? I praise God that not all members of the Churches of Christ embrace negativity. Praise God for the Soul-Winning Workshop. I may finally get to one next year.Jon ForrestMarch, 22 2013When I read Francis’s book, “Crazy Love” and watched his videos I was struck that he was a “searcher”. He is very passionate about God and His Son and has a sincere heart for the Word. I love that about him. Too many people who claim to be Christians think they know all and have stopped searching.TammyMarch, 22 2013We as Christians need to focus on Jesus and his teachings……not any denomination…..just Christ and his word, this is what was said here. I agree with Chan,about the baptism and what it is for us as Christians, great speaker,thanks for sharing .If Jesus said it then do it!
Matthew 28:18 18 Then Jesus came to them. He said, �All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 So you must go and make disciples of all nations. Baptize them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach them to obey everything I have commanded you. And you can be sure that I am always with you, to the very end.�
Debbie Bonar Lynn Street Church of Christ
Put on Christ on 10-17-67 in Elizabeth, West Virginia,()my spiritual birthday,baptized by brother June Williams. :)46 years ago.DebraMarch, 22 2013I hate I missed him. He is a disciple that makes others want to be a disciples.(I like that) When we speak about him being outside our fellowship, I wonder what we mean. I don’t consider him outside of my fellowship. He is my brother and I can’t call him anything less. On the day of Pentecost, when God added “them” to the church, either they were brothers and sister or they were nothing at all. Either he is part of the church or he isn’t and God makes that decision…. thankfully! I pray for more disciples like Francis that have the courage to call people back to the Word and away from tradition.
Love God, Love People
DaleDale IsomMarch, 22 2013I applaud the Tulsa Workshop for having Francis Chan speak. The Kingdom of God is not a group of people who meet with similar church signs but rather a group of people who exhibit the signs, the Fruit of the Spirit. Francis exhibits that fruit whenever I hear him.James CollinsMarch, 22 2013I’m hopeful for our movement when we make steps like this! Chan speaking at the Workshop is awesome, and a good sign.Craig CottongimMarch, 22 2013“Why would the organizers of the workshop choose to spend money to bring in a speaker from outside the fellowship?”
What in the world are you talking about? Chan is more “of our fellowship” than most I have met in the church of Christ lately.
Thank you Tulsa Workshop…you get it.LynnMarch, 22 2013There is many capable speakers in the Church of Christ, but Chan is better than 99% of em, and maybe 3 even spoke at the workshop this year.KyleMarch, 22 2013This was a wake up call for the “church of Christ”. I feel this is where some are tangled up within the name of the church and express you are not a christian unless you are rebaptized etc.. To often I have people in my counseling office expressing how “Christians” make them feel. This is why they left or this is why they are struggling. Francis laid his heart in a very spiritual and loving manner. This haunts the church when we do not lay bare our thoughts and come together and work out our differences. Francis Chan said, “It isn’t compromising the bible, it is compromising our thoughts and working together.” To one comment on why the director would spend money? It was a spirit driven approach to have Francis Chan at the workshop. How often do we hear other ministers express in love, how the “church” appears to others from the outside. It is time for change and the Tulsa Workshop proved it!Steven H.March, 22 2013I like Chan! I think he is a man after God’s own heart.He tells it like he reads it,from the Bible. He belives it and does it very well and asks others to also because that is what God’s word says.His book Crazy Love is how I know about him and his work.
I am a member of the Nola Church of Christ since 1974. Dorotha Austin,Harvey, ArkansasDorotha AustinMarch, 22 2013No follower of Christ is outside of the fellowship as I read the teachings of Jesus. It was such a blessing to hear God’s message through brother Chan’s preaching. If our salvation comes from some kind of perfect doctrinal adherence, then Christ died for nothing. But it doesn’t, and Praise God that all of us redeemed sinners are one in Jesus!Dale BrownMarch, 22 2013I pray that each of us that were at the conference will refuse to argue the merit of Chan speaking. It’s a new day. Let us be done with debate and dive in to the deep end of our faith.RonnaMarch, 22 2013Francis Chan’s messages in Tulsa were from God and thawed my heart. I’m so weary of arguing about worship preferences. I came to Tulsa thirsting for spiritual refreshment. Brothers Chan, Beam, Rush, talented singers and speakers delivered. This was my first workshop and I will be back!Heath McCartneyMarch, 22 2013I believe Chan is very honest & compassionate about the love of God thru just watching some of his YouTube. Yet also did not the Jews have a zeal, the knowledge of God persuading us is the difference. The Lord said his word is spirit, truth & there’s life in it–not because he willed it, but it was ordered to him from ABBA to share it with us. God’s word will always be spirit, but let us learn that authority is only what is outlined in the manual. Let us notice tho Paul & Barnabas had differences they didn’t stay following God’s command.
Many before us & after us will argue the of the church, however in our society the name of an organization’s building has to be indicated on the signage much similar to each of us have state (ID) identification to prove we are who we say we are. God know most of us could do more serving & ministering. Lord knows his ek klesia “out called” by whether we obey the calling, whether we’re family by us doing the will of the Father or not, else wise he says we are not his brother or sister(Mt12:50).AdamMarch, 23 2013It is very clear that The Lord’s “out called” need to be more spiritual, more compassionate, more heaven minded, & pick up our plows.
May we all be led by the Holy Spirit which is our seal. May we also understand that form of doctrine that Paul declares is not a tradition but is the authority of the great I AM. None of us are worthy of His favor but He has entrusted us with a great role in his kingdom.
Shalom!AdamMarch, 23 2013Typo: *Paul & Barnabas had differences they didn�t stop following God�s command*AdamMarch, 23 2013Nice post, Erik. Wish I could have been there to hear Francis speak. Hats off to the Tulsa Workshop and to Wes for inviting him over.Mike S. AllenMarch, 23 2013I rejoice and respect the Tulsa workshop for having Francis Chan to refresh us.
Some of the comments I gather are believers still thinking and speaking out
in the ” box.” The phrase ” in our fellowship” sounds wonderful, but I would
prefer that we are in the same ” FOllowship.” spells it with an ” O “
Acts 2– Allow the Lord to do the adding. We focus on uniformity instead
of unity. Sadly we distant ourselves from _______________, and divisive.
Amazing . Ming Paul,Lee – Canada.ming Paul, LeeMarch, 23 2013Is the “pastor” reference to Mr. Chan appropriate?Linda LawtherMarch, 23 2013I really liked hearing Francis Chan at the workshop. I probably liked most his discomfort at being treated like a celebrity preacher. His geniune humility does a lot to reinforce his biblical message.Terry LaudettMarch, 23 2013Oh how I wish my family and I could have attended the workshop this year. Francis Chan is one of our most favorite speakers. I have read several of his books and watched numerous videos of him speaking–I always get something new from what I read or watch. What I love most about him though, is how he lives exactly like the bible says. If you read about him, he left his comfortable job in the church he helped start so he and his family could go on a foreign mission trip to a very remote location, sold their house and moved to an inner city neighborhood to serve those who live there. He truly is a man of God. Obviously the person who made the comment about the workshop spending money to bring him in has never heard him speak or read any of his work.MerrilyMarch, 23 2013When we close our minds and hearts to God’s word because it is not spoken by the person we choose, we become as arrogant as the pharisees. God has spoken throughout the Bible by people He chose who were “not of us.” Francis Chan is a man after God’s on heart not only by the Word he speaks, but by the life he lives in obedience to it. His humility allows him to be used by God in a powerful way. Something everyone of us need to learn how to do. I heard both messages at Tulsa Workshop and was challenged to look at my life in comparison to the Gospel call and to realize how much I fall short of living out that call. May we quit talking about differences and listen to people like Francis Chan that call us to repentance and a life lived out in full obedience to God’s call and therefore change the world by it and bring the lost to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.Jim WrightMarch, 23 2013This is an exciting time to be a Christian. I believe that we are at the dawn of the next great church movement. First it was the day of Pentecost, then the Protestant Reformation, then the Restoration, now is the time of the Spiritual Revolution! Brothers and sisters of the churches of Christ and other churches (denomination and non-denomination) are starting to wake up and realize that Christianity isn’t about what we call ourselves, our opinions, or our traditions. Christianity is about whether or not we are changing the world through God’s love! Having Francis Chan at this Church of Christ gathering is just more proof. Just like these comments are proof of the change that is happening. This indeed is exiting and encouraging. Thank you!DavidMarch, 24 2013Maybe others in the denominational world will begin to openly study Scriptures without pressure to conform to their particular denomination’s tradition. Francis Chan spoke on Baptism awhile back and what he said was correct. We reviewed what he said here – http://www.bibleanswershow.com/2012/12/is-francis-chan-right-about-baptism.html
It would be great to here of other well-known religious writers and speakers come to similar conclusions.Bible Answer ShowMarch, 24 2013AMEN!AMEN! It has been far to long that we as Christian’s bicker and bite at one another. I’ve been on both sides of the true believers and there is no doctrinal differance. We are all brother’s and sister’s in the Lord. Hats off to those who are trying to unite us all together for we will be forced to unite when Christ comes again. The angels in heaven are rejoicing and getting ready for a party that we all will attend so shake off tradition and lets unite before that time comes.Patty TockeyMarch, 24 2013There is a saying that goes, “so go your leaders, so go your followers.” As Francis Chan spoke for the second time, this played through my head. Chan challenged us to quit “playing it safe” and GO! If I want my children to walk by faith, then I am going to have to do the same. If I practice playing it safe then my children are going to do the same. As I left the arena I continued to process this thought: “What am I doing now, that will hinder my children from reaching their God given potential because they are not learning walk by faith.”
I also loved his challenge to us to hold tight to scripture, respect the wisdom that has gone before us, but to embrace the younger generation that God is bringing up. We can trust God with His church. We need to be teaching and training our children seek God in everything. We need to be teaching and training our children how to seek God in prayer, seek Him in the scriptures and then wait patiently for His response. We need to be teaching them to seek the peace that comes from being in His will.
As Dusty Rush challenged us…”Go ahead – JUMP! The deep end of the pool is fun!”
If we want to see God and experience His power, we cannot stay in shallow end of the pool. We are going to have to Go and make disciples as we’ve been commanded to do. As we were charged (Mt 28:18-20), we were also promised that Jesus would be “with us always, to the very end of the age.”
If we don’t learn to really walk by faith and trust our God at His word, our children may miss out on some really exciting things this side of heaven.
I really appreciate Terry Rush stepping out in faith and inviting Chan to speak. I also appreciate Chan stepping out in faith and actually coming and speaking what was on his heart to share.Dawn ScottMarch, 24 2013To those who are “concerned” that Francis Chan spoke at the Tulsa Workshop, let me remind you of this.
“Teacher,” said John, “we saw a man driving out demons in your name and we told him to stop, because he was not one of us.”
“Do not stop him,” Jesus said. “No one who does a miracle in my name can in the next moment say anything bad about me, for whoever is not against us is for us.” Mark 9:38-39.
I was there to be blessed by Brother Chan. His messages should be required listening for the entire church of Christ fellowship. They were tremendous, Biblical, and challenging.Perry SimsMarch, 24 2013I applaud the workshop planners bringing Francis Chan to preach. He has a fire and a passion for Jesus and evangelism, as well as an authenticity, that’s contagious. Perhaps the comments directed at folks in other “denominations” being open to Bible study should be more directed at ourselves. We can be as guilty as any Christian group of making our traditions the terms of fellowship and faithfulness. Men like Chan, and others outside our “fellowship” have just as high of a regard for scripture as we do.
As to the comment about Chan being better than 99% of our preachers, Let me encourage us to quit comparisons. Preaching the gospel is not a competition. It’s hard enough for us to find men to enter the rigors of preaching ministry today without making them feel that they have to be compared to a half a dozen well known preachers. Let the likes of Francis Chan inspire others, without us discouraging those among us who are seeking to faithfully preach with comments like this. Such comments are unhelpful and even insulting, and shouldn’t be approved, in my view, for distribution on this thread.RKMarch, 24 2013I missed hearing this message by needing to return home in daylight after enjoying the day at the Workshop. How thrilling to hear of a brother whose message no doubt thrilled the heart of Marvin Phillips. “Our” movement doesn’t belong to us if we really love Jesus as our Lord. He calls us to be one body with all who also love Him. I’m glad that the comments I see above mine are with only one exception recognizing that all who love Jesus are to be loved by us! And appreciated by us. And heard by us. I appreciated that Rick Atchley was invited to speak and was able to take time to do so. He also inspires us to seek fellowship with all who are in Christ. His preaching is inspirational. I rejoice that I get to hear him most weeks even while he’s in Texas and I’m in Missouri.Ray DownenMarch, 24 2013we’ll let him “in” again next time for another workshop..we see our selves through him by his high regard of the scriptures.. he could be that passionate of the word of God which is also very possible for all followers of the Lord..Orlando BragaMarch, 25 2013The reason the organizers would bring in Francis Chan is because he is led by the Spirit of God with a message for God’s people now. We did bring in other speakers; about sixty of them. And Francis was surely welcomed….and we had a tremendous time of fellowship.
Mr. Goldtrap, when Francis read your comment, he contacted me that he would tear up his check. I told him that if he did we would send another; that I am the organizer of the Tulsa Workshop; not Mr. Goldtrap.
I’ve invited Francis Chan to return to the workshop…and if he obliges….we will pay him more money.Terry RushMarch, 25 2013Terry, Great choice. The Workshop had a great theme, and all the classes I attended were sound, challenging, and just what the church needed. Thank you for bringing Francis Chan. He’s got the same spirit that once drove the Restoration Movement–a desire to serve the Lord, live out His Word, and do so while calling people to deeper faith, greater obedience, and a greater love for reaching the lost.
Thank you for all the hard work you and your crew do to bring it all together.JamesMarch, 25 2013How sad. The restoration is in need of restoration. History does indeed repeat itself because of humanity’s refusal to submit to YAHWEH. Isaiah well said, “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight!” Isaiah 5:20-21.Orion MitchellMarch, 25 2013I have been writing good material for years and have been ignored on every corner, including Christian Chronicle. I express concern over the choice of a speaker and all I get is beaten up by an endless stream of comments. I am not a Pharisee. Pharisees had jobs and support from the community. I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness.Jason GoldtrapMarch, 25 2013Terry, please pass on to Francis how wonderful it was to have him with us. I personally would love to have him back. If only just to worship together. Let him know he is our brother, not a visitor.Jimmy CooperMarch, 25 2013While reading all the responses I’m overwhelmed with feelings of the need of Christ. We need to do away with “denomination”. It’s a word that conjures negative vibes. If we are of Christ we are in his Kingdom. We need to do away with “tradition”. Tradition is not biblical. Nothing is wrong with doing things but not for salvation purposes. We need to do away with “legalism”. It hurts our fellowship.
My husband and I are campus ministers. To the dislike of others we try to connect to ALL Christians students and get them connected to a church family. We look at the commonality of what we believe instead of what we what causes our divisions. We need to love each other and let God do the rest. We need to serve each other and let God do the rest.
Francis Chan is a man of God, just like the other speakers that were asked to attend and give a word. It turns my stomach that he is called “outside of the fellowship”. Mr. Chan is in the fellowship of Christ.Gina CroftMarch, 25 2013I was front row for Francis Chan and I can tell you he is filled and driven by the Holy Spirit like very few people I’ve met. He is my brother and we will have great adventures in Heaven together. Let us dwell on any thought that is “true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.”PeytonMarch, 25 2013I enjoyed both of Francis Chan’s sessions at the Tulsa Workshop and was so proud that he included this gathering into his very busy schedule. Thank you, Terry Rush, for pursuing him. And thank you, brother Chan, for your spirit of humility and respect, yet also your boldness and transparency. Now is the time, church, for us to be what God has always called us to be among those who don’t yet have relationship with their Father. Let’s keep our focus on the mission outside our walls. What an exciting time we live in!AlanMarch, 25 2013I say it�s high time people quit doing God�s job of separating the sheep from the goats and start loving each other with a sincere heart. Look for good in each other not their flaws. Love and grace, friends, love and grace.
“Master,” said John, “we saw a man driving out demons in your name and we tried to stop him, because he is not one of us.”
“Do not stop him,” Jesus said, “for whoever is not against you is for you.” Luke 9:49-50Janice GarrisonMarch, 25 2013Terry Rush- Thank you for not bowing to those who do not get it. I think Francis should be back. Francis obviously loves God. He also holds more closely to our doctrines than many in our own “brotherhood.” I think bringing him back will help to bring a younger audience back to the Workshop, which we most definitely need.
I would bet that Francis’ message hit some people a little too close to home…Thank God.Kerry CoxMarch, 25 2013Chan gave a Spirit-filled and humble message. I pray we take to heart before it’s too late. As a young minister in the CoC, the whole workshop spoke to my heart and walk with Christ, with Chan’s talk at the climax. It is my desperate prayer that we can take a dive in the deep end by faith, following Jesus to whatever end, and I plan on starting with myself.
Terry and other workshop leaders and speakers – thanks for taking the time to prick our hearts and point us to the Father. I believe it will make an eternal impact.Joshua TuckerMarch, 25 2013Thank you Francis Chan for your willingness to witness in Tulsa. I have listened to the CD’s, which are a great blessing. I wonder why we bother to listen and study if we aren’t also willing to be open to learn and be changed?Steve BeallMarch, 25 2013Thanks for continuing to speak the truth in love, Mr. Chan.Dustin HahnMarch, 25 2013Jason Goldtrap…friend, I am sympathetic to your feeling discouraged. This is not the venue for us to talk. If you want, write me at [email protected] Maybe I can come alongside to cheer you on. Really.Terry RushMarch, 25 2013Francis, thank you so much for not only coming to the workshop, but sharing your heart and word from God. I learned so much and I walked away changed. I pray God gives you the strength to never stopBlakeMarch, 25 2013I’m really encouraged to see so much support for Chan in these comments. When I first read the comment criticizing the Tulsa Workshop organizers for inviting Chan to speak, I felt a deep sadness. Having grown up and spent my entire life in the Church of Christ, I long for the day when we don’t hear these painful “who’s in” and “who’s out” accusations any longer. Those type of comments only serve to alienate others and cause pain and division. Thank you to Terry Rush and the others for having the courage to invite Francis to Tulsa. Thanks to everyone who’s left a positive comment for Francis on this blog. I hope he comes back next year.DarinMarch, 25 2013Just wanted to say thank you to Terry for for all the hard work in putting together another workshop,especially in getting Francis to come and speak.I am a member of a Church of Christ,but did not grow up in this tradition. My church accepted me as a brother in Christ knowing that I wasn’t Baptized in the so called right way. They recognized the Spirit of God that dwells in me, as I did in them.I cannot understand how anyone could question Francis Chan’s faith.These people should look at themselves first, and remember that only God knows what’s in each persons heart. Again,thank you Terry and Thank you Francis.Raymond MartinMarch, 25 2013Several of my brothers and sisters attended the workshop this year. I used to attend and want to return. I perused most of the comments here. I guess I would like to hear a tape of his. I would like to hear why Francis Chan was so dynamic and inspiring to the attendees. Thankyou! Mary Southard Clovis, NM W. 21st Street Church of ChristMary SouthardMarch, 25 2013From what I gather, he seems to be on the right track as far as what a person must do to be saved. However, he does not claim to be a member of the Church of Christ right? I think I have heard of this man before and from what I understand, he does not claim to be a member of any church/denomination of any kind, but just wants to tour around and visit different churches, whoever will have him. The thing that gets me is that he like many people within the denominational world appears to be in it for the money! If he does not claim to be a member of any church than he would likely be accepted more and the welcomed into peoples congregations to speak. Personally, I don’t agree with having to pay someone to come and speak at your congregation. I have heard of people within the church sending money to support other congregations who are struggling financially and those who do mission trips to other countries to evangelize, but not paying someone who doesn’t even identify themselves as members of the Lord’s church. I agree with what you said.
Another thing, he didn’t say anything that I haven’t heard other members of the church say including myself. I think that he is a decent speaker, but the problem I see is so many people get too caught up with how smooth and charming a speaker is rather than how truthful the message is. Also, many people get more wrapped up in wanting to be praised than anything and if that is their motive, then they are in it for the wrong reasons. There is nothing about him that is more important than any other member of the church. I noticed someone say that he is better than 99% of the preachers in the Church of Christ… HOW SO??? How would they know unless they heard all of them. 99% of us have only heard less than 1% of the speakers that the church has….Scott LucasMarch, 25 2013For your information Mr. Lucas if you knew anything about Francis Chan you would know that he gives most of what he makes away to charities that will further God’s kingdom. He also disdains people who exalt him above God. I think anyone who attends a church that preaches the word of God is a member of the Lord’s church.Raymond MartinMarch, 25 2013And these comments are the reason churches are dying…While time is being spent arguing about ridiculous things like this, kids in Africa are dying of starvation!DannyMarch, 25 2013Mr. Lucas, I am not sure if we can really know for sure if anyone is only “in it for the money” including Frances Chan unless time reveals he is. But I did finally locate a version of the video clip where he was preaching at the Cornerstone Community Church and I thought what he was teaching was right: repent, be baptized, and receive the Holy Spirit. Now that I think about it, he did not mention the forgiveness of sins as Peter did in Acts 2 and elsewhere. But the point I want to make is that after hearing him, I did not perceive him as being dynamic rather he communicated gentleness, sincerity, and conviction. What I agree with you on is that “he did not say anything any different than what I have heard other members of the church say including myself”. So, what is his draw? Many men communicate gentleness, sincerity, and conviction. Many men and women communicate a “crazy love” for Jesus and His Word. Why is he unique? Is it because he is NOT identifying with the churches of Christ AND preaching baptism for the remission of sins? And that is a big draw? I would like to hear other opinions. Mary SouthardMary SouthardMarch, 25 2013Scott Lucas – do you think it wise to pass judgement on a person you have never met and whose messages you haven’t even listened to?
For your information, Francis donates the money he receives from speaking engagements and book sales to charities – mostly those that help victims of sex trafficking or provide the world’s poor with food and clean drinking water. He and his wife live in a modest home and drive old cars, and are not “in it for the money.”
Seek understanding before you speak.
2 Fools find no pleasure in understanding
but delight in airing their own opinions.Wes WoodellMarch, 25 2013In addition Scott Lucas, Frances Chan planted and preached for a very viable and healthy church for many years in Southern California and knows first hand the challenges of local work, and now works in ministry in San Francisco with a church there. Whether you agree or not with paying preacher to come speak, Paul spoke of men who preach the gospel getting their living by preaching the gospel. To those who have known him, Chan lives modestly, and as mentioned here, gives much of his income away to Christian ministry. How one can read or suggest a persons motives is beyond me, but, it’s none of our jobs to do this. The Lord uses all kinds in ministry, putting some on a larger platform, speaking to thousands, and some faithfully plodding day-to-day in more remote, unseen corners. Let’s praise God for the way he uses each of us, including Francis Chan!
Most of the posts on this thread have been refreshing and suggest that sectarianism in our movement may finally be fading.RKMarch, 25 2013Hey, Mr. Lucas, I did not intend to beat up on you. I hope you feel that from my comments. We should all be able to speak our opinions.
ClovisMary SouthardMarch, 26 2013Hey folks. Thanks for the comments. I’ve tried to edit things a bit to keep the conversation from getting too much into a back-and-forth argument. I think some good discussion has come out of this, and I appreciate Wes and others for clarifying some points on Francis Chan’s charitable giving. Didn’t know that before. Nice!
I could still use a few comments from folks who attended the Tulsa Workshop. Looking back, what did you think of Chan’s message? What, if any, steps will you take (or will your church take) in response to what he said?
Please include your home congregation when you post or <a href=”mailto:[email protected]” rel=”nofollow”>send me an e-mail</a>. I’ve heard from several guys. It would be really be nice to get a few comments from ladies who attended. Thanks.
— ETErik TryggestadMarch, 26 2013It was an amazing experience to learn from the speakers at the workshop! Francis did an amazing job and I respect his humility.EmilyMarch, 26 2013I was sad that I could not attend the conference, but wanted to say a few things on Francis Chan’s behalf. When I read crazy Love the first time, it really pricked my heart, and got me thinking about my Christian walk. Then I read it a second time in a ladies Bible study and also read Forgotten God. I believe that I was a lukewarm Christian before I was challenged by the Word of God to get serious or forget it. Since getting motivated, I have prayed for the Spirit to lead me to do whatever God wants me to do, even if it’s uncomfortable. Yes, it’s a scary prayer to pray, but SOOO worth it. I have never known more security in my salvation than when I am consistently abiding in the will of God and letting Him guide my thoughts and actions. So, all I can say is God is using Francis Chan in amazing ways to motivate others to get out there and make disciples. And seeing someone come to Christ is the most amazing thing in the world! By teaching others, your faith grows, because you aren’t going to teach something you don’t know or believe. My prayer is that people will look at the mission we have as a Church: focusing on making disciples of Jesus. Because if we aren’t doing that,(or don’t have the desire to), are we really disciples ourselves?KaylaMarch, 26 2013I was very moved by Chan’s humble spirit and genuine love for God and God’s people. Is he a member of the church of Christ? Of course he is, if the definition is someone who confesses the Messiahship of Jesus and was buried with him in baptism to become a new creature. Or are we talking about someone who worships with a denomination (yes, we have become that in every sense of the word) with a certain name on their building? Did he tell us anything new? Depends on what you’ve heard. And I don’t know about everyone else, but I need to be reminded–often–of the very things he talked about. It was refreshing to hear many of the speakers at the Workshop, including Chan, with a passion for unity among believers–the very thing Jesus prayed for before his ascension. I had hoped that walls would eventually be torn down, I just didn’t think it would happen in my lifetime. Praise God!
Worshiping and serving with Memorial Drive CoC – Tulsa,OKLita BlevinsMarch, 26 2013I attended the Tulsa Workshop with my wife. First one we have ever attended. We attended the workshop and were very pleased as we got to hear many people from our own brotherhood speak of God working actively in their lives and the lives of the people they minister to. This is something that we should expect from our own brotherhood, correct? I mean, even if we are not having masses of people coming to us and being saved, we should expect some success, Right? However, it was when we heard Francis Chan that something was switched in my brain. Something that woke me up, and many other people in our brotherhood, to a truth that has eluded us for a long time. That truth? That God blesses those who are about His business and humbly complete the purpose of His Son. More on this fact in a minute.
When Francis Chan came out on stage after some singing, a small group of people began to stand up and cheer him on. Applauding him for being there, for all he has done already done, and all he was about to do. And why not? He is a author who has sold millions of books and is a public figure. He deserves some praise for what he has done. There was a portion of the crowd that we saw from the place we were sitting, arms crossed, looking up in anger or disbelief that someone not from their own brotherhood getting the praise. Although this point is true, I firmly believe what happened next won them over. Humbly, he cried for everyone to stop applauding him. He asked for it to stop because he did not want any of the praise. He talked about the book of 1st Corinthians and how the church was so messed up. That there were orgies, people getting drunk at the Lord�s Supper, and how incestuous relationships were in the church. He listed all these things and then pointed out a simple truth: the first thing Paul pointed out in his letter is that there were divisions among the church of people applauding Paul, or Apollos, or Peter and they were saying they were following these men rather than Christ. That of all the problems going on in this congregation of the church, that was the first focus that Paul took. Chan then said he does not want to know anything other than Christ crucified. At that moment, I think every ear was open to what God was about to say through this man.
He than talked about how awesome it was to be there. How he was glad to be apart of our fellowship and Worship. We heard his story of How God was blessing his ministry where ever he goes. How when things are needed for his ministry, God provides them in ways that only He can. He tells how God provides more and more souls for Him to baptize and how people are being served, loved, and welcomed into the church of Christ that he serves. HE NEVER TOOK ANY CREDIT!!!! He gave it all back to God.
Although it does not have a Church of Christ on its sign, nor does it worship in the same traditions of the Churches of Christ, there seems to be a common thread to allow me to say Chan is my brother. He seeks the same things as we do and should and believes in the fundamentals of our faith. Do we agree on everything across the board? Not sure as I never sat down with the man except in our one sided conversations (Chan�s Books). Although this point is true, I can say that I share more than a common belief with this man. I share the family name that lasts forever. THIS MAN IS MY BROTHER! Why can I say this fact? God answers his prayers and rewards his ministries with more souls than I can ever dream of reaching in a lifetime.
Another thing that stood out about this Workshop to me is simple: No one began to bash Chan for what he said. Everyone that heard him said that it was nothing short of a prophetic word from God calling us to unity with our brothers and sisters in Christ across boarders. To allow lines that was drawn by our brothers and sisters in our own brotherhoods to be erased. To drop the egos we have and to step out of the way and allow God to finally work in His church. It is this message and the many like it throughout the workshop that made me also realize something else: SOMETHING BIG IS ABOUT TO HAPPEN (if we let it)!!!
The following verse has come to be mentioned multiple times in the discussions and lessons we have heard and digested throughout the workshop:
(5) Look at the nations and observe– be utterly astounded! For something is taking place in your days that you will not believe when you hear about it.
It shook me looking and reading this verse as I have never seen or heard it before. However, the way that people were speaking and the way that God obviously moved this weekend in the hearts of people who are genuinely seeking to not only be with God in the end but to be like His Son has awakened me to the fact that God is moving and that there is a movement that has repeated itself throughout the age of Spiritual Israel: REVIVAL. An age of where people will return to the Bible and follow it with all their hearts and that people will drop their own desires and opinions at the feet of Jesus. It is a movement where God will gain control of our churches and our lives again. It is an age where those who do not abandon their Pharisaical ways and renew the purpose to be the purpose of Jesus Christ [Luke 19:10; Matthew 28:18-20] they will miss out on the time at hand. That until people throughout our brotherhood remove themselves from the equation and let those who God has chosen to lead his church that are younger than they are to step forward and take the reigns, until that happens, God can not move in our churches and in our lives. This is my prayer: that we will answer this call from God. To move as God has called us to move. To live as God called us to live. To revive God�s people to a standard, not of the traditions that our brothers set forth, but of the Holiness that our Lord and Savior called us to. May God move in and through and WITH His people!
KCKevin ClineMarch, 26 2013Eric…What’s going to be different? Everything! A new day has risen in the Church…Chan woke up a sleeping Lion! He spoke to the heart of what we call The Church of Christ and things will never be the same. Some are going to “Get it” and the Church will grow once again. And sadly some won’t and shrink and die. I’m ALL IN! Thank you Francis Chan for your humble words from God.Lynn StringfellowMarch, 26 2013Raymond Martin you said,
“I think anyone who attends a church that preaches the word of God is a member of the Lord�s church.”
This is where you are wrong sir. For one, we do not attend a church, those who have obeyed the Lord is the church. (Acts 2:38-47) and while it may seem that many of the denominations and even more liberal church of Christ congregations are speaking and preaching the word of God, does not mean that they are teaching the truth. Many are teaching falsely. The word mixed with traditions of men = FALSE DOCTRINE! Just because you are standing behind a pulpit with a Bible on the table, does not mean that you are preaching God’s word.
Wes Woodell you said,
“Do you think it wise to pass judgement on a person you have never met and whose messages you haven�t even listened to?”
More than likely, I will never meet him in person and even if I don’t doesn’t mean that I cannot expose his errors if I happen to come across one. We are commanded in scripture to expose error and false doctrines and to judge righteous judgement. (John 7:24; 2 Timothy 3:16-17.) You say that I have to know him before I can judge him, but yet you call me a fool and you have never met me. I think the Bible would call this hypocritical judgment. I think that it is good if he wants to contribute money to charity, but he and we all must be careful that we are not channeling money into charities and religious organizations that are teaching and condoning false doctrines. Not saying that he is, but it wouldn’t surprise me if he was. We find this a lot in the religious world.
RK you said,
“The Lord uses all kinds in ministry, putting some on a larger platform, speaking to thousands, and some faithfully plodding day-to-day in more remote, unseen corners. Let�s praise God for the way he uses each of us, including Francis Chan!”
The Lord uses His people in many ways to spread the Word of God and to fulfill His mission and purpose for HIS church, but He does not use false teachers and those within the denominational field to spread His word. False doctrines are not His word, therefore they are automatically disqualified.
Thank you for your reply and doing so in a nice and polite way, that is more than I can say about some.
I am not saying that Mr. Chan is a terrible person, I am just simply making an observation here based on what I know about the man. As far as this article and video is concerned regarding the plan of salvation as found in the Bible, he is right as far as what a person must do to be saved. When a person has done these things in obedience to the commands of Jesus Christ, they are added to the Lord’s church and are saved from their past sins. I have not heard a whole lot of his material, therefore I cannot form an opinion about his other teachings. I want to say one thing more and I am done here. As far as being able to know peoples motives and whether or not they are in it for the money, my answer to this is, YES WE CAN! Jesus said, ye shall know them by their fruits.
God Bless to all! Peace!Scott LucasMarch, 26 2013So many Workshop speakers this year were powerfully available to God and I learned so much…Francis Chan challenged me personally more thoughts than I have room to share, but here are a few I took away:
-He challenged us with lacking power & purpose as long as we value safety over risk. How often do we look at the supposed ‘ridiculous’ moves of faith that others make and tell them to be careful, or to not be so “crazy” with their faith? -Indeed, in view of heaven- those crazy moves and lives are the ones that really make sense!! Wouldn’t it be great to “give it all away by the end of our lives and enter heaven that way?” And what an impact on our world such living would make!
Also, in our tendency to cling to what is familiar or safe, and encouraging others to do the same�
*What if we may be protecting the church from the movement of God?*
Discerning between what is comfortable, safe, or tradition, and what is truly God’s will requires humility & prayer. Laying down the familiar for the unknown has always been a part of the story of faithful believers. Yet generation after generation, we struggle inside to hold on to the familiar at the cost of what God might be directing us to that is greater. Chan�s reminder that the Spirit moved on behalf of people when they were in situations that were beyond themselves challenged my personal inconsistency in all too often expecting to see God move when I’m asking Him to protect whatever is comfortable to me at the moment.
And though this was not a point of his lesson, his life was a beautiful challenge to all as he stood on stage, for what seemed like a few minutes, taking the time to wrestle openly before us… desperately desiring to lay his own fleshly urging or opinions aside, and speak only the truths that were from God to us. How deeply I respect his respect for Jesus Christ. Oh that all of us would be slow to speak, and eager to wrestle with ourselves, so that we could really discern God�s truth from our own opinions.
�By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:35
Chan did a genuinely powerful job of loving us well, and accepting our love for him, as he challenged us all.Heather ThorntonMarch, 26 2013I was at the Workshop and heard both of Chan’s messages. Both were powerful messages in their own way. Several of my “takeaways” were: 1. Chan made it clear that his deepest desire was for the audience to leave talking about God not him. That will now become part of my prayer every time I prepare for a class. 2. He asked a couple of hard questions, “Are you going to reach your potential?” and “Are you going to hold others back from reaching their potential because of your lack of faith?” I do not want to hinder my children’s ability to walk by faith because I played it safe in front of them. I am working hard at sharing with my kids how I am praying and how I am purposefully walking by faith. I’m asking them to pray with me as well. 3. His humility spoke volumes! I will pray for and practice humility better than I have been. 4. Chan said that “conviction isn’t success”. It’s useless if we leave and do nothing with it. I want to purposefully and prayerfully ask God to help me discern what to do with each conviction. I can’t pray to “be more like Christ” and then refuse to change my ways. Transformation only happens when we cooperate with the refining.
Chan is not afraid of the next generation. We shouldn’t be either. God knows what He’s doing and He’s not going to let the next generation hurt His church. I have a new perspective of our teens! They’ve got insight that I may not have. God has great plans for His church. I cannot wait to see what is yet to come through our children.Dawn ScottMarch, 26 2013This year was my first to attend the Tulsa Workshop. Francis Chan’s keynotes were absolutely amazing. In fact, the Friday morning program was worth the trip all by itself. Chan’s encouragement to live our lives within the context of the second coming was a burning bush moment to me. He reminded us that one day we all will stand before God and our lives must be defined by that fact. I will be challenging the congregation where I preach to embrace this truth. Thank you Terry and Wes for making this possible!Tony WilliamsMarch, 27 2013As someone raised in the Church of Christ (and from five generations of many church leaders) I deeply love the Church of Christ and many of her characteristics but we have been our own worst enemy. We have spent generations spewing venom against other dedicated God-serving Christians professing that we were the only ones getting it right and the only ones “in The Lord” all the while losing more and more young people who were desperately seeking that deep relationship with Jesus and desiring to actively work alongside all Christians to bring Christ to a broken world.
I greatly respect (always have – greatly loved hearing Terry speak when he would come to Indianapolis) Terry Rush for reaching his hand of fellowship to Francis Chan, a great man of faith with the courage to live his convictions. It is very emotionally challenging journey to look honestly at the fact that many of the tenets of our faith were tradition; just as many other churches have grown to realize. But to keep the church alive and fruitful we must acknowledge the legalism, keep true to those matters of doctrine that are without debate, and reach out to a lost and dying world and represent Christ to the lost; not battle each other over the name on the building. That is sincerely one of the most misapplied scriptures in the Bible. The churches of Christ salute you – all Christ serving, Christ believing, Christ worshiping gatherings are the churches of Christ. It is a global family of believers, not a denominational name on a building. May we all love more, extend the hands of fellowship, and remember the price paid was too great to allow Satan to take control.Lisa BowlingMarch, 27 2013Francis’ spirit is filled with God’s Grace through the Holy Spirit. I heard every Word in Tulsa.I cried! Francis slapped me and woke me up. What a blessing! I came away filled with Jesus. Heaven is available on Earth for each individual choosing to allow the Holy Spirit out of the closet. No mere man can hold back Francis from sharing Jesus. Speak Boldly! Love Deeply! Forgive Always! Live Eternally!Larry PopwellMarch, 27 2013I wish i could have gone to the Tulsa Workshop this year, especially hearing from those who went � how it was the best ever and how Francis Chan delivered a message that needed to be heard. I am moved by the spirit and have a passion for preaching Christ’s message and, most of all, seeking and saving the lost.
It is easier to judge what you don’t understand. Just because a building says “Church of Christ” doesn’t mean anything. As long as a church is preaching the truth in love, that is all that matters. Yes, Francis Chan gives a lot of his money to many Christian groups and organizations. He is all about making disciples.
I am a part of a college ministry and Tampa, Fla., at the Bay Area Church of Christ and I have watched plenty of Francis Chan’s videos. To preach with passion is not faking it or all about money � especially when you are preaching the truth. I think what the whole church needs is passion and humility. To get that, we need to be about the business of Jesus. I look forward to hearing his lessons from The Tulsa Workshop, because I know Chan was moved by the Spirit.Kevin McLeanMarch, 28 2013After hearing Francis speak, I could not help but think back to the 1st century and thinking this man would have been one of the ones who sold everything so that no one was in need. A true Christ follower.Joe HydeMarch, 28 2013knowledge puffs up while love builds up. Those who think they know something do not yet know as they ought to know. But whoever loves God is known by God. (1 Corinthians 8:1-3 NIV)Robert McCormickMarch, 28 2013Erik, thanks for your wonderful article! Terry, thanks for having the vision and love to invite our brother Francis to wash the feet of some disciples in Tulsa!!!! I pray that there were some unbelievers there that were encouraged to become a part of the Way because of what they heard in Tulsa. And to Francis, if by chance you read this, thanks for continuing to bless SO MANY people by being HIS servant and disciple! I love you much!
David UnderwoodDavid UMarch, 29 2013Sadly, I did not attend the workshop this year. I really wanted to go. Francis Chan is one of several young preachers who are passionate about following Christ and live out what they preach so far as I can tell by human observation, and they are not members of a local “church of Christ”.
Some of the comments here come from people deep-seated in sectarianism (a far worse sin than denominationalism by the way). Some of our friends here seem to forget that there were no churches of Christ as we know them just a few hundred years ago. There has always been the body of Christ, the universal church of Christ which is the sum total of all the saved. The churches of Christ on earth are not the exact representation of the body of Christ for one glaring reason. Some of our members are not saved which is true of every church denomination. Some of us speak of “the Lord’s church” with an exclusivity that in our view makes all other’s who claim Christ as Lord condemned. Hence the push-back against having someone speak at a coc gathering who is not coc.
It would be comical if not so sad that in our beloved fellowship of believers we have a poor track record of loving even our own. Some of our best servants are called apostates and marked as condemned by those we still refer to as “brothers”. True Christians love each other. I think that’s what Francis Chan emphasized.
I hope that our common future will be more about Christ and what he has done for the ungodly, more about serving and loving others, and less about our historic infighting over things that do not rate very high on the list of importance to the cause of Christ.Royce OgleMarch, 29 2013As I listened to all the speakers, I realized again that Francis was not the only one on the program who brought diversity of thought. Thank God that he was one among many who challenged us to think and grow. It would seem to be a slippery slope to imagine him as OUTSIDE our fellowship, but to accept everyone else who was at the workshop as INSIDE, just because of the unfamiliar use of words or his description of certain beliefs in a way that differs from one of us or even many of us. There were many examples of differing beliefs, and thankfully Francis was among those diverse voices. We went back to our roots: a unity movement of seekers.DonMarch, 29 2013I began attending the Tulsa workshop in 1981 when I was in the sixth grade, riding the Joy Bus up for a Saturday session. I still can remember the feelings I felt the first time I got to sing with thousands of people in that concrete pavilion palace. I remember as a teen listening to Jeff Walling year after year as he also brought some new creative way to teach us more about God. Precious Marvin Phillips teaching on “I ARE Church of Christ” and me purchasing many “cassette tapes” to hand out to friends. Terry Rush sharing powerful material regarding the Holy Spirit, that needed to be taught. I now add my Thursday night time with Francis Chan as one of my top experiences.
I went to hear him out of respect for his book and studies that he has produced, yet wondered in my mind, can he really be what we see in videos? Is he the real deal by Sabrina’s standards? (I know this is not my place to decide, but being human I ask myself a lot of questions that I should let God alone decide for me.) I can say with 100% confidence, YES – he is the real deal. A true man of God. He spent so much time making sure we all understood we should not be there to listen to Francis Chan, but what God wants to say through Francis Chan. I appreciated that so much and I’ll confess his opening prayer brought me to tears. I just felt the Holy Spirit’s presence so strongly the entire service.
I am proud of my Church of Christ heritage and I am so thankful that Terry and Wes had vision and perseverance to bless our fellowship with Chan’s teaching. The blessings will outnumber the negatives, don’t let Satan divide us. Let’s fight him, not each other.
Stillwater Church of ChristSabrina WoodMarch, 29 2013Wow!
How can anyone listen to what he is teaching on becoming a part of God’s Kingdom and then state: He is NOT of “our fellowship?”
If he is not in fellowship with you then my question is, pray tell, how does one get into fellowship with you?Bob OdleMarch, 29 2013I have been blessed by Francis Chan’s videos, went to hear him teach here in Phx.at Grand Canyon U., and would have tried to go to Tulsa
if I had known he was going to be there. Next year, I hope he will be back, and invited to Pepperdine and ACU as well.
The majority of the comments above are very encouraging, and reflect the humility that we all need Jesus to cover our lives with his.
Trying to distinguish ourselves from others is simply pride.
Psalm 65:4aWayne McDanielMarch, 29 2013Imagine what the early church (all Jews) thought when the first Gentiles became disciples. What tests can we use to inspect their fruits? Acts reveals that when they saw God working among them, they were convinced. What did they see God doing?
Teachings and doings are both indicators of the work of God in us, are they not?
We have brethren who focus on teachings but accept as fully in fellowship many who do nothing except attend services. Then there are those who see the amazing doings of others that teach some error and they embrace them as fully in fellowship because of their powerful works.
Paul told Timothy to watch his life and teachings closely, and that in so doing, he would save himself and those who listened to him.
As I see it, Francis Chan is a man of integrity and faith. His books and lessons on youtube are filled with scripture and gifted illustrations that convicts my heart and challenges me to live for Christ. His personal struggle to walk with Christ and direct praise to God rather than receive it are encouraging and a great example to me.
His willingness to come speak at one of our conferences and our struggle to know what to do with him raises a question: What is God doing in all this? When we know the answer to that question, we will know how to go from here.Greg NanceApril, 2 2013Bro. Chan
Thanks for being bold on Bapitizm. Heard of him when he was in Simi Valley saw him on TV few times, as a friend of mine went to his church and was on the praise team. This Brother is for real. May God bless and keep him humble.Michael ReyesApril, 10 2013Mr Lucas,
Francis Chan gives away 90% of his income. He gives away 100% of the proceeds from his book sales to a charitable fund. Francis Chan left the church he founded after nearly twenty years because he was afraid he was receiving more attention than way healthy in a church. As he put it, “I was hearing the name ‘Francis Chan’ more than I was hearing ‘Holy Spirit.’ ” So, he left. Now, the focus of his ministry is on the city of San Francisco, one of the darkest cities in America.
Please do yourself a favor and listen to some of his videos on YouTube or read his books. They have personally inspired me greatly and helped to transform my heart.MattMay, 17 2013Jesus said: “Whoever is not against us, is for us.” Mark 9:40. Let us encourage Mr. Chan rather than discourage him. If his heart is open he will come to the light where any darkness will be dispelled. John 3:20-21. “Love rejoices in the truth.” 1 Corinthians 13:6. Let us be thankful in all circumstances. Let us neither quench the Spirit nor despise prophetic utterances. Let us therefore examine all things Mr Chan is preaching and writing, and hold fast what is good. 1 Thessalonians 5:18-22. None of us gets every single thing right, do we??!!
Dinkum Downunderwriter DavidDavid CarrJuly, 20 2013How thrilling to read the testimony by many of how blessed they were by what our brother said even without knowing all about “the Church of Christ.” It surely seems that Francis Chan knows a great deal about the church which actually is “of Christ.” What a pity it is that some imagine that only those who agree with them in every particular of doctrine are members of Christ. We began as a UNITY movement, as Leroy Garrett likes to remind us. I’ll continue to “promote” the Tulsa Workshop as best I can, partly because of Marvin Phillips, its founder, but because its obvious goal is service to Jesus.Ray DownenJuly, 22 2013