Essay Posts

Church Discipline 101: Hupokrites, or A Study in Duplicity

Hypokritḗs (ὑποκριτής): (a masculine noun derived from 5259 /hypó, “under” and 2919 /krínō, “judge”) – properly, a judging under, like a performer acting under a mask (i.e. a theater-actor); (figuratively) a two-faced person; a “hypocrite,” whose profession does not match their practice – i.e. someone who “says one thing but does another.” Source: Strongs 5273.

The following is a transcription of a sermon titled “Church Discipline 101” given by Senior Pastor John Marc Wiemann on 2/12/12 at Cornerstone Community Church, Atascadero, California. It was given twice that morning, and each sermon was followed by an unrecorded meeting with the congregation, where Pastor Wiemann, Associate Pastor Curtis Solomon, and Elders Kevin Covington, Cole McDaniel (PhD, professor, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, CA), and Larry Jordan (CPA, Templeton CA) informed the congregation that the purpose of the meeting was to inform them that I had been excommunicated for “slandering the elders of Cornerstone Community Church in my emails to the Evangelical Free Church of America District Office.” As I was not made aware that this meeting was being held, nor was I informed of the details of what they said, I rely on second hand (but I believe trustworthy) accounts for the details. Since  the congregation was discouraged from speaking to me (it feels like a total shunning) I have never had the chance to respond to public allegations made against me. Pastor Wiemann’s words are in black; the italicized text  denotes points that Pastor Wiemann made that I refute. The red text is not part of Pastor Wiemann’s sermon, it is my response to some of his allegations, and it clarifies much of the subtext of his sermon. The green text is additional information that I have added for clarity. Links are in blue. For background of my church discipline process and matters leading to my excommunication, see here. For reference, my emails can be seen here.  Documents related to this matter can be seen here.  

[Author’s note added 4/11/14 : If this is a first, quick or cursory read, skip my auxiliary notes in green, as this gets lengthy. Read Pastor Wiemann’s sermon in black and my rebuttals to his sermon in red. These two voices pretty much say it all.]

From this point on, the black text is what Senior Pastor John Mark Wiemann preached verbatim that morning. His sermon can be heard in its entirety here.

Well as you can see from the title of my sermon we’re taking a break from our study in the book of Genesis to address a vital issue in the life of the church and this morning I want to deliver to you an overview of church discipline and reconciliation and so I’ve entitled my message “Church Discipline 101.” If you’re visiting this morning you might be getting a bit more than you were expecting and I think that though the scriptures are so clear on this and it’s important for us to look at what Jesus says. Continue reading

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Blog, Essay Posts

A History of My Excommunication from Cornerstone Community Church

Background

In 2009, I hired a licensed contractor ( ████████  ████████ ) to repair and improve my very old and earthquake-damaged home. (I actually approached Armando Heredia, a licensed general contractor, a Christian, who I knew needed work. He brought Mr. ████████ to my home and suggested that he and Mr. ████████ would work on my home together. I took Mr. Heredia’s action as confirmation of Mr. ████████ ’s character and ability. They agreed Mr. ████████ would be the general contractor although I never received any paperwork or a contract explaining exactly what this meant. Mr. ████████ claimed to be a Christian, invoked prayer often (especially before he was hired), and said he regarded me as a ‘widow in the church’ and that he felt the need to look out for me. I later found out that although he was a licensed contractor, he was not only not competent to do the work on my home, but proved repeatedly to be dishonest and a person lacking moral character and judgment.  He lied not only to me, but also to others involved in the project, he appears to have forged a contract, and has violated multiple contracting laws, causing me great financial hardship.  He is not a member of a church, but pastors his own home church.  The following (partial) list is a description of what he did at my residence prior to my terminating him in 2011:

1.   He constructed a 15-foot exterior wall in a part of my home that had collapsed due to earthquake damage. I was adamant that all work be done legally and with appropriate permits, and that this wall be engineered.  Not only was it not engineered, he failed to build it according to the approved plans.  He failed to install a mud sill in the concrete footer, which allowed water to travel freely into the interior of the room under the wall.  He attempted to remedy this by caulking the base, but this did not rectify the problem.

2.   He removed a water heater and water softener and either ignored or forgot the severed plumbing lines, over which he poured concrete.  This oversight was revealed when I was doing my laundry and discovered water coming up through the concrete seams in the floor of the family room.

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