You may think we are spending too much time on this topic but there is just too much information to be covered in just 2 articles. Our source for this article will be the following link:
Let’s just get right to it.
Providing more details on the sexual misconduct case against Willow Creek Community Church founder Bill Hybels, former staffer Nancy Ortberg claimed that the woman who alleged a prolonged sexual affair with Hybels was suicidal
We have read the article and these supposed new details do not shed any more light on the problem. It may shed some light on the woman’s mental state but it does not help find the truth in the sexual allegation accusations or the guilt or innocence of Mr. Hybel. There may be many reasons for her suicidal state of mind, including the fact that her state of mind may have fabricated the whole affair.
Remember there are famous people who have stalkers who claim that a look by the star through a television screen was a silent communication of affection and desire to them. It is highly possible that the woman misunderstood what was transpiring between the two.
that the founder was allowed to continue counseling the woman even after the allegation was made.
This was probably a bad decision and poor judgment given the woman’s state of mind and the allegations made. Just because a pastor has a spiritual calling does not mean they always know what is best. They may know the woman but it would be best to recuse oneself and let another counselor step in and take over. Letting go has to be done by the pastor.
Ortberg, who served on the Board of the Willow Creek Association and on staff as teaching pastor at Willow Creek Community Church for nine years, decided to release the details two days after Hybels announced that he would retire, because she remains “deeply concerned about the process and church governance that brought us all to this point
She may be a former staff member but in reality, her concern has no place in the issue. All she is doing is making things worse by not presenting any real evidence and relying on generalities and non-issues to enflame the situation. She is distracting those involved not helping them.
Ortberg said she first heard the “disturbing story” in 2014 from Leanne Mellado, a former Willow Creek staffer, who said a good friend of hers had confided in her.
So Mrs. Ortberg heard a 3rd hand story and assumed that it was true, unembellished and without error? She does not conduct her own investigation to find out the facts but simply assumed the story was true because her female friend heard it from another female. This may sound harsh to you but it isn’t. Where are the facts? Where is the honesty? Where is the examnation of the accuser to see if she is mentally clear and that the story actually happened?
What we see here is an assumption based on nothing but the word of a female friend.
This story involved a fourteen-year sexual affair. After carrying this story on her own for over six months, Leanne made the Elders aware of these allegations, and I was sure a thorough and independent investigation would be done to find out the truth on behalf of the woman, the church, the Willow Creek Association, and Bill,” Ortberg said.
Now again, neither Mrs. Ortberg or Ms. Mellado did not conduct any investigation into the story but assumed it to be true. What they brought to the Elders was more like gossip not an actual violation of scripture or the law. They then passed the buck to the Elders ASSUMING the Elders would do as they wanted and come to the conclusion the two women wanted.
Yet they present no facts or evidence to back up their or the woman’s story. Then the fact that Ms. Mellado held on to the story for 6 months is also disturbing. Given the fact that she had professional duties, how does anyone know she recalled the story correctly and did not change any of the details? Where is the corroboration?
She then detailed the investigative process conducted by the elders of Willow Creek which her husband John Ortberg, senior pastor of the nearly 4,000-member Menlo Church in Menlo Park, California, previously dismissed as “poorly designed” and dangerous for the women involved.
Forgive us for sounding sexist here but how is it dangerous to women only? What about the fact that the situation may be dangeorus for men if an innocent man is punished for things he did not do? Sorry women, but you are not the only part of the issue that matters here. Then, Mr. Ortberg’s assessment is purely subjective and not without some bias.
What we are seeing here in this account is the fact that Mrs. Ortberg wants the Elders and other staff members to come to her pre-determined conclusion about the issue and act the way she wants them to act. We do not see any attempt at honesty on either side of the issue though we will give the benefit of the doubt to the elders at this time because we have not heard their side of the matter.
What we are seeing here is that Mr. Hybel is determined to be guilty simply because a woman complained and made accusations. That is not right in any honest court of law and it is not biblical either. While men are to protect their wives, they are not to sin in doing so and hurt innocent people. Neither are staff members of a church. They cannot let their bias take them away from God’s directions on how to handle spiritual matters.
In addition to everything we were learning, I and others on the Board of the Willow Creek Association grew deeply alarmed at Bill being allowed to continue in a counseling relationship with this woman who was suicidal, as well as the slipshod nature of the investigation and the overall lack of accountability in the Willow Creek culture,” she wrote.
The bold word provides the support for the immediately above words and for the following It is her opinion that the investigation was slipshod. When people do not get the results they expect, they often criticize thse who came to a different conclusion. Was it slipshod? We do not know but since the woman recanted and said she lied, that does tend to cut short any investgation. Of course, another investigation could be conducted to see if she was pressured to recant and on it goes.
One thing that you should have noticed by now is that Mrs. Ortberg did not even consider Mr. Hybels side of the issue at all? She did not take into account that he may have been telling the truth. In her mind he was guilty and that is not biblical either. This is one of the main problems in these sexual allegation issues. Only the woman seems to be seen as telling the truth and the man is automatically lying & guilty.
On Tuesday, Hybels resigned months earlier than planned, while staunchly maintaining his innocence, explaining that the controversy has become a “distraction” to ministry work. He called some of the allegations “misleading” and others “entirely false.
We do not think he should have resigned early. But that is how we feel about that action. We do not see this as a sign of guilt or innocence though some may.
According to Ortberg, when Hybels was asked at a 2014 meeting with elders and Willow Creek Association Board members about two women who made allegations against him, “Bill characterized both of them as ‘having drinking problems,’ being ‘unstable’ and ‘stalking his family.’ I was the only person on either Board who knew the identities of both women, and I knew they were smart, kind, and diligent leaders,” Ortberg wrote.
The bold words do not provide any proof that the women may not have misinterpreted the words and actions. It also does not mean that those women may not have lied. Mrs. Ortberg may be turning a blind eye to the truth here but we cannot be sure. We are sure that her support of the women is not evidence or an indication of the motivation behind the two women and their accuations. Smart kind, diligent leaders err and are not immune to lying.
Ortberg, who is currently a founding partner of TeamWorx2, a business and leadership consulting firm, also recalled how she felt inappropriately touched by Hybels after a meeting with others in his hotel room on a mission trip to Tasmania.
Since she shed no real light on the issue and presented no real evidence to convince anyone to join her side, she falls back on an unsupported, subjective and individual act to make her case. Where is the evidence this happened and where does it show Mr. Hybel’s sexual intent? It is merely her word against his and something said out of desperation.
This is the problem with these sexual allegation issues. We have said it previously and we will say it again, these women have not presented any legitimate evidence or proof that the allegations are true. They rely merely on their word and have nothing to support what they have said. They are unwitnessed individual accounts.
We are not trying to be hard on women as these words apply to both men and women. You need real evidence to make a real case. Anything short of that only makes you look hate-filled, revengeful, vindictive, dishonest and many more negative characteristics. It also demonstrates that these people will not follow God’s instructions when these cases do not go their way.
You will also notice that Mrs.Ortberg did not use one scripture to back her up, although, and she may not admit it, she ignored many scriptures to ‘reveal’ these new details. God’s word applies to both sides of the issue and to all parties on those two sides.
We wonder why Mrs. Ortberg is saying anything to the press since she had nothing to reveal that proved the innocence or guilt of Mr. Hybel and nothing to show that the original complainant was telling the truth. You may think you have details but the media is not the place to reveal that information. If the information was credible, real evidence and so on, it should have been sent to the church and possibly law enforcement privately.
Going to the media is not a way to build credibility or make a case. It is also not a biblical way to act.