A commenter posted Friday, April 4 on Calvary Chapel Abuse blog that Bob Coy, long time senior pastor of the mega church Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale, had resigned…and that an announcement to the congregation will be made in a closed meeting after services this Sunday.
Sources inside and outside of Calvary Chapel have confirmed that Coy is resigning and the reason for his resignation is “moral” failure.
One source used the word “devastated” to describe the mood of those at CCFL who are dealing with this news.
UPDATE: Sunday, April 6, 6:30PM MST:
Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale has issued a Press Release and confirmed Bob Coy’s “resignation”. An employee meeting was held at approximately 3:00PM EST today followed at 4:30PM EST by a general closed meeting for those considering CCFL their church home.
Sources tell me Coy was not present at the meeting and that an assistant pastor read a letter prepared by Coy.
The full press release is here:
Posted on Sun, Apr 6, 2014
Media Statement – April 6, 2014
On April 3, 2014, Bob Coy resigned as Senior Pastor of Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale, effective immediately, after confessing to a moral failing in his life which disqualifies him from continuing his leadership role at the church he has led since its founding in 1985. The media ministry of the Active Word that distributes his Bible teachings through radio, television, and digital media has also been suspended.
Pastor Bob will be focusing his full attention on his personal relationship with God and with his family. The governing board of the church is providing counselors and ministers who will help guide him through the process of full repentance, cleansing and restoration.
Trusting in God’s providence, protection, provision and direction, the staff of Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale will continue our mission to “make disciples,” through regular services at all campuses and through a myriad of other ministries the church has established over the years. A team of assistant pastors already on staff will maintain their usual rotating schedule as teaching pastors for all services.
Calvary Chapel Abuse Commentary and Opinion:
This is a teaching moment for Calvary Chapel and could be a watershed moment for the Movement/Association.
I have long stated that Calvary Chapel senior pastors are not “specially anointed” as Chuck Smith had claimed as part of his CC apologetic. I know these guys, I grew up the son of a Calvary Chapel pastor, I’ve seen behind the curtain. These guys are men. They are sinners and just as much or more a sinner than you or me. They aren’t special, they aren’t anointed. Don’t build them up as something they aren’t. Many of these guys are not qualified per the standards set out in 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1…and I’m beginning to think none of us men are able to meet that standard.
Let’s be frank, Coy was a rock star of a mega church…worshipped by many. He came from a Las Vegas background that fed his appetite for the carnal things. He got “saved” and sought a leadership position and was a very talented guy who rose through the ranks quickly. He was very comfortable in the spotlight and extremely charismatic…and he actually seemed like a nice guy on the surface (though some have reported he can be a jerk…but so can we all at times…I can be one of the biggest).
I get it. I know what it’s like. I’m no better than Bob Coy. You are no better than Bob Coy. We are all inflicted with the same human condition.
But, big sins can have consequences…and when you put yourself out there as “special” and “anointed” and sit atop that pedestal…it can be a long way down to hit the floor.
Coy will suffer loss for his sin. He was a big boy and took risks and made the choices he made and now it’s time to pay the piper. Many don’t get caught in Calvary Chapel and they get away with their sin for many years. My step-dad is one such example. I have more sympathy for a “moral” issue like Coy’s appears to be than I do for someone who hurts kids…but regardless, we’re all sinners and we all need Jesus. None of us get “transformed” and none of us can meet the standard…even after we’re supposedly saved. That is the great myth of Calvary Chapel’s brand of Christianity*…there is no such thing as the “transformation” gospel. We’re all still sinners after we’re saved and we’re all just as capable of sinning as we were before we were saved…which is why we NEED ACCOUNTABILITY measures in place to protect kids and to have open finances to keep things on the up-and-up with the Jesus money.
The details of Coy’s resignation will come out. A lot of people who put him on a pedestal will be disillusioned, some sad, some angry. I know. It was very sobering to find out that my “pastor” and even Chuck Smith himself were just as much NOT anointed as I am, when push came to shove.
While Coy is no better than any of us and no more “special” or no more “anointed” than anyone…he is also a human being who has sinned and if he has truly confessed and repented then his life isn’t over and hopefully he wants to make amends with his family and hopefully God will help them to forgive and reconcile.
This is not a happy day and not an “I told you so!”…it is simply something I always expect to happen and I know many more stories of abuse and moral failure will come from Calvary Chapel…because I know the truth about mankind and religion.
Calvary Chapel pastors currently hiding your sins…come clean, do the right thing. If you really “trust the Lord”…then quit dodging the consequences and man-up and take your medicine. I did it at one time in my life. It was terrifying, but actually trusted the Lord and did the right thing not knowing how things would go from there. Quit playing Business with your church, quit playing Celebrity and Guru and quit hiding behind the veneer that you are something you are not. If Calvary Chapel ever wants to see a true “move of the Spirit”…it will start with Leadership coming forward and being honest about who they are, what they’ve done and then exampling true Christianity for the world to see. True Christianity is about humility…the humility that knows you are as much a sinner as the homosexual or the drug addict or the person who makes you uncomfortable because their sin is different from your sin.
I hope Coy is truly repentant and does whatever he can to be honorable and honest and face the consequences of his actions. I hope his family can overcome this. I hope those who esteemed him will look to Jesus and within and realize we are all in the same boat and all of our hope should be that God is truly “love” and is truly merciful…even to his “enemies”…as we are all God’s enemies at times…as well as his kids.