UPDATE: On ‘Pastors Together’ and Holland Davis

Update on the ‘Pastor’s Together’ group – see: https://emergentwatch.com/2018/07/09/holland-davis-and-pastors-together-go-contemplative/

Rather than offering any explanation for the activities of the PT group, and particularly, their recent outing at a Catholic retreat – They have instead deleted the evidence – the entire album (39 photos) that they had posted of the ‘Pastors Together’ retreat at the ‘Prince of Peace’ Benedictine (contemplative) monastery on May 6, 2017. (See: https://www.facebook.com/pg/PastorsfellowshipOC/photos/?tab=album&album_id=10156581032822708  (Thankfully we have screen captures)

If there truly is no problem with their “retreat”, why has the documentation been deleted? What are they trying to cover up? Where is the accountability? Below is a screen capture of the photo album posted to the PT group’s Facebook on May 6, 2018

Rather than being held accountable to the church, instead Holland Davis has gone on the offensive and engaged in personal (‘straw man’) attacks – calling this reporter a liar and a slanderer. Exactly how posting screen captured image documentation taken from their own social media pages can possibly be “slander” or “lies” is never addressed.

In a message to me on 7/14, Holland says: “Mark… you’ve slandered me again. I pray the Lord shows you mercy for the lies you continue to propagate. You are of your Father the devil…” etc. I believe that if pastors have a problem with their activities being exposed, maybe their activities are the problem. My bible says to “Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them!” – Ephesians 5:11

The above screen captured image of the invitation to the PT group’s 2014 retreat at the ‘Prince of Peace’ Catholic monastery shows the “Agenda” of the retreat includes “Silence, solitude” and “Practicing spiritual disciplines” – all indicative of contemplative mysticism.

To this day, no explanation has been given for the group’s ecumenical activities, and for events such as their 2014 retreat. This event featured a ‘Spiritual Formation’ seminar by Dr. Michael Bischof of Souleader Resources. http://www.souleader.org/leader-retreats

We saw the same diversionary ‘Straw man’ tactics after my 2016 post on the PT group. Intimidating or attacking me or my friends is simply a diversion to obscure facts that can’t be refuted. Accusing me of “slander” for posting screen captured primary source documentation is disingenuous to say the least. Until Holland, (and/ or the others) adequately publicly respond to the questions brought up in my articles, there is nothing to discuss with them.

Aside from the aforementioned, the original issue with the PT group was and remains the ecumenical compromise involved in the group. In my previous post I’d listed some of the churches involved. Why is Holland’s church and two other Calvary Chapels doing communal meals, prayer, worship, retreats, etc. with heretical and otherwise aberrant churches? Do they not understand that this lends legitimacy to these churches and may be stumbling many? Do they care? Here are screen captures of some of the questionable churches – at least two of which are involved with NAR doctrines and practices.

[Note: “PT” = Pastors Together – AKA Pastors Fellowship of South Orange County]

 

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Holland Davis and ‘Pastors Together’ Go Contemplative?

As I reported in March 2016: From posts on their own social media pages – Calvary Chapel pastor Holland Davis (CC San Clemente) and his friends in the “Pastors Together” group appear to have been involved with ecumenical and contemplative activities for years now. > See https://emergentwatch.com/2016/03/26/pastors-together-together-in-ecumenical-apostasy/

Now, in a May 6, 2018 pic posted on Facebook page of the “Pastor’s Fellowship of South Orange County” [aka ‘Pastors Together’], Holland can be seen with Ron Sukut (Cornerstone San Clemente) and two other unidentified men, posing outside the Benedictine Catholic “Prince of Peace Abbey” in Oceanside, CA. > See photos https://www.facebook.com/pg/PastorsfellowshipOC/photos/?tab=album&album_id=10156581032822708

As I have documented, this is apparently an annual retreat for the ‘Pastors Together’ [PT] group, since at least 2014. Note that this is a Benedictine monastery devoted to contemplative practices – that is what they do there. At least one of these retreats was led by Dr. Michael Bischof, of  Souleader Resources [http://www.souleader.org/leader-retreats]. Souleader itself is a contemplative group that specializes in facilitating “Spiritual Formation” seminars.

In one of their adverts, ‘Prince of Peace’ Monastery says: “We are monks of Prince of Peace Abbey, a monastery of the Order of St. Benedict, in the Catholic Church. We seek and serve God IN OUR [NOTE] CONTEMPLATIVE HORARIUM of liturgical worship and personal prayer…”

WHY has the PT group chosen to hold their retreats at a Catholic monastery – even a Benedictine one – whose monks are specifically contemplative. If they wants a secluded, peaceful atmosphere, there are dozens of beautiful retreat centers in SoCal with much better accommodations – and free from the Catholic contemplative, Eucharistic influences. Again – if they are not involved with contemplative practices, why do a retreat at a contemplative Benedictine monastery? WHY was a contemplative facilitator [‘Souleader’] used?

Aside from many questionable social media posts promoting groups like Jesus Culture, Bethel Music and Hillsong, Holland went out of his way, with multiple posts, to promote NAR frontman Nick Hall and the NAR/ ecumenical “Together 2016” event.

The ‘Pastors Together’ ecumenical group meet regularly – at least monthly, for prayer luncheons. They also do occasional special events and nights of “worship and prayer”, ‘Easter Together’, etc.

Churches involved with “Pastors Together”:

Capo Beach Church [Hosts Chuck Jr. contemplative events]

Celebration Church San Juan Capistrano [NAR affiliate!]

Calvary Chapel San Clemente (Holland Davis)

Calvary Chapel Mission Viejo

Calvary Chapel Foothill Ranch

Cornerstone Church (Ron Sukut) – San Clemente

Heritage Church – San Clem. [they do ‘Sozo’, ‘Soaking’ prayer & hosts NAR events]

Saddleback San Clemente [Purpose Driven & Contemplative practices]

St. Michael’s [heretical] Charismatic Episcopal – San Clem.

St. Clement Catholic Church – San Clem.

All in The Family: Nepotism at Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa?

Calvary Chapel Pastors & Leaders Conference 2018 – to be held June 25-28 at Costa Mesa, will have Brian Brodersen’s wife, Cheryl, and his oldest son, Char Brodersen [hereafter ‘CB’] as featured speakers. Aside from the issue of having Brodersen’s wife address the conference’s mixed audience, there are problems with Brian’s son. CB is Senior pastor of Refuge Christian Fellowship in Santa Rosa, Ca., which is not officially affiliated with Calvary Chapel, but is a member of the New Calvinist Gospel Coalition. [See https://www.refugecf.com/beliefs/]

The problem with incorporating CB, a New Calvinist, into the CC Pastors & Leaders conference is compounded by his apparent affinity for a number of aberrant teachers. CB has posted scores of social media posts by contemplative and/or otherwise aberrant teachers. There are frequent posts by Eugene Peterson, Tim Keller, and Eugene Cho, and posts of Catholic contemplative gurus Henri Nouwen, Brennan Manning, Dallas Willard and Thomas Merton.

CB’s Refuge CF website lists “Books and resources mentioned in sermons” [see https://www.refugecf.com/booksandresources/] Amongst the books listed are contemplatives Dallas Willard’s Divine Conspiracy, Brennan Manning’s Abba’s Child, and Eugene Peterson’s Practice Resurrection, and Peterson’s The Jesus Way.

April 2017 – CB posts on his blog that, “I’ve been reading Henri Nouwen’s book – Show Me The Way – for Lent this year… I’m so thankful for his writings.

On Jan. 30, 2017 CB posted an advert for “Come Together” – which says to “Join in *Interfaith friendship and support for Sonoma County’s Muslim community”.

Char Brodersen is also now listed as leading the 2019 Israel Tour for CC Costa Mesa, alongside his mom & dad – Brian & Cheryl Brodersen. [See https://www.refugecf.com/calendar/israel-2019-informational-meeting]

 

For more on the problems with this CC Pastors Conference – see: https://emergentwatch.com/2018/06/05/calvary-chapel-pastors-conference-to-feature-contemplative-reformed-speakers/

 

Calvary Chapel Pastors Conference to Feature Contemplative Speakers

The 2018 Calvary Chapel Pastors and Leaders Conference will feature a number of speakers from outside the CC movement, not the least of which is Dr. Gerry Breshears. A graduate of the heretical Fuller Seminary, Breshears is Professor of theology at Western Seminary, and is also the co-author of three books with the infamous Mark Driscoll.

The recent appearance of contemplative promoter Kyle Strobel at the Calvary Chapel Men’s Conference [See  https://emergentwatch.com/2018/04/12/calvary-chapel-mens-conference-to-feature-contemplative-speaker/ was apparently not a one off, as now Strobel is to be a featured speaker at the 2018 CC Pastors and Leaders Conference. The inclusion of Strobel at two of CC’s premiere events marks the deepest infiltration of contemplative mysticism into the CC movement to date.

The Bio data on Kyle Strobel (KS) presented in the list of speakers at the CC PLC18 only states that Strobel is “a theologian at Talbot School of Theology, Biola Univ. What they fail to mention is that in fact KS is “Associate Professor of *Spiritual Theology – Institute for Spiritual Formation” [ISF]. See http://www.talbot.edu/isf/about-isf/faculty/

“Spiritual Formation” at Talbot is thoroughly contemplative, and the ISF is it’s very core… The ISF’s “Goals and Approach” informs us:

“All of our programs… facilitate personal growth [NOTE] through various experiences, including: *Experiential-relational soul work employing [NOTE] the spiritual disciplines within courses along with co-curricular activity in personal *spiritual direction, various [contemplative] retreats, individual psychotherapy, and community [group] experiences.”

Strobel’s boss and mentor at the ISF is John H. Coe, (who is a fierce defender of contemplative practices). See his bio @ http://media1.biola.edu/rosemead/faculty/cvs/john_coe.pdf

Though Strobel & co. had previously gone to great lengths to avoid using the word “contemplative” – the “C” word has returned again – in the forthcoming (2018) book entitled “Contemplation and Contemplative Prayer: A Guide for Evangelicals” – of which Strobel is co-editor.

As further evidence of Strobel’s contemplative ideology, consider:

Spring 2014 article by KS in Biola’s Journal of Spiritual Formation and Soul Care, was titled “A Theological Prolegomena for Contemplation” – wherein Strobel says, “Contemplation is at the heart of the Christian faith…” [show SC]

July 2016 – KS article: “Jonathan Edward’s Reformed Doctrine of Theosis” in the leftist Harvard Theological Review – the Review being the journal of Harvard Divinity School, whose notable professors include: Harvey Cox, Henri Nouwen, Paul Tillich and [Marxist] Cornel West.

Lighthouse Trails has noted KS’ recommendation of his ‘Top Ten’ books in 2008.

Lighthouse Trails has written on Strobel’s contemplativism: “There is NO QUESTION that Kyle Strobel is following the contemplative path… [Strobel] is helping to pave the contemplative way by touting the works and practices of mystics, contemplatives, and emergents. Kyle’s website ministry Metamorpha is called “an online community for Christian spiritual formation,” listing several contemplative practices, including repetitive prayers, lectio divina, and Ignatian exercises. Recommended books on the site list a who’s who of contemplative mysticism proponents such as Dallas Willard, Thomas Merton, Richard Foster, Henri Nouwen, Adele Calhoun, Thomas Kelly, and several others.” > See https://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/?p=1405

Strobel’s ‘Academic Curriculum Vitae’ is here: https://assets.biola.edu/4396738754672012438/attachment/5ace387ab9c465000648fc05/Kyle_Strobel_2018.pdf

 

 

 

Calvary Chapel Men’s Conference To Feature Contemplative Speaker

When Pastor Chuck Smith was alive, the CC Men’s Conferences, held annually at the Anaheim Convention Center, were a bastion of Christian strength, spiritual edification and biblical spirituality, centered on God’s Word… apparently this is now no longer true.

(Brian Brodersen’s) Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa’s 2018 Men’s Conference [Sat. 5/12] is featuring the emergent, contemplative Kyle Strobel. Strobel is not affiliated in any way with CC, and his inclusion in the CC Men’s Con18 is highly irregular. Strobel is the author of several books and created a contemplative group called “Metamorpha”. Strobel is currently Associate Professor at Talbot School of Theology – Being well versed in church history, but also in the practices of Catholic contemplatives. [See https://mensconference.calvarychapel.com/]

While his teaching career may pay the bills, Strobel’s real passion seems to be contemplative mysticism. He has been a featured speaker at more than a few contemplative conferences – not the least of which is Richard Foster’s RenovareWhere in 2014, he spoke besides top contemplatives Larry Crabb, Ruth Haley Barton, Eugene Cho and Richard Foster himself. Make no mistake about it, these conferences are about one thing, and one thing only – Contemplative mysticism and it’s practices.

Strobel’s 2007 book “Metamorpha” has some very telling endorsements: See http://metamorpha.com/resources/books/metamorpha/  >> Dan Kimball author, The Emerging Church; Contemplative guru Chuck Smith Jr., and Leonard Sweet, author of the (heretical) Jesus Manifesto, and others.

A book review of Strobel’s [2013] “Formed for the Glory of God” tells us: “Many Protestants are now quite happy to read Catholics… Strobel himself is young and profoundly aware of the hungers of the post-modern generation, and is [NOTE] well grounded in the scholarly study of church history and various sorts of thinkers who taught contemplation and meditation. In fact, he explores exactly some of this sort of mystery in this very volume.”

Formed for the Glory of God reveals the books contents, as chapter 4 is entitled “Spiritual disciplines as a means of Grace”. Spiritual Disciplines virtually always is referring to contemplative mystical practices. Chapter 6 is entitled: “Meditation and Contemplation”, etc.

In the 2013 book, Reading the Christian Spiritual Classics, co-authored by Strobel and his Metamorpha partner Jamin Goggin, the “Suggested Reading” section includes: John of the Cross: The Collected Works of...; Julian of Norwich: Showings; Thomas Merton: The Wisdom of the Desert, and many other “classic” contemplatives.

Strobel’s Metamorpha website is careful to disguise words and phrases that are instantly recognizable as being contemplative. They claim that they: “Serve the local church by offering *training resources that cultivate [NOTE] *doctrinal reflection (Lectio Divina), the life of (contemplative) prayer, and compassionate (Social gospel) community.”

Metamorpha also regularly promotes contemplative gurus Dallas Willard and Richard Foster. A 2011 article on Metamorpha by Dallas Willard was titled: “Spiritual Disciplines, Spiritual Formation, and the Restoration of the Soul”, wherein Willard advocates becoming “active in spiritual growth by *utilizing (‘spiritual’) disciplines such as [NOTE] solitude, silence and fasting… Spiritual formation through spiritual disciplines is emphasized.”

Summary: It should be quite clear from the above evidence that Kyle Strobel is a dyed-in-the-wool emergent/ contemplative who should have absolutely no place in Calvary Chapel, let alone at the premier annual event for CC men. Yet it appears Brodersen has taken yet another step off the precipice into the contemplative abyss. Although Strobel may not even discuss contemplative mysticism directly at the conference, you can be sure his books will be on the merchandise tables, and thus his impact at the CCMC18 could have great and lasting consequences. Sadly, rather than protecting the sheep, the CC leadership are feeding them to the wolves.

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YWAM’s Occultic New Age ‘Alternatives’ Ministry

The Christian community was recently shocked to discover that a group out of Bethel Redding – Christ Alignment – was practicing divination using “Destiny Cards”, and involved in forbidden occultic practices under the guise of ‘ministering’ to New Agers.

As it turns out, Christ Alignment has a sister group, connected to the Mendocino YWAM HQ – YWAM’s “Alternatives.net“. is based in Ontario Canada, and like ‘ChristAlignment‘, bills itself as a ministry outreach to New Agers

The Alternatives ministry is lead by a Finnish couple Jari Koivu and his wife, and claims to offer “Spiritual Readings, ‘Healing Touch’, ‘Sacred Oil’, Dream interpretation, “Prophetic & Angelic languages”.

Their webpage says: “Our teams have ministered at many holistic health and alternative spirituality expos, with hundreds (allegedly) coming to Christ and many *reported healings. We also train churches and organizations to do this… Our flagship training for that is called ‘Carry the Light‘ [cp. Latin = Lucifer].” See http://www.ywamalternatives.net/

See the accompanying video here: http://

“Alternatives Network also offers different retreats which focus on renewal, *CONTEMPLATION, healing, etc. Another aspect of our work is INNER HEALING [Sozo].” See: http://www.ywamalternatives,net/about.html

The banners displayed at the new age expos state: (apx. translation from Finnish) ““Open Sky Cafe – “On the way to Light: Intuitive messages, Words and visions whose messages healing the Spirit Energy, body and mind – Cure encounter – Holy Spirirt effective guidance for spirit growth”

Other banners claim they offer “Healing Touch” and that “There is an *IMPARTATION and flow of spiritual energy when we combine words of healing and placing our hands on the subject.”

The reality of this group is that aside from the demonic doctrines and practices involved, the leaders of this “alternatives” group use this ministry as a front to market their own line new age products.

Their banner proclaims “Wellness Advocates”, as they openly sell their Essential Oil/ Aromatherapy products at the same venues they do their “Open Sky Cafe” / “prophetic guidance” ministry.

The same essential oils being sold by Jari and the Alternatives group – doTerra – are promoted as, and used in new age occult/ meditation and Yoga rituals. See https://www.doterra.com/US/en/empowered-life-series-yoga-and-meditation

doTERRA has a series of endorsement videos by Yoga & meditation instructors, and a “Mindfulness” page, and one entitled: “The Unity of Yoga and Essential Oils”- see https://www.doterra.com/US/en/blog/science-wellness-unity-yoga-essential-oils

One video by Jari Koivu shows him doing a seminar on the ‘Alternatives’ ministry, wherein he states:

“When we do this (the new age expos) we believe that God speaks and offers words of encouragement, comfort and (will) edify non-Christians. We can encourage and comfort un-churched people. In many churches this is a new idea. This is something we can do and it seems that Jesus really likes that…” And:

“When we go to these expos… we just bless people…. we don’t prophecy in a Christian way though… We introduce ourselves as followers of Jesus. we don’t say we’re Christians because of the bad connotations… (they tell them) ‘This is not a psychic reading, because psychic is about the soul realm. This is a spiritual reading. We tune into the Holy Spirit here, and we do, whether it’s healing or prophesying, we do this in the name of Jesus Christ…”

NOTE: In addition to his YWAM activities, Jari has also been a regular at John Arnott’s ‘Catch the Fire Toronto’.

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See also: Young Living and Do Terra Essential Oils — New Age and Occult Multi-level Marketing in the Church – https://thelasthiker.wordpress.com/2015/06/27/young-living-and-do-terra-new-age-and-occult-multi-level-marteting-in-the-church/

Hillsong Sponsoring Contemplative Alpha – Allows Catholic Mass at Conference

In what appears to be a one of the latest atrocities in the ecumenical war against God’s church, Hillsong churches are partnering with Alpha – a contemplative program that originated in the heretical Anglican Holy Trinity Brompton – the church that was the European home of the ‘Holy Laughter’ heresies.

The mega-ecumenical Alpha Conference 2018 in the U.S. was just held at Hillsong Phoenix on Feb. 8-9, and featured popular Catholic artist Matt Maher, the Hillsong Phoenix worship team, Eleanor Mumford of the Vinyard Int’l Executive, Catholic Bishop Eduardo Nevares, and former Willow Creek executive Craig Springer. > See their promo vid: https://vimeo.com/239912965


Photos of the event show Catholic clergy in full regalia holding up the Eucharist wafer and doing mass on the stage at Hillsong Phoenix.

 

Strange thing is, Hillsong Phoenix’s Facebook pages show no trace of the Alpha Conference. But, Hillsong LA’s social media page show the church is beginning the full Alpha course in the church starting Jan. 31st 2018. > See https://hillsong.com/la/alpha/

Apparently, unbeknownst to most, Hillsong has had an “Alpha Track” at many of their conferences since at least 2011. See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c9rOZNF1ams

How long Hillsong can maintain the facade of orthodoxy is anyone’s guess, but they are aided by endorsements like Greg Laurie’s and Brian Brodersen’s, who on KWVE radio @12/3/2015 said:

“I’m a big Hillsong fan… These guys are tremendous when it comes to worship. I might not agree with every fine point of theology, with the Hillsong movement, but that’s OK. We don’t have to agree with everybody on all the finer points of theology. They’re Christians, [NOTE] THEY’RE *ORTHODOX, they believe in the Gospel… I recently read Brian Houston’s book ‘Live, Love, Lead‘ – it’s a great book, inspiring – So, personally, I appreciate the contribution that Hillsong is making to the advancement of the Kingdom in this generation – I think it’s a good thing.”

Anyone familiar with Alpha’s links to contemplative mysticism knows this certainly is not a good thing. As a quick perusal of the Hillsong TV Channel will show – Hillsong is far from being orthodox, and is firmly in the ‘Word-Faith’ / ‘Kingdom Now’ camp. That they have now joined with Alpha takes their apostasy to a whole new level.

See also: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANvmPqfd6mE

And see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gsN00TxSQFI

UPDATE >> See also Hillsong exposing their Chrislamic, Roman Catholic agenda @ https://youtu.be/HDBBqn0Vdho