Saturday, June 4, 2011

"pastor" Tim Henderson's Lie

More than a few years ago, my family decided to begin attending a small church in the tucked-away town of Elkton, South Dakota.  The church was called First Baptist Church of Elkton.  It was headed up by the lying snake of a control freak, Tim Henderson (you'll see why I call him that, in a bit), whom I'll refer to as T Boy.  

Note: You'll notice the church is now pastored by some other "KJV Only/Brother this, Brother that/Bus Ministry, numbers matter more than people/Women's Ministries because men just don't need it" nut job. 

Tim Henderson had the perfect wife, perfect kids, and perfect hair.  He was trained as a "pastor" by the prestigious child pornography "seminary", Hyles Anderson College.  T Boy had all the characteristics of a good HA "pastor".  He controlled his wife.  He controlled the church.  He yelled fire and brimstone against anyone that didn't agree with him, perceived (mostly) or otherwise.  He scoffed at anyone - to their face - when they were obviously beneath him.  He touched young girls and budding women inappropriately.  You name the deviant IFB behavior, he lived it.

FBC of Elkton was heavily affiliated with this cultic Independent Fundamental Baptist group, as well. The young people would go down to First Baptist Church of Hammond, Indiana, the church run by the moron Jack "I Worship Hyles" Schaap to the indoctrination conference once a year.  The young men would come back, hootin' and hollerin', fully expecting all women to bow to them and then dance around, spouting filthy humor, knowing they were free to do so because they were little earth gods.  On the other hand, the women came back quieter and more inwardly angry at their god ordained position of submission.

When we first started attending this church, we were a young family.  We saw the "godliness" of the young people and the "boldness" of the "pastor" and were hooked.  The honeymoon phase lasted a good three months and then reality set in.  We became Sunday School teachers, church cleaners, carnival organizers, pastoral pray-ers, and much more.  I went out on four hour lunches with T Boy every couple of weeks to discuss nothing but life.

We began to lose sleep.  All the work we were doing turned into drudgery.  The church kids were bused in from all over the region and we were expected to teach them as if they believed in the Bible.  Rather than teach anything we ended up swatting away discussions of sex, including bestiality (I was teaching 3rd graders),  and spent the rest of the time trying to get the kids to shut-up so we could get a word in edge-wise.  It was a pathetic system, but it was required by Hyles.  

We learned to thumb our noses at other stupid denominations and mock Catholics for their belief in infant baptism.  We learned to hate Muslims and all other religions.  We discovered that all our societal problems stemmed from the homosexual agenda and the fact that forced prayer in schools was no longer forced.  We learned that just the presence of the Ten Commandments, hanging on the school walls, would eradicate all demonic elements in all children for all time, causing all school's test scores to rise, and all children to come to Jesus.  We learned that the church split a few years earlier was all due to a misunderstanding of the true heart of T Boy.  We learned that rock music was evil and yet Bill Gaither derivatives were very good, only because it was T Boy's wife's preference.  We learned that, even though T Boy would agree with me on something at a lunch the previous week, he would rain fire and brimstone down on me, citing the exact opposite opinion from the pulpit (which he never stood behind – the pulpit, that is).  We learned that friendship with T Boy and his family was only as deep as the work you would promise to do for him.  We learned a lot of things.

And we got tired - very tired.

So, one Sunday, we decided to leave.  My bride and I wrote a letter to T Boy and emailed it to him.  The first half of the letter jokingly referred to our conversion to Jehovah's Witnesses and that we firmly disagreed with everything T Boy espoused.  We told a mock story of some very nice Jehoves, showing up at our door, and winning our friendship and souls.  Then we got serious and revealed that the JW part was a joke.  We then discussed our need for a break and some rest and the fact that we were removing ourselves from church membership.  We ended by asking him if he would read the letter to the church.

T Boy sent back a one line email message thanking us for the letter and saying that he would most definitely read it to the church.

And that ended our contact with the T Boy.  Contact that I admit to, anyway.

Six months later, my bride caught up with another family from the church that had recently been excommunicated.  They asked her, in all seriousness, how our marriage was doing.  My bride wondered why the question was asked in the way it was and answered in the positive sense.  Then she asked the following simple question.  "Why?"

The woman said, "Well, of course, due to your husband's infidelity.  You must be torn up.  Two women at the same time, no less!"

My bride was shocked and inquired as to how this woman had heard the fake news.  She was informed that T Boy and his wife had gotten up on their show stage at the church the week after we sent the letter and told the congregation to pray for us.  They told the people that my bride had recently discovered that I was involved in affairs with two women at the bank I was working at and that our family needed some time alone to rebuild our marriage.

What a pile of cow dung!  How awkward do you think it was for me to march up to all the women at my bank and find out which ones I was having an affair with?  Maybe I should have just picked two to go and apologize to.  Maybe I should have felt deliciously virile, having T Boy vicariously live his dreams through lies about me.

We could have done much, but we just laughed.  After apologizing to my bride for my imaginary affairs, we got on with our marriage and the rest of our lives.

T Boy?  He was run out of the church.  His funeral.  Who cares.

24 comments:

  1. Wow. Didn't know that part of your history. What brought it to mind?

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  2. I was pondering the morality of cross-breed cock fighting.

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  3. I'm no serious mathematician, but I think I've cracked this "pastoral" formula:

    befriend + indoctrinate + delegate = controlled facade

    Here's the philosophy, heralded by Almighty Annah Reid, "Being a godly leader is like being a copilot to the pilot flying a jet. The passengers might want to fly the jet too, but they must first go through the pilot's schooling."

    Since you and I are invariably the passengers, the  copilot HAS to befriend us, only to indoctrinate us by schooling us to be JUST like the pilot in "keeping that nose up"?! After all, that's the only way to keep a jet airborne.  As a passenger/congregant I'd have no chance at flying/leading this jet/church until I become a 'dependent' variable in this formula. 

    Skydiving anyone? That'd be a lot more fun than going through the motions just to get elected then ejected by the pilot/"pastor" when you crack his formula! Who needs a jet anyway?!

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  4. You forgot the idea that when the "pastor" crashes the plane, most everyone lives. Some of them just don't realize it.

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  5. There's no way to crash the jet if the pilot keeps his nose up. The fuel will last as long as the formula keeps people onboard to fly the plane, were the pilot to be removed. It's a self-fulfilling and self-refuting formula. An endless, vicious cycle of abuse and retaliation.

    When the survivors of an ultimate, inevitable crash come out of their comas, they'll hopefully have forgotten that jets exist at all. They're always UP to no good yet all the while pretend to be the way to God.

    I am a survivor. I have forgotten. I only know the only way, and He's NOT a jet or a pilot. He's my Savior and my Author and Perfecter.

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  6. I'm with you, bro. Keep your nose down so you don't trip on the pennies that'll make you rich.

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  7. Wow, I was in an IFB/KJV only, soul winning, pre-millenial rapture, Baptist church for 14 years and I did not ever get involved with the Hammond Indiana crowd. Most of the churches I attended were of the Bob Jones and PCC persuasion.

    PCC would not even let me go hear Jack Hyles when he preached at Marcus Pointe Baptist Church years ago. Its a shallow mess and glad that I never got involved with it.

    I did spend time in bus ministries however. I knocked on doors to bring kids to church. Parents gladly relinquished the authority of their children over to the church- only because they wanted to have some alone time to party and for physical intimacy.

    I also questioned why we were treating kids like Christians after they received the instant Gospel.

    Anyway, I am so sorry that you had to bear the lies of this pastor. Many of them will find out one day that they were the enemies of Christ. Thanks for sharing your pain. It really hit home.

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  8. Take what you went through and water it down with more socially palatable flavor and you have a church I used to attend.

    Sounds like your church was the Yugo of generations ago. My old one is a Pontiac.

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  9. Oh, my, IC, that all sounds oddly and terribly familiar. It's amazing what these pastors think they can get away with to cover up such a flawed system. When we left our church we received a letter in the mail damming our souls forever cursed for forsaking the assembly. Can you feel the love? We are not quite at the laughing phase yet. Thanks for sharing.

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  10. Run of the Mill Church in Pensacola. No worries. It may have been pain for a few minutes. But we had left for good and had completely broken away from the church INCLUDING the people who still went there. It wasn't that difficult because we lived about 45 minutes away. So, right now, I look back at it with mirth and imagine how I would handle three women at once - without them knowing the other two were involved with me. It's quite laughable, really.

    Jon. I agree.

    freetothink. Come to our house. Our kids can play together and my trophy wife and you two can learn to laugh about it over a beer. We'll have a few tubs of Kleenex to get through the process.

    Even so, it seems that you may have had friends from your old church? Is that why its still tough? I can see that.

    In truth, I am still trying to get over the rejection I received from my own mother, as well as others that I used to respect. In the end, it seems that it is a choice to be who you are and move on. The key is to befriend people who accept you for who you are, rather than accept you if you are exactly like them.

    Keep on plugging. Your beeeeeeautiful family will make it. I guarantee it.

    Thanks all for reading. Love y'all.

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  11. "We learned to thumb our noses at other stupid denominations and mock Catholics for their belief in infant baptism. We learned to hate Muslims and all other religions. We discovered that all our societal problems stemmed from the homosexual agenda and the fact that forced prayer in schools was no longer forced. We learned that just the presence of the Ten Commandments, hanging on the school walls, would eradicate all demonic elements in all children for all time, causing all school's test scores to rise, and all children to come to Jesus. We learned that the church split a few years earlier was all due to a misunderstanding of the true heart of T Boy. We learned that rock music was evil and yet Bill Gaither derivatives were very good, only because it was T Boy's wife's preference. We learned that, even though T Boy would agree with me on something at a lunch the previous week, he would rain fire and brimstone down on me, citing the exact opposite opinion from the pulpit (which he never stood behind – the pulpit, that is). We learned that friendship with T Boy and his family was only as deep as the work you would promise to do for him. We learned a lot of things."


    This describes so many independent fundamentalist churches, with minor casting changes. Great writing.

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  12. Thanks shadowspring. I agree. It has caused me to be very tired and wary of anything called church for now. Many people keep trying to convince me that there are many decent church buildings around, but I don't want any of it at the moment. I'm just too tired.

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  13. I'm still attending, but many people I love can't bring themselves to do it, and you know what? I understand. I really do.

    I hope they find some kind of venue for hanging out with other believers and just sharing what all God is doing in each of their lives, maybe taking communion and offering some heartfelt worship to the Lord in unison. That would be so awesome.

    Maybe church itself needs to shrink down to that- no paid clergy, no lectures, no central location, no universal day/time, just believers sharing their hearts with each other and honoring God together as it fits their lives. Don't I wish....

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  14. Me too. Thanks for reading and chiming in.

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  15. Wow.
    Just read this one.
    Amazing.
    Only in the last year have I learned about IFB churches and Jack Schaap.

    I'm so glad you are out AND can laugh about it.

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  16. Wow... Just WOW. I had been in a church for 10 years until I was recently (6 months ago) excommunicated. Up until the time I was told that I was not "faithful" enough in my attendance at church to be qualified to remain in my position as an Awana leader I had no idea that I was being abused. I had no idea that this was the kind of church we belonged to, but you totally discribed my experience. Wow... Just WOW. This idiocy is more prevalent than I ever imagined. Thank, God (Still a Christian here) I am out of it.

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  17. We lived next to this terrible family when they moved to Murfreesboro, TN (based on your recount, I feel pretty sure this the same TBoy and family....2 boys, one daughter, self rightious Kim). We had a terrible 2 year battle with their boys (and the parents) bullying my oldest son. It was passive aggressive nasty glares, hatefulness...The entire time, we were told our children were habitual liars and their children could never do such a thing. To boil down a long story, we did prevail, the truth was seen by the schools and our oldest now attends school comfortably with their children. My husband and I both grew up in church and were knocked off our feet for awhile by the self rightous bullying of these constant bible thumpers. We found out that they would do and say anything to protect their conjured "perfect" image.

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  18. I call shenanigans. There's no IFB church of ANY persuasion where the women wouldn't have made it back to your wife as soon as the service was over that day. You would have known far sooner than your story recalls. Bull shit.

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    1. LOL! You're funny. Guess you know my life better than me. I'll check with you for the next excerpt of my life I write about.

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  19. Holy cow. O.o That's a crazy way of dissing on your family. My ex-church would have just asked the congregation to pray for us, saying we were "confused" and losing the battle that god/satan was holding over our souls.
    T-Boy's way is more hilarious, though.

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  20. I live next to this moron and his family who still try to portray the perfect family. I pray that they will move out soon.

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    1. The last I heard, he was selling something down in Tennessee.

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