Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Pray for Ralph Rutledge

We need to pray for Ralph Rutledge. We need to craft that prayer with the guidance of the Holy Spirit. We need to pray the Word of God for Ralph Rutledge.

We will remember that God chose Nathan - a prophet - to confront David when he was in sexual sin and deadly cover-up games. God's love for David lead to confrontation.

We also remember that Jesus brought issues out in the open. Pharisees avoided open debate and retreat to violence - "Kill him." Jesus loved with tough love.

God loves Ralph Rutledge enough to confront him, to expose his sin, to discipline him. May God the Father discipline the son He loves as it says in Hebrews 12:5 and following.

God is always ready to restore. He is the God of the fresh start. A broken and a contrite heart he will not despise. So let us lovingly pray that God will do whatever it takes to bring an open, humble and contrite heart.

I will suggest three different prayers. You choose one that is appropriate to you based on your knowledge and experience of Ralph and the discernment of the Holy Spirit.

Together let us pray:
1. "God, our loving Father, Holy One, please let your love, your fire, a spirit of godly repentance fall on Ralph so that he may enter your presence with holy hands and a clean heart."

2. "Father God, do whatever it takes to break through to Ralph. Do whatever it takes to make him willing to break open in confession and contrition. Speak love and truth by your Spirit to his inner being. May healing come to his heart and spirit and the strongholds of evil and sin be broken, so that there is rejoicing in Zion and the captives may be set free."

3. "Father, deliver us from evil. Stop this man from messing with the Bride of Christ. Do whatever you have to do to deliver us from this man's abuse. Do whatever you have to do to stop these offenses against your little ones, your little children. Let there be a peace bond from heaven. Intervene now and deliver us from evil."

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Friday, December 25, 2009

Demons in the Sanctuary

Demons in the Sanctuary (Miriam E. Bellamy, Trafford, 2008)
This is a fiction book about the supernatural in the church by a woman
who has served As a leader in several churches. Miriam Bellamy
is a former accountant who is now involved in writing and the
art community. Currently she resides in Cambridge, Ontario.
The book is interesting because, according to some, it sheds light
on a later time in Ralph Rutledge's ministry when he was a pastor
of a church in the Kitchener Waterloo area of Ontario, Canada.
A fiction book is often based on the writer's observations of actual events.
Nothing in the account can be taken literally, of course. Any discussion
of the book must remember that there may be truths about Ralph Rutledge
in the book but not everything in the book is true because it is,
after all, a work of fiction.
My approach to the book will be one of open minded curiosity.
Miriam observed Rev. Ralph Rutledge first hand. She was an
insider in the church where he was a pastor. When I read the book
I will be learning how deeply she and her family were effected
by Rutledge. I will be learning about his leadership style, how he
worked with the church boards and his financial accountability.
One quote from the book: "Resentment over her pastor's misspending
was gradually seeping into her awareness, gnawing at her spirit."
There will be one thing missing from the book. She cannot say:
"This man is Ralph Rutledge." But this we do know, Rutledge was
pastor at Good Samaritan Church.
Our author, Miriam Bellamy, was secretary-Treasurer of the
board of Good Samaritan Church. As such it was her job to take
minutes of the board meetings of Good Samaritan Church.
She transcribed every word of mediation meetings so that
the record would be unbiased. She confirms to me that
she has comprehensive archival information in her possession
so that the truthfulness of any conclusions I might draw
from the book can be confirmed from the records of
Ralph Rutledge's behaviour. It sounds like one can learn a lot about
Ralph Rutledge by reading "Demons in the Sanctuary."
The senior pastor in the books first chapter is Pastor Rafe Rutherford
and one of the members of the church by the name of Mira is
concerned about her husband's alienation from the Pastor Rafe.
Pastor Rafe does not seem to take a personal interest in her
husband Dan. He always pressed Dan to do handyman duty
around the church and the parsonage. It seemed as if he's
only interested in what Dan can do for him. Dan had "caught
the minister in several lies completely souring him on the man."
I will have to purchase the book to read more and I suggest that
my readers do the same if they want to learn more about Pastor
Ralph Rutledge.

Dec. 29, 2009 Update: I have received word from a previous elder at Good Samaritan Church. His report is that Miriam Bellamy's book, Demons in the Sanctuary, "is a good portrayal of what it was actually like."

January 11, 2010 A confirmation from a member of the Board at Good Samaritan church with Miriam Bellamy when Ralph Rutledge was pastor that: "I was amazed. She wrote it just like it happened."

February 22, 2011 Another confirmation that 'Demons in the Sanctuary' is an accurate portrayal of Ralph Rutledge.  I have just had contact from someone who knows the Rutledge family well and is well acquainted with Ralph Rutledge.  This source gives testimony that Mariam's book "Demons in the Sanctuary" is an accurate portrayal of Rutledge's character.  

This source described Ralph Rutledge to me as a "wolf in sheep's clothing" - as one who is cunning, prideful and "someone who acts one way for you...and another for someone else. He always plays to his audience."

"It's crystal clear the only reason why you have chosen to discuss this issue, and the man is because his sin is ongoing, and he is a very real threat and danger to other unsuspecting believers. Especially vulnerable young men who are confused and having self identity problems.'

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Sunday, December 06, 2009

Rev. Ralph Rutledge pastor Queensway scandal

Ralph Rutledge was pastor of Queensway Cathedral Pentecostal Church until the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada (PAOC) defrocked him. Yes pastor Ralph Rutledge was removed from being head pastor of Queensway Cathedral and his credentials to preach within his denomination were removed as well. This was severe discipline from those in charge of overseeing the pastors in the POAC.

As I understand it, the PAOC leadership considered the details of this discipline hearing to be confidential. They published very little about whatever was confessed or witnessed. So the Ralph Rutledge scandal remains in obscurity.

They remained silent when Ralph Rutledge began to manipulate the story to his advantage and make them look bad. He (The abuser) pleads 'victim' and there was nothing said. He makes the church look bad: 'Those bad guys are picking on poor Ralph.'

Most of us around Queensway Cathedral heard rumours that the scandal involved homosexuality. But there was no clear statement to that effect, just rumours. The details as to what this meant did not get out.

As I remember it, and I may be wrong, Ralph admitted to some homosexuality but not a lot of homosexuality. He was the victim not the aggressor. He may have suggested that an adult male molested him but I am not sure.

I had contact with students and clients that sometimes provide unexpected information. One of my students brought information that Ralph's behaviour involved a much larger breach of professional ethics, religious standards and the moral guidelines followed by his church ans denomination. Then recently a client reported that her boyfriend had been seriously messed up by what Rev. Rutledge said and did to him when as a young man he was sent to Rutledge for counselling. His father sent him and obviously put trust in his beloved pastor that, if this report is true, was seriously betrayed.

If these reports are confirmed by other credible sources that we have a very serious scandal - a pastor abusing pastoral authority and position by actively soliciting young men. Ralph Rutledge was a significant Canadian public figure based on the height of Ralph Rutledge's popularity, the size of Queensway Cathedral and the far reach of his television ministry. He still has a following and a ministry: "Grace Restoration Ministries" of Toronto, Canada "a faith based outreach ministry to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the poor and needy of the world, and to bring healing the bruised and broken."

I fear that the harm done to these young men in their gender identity, their relationship with God, in their faith and in their trust of men will be found to be considerable. I believe these wounded individuals needs support to go public about their abuse. That is part of their healing process. I am publishing this blog entry to initiate a process of bringing the truth to light and let healing begin. I fear that much harm has been done may continue to be done if we allow these allegations to go unattended.

I fear that the PAOC may have left a 'wolf in sheep's clothing' loose to harass everyone else. It is as if they were to say "We don't want any homosexuals in the PAOC but you can go a prey on others in the Body of Christ." This compromise would leave the rest of the church open to possible abuse of the same type that they decided was not appropriate for a pastor in the PAOC.

Matthew 18 describes a process of confronting sin. There are several steps in increasing public exposure from a private encounter, to bringing witnesses to a public decision by the church. Well we got to the final level. They had listened to the witnesses. A decision was made public. But no details were revealed. The sin of Ralph Rutledge was not exposed. There was no full exposure and no apology to the Queensway Cathedral in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. To this day I have not heard Ralph Rutledge reflect a broken and contrite heart about this issue. There has been no humility. No confession.

The wolf that remains hidden can still attack the sheep. A pastor is a shepherd. Shepherds protect their flock. That is why the PAOC overseers removed Ralph Rutledge. Shepherds expose wolfs and 'blow the whistle.' We got that kind of shepherding for the PAOC now we need it for the rest of the Bride of Christ.

Update (Dec. 21, 2009) Since publishing on the Ralph Rutledge scandal two persons have contacted me with confirming evidence and a concern that this matter be brought to the light.

Update (Dec. 23, 2009) Two sources indicate that the book "Demons in the Sanctuary" by a Miriam Bellamy has relevance to Ralph Rutledge and his 'leadership' in a local church since being kicked out of the POAC. This fictional account describes a "pastor's arrogant pride and unethical conduct."

Update (Dec 27, 2009) A man who is to this day dealing with the fallout of his relationship with Ralph Rutledge. This man needs prayer to deal with an extremely painful matter arising out of his relationship with Ralph Rutledge. Please pray for him and all those who are still suffering from their relationship with this man. This particular man said: "I am sorry that I ever met Ralph Rutledge."

Update (Dec. 28, 2009) Ralph Rutledge phoned me today to say that none of the allegations about him are true. He said that the events referred to are from 20 years ago. He questioned my motives in reporting these things implying it was some kind of personal vendetta. Also, in his opinion dragging these things up would hurt the Body of Christ. He was angry at me. There was no humility, no self reflection on his own sin.

That is the gist of it. I was not able to take notes. I could report him more accurately if he wrote something out and e-mailed it to me. I did invite people to contact me with information to add to this story. If you do so you need to identify yourself: full name, address and phone number so that I can verify my facts. It is best to write or e-mail and, then, if and when it is appropriate I will phone you with specific questions.

My response to Ralph is: One - that the good shepherd who is protecting the flock does so out of obedience and love. Two - my information sources suggest to me that the Rutledge's misuse of the responsibility and authority of the role of pastor (shepherd) goes back at least 20 years and that the behavior is also quite recent and likely ongoing. Third: When the wolf is caught eating lambs, the shepherd goes by the evidence in front of him not the wolf's denial. When Jesus said: "By their fruit you will know them" he meant the attitude and character of the person and actual reports of his ministry. Jesus is clearly saying to identify the 'wolf in sheep clothing' by actual track record not words.

Update Dec. 29, 2009. An elder from the Good Samaritan Church reports much hurt from Ralph Rutledges time as senior pastor there. He confirms many concerns with Ralph's behaviour (sexual and financial) that were never resolved. One financial accusation was "to do with net4jesus internet deal that Ralph put together apparently without approval of the board." It becomes clear to me that Rutledge was not held in check by or accountable to the Board of Good Samaritan Church. He controlled and intimidated them! This rebellion against appointed authority is one example of bad fruit in reports of Rutledge's ministry.

Update Dec. 30, 2009 I now have information from a reliable source that supports the contention that Ralph Rutledge has not fully committed himself to transforming his life and is not prepared to make a whole-hearted commitment to saying no to his sin patterns. He will not submit to an accountability process to hold his feet to the fire. He can play games with the counselling process but he resists the deep commitment that changing such strongholds requires. This is another report of behaviour and attitude and, therefore, fruit.
Hebrews 12:1 adjures us to "lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race set before us." My information indicates that Ralph is not doing willing to do that. He will not allow God to heal his life he will not be accountable for his sexual behavior.

Update January 4, 2010 I did not know this but it appears that Ralph Rutledge made several attempts to be reinstated by the PAOC - to get his papers to preach as a PAOC pastor. In spite of his considerable influence and top level contacts this never happened. This would be evidence that in the judgement of the PAOC Rutledge was not ready for restoration at the time this happened.

Update January 6, 2010 I need to report that Ralph Rutledge not only intimidated and controlled the board of the Good Samaritan Church but he intimidates those who have been wounded by him or who might expose him. He has many tricks to use to cover his tracks and avoid accountability. Just like he phoned me to express displeasure at this blog he also phones those he has wounded if he hears they are talking about him. If this is to be exposed we need the backbone and courage to not be intimidated.

Update May 9, 2010  I have had several discussions with the author of Demons in the Sanctuary and have met with the members of the board of the Good Samaritan Church to hear first hand reports of their experience when on the board when Ralph Rutledge was the head pastor.  No one provided evidence that suggests that the public should not be concerned about  Rutledge.  The evidence people present to me not only confirms my original concerns but add other concerns of possible spiritual abuse (misuse of the power and position of being the head pastor in a way that hurt others) possible financial abuse (misuse of the power and position of head pastor and the trust engendered by that to build his own financial position at the expense of others).  So the account of Rutledge's time at Good Samaritan Church adds to what was already suspected from Queensway Cathedral of possible sexual abuse (misuse of the trust position of being a respected pastor to engage in homosexual relations) and then possible misuse of his power and position to cover up and avoid accountability for these actions.

Update: July 12, 2011.  The news is not good for those who love Ralph Rutledge.  Over the last year there has been no documented facts that would support the thesis that he has faced his sexual addiction, sought treatment, turned away from it and established an accountability group to hold him to it.  Nor is there any evidence that he does not have a sexual addiction which has lead to crossing boundaries in his professional role as a pastor.
The perspective presented in Mariam Bellamy's book Demons in the Sanctuary, based on his final years at the Good Samaritan Church in Breslau, has been confirmed repeatedly by everyone I have contacted or who has contacted me as credible witnesses.  Many insiders affirm that the facts are not fiction although the names have been changed.
That book, based on supportive church minutes and documents, points to boundary issues in personal relationships, habitual lying, putting glory focus on himself rather than God, unprofessional 'sexual' gestures, speech and behavior, sexual harassment, money schemes (dual relationships) and manipulating the personal and positional power that he had as a minister. 
The evidence to dis confirm these affirmations just has not surfaced. 

Related Posts to this blog: Demons in the Sanctuary - a fiction novel, and Pray for Ralph Rutledge three suggested prayers.

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