Megachurch pastor Matt Chandler returns from 3-month absence over inappropriate messages
(CP) Texas megachurch Pastor Matt Chandler was to return to the pulpit on Sunday, about three months after taking a go away of absence from his position as instructing pastor as a consequence of inappropriate social media messages with a girl who will not be his spouse.
In an email despatched to congregants this week, elders at The Village Church in Flower Mound introduced that Chandler will return to preaching because the church celebrates its twentieth anniversary.
“We requested a number of Matt, together with time spent in research and prayer, private reflection, and a number of intensives with trusted outdoors specialists. Matt has accomplished every thing requested of him with submissiveness, steadfastness, and humility, and we’ve got acquired optimistic suggestions from all concerned,” the elders wrote in an electronic mail, a duplicate of which was shared by The Roys Report.
As The Christian Post reported, Chandler introduced in August that he accepted a choice by the elder board for him to take a go away of absence for participating in inappropriate Instagram messaging, which was neither sexual nor romantic, with a girl within the church.
The elders mentioned on this week’s electronic mail they’d been “inspired by his posture all through.”
“Due to this fact, we’re happy to share with you that his return to preaching is scheduled for this Sunday, December 4,” the e-mail reads.
“Though we didn’t work towards this date as a goal for Matt’s return, we didn’t assume it was applicable to delay Matt’s return to keep away from it falling on the anniversary.”
The Village Church elders mentioned in an August assertion that Chandler voluntarily disclosed the inappropriate Instagram messages after a pal of the girl confronted him about his behaviour within the church’s lobby a number of months in the past.
World church planting community Acts 29, the place Chandler served because the president and chairman of their board, additionally requested him “to step aside from Acts 29 talking engagements” following the choice by The Village Church.
Chandler, who maintained he wasn’t conscious on the time that he had “executed something improper,” mentioned he alerted Josh Patterson and elder Chairman Jasien Swords and “submitted to their management in addressing the state of affairs.” He additionally knowledgeable his spouse.
“I did not assume I had executed something improper in that,” Chandler advised the congregation in August. “My spouse knew that. Her [the woman’s] husband knew that. And but there have been a few issues that she mentioned that have been disorienting to me.”
The Village Church elders commissioned an impartial legislation agency, recognized by The New York Times as Castañeda and Heidelman, to research Chandler’s messaging historical past throughout social media platforms, mobile phone and electronic mail.
They concluded that Chandler “violated our inner social media use insurance policies, and extra importantly that, whereas the overarching sample of his life has been ‘above reproach,’ he failed to fulfill the 1 Timothy customary for elders of being ‘above reproach’ on this occasion.”
The elders additionally mentioned the lead pastor’s go away of absence “is each disciplinary and developmental” to permit him time “to give attention to rising higher consciousness on this space.”
In October, Chandler hinted that he would seemingly return to the pulpit “quickly” and was “desirous to return.”
Chandler wrote on Instagram on the time that he had turn out to be “extra conscious than ever of that earnest and angsty prayer of David’s in Psalm 27:4,” which says: “One factor have I desired of the LORD, that can I search after; That I could dwell in the home of the LORD all the times of my life, To behold the great thing about the LORD, and to investigate in his temple.”
In an Instagram post on Friday, Chandler recalled his two-decade historical past with The Village Church.
“Over the previous 20 years I’ve watched God do INCREDIBLE issues nearly all of which have been regardless of me,” Chandler wrote. “I survived a bout with mind most cancers in 2009, wanted to publicly repent greater than as soon as and have been liked deeply and cared for fiercely by the women and men of The Village. I’m at a loss for the invitation into this nice journey the Lord put me on!”