It’s true. Change Sucks. Ask some of the members of The Church At Carrollton, who are none too happy about change.
Since Pastor Greg Drake came five years ago, some things have changed. As noted in a news story, some people are ticked. Royally ticked, actually.
Here are the things cited that have changed:
1. The church name (it used to be Abilene Baptist Church)
2. No more ‘hymn book singing’
3. Removal of the piano and organ
4. Printed words to songs are now “replaced by a screen”
5. Several pews were removed
6. Some stained glass was partially covered.
7. Shut down Sunday School classes (these classes met for SS, then left before the service started)
8. Walking away from the SBC
The result? A lawsuit in county court questioning the legal ownership of the church entity, going back to the original deed in 1876.
Here’s the premise: since the church changed it’s name this year, and is no longer operating under the Abiline Baptist name any longer, the 1876 deed that grated the land to “Abilene Baptist” has been revoked since the new entity is no longer using it for the said purpose of the deed (again, signed in 1876).
One of the protesters is quoted in the article:
“I just feel like the Lord wanted that to be Abilene Baptist Church, or otherwise he wouldn’t instill in these men back in the 1800s to put that in the deed…The said purposes has got to be Abilene Baptist Church. To me, it’s clear, the purposes are your ministries of the Baptist Church because it states that in the deed.”
This guy’s also more than a little ticked that he’s no longer a deacon:
“I just had a feeling from the Lord that it wasn’t supposed to be changed, and that’s when [Pastor Drake] told me that he removed me as a deacon. My dad was a deacon there, and I voted for all the former deacons because I felt like they wouldn’t want the name changed.”
After all, his dad WAS a deacon.
But wait… there’s more!
Not long after the civil suit was filed, the church was called to defend against allegations in Carroll County Magistrate Court that the Rev. Drake had been removing flags from the graves of Civil War veterans buried in the church cemetery.
All I can say is… change sucks.
This is one of the more outrageous church conflicts that I’ve seen recently… but you know… things like this happen all the time. They’re just not written about in the local newspaper (thankfully).
I hope that I don’t become like this when I’m older.
I hope that if/when I walk away from a church and it’s leadership, it’s about something much more important that hymnbooks, pews, stained glass and the like.
I pray that I don’t end up a bitter, angry, hopeless man as I get older.