Petry-leaks Or A Silenced Pastor Speaks Out

We’ve been following the various controversies surrounding Mars Hill Church’s apparent interest in increasing the authority and respect of their organization and its central personality, Mark Driscoll. Now we can add to the dossier on Mars Hill’s authoritarian style this site created by one of the two pastors who were fired by MH in 2007 over new bylaws that consolidated Driscoll’s power. Paul Petry’s website is described as a blog (he does use WordPress as his site engine I believe) but it bears more resemblance to something like Wikileaks in the sense that it contains a considerable cache of written and email correspondence between Petry and the elders of Mars Hill as well as web archives of Mars Hill’s earlier views on ecclesiology.

What these documents suggest is that Petry – far from being disrespectful or insubordinate – appears to be genuinely trying to help create reasonable, fair bylaws for the church and, if he had been outvoted on his views, he would have cheerfully gone along serving at MH. He makes repeated overtures for reconciliation and does not appear to be the sort of person who needs his nose broken to step into line. Moreover we learn that Petry is actually a lawyer by trade – in other words, just the sort of person who might be well-qualified to offer advice on new bylaws for the church.

I’m not sure if Mars Hill will feel moved to respond. Given their pattern the response will probably be more about how evil bloggers ruin everything, but I remain open to being pleasantly surprised. Bill has more here. Tony Jones questions what role Driscoll’s theology played in all this.