A decade and a half ago, Mars Hill pastor Mark Driscoll co-founded the Acts 29 Network as a kind of social network for evangelical churches, an organization intended to help churches expand and grow within their local network. That's what makes this news especially shocking. Warren Throckmorton at Patheos says:
In a stunning move, the Acts 29 Network leadership has removed network co-founder and Mars Hill Church lead pastor Mark Driscoll from the organization’s membership. I obtained a letter from several Acts 29 pastors which was sent to Driscoll and Mars Hill Church removing Driscoll and the church as members of the network, as well as calling on Driscoll to step down due to a pattern of complaints from Acts 29 pastors.
The letter says that Acts 29 has received "countless" complaints about Driscoll's "ungodly and disqualifying behavior." In response to those charges, they've "tried to support and give [Driscoll] the benefit of the doubt," and when the charges continued, they tried to resolve the issue internally with Mars Hill.
In response, we leaned on the Mars Hill Board of Advisors & Accountability to take the lead in dealing with this matter. But we no longer believe the BoAA is able to execute the plan of reconciliation originally laid out. Ample time has been given for repentance, change, and restitution, with none forthcoming. We now have to take another course of action.
The letter calls for Driscoll to "step down from ministry for an extended time and seek help." You can now find the public statement on the Acts 29 Network site. This is huge news. As Brendan Kiley wrote in his excellent feature about Mars Hill this week, Mars Hill has come under pressure from people close to the church to do something about Driscoll. For an organization representing hundreds of churches—one that Driscoll helped found, no less—to openly identify him as the problem, and to call for his resignation, is a vote of no confidence that cannot be ignored. At the moment, Mars Hill has not responded to the Acts 29 Network's statement. We'll keep you posted right here on Slog.