REFORMATION RUMBLINGS “Buff, do your readers know that you were on paid staff at a Christian Church in Phoenix long after you took the anti-clergy, anti-church house stance you now promote? How did you then, and how do you now, justify your paycheck when you were one of the hirelings. Just thought I’d scratch a spot that needed some attention. Thanks.”—Steven.
BUFF SCOTT, JR.
A Question & Answer Worth
Steven, I believe I have covered these questions before when a few other readers inquired about the same matters. Occasionally, I receive a private letter from a reader who asks for the same information.
First off, you don’t have all the facts straight. I moved to Phoenix in 1990. A couple of weeks after I identified myself with the Mountain View Christian Church,
they discovered that at one time I was pulpit minister for a number of churches and wanted to make me “Associate Minister.”
I resisted the idea and told them I was not seeking a clerical title, and did not want a clerical title.
The “Senior Minister”
wanted to enhance his church’s public image, so he asked if I objected to his idea of “Associate Minister.”
I said, “You are free to do what you wish, but you know my position.”
He and the elders then wanted to know how much of a salary I thought was fair. I told them in no uncertain terms that I did not want nor was I soliciting a salary to do what the Lord lays upon my heart. During the nine years I was there, not one
dime was paid me for my ministries. My primary ministries were working with senior adults and conducting the senior adult class on Sunday mornings. And, yes, I worked for reform while with this splendid group of believers.
During these nine years, I continued publishing—on paper—The Reformer,
copies of which were distributed to the leadership. From the beginning they knew my position on the professional clergy, “churchitis,” and a host of other matters. I kept nothing secret. Yet they accepted me and supported my ministries while I was with them. An a cappella
Church of Christ would have kicked me out before I had time to explain myself! “I know, been there, done that.”
And now you know. The concepts regarding “Churchianity” and the professional clergy, which I have carried for decades, were not swept under the rug while meeting with the Mountain View Christian Church.
And by the way, heaven no more approves of an “Associate Minister”
or “Associate Pastor”
or “Senior Pastor”
than it approves of an “Associate Saint”
or “Associate Servant.”
Another ridiculous ecclesiastical icon is “Youth Pastor.”
The term is as silly as calling a small boy an “Old Youngster!”
Hope this clarifies your misconceptions.