Apr 12, 2017 by Will Maule

Mark Driscoll On Church Fallout: "Every Sunday I Would Go And Cry In The Shower"

Fiery preacher Mark Driscoll has seen his fair share of controversy, culminating in his resignation from Seattle megachurch Mars Hill back in 2014. Now, he and his family live in Phoenix, Arizona, where he has planted a new Church: The Trinity Church. He spoke with Life Today about the impact the controversy in Seattle had on his family, and how they are rebuilding their lives in Arizona. 

Mark was accused of bullying and domineering behavior towards other staff members, as well as using Church funds to pay a marketing agency to 'bulk buy' his book to ensure that it became a bestseller. Former staff members turned against him, and he has been embroiled in many bitter legal battles ever since.

"We had a governance war in the Church that went on over 8 years, over who's in charge and how things play out," Driscoll said. "It finally went public the last year and was very painful for everyone involved. The governing board invited us to continue, we prayed about it and talked about it as a family, and I resigned and left without even saying goodbye to the people."

The family withdrew from ministry and took some time out together.

"We took some time to heal up," Driscoll explains. 

Driscoll is asked about the personal effects of such a sudden end to what was an incredibly successful period of ministry. "I felt about the Church as I do towards my children. Once you share the gospel with someone and they become a Christian, it's kinda like becoming a parent. They're born again, and now they need to be fed and loved."

"Being unable to do that and unable to continue forward, and leaving was very difficult. I'll be honest, I got every Sunday for probably six months and sat in the shower and cried so that my kids wouldn't see me." 

Mark explains some of the horrendous treatment of his family. "All the media, the protestors, the critics all showed up at our house. Rocks were thrown at my kids. We moved three or four times for safety issues. People arrested at the house."

"I had a bulletproof, stab-proof vest from the Seattle police department."

"Why were they so mad at you?" the presenter asks. "Well, I'm a Bible teacher and sometimes I can be intense, I've said and done things I regret and publicly acknowledge," says Driscoll. "You have to own evertything you can that you contributed to it, so that your children see repentance, humility, honesty and integrity," highlights Driscoll. "And then, you teach them forgiveness."

Driscoll then started "doing Church" with his family in the safety of their own home, and asked his kids to forgive him for any wrongdoings on his part. Then, they would practice forgiveness for anyone else who was involved in the complex situation. Driscoll says he didn't want to raise up kids who were "caught up in demonic unforgiveness because they had been hurt by the Church." 

Then, the Driscoll's up and left to Arizona, to plant The Trinity Church. Driscoll says it was actually his kids who dreamt up the idea to plant a Church. "We decided to plant a Church as a family project," he says. 

Watch the full interview below. 

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