Resign Mark Chappell
Pastor Freeway Baptist Church
Pastor Freeway Baptist Church, 8501 N Black Canyon Hwy Phoenix, AZ 85021
Evidence has shown that you admitted to having immoral contact with under age minors. Not only is this a gross and sinful use of the pastorate, but is also criminal. The allegations have been made by one of the victims whose story is posted below.
"A bishop then must be blameless" I Tim 3:2, Titus 1:7
"Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without.." I Tim 3:7
One of the things that Christ told the churches to repent of or He would remove their candlestick from the church was the sin of fornication. Revelation 2:13-20. A sexual encounter with a minor certainly qualifies for that.
As embarrassing as this may be for you, it is more embarrassing to the church and fundamental Baptist churches in particular where there has been an epidemic of sexual sins and crimes and churches more worried about their reputations then doing the right thing. It makes no difference how long ago this happened. You can not merely commit a crime, and then expect time to vindicate you. God has waited over 2,000 years to finish Israel's transgression and He made it clear that "be sure your sins will find you out".
Judgment must begin at the house of God, and you have forfeited your right to be the pastor of a church and we among the independent Baptist churches are asking that you resign.
(see also the blog tab, with a statement from the current pastor of Heritage Baptist Church, Thomas Bish, where Mark was formerly assigned)
I was that underaged girl. I am standing here crying because after 25 years someone is finally taking my side. The seduction started when I was 15. He didn't put his hands on me until I turned 16. He continued to molest me for almost two years. I didn't know how to tell anyone and finally, in desperation, took a bottle of pills. Even in the hospital I was afraid to tell anyone what happened. He told me if I told anyone I would be responsible for ruining his life and the church. I wouldn't talk to the shrink at the hospital, but I said I would talk to my Pastor. I told Pastor Baker ( who was later fired for having an affair with his secretary that was going on during the same time as Mark was molesting me) what was going on. I don't know what he told the doctors but I was let out. My parents weren't told, the church was not told and Mark was not fired from being my youth pastor. Mark and I were to undergo counceling (separatly of course) and no one would ever know. I was put back into the youth group for pete's sake! Of course, several months later, he molested me again. I kept it secret. Then I turned 18 and was off to HAC. I wanted so much to be right with God. I knew that if I didn't tell someone what had happened that I wouldn't have the strength to say no to Mark when I went home to Ct. for Christmas break. So I went for counceling.......with Jack Schaap. -no joke. Of course, he was all about protecting Bro. Hyles and the college. He had to bring my situation to Jack Hyles and the big question was not what would happen to Mark, but whether or not I would be allowed back in college. I was told that I had to tell my Pastor at home. That entire vacation I avoided Mark. At church every time I would look up he would be staring at me( from the platform, across the church, through the window in the door) with those eyes . On the last day of vacation I told Pastor Baker. He sent me back to HAC - where I was not allowed to register for classes until the ruling came down from Jack Hyles- while he decided what to do. He decided to bring it before the church. I wasn't there so I cannot tell you what was said. All I know for sure is that I was told repeatedly that I was an equal partner in this sin, that I was just as guilty as Mark was. I don't know if the congregation was told that it had started when I was 16 or if they thought I was already eighteen. I was always made to believe and feel, from the Pastor on down to the congregation, that I was as much to blame as Mark was. I came home from school that summer, stayed for about three months then left and didn't look back. I didn't even talk about it for about ten years. Then we moved back to Ct. A new Pastor took over the church and my husband surrendered to the ministry. Everything that I had buried came to the surface. How could I , who felt so dirty and unworthy, ever be a pastor's wife. I went to the new pastor for counceling. I believe this man to be a good man. He tried to look into everything for me, but there were no notes from decean's meetings and church meetings from that far back. He and his wife let me know that I indeed was the victim and not an equal perpetrator, but once again I was encouraged not to bring up the past with anyone. What good would it do? I was asked. I was encouraged to forgive and move on. I believe to the best of my ability at that time that I did. Now after all this time, I am reading this and wondering if I should go to the police. I know there are people who would tell me that if I go to the police it just means that I am bitter and I haven't forgiven him. I don't know what the right thing is to do.
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