Saturday, May 26, 2012

A Note to Our Friends...

About six months ago, in response to a comment made at The Wartburg Watch, I decided to share my story about my experience at Mars Hill.  Since I left, I had struggled with what to do with what happened to me.  My husband and I wanted to just forget about it and move on, yet we were both constantly troubled by the idea that if this is what happened to us, are there others?  What about single young women?  What about new Christians who have never had any other church experience? If this or something like it happened to them, would they continue their Christian walk? What kind of damage is this causing to others?  How can we just walk away and be glad that we "dodged the bullet"?

I had already submitted my story several days before it came out.  I simultaneously started this blog (in response to another comment), which I thought would be some obscure little piece of the internet. I had no idea that just one day prior to my story being told, Matthew Paul Turner would write about Andrew's sad experience.  I could not have imagined the chain of events that would follow.

Shortly after the release of my story, The Stranger wrote an article about Lance, another person with a story.  In that article, my blog was linked (without my prior knowledge).  This was followed by The Slate Article, which was picked up by the Huffington Post.  Then many of us were contacted to participate in KOMO News Story.

The result of all of this unsolicited publicity following the telling of my story has been a response I couldn't have predicted.  People have come forward with their stories in large numbers.  Some are posted here on the site, and some have been shared privately.  The response has been overwhelming (literally), and each time I have wanted to quit, to walk away from it all, I receive another email from someone, telling me their own experience at Mars Hill.

Now, six months later, I find myself at a crossroads. You can read about it here. I am grateful for all of the people I have met and want to support you in anyway I can, but at this point, I do not feel like I have a lot left to offer.  I need some time to heal, to not think about Mark Driscoll, Mars Hill and the problems that plague it every day.  Kaelee has expressed the same feelings.

So, we wanted to let our readers know that we will not be posting regularly.  To do so requires that we monitor Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill.  We left to get away from it and yet it is still a daily part of our life.  So that begs the question, are Kaelee and I really "free from Mars Hill"?

I believe that we have been effective in bringing the red flags to light.  I am confident that anyone who is questioning will be able to find plenty of information to help them answer any questions they may be having.

We are aiming to start the Walking Wounded class (that you may participate in anonymously) at the end of July.  I will post more information as soon as it is available.

I am blogging regularly at about my journey now.  I would love for you to join me there.  Disclaimer: If you left Mars Hill but still completely hold to the reformed doctrine and complementary roles, I might make you uncomfortable as I wrestle.

Kaelee blogs occasionally at  She explores her questions about faith and other topics.

And as always, you can follow UnReformed's insights at his blog, .

We are also open to anyone who would like to guest post here on Mars Hill related issues!  After all, this is ALL OF OUR refuge space. If you are interested, please email us.

We are still available via email at and and would love to hear from you.  Also, if you want to share your story, please email it to us.  We will post occasionally and show up if anything major happens.

Comments will continue to be moderated and posted.

We love you guys and pray for you regularly and ask that you do the same for us!



  1. I completely understand. I left Mars Hill at the end of July 2011. Since then, I have learned that I have to take care of myself first. My mother almost died at the end of November. I was able to visit her in December, and it was just a special time of being there for my mother while she was in the hospital. It really did not matter what had happened at Mars Hill. My mother was the most beautiful woman to me, and I had learned more from her during my lifetime. As well, I found out I was pregnant with my second child during this time. And then, I had some bleeding issues in my 3rd trimester that started at the end of March. Again, Mars Hill was the last thing that I wanted to think about. I went through a lot of bedrest in April. My daughter was born April 30th. It got me thinking about how her life is a new beginning. And how it is not like she has really been hurt by anyone. It is her choice on how she wants to live her life from this point, but it was my choice as well on how I was going to live my life--and I just want to teach her how to love. My daughter has a beautiful name. Her name is Noelle. It means "born on Christmas Day." I know that she was not born on Christmas Day, but my daughter is like a special gift on Christmas Day, almost like Jesus was a gift to all of us on Christmas Day. Jesus had so much humility when he died on the cross for us. I do not think life is about so much about being better than other people or what the world can give us. I felt like Mars Hill was too much about the world. And Jesus just gives you more. So I know I made the right choice when I left, and I am still finding out each day who God wants me to be (without Mars Hill).

  2. Thank you both so much for being willing to make yourselves visible.


  3. I'm excited for you guys on this path of healing that you've shared with those that have needed it (like me!). God bless!

  4. I think that is so healthy. After I posted my story, I checked this site often but this is the first time in a month or so. You have to let go completely. Mars Hill is a church that Jesus allows to be open. It is sad that some of the leaders have caused so much pain in our hearts but that should never change our love for the Lord. Bitterness is a sin and I struggled with being bitter against Mars Hill for almost 2 years. After I posted my story I knew I needed to really let go completely. It is so freeing. I hope you all find freedom also :)