Monday

THE HYPOCRISY OF CLERGY: A CASE STUDY ON ROWLAND CROUCHER Part 1





Here is the preface to Rowland Croucher's site ....


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JOHN MARK MINISTRIES is a counseling, consulting, preaching, mentoring, seminar and writing ministry, especially for pastors, ex-pastors, church leaders and their spouses. Named after John Mark, the young first century apostle who 'bombed out' of ministry when it was hard, we try to help/encourage pastoral leaders - and others - who are also 'in transition' due to stress and burnout. (Rev. Dr.) Rowland Croucher from http://jmm.aaa.net.au/


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This thread is a critique of his "ministry".


I first came across Rowland Croucher when I had undiagnosed and untreated Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in the mid 1990s that was partly caused by Christians. A friend, also suffering from depression, had seen Rowland's site and as we were both Christians at the time thought that we could get some help. I phoned him up. There was a price for his "ministry"- thousands of dollars for a few days. Completely out of the question. That should have rung alarm bells. I often asked him how much Jesus was paid for the Sermon on the Mount. No reply - ever. He didn't get it. He did get many speaking engagements. Speaking engagements at Christian seminars and other churches is how clergy double their money - they get their regular stipend then a "love gift" of lots of dollar$ to speak elsewhere. When I used to question him about this and his tax free status as clergy he stopped posting about them.


As he was "ministering" on usenet, I joined his usenet discussions. He asked me if I would like to do a free counselling session on usenet by answering some questions. I was desparate for any help at the time and foolishly allowed this to happen. It was then quoted over the next 15 years by any Christian fundamentalist that had a grudge against me. I should have refused to answer any of the questions but PTSD makes you extremely desperate for help and open to abuse by clergy as in this case. Rowland had addded at the beginning of the post "There are some limitations in doing this on-line, as occasionally one’s ‘confession’ is used as a weapon later, by people who haven’t (in my opinion) dealt with their ‘stuff’..." Obviously my Fundamentalist critics never read that part. Though I asked several times later in our relationship for Rowland to remove the page on his website he never did till he finally defriended me on Facebook for daring to have my own opinion and expressing it. (More about that in detail later.)



These are the questions he asked me to answer for all the world to see ....


1. Do a time-line of your life, noting ‘highs’ and ‘lows’ (however you like to define them). Graph the highest and lowest and put rough dates against these, noting your feelings then and now about these events/experiences. Why were/are they significant? H = High, L=Low, HHH = Highest, *LLL = Lowest (shared)


2. On separate pages, write the following headings and make some > notes on your experiences in each: Anxiety/Fear, Sadness/Grief, Guilt (bad things I have done)/Shame (bad things I feel about me), Irritation/Anger.


3. What problems/challenges do each of the ‘seven deadly sins’ hold for you? (Sloth, Lust, Anger, Pride, Envy, Gluttony, Greed). What are your ‘addictions’?


4. We each have a ‘shadow’ side (Jung). What is yours? Where are your areas of incompleteness? For what non-altruistic reasons are you in ministry or doing good?


5. Of the three great temptations – money, sex, power – where are you weakest? Why? What are you tempted to do/be/think if you were sure > you wouldn’t be found out in this life?


Just think about this for a minute. All your deepest darkest secrets posted so the whole world knows about it. What type of "ministry" and "counselling" is this? It is indeed extremely cultish and controlling and misguided. Totally unethical. It is a form of abuse. Then the revelation came later on that Rowland Croucher is NOT a qualified clinical psychologist at all. We discussed items on usenet and I met him in person once. As usual, I was on a journey in life and he love bombed me. I received free tapes and books in the mail all from Rowland's favourite conservative Christian authors. Rowland suggested I read a few different authors. The only one of any value was John A T Robinson's "Honest to God". I am sure that Rowland thought that, as a then Christian who didn't attend church, that he was my defacto Pastor. A sheeple for the picking!


As I veered further away from conservative Christianity the love-bombing and the free materials stopped. Rowland loved to use the word "irenic". You had to nice smiley happy happy joy joy to Fundamentalist that repeatedly abused you with multuiple insults and who quoted the above interview ad nauseum. Intolerance of intolerant Christian fundamentalist abuse was naughty in his eyes. Rowland likes to think that conservative and evangelical Christans are not fundamentalist but he is wrong. They all adhere to the Five Fundamentals. If you adhere to the Five Fundamentals then you are a Fundamentalist. Rowland Croucher is a fundamentalist.