Schullers Resign From Crystal Cathedral Ministries -- Does God Approve?

crystal cathedralWell it's finally over between the Schuller family and the famed Crystal Cathedral Ministries. Founders Robert and Arvella Schuller resigned from Crystal Cathedral's board of directors this weekend. And on Sunday their daughter, pastor Sheila Schuller Coleman, announced that she was leaving to found a new church elsewhere.

Unfortunately, it sounds like most of this is over money. Under the Schullers, Crystal Cathedral Ministries racked up $55 million in debt and had to file for bankruptcy. The board ended up selling their landmark Philip Johnson building to the Catholic Church. Meanwhile, the Schullers have complained about an "adversarial" relationship with the board -- and does look as if it's been trying to drive the family out.

I can't help imagining the memo God would send the Schullers. I think He'd have a thing or two to say to them.


To: Schuller Family

From: God the Almighty, i.e. Your Boss

So, remember when my son chased the money changers off the temple steps? SIGH.

Look, the big glass building was cool and I actually do dig Philip Johnson's work. But then you added that visitors' center and you produced that expensive play -- Creation. You kind of got carried away and lost sight of what's most important. You forgot what this is supposed to be all about.

Spreading my gospel and bringing people to me. The end.

Seriously, you could do that in a park. You don't even need a building. I mean, it's Orange Country for crying out loud. Put on some sunscreen. That's why I made titanium oxide. You're welcome.

But now you've gotten into this public fight with the board. "My entire family has been experiencing a hostile work environment." Sheila, my child, how can I put this delicately? What you see as hostile, I see as doing what's necessary. Sorry, but there it is. Meanwhile, all this fighting just makes me terribly sad.

Look, I know you mean well -- which is why I haven't struck you down by lightning. Just kidding! I would never do that. On purpose. I am a loving and forgiving God, and I really want to see you do the right thing. A little advice? When and if you start a new church (and if I were mortal, the very idea would be giving me an ulcer right now), start small. Start humble. Focus on the basics.

Peace be unto you, etc.

But hey, I'm not God (as I'm sure some of you are dying to remind me) and I couldn't tell you what exactly He's thinking. This just looks to me like an opportunity for the Schullers to remember why they founded a ministry in the first place -- and to get their priorities in the right place again.

Do you think the Schuller family mis-managed Crystal Cathedral Ministries?


Image via b r e n t/Flickr

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