Classroom Videos Show James MacDonald Bullying Students & Disparaging Rival School

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Many have asked me to release videos I have of James MacDonald berating students at Harvest Christian Academy (HCA) during his ill-fated and short-lived time as a guest Bible teacher there in January and February of 2017. I have been reluctant to do so, not because I’m trying to protect MacDonald, but because I do not have video of the incident described in my WORLD exposé of Harvest, which several people have told me was the most shocking. And I didn’t want to give the impression that the videos I have represent the worst of MacDonald’s behavior when the truth is, they may be tame in comparison. 

However, the behavior in the videos below do give a glimpse into the character of the man who founded and pastored Harvest for 31 years. Both videos show MacDonald confronting students in a harsh manner, and in one, he mocks a student. One also shows MacDonald disparaging a neighboring school, saying, “Like, why do they even have a school?” 

I think Harvest parents, church members, and anyone who’s supported the ministry of Harvest Bible Chapel or MacDonald’s broadcast ministry, Walk in the Word, have a right to see what’s depicted in the videos below. Also, it’s notable that Talbott Behnken, HCA superintendent now and at the time of these incidents, also serves on Harvest’s new Church Leadership Team. Also serving on that team is Todd Rukes, who received videographer Luke Helmer’s stunning resignation letter.

But again, the videos below do not represent the worst incident. The video of the worst incident reportedly has been erased, but there are several descriptions of it.

Here’s how I described the incident in WORLD:

 In 2017, videographer Luke Helmer resigned from Harvest one day after witnessing MacDonald teach a Bible class to a roomful of teenage students at Harvest Christian Academy. Citing what he called MacDonald’s “pattern of uncontrolled anger,” Helmer in his Feb. 16, 2017, resignation letter (posted below) said MacDonald had singled out two students, “berated them for minutes in front of the entire high school student body, mocked them, called them ‘morons,’ ‘fools,’ ‘stupid,’ and he threatened one of them physically.” The incident also upset several parents who later heard about it.

Asked about the incident, MacDonald told WORLD he had been responding to a student who yelled something “very coarse and troubling” aloud in class. “I for sure was too intense and did locate the student and did move them up to the front and did let them know what I thought of the behavior. … At the end of class, though, I did feel grieved in my heart that it was too intense.” MacDonald said he apologized to the student and his classmate the same day, recorded an apology video shown to the class, and talked to the offended parents.

Also, here’s what Dallas Jenkins, former executive director of Vertical Church Films and a parent of HCA students, wrote about the incident in a recent letter submitted to Harvest leaders:

Some of us have children who came home from school in February of 2017 shocked and saddened by one of the worst outbursts of anger they’d ever witnessed–a berating by James of two students in front of the entire high school. Several students were in tears watching it, a student described spit hitting her in the front row. There was a videotaped apology, and a year later, an in-person apology. But the public promise by James to teach the class for the semester was never kept, the schedule that had been completely upended to accommodate his teaching never fixed, and an apology for breaking that promise was never given. 

To be fair, a few elders and staff have told me they did not believe the incident was a big deal, that their children did not report it as a problem. And one of the top leaders of the church told me he wishes James wouldn’t have apologized for the incident at all. However, that same person had the video of the incident erased immediately, ensuring those not in the classroom that day would never see it.

Below are two videos, which were sent to me from an anonymous source. They appear to be videos of a video playing on a computer monitor. It’s my understanding that all the videos below were at one time posted online at Harvest’s Vimeo site.

MacDonald Grabs and Confronts Student

In this first video from January 25, 2017, MacDonald confronts a student for falling asleep in class. He walks up an aisle, grabs the sweatshirt of a student by the shoulder, and pulls his arm off the top of the seat adjacent to him, saying, “Sit right up. Get your hands off the chair. . . . Don’t let me see you sleeping again, or I’ll throw you right out of here. I’m not even joking.”

Then MacDonald adds, “Pay attention in class. Stop wasting my time, you hear me? You hear me? (boy responds inaudibly) ‘Yes sir’ is your answer. Say, ‘Yes sir.’ (boy responds inaudibly) All right. Don’t make that mistake again.”

 

MacDonald Mocks Student & Disparages Neighboring School

In the second clip from February 8, 2017, MacDonald mocks a student in the front row because he failed to bring his book, notebook, and pen to class. He also disparages a neighboring school.

“Magic guy. You’re like in the front row two weeks in a row. Is that a trick? Is that a trick you pulled? . . .” MacDonald asks. “Nice play. Where’s your book?”

The student responds, “I left it at home today.”

“You left it at home today,” MacDonald says. “That’s super awesome. Can’t you just like – pfugh – make it appear or something?” Then MacDonald asks if anyone wants to “bless” the student with a pen and a paper. A student apparently brings him one and MacDonald responds sarcastically, “Hey, glad I could do this for you (name).”

“Thank you,” the student responds.

“Ya, no, no problem,” MacDonald says. Then he discovers the student is a freshman and adds, “You’re a freshman! Oh my gosh, you’ve got four years to learn how to bring your stuff to class!” Then he instructs the boy to respond, “Thanks Pastor James.”

“Thanks Pastor James,” the boy says.

“Nice. I’m even giving you your lines now. Wow!” MacDonald says.

MacDonald also insults a nearby private school, Westminster Christian School, which HCA had apparently crushed in a girls’ basketball game the night before class.

“Like, why do they even have a school?” MacDonald jeers. “Like they should just – they should, they should come over here and we should have them in a different hallway. It’s like the B school. And, and uh, that’s what I’m going to be recommending. And um, I’m, I’m loyal to our church so, so that’s allowed.”

 

MacDonald Gets Physical With Students: “Teachers aren’t allowed to touch students, but pastors are.”

I downloaded this last video from Harvest’s Vimeo site last fall. (The link I used to access the video is no longer active.) This is the full class on February 8 from which the previous video excerpt was grabbed. The previous video shows the beginning of the class, which clearly has  been edited out of the video below. (You’ll see the beginning of the video below is the same as the end of the video above.)

The most telling part of the video below occurs between 36:25-38:39. Here, MacDonald gets physical with students as a way of driving his points home. Then, as he’s doing so, he says, “Teachers aren’t allowed to touch students, but pastors are.”

He also again makes fun of the student he confronted at the beginning of class. While urging the class to work hard intellectually, he says, “What I’m concerned about is that you’ll be a little bit lazy intellectually.” Then referencing the student who forgot to bring his supplies to class, MacDonald says, “Like showing up at class with no pen or paper—like stuff like that. But you’re just a freshman so everything’s good. Plus, you’ve been working on your magic tricks. So that takes a lot of time.” 

 

Luke Helmer’s Resignation Letter:

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94 thoughts on “Classroom Videos Show James MacDonald Bullying Students & Disparaging Rival School”

  1. Is this beating a dead horse? Pastor MacDonald has been fired, elders have resigned, the ECFA has suspended Harvest. What’s left that the public—those who know Harvest and the principal players, and those who do not—absolutely must know about? Events of interest to the evangelical community have duly been reported. At what point do we say the goal (ousting the leader and presumably giving the church a chance to heal) has been achieved with this individual and his former church? I suggest that posting a video from two years ago is not part of the healing process.

    1. Pam, my guess is you’re simply not caught up on the whole situation. MacDonald is planning on launching another ministry very soon and the leaders that remain at HBC are still not being honest & transparent about millions of dollars that have just gone missing.
      This is far from over. While I don’t go to Harvest (or church) anymore, I’m thankful for Julie has others who keep beating this drum until the congregation gets real answers and James is held accountable to the congregation he fleeced. (He has yet to utter a single word to them in all of this).

      1. Well said Mandy.

        I have been a member of Harvest RM and will remain because of the Lord and not Mcdonald. My mentor taught me…
        “never walk away from a ministry until the Lord releases you.” The body of Christ will heal and rebuild spiritually.

        Julie Roys, THANK YOU!!! for continuing to expose the truth of Mcdonald and the bunch who co-signed his bad behavior. They are all forgiven and at the same time cannot be allowed to mislead and mistreat anyone ever again.

        A response from the Mcdonalds would be nice, as well as charges filed against many for the financial abuses.

      2. FormerHarvestMbr

        Hi Mandy – Saw your note about James planning to launch another ministry soon. Sad but not surprising. Do you have more information on that?

    2. These videos and the past news on JM show a pattern of abuse on many levels. The reason to continue to keep exposing this man is to be a warning to others. I’m sure Harvest is not the last curtain call for JM and the more he’s exposed the greater the possibility for less abuse of others in the future by him. At least that’s the hope.

    3. One issue with moving on from this subject and the truth it presents is that James is hiding out right now in Florida. He basically stole a church (Harvest Naples) and fired the lead pastor. Right now the HBC sit in pastor and I’m sure many others are funneling James and his family money. What still needs to happen is an audit of HBC and James needs to give people their money back, sell his home and/or spend some time in prison for embezzlement and fraud. This is far from over.

      1. I agree with you. Does anyone really know where he is (except his friends & family)? Julie mentioned in one of her blogs that the “authorities” should get involved. I completely agree. Don’t some people have enough information on him and other leaders of HBC to get various authorities investigating this? I, too, would like to have my tithe back so I can give it to my current church and other Godly ministries. Heavenly Father, help us to be patient and wait for Your perfect timing in this situation. Your will be done, in Jesus’ Name, amen.

    4. Pam- Absolutely! Thank you for saying this. But Julie still needs a paycheck and like all sinners, she will continue to make the most of her criticism about Harvest for as long as she can since her other news seems un-newsworthy.

        1. Oh, Mary and Pam—-

          You’ve let us know you are ostriches…so very deluded, with your heads in the sand.

          You are both enabling a MAJOR tool of Satan—that doesn’t bother you at all?

          Obviously, you missed something else: That Julie Roys is not making a single cent from this blog!

      1. Pam and Mary you are both very wrong. Yes this happen in the past, yet no one spoke up about thus verbal and physical abuse. That silent behavior allowed a pedophile to serve at HBC. We see JMac bullying and grooming HBC students to be submissive robots for future service in his MACjesty service. HBC staff, elders, leaders and their staff were obedient pawns. You state Julie Roys does it for income but this is her blog and she receives FREE WILL donations not a paid salary. The monies that JMac and his team stole is a criminal offense. It is not okay for two people to live in a 10,000 SF house with 10 car garage, taking exotic trips from offering designated for ministry, allocate radio ministry funds for a deer Park, etc. Please take your eyes off of your lord and master James MacDonald and not blame others for his gross sins and misdeeds. He is an very evil man and has corrupted many minds and souls including you both.

  2. I disagree with Pam. As a former high school teacher, I would have been fired on the spot. With MacDonald in Naples, FL where I live, I feel it is very necessary to expose this man who should not be a pastor or teacher for who he is. I have heard people who attend the Naples Campus make excuses for James’ behavior. They continue to attend. I’m glad Julie is posting these truths. I was almost taken in by Harvest and I now have changed to a church where I feel the pastor is genuine and is a shepherd. I cannot tell you how excited I was to start attending Harvest Naples and within three weeks the truth was exposed. The ripple effect of this man’s choices has even extended into my own family.

  3. Oh…my…God!!! James MacDonald is one sick puppy! Constantly touching and grabbing the kids. Where the hell were the teachers that put up with this crap??? I would not let my child near him! MacDonald is violent with kids because he can get away with it – covered in love by Donald, Donaldson, and the rest the sick individuals. My God!

    1. I would have yanked my daughters out of there in a minute upon hearing this. The grade school where my twin daughters attended refused to work with me as I had asked for them to be in the same class. I was told, “we don’t do it that way….” I pulled them out and home schooled my twins and their younger sister for 8 years. Far less expensive than a private Christian school. With God’s guidance and grace, we had an amazing 8 years at home.

      1. Fantastic Barbara! Just remember everybody it’s ALL part of the SYSTEM , you know the money making system …… harvest church, harvest bible school , harvest christian school etc etc etc , conferences, concerts etc etc etc……

  4. Year after year, sermon after sermon James MacDonald seemed to invent new ways to embarrass and humiliate men he brought up on stage as poor sermon illustrations, at best.

    I’m grieved that in my earliest days at Harvest, I found many of these episodes refreshingly whimsical. By 2003, when I left Rolling Meadows to attend Crystal Lake, these incidents of MacDonald pushing around and emasculating men became less than amusing…and, in all likelihood, revealed a dark, twisted heart of a man…that took some of us (like me) longer to see.

    May the Book of Matthew remind us of some of the most haunting words in all of the Bible.

    “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them. “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!” (Mt. 7:13-23)

    Yes, friends, it is possible to work in the name of Christ, and even to preach in His name, and though the world knows us, and the Church knows us, yet to be unknown to the Lord!

    1. Thank You Mike Medow for that Scripture, it brought God’s Word back into focus of what we are called to be and look for. May God have mercy on the souls of individuals who are wolves, not bearing fruit and cut down, thrown into the fire.

      Thank You Julie Roys for continue to be on the front line fighting the battle of unrighteousness. May God’s armor protect you in the fight. PRAYING for your families continual protection.

  5. I’m also a long-time teacher of almost 40 years. In any school I have ever been in, Christian or otherwise, that kind of behavior would have been my last day of teaching. People need to know who James is, both in public and private, especially since he wants to continue his “ministry” in some other place. James is so public with his egregious behavior that it is no longer a secret. He certainly wouldn’t pass the hiring process for janitor at my current church.

  6. Narcissists keep you on edge by unpredictable behavior- switching between anger and rejection and kindness. It feels very unsafe and messes with your mind in a major way. I feel for these kids. Nothing like Jesus is being shown from what I see. And I loved James while attending for about a year.

  7. He’s a certified CREEP. I’ve begun to notice any male who shaves his head has the character traits of a bully/control freak. Take Jeff Bezos – same kind of greedy creep that James MacDonald is.

    1. You can’t condemn all men with shaved heads based on the sins of two. The two friends I have who shave their heads wouldn’t hurt a fly. If I was to judge by personal experience, I would be declaring shaved headed guys to be saints!

    2. Juan Life 2 Live

      Hey Clark Kent, put your glasses back on.

      May you someday lose every last hair on your head and may it instead grow out ears.

      “…Any male who shaves his head…” (sigh)

      And all blondes are dumb, and all Irish have tempers and all of Kansas is flat.

      Whose side are you on anyways??

  8. I’m not defending jmac but I am 62 and went to catholic school. This is nothing compared to what happened to us when disciplined. The more they could embarrass you in front of class the better. One thing for sure there was a lot more respect for adults than what I see today

    1. Robert I have to agree. I’m almost 60 and growing up in the 60s and 70s, we weren’t handled like fragile China. There was more respect for authority in school and teachers didn’t talk to us as if a harsh word or simply a reprimand would give us PTSD. Not defending James many other behaviors either, but some of this seems rather tame compared to the discipline in Catholic or Jesuit schools when we grew up. We were expected to act dress and talk with a degree of respect, without our Moms running to school to yell at the teacher . I feel alot of times we are raising a weak generation who fold at a harsh word or criticism or over compensate with a complete lack of respect for authority cause mommy always protected us.

      1. Susan Vonder Heide

        There is a big difference between discipline and meanness. Kids can distinguish between a loving teacher enforcing fair discipline and a nasty teacher playing power games at their expense. When the latter is at play, the teacher is not a good role model and may do great harm.

  9. Susan Vonder Heide

    This stuff takes me back over 50 years to when a parish priest was hitting and yelling at a boy in my class. If the kid even did anything wrong I sure didn’t notice it.

  10. Robert, was it respect for adults or was it fear based obedience? Teaching well seeks to inspire in the hearts of children a love for others as Jesus loved. Tyrannical rule, whether in Catholic school or HCA, does not abide the biblical command to love.

    1. Probably both…I always respected elders and still do. I work in the public every day and the way I see many of our youth causes me to realize parents are failing. Did I deserve a good whack at catholic school now and then? You bet I did…and I learned what was expected of me. Our schools have lost control with overprotective parents, law suits, and going too far with discipline. It’s just not the same anymore compared to when parents and teachers were kind of on the same team to raise good kids. The majority of the kids I deal with have buds in their ears or walking aimlessly staring at a phone screen and don’t even acknowledge a simple thank you or how are you today. Okay I’m stepping off my soap box and I’m way off topic

  11. Todd Rukes saw every employee’s resignation letters. He knew the reasons people were leaving and he acted like an asshole. No matter how you left or what you said, you were always wrong. He was involved in forcing people to change their resignation letters to get their pay for the notice they gave. Todd allowed R.T. Maldaner’s pay to be withheld, only to have to cower and pay up bc the Maldaner’s had record of the pay agreement. Todd Rukes needs to GO. He served Luke’s whims and is the exact opposite of what an HR professional should be.

    1. Carrie is right. Todd Rukes has completely disqualified himself. In fact, many of the men on the new harvest leadership team have disqualified themselves. These men all knew this kind of behavior was going on and said NOTHING. Many times, they would laugh along with the jokes and mockery. It’s disgraceful and they should not be trusted to now lead the church into the next chapter.

  12. Recent Harvest Departed

    I have heard numerous other reports of Rukes lying, cheating, deceiving, abusing power, and shredding documents.

  13. There are many men like this in Harvests ranks. They came as decent men, or at least mostly blank slates, but we’re corrupted by a desire for the “inner ring”, a ring that must be entered if you are to last in a culture like Harvest’s (see CS Lewis’ brilliant essay “The Inner Ring”) it explains much of what perpetuated and enabled the abuse of many by a spiritual and carnal bully named James.

  14. While I agree that James MacDonald’s manner was very rough/coarse and not particularly polished or what one expects of a healthy academic environment, did anyone actually watch the whole video for the content and the attitude he was trying to foster? I’m not saying that he wasn’t being a bit of a butt, however, the teaching was entirely sound and those high school kids were getting information that I’m getting in my first semester of seminary.

    It is absolutely a gross misrepresentation to say that he was violent to kids: he was performing an illustration— if perhaps an unfortunately chosen one. It is wrong to attribute this as anything more than a gruff cranky demeanor. Pleasant? No. Informative? Yes. His method of instilling fear of authority for behavioral modification is nothing new. Anyone over 30 could recognize that technique from their public education days.

    How delicate are we making children these days that a teacher’s cranky disposition is intolerable?

    I’ve followed the disaster JM made of his ministry. Unfortunately, he is a man with great flaws and apparently outright sinful behavior—- but let’s not forget that could be said of many of us to one degree or another.

    Both schadenfruede and misrepresenting truth is unChristian.

    1. Susan Vonder Heide

      I watched the whole tape and it was far more than a “cranky disposition”. He wasn’t complaining about the weather or about heavy traffic on the drive over. Anybody in a teaching role needs to have control of a classroom but this was about drawing attention to himself as the great fearful presence in the front of the room by choosing kids to go after in a nasty way over minor matters.

      1. Oh Sandra June where are you? If that’s the kind of “info” you are learning in your first year of “Cemetery” then you best RUN with everything you have FAR FAR AWAY. You are being deceived, the teachers are deceived and the institution is DECEIVING YOU.
        Jesus said in John10:27 ” My sheep hear MY VOICE………. ” learn the rest.

        1. David, you must have misunderstood me because I’m sure you aren’t saying that inspiration and inerrancy of scripture is deception. Also, I have no idea why you’d call seminary “cemetary”….. your post is snarky and confusing.

          1. MANY people substitute “cemetery” for “seminary.” It refers to how many people lose their faith while there.

    2. Give me an absolute break, Sandra June. Many of those kids will absolutely remember that a “Pastor” “man of God” treated them with hostility, the exact opposite of how Jesus would teach kids…..and then has the gall to “teach them”…..who cares if it’s “sound doctrine” as you put it……that makes it even worse!!! Those kids will be turned off to that “sound doctrine” you mention because this “pastor” treated them this way while teaching the scriptures. It’s an abomination. In fact, Jesus said if you make little ones stumble (kids) its better that a millstone be tied around your neck and you be thrown into the sea. How do you feel about that?

      1. Hey, I said I thought he had poor behavior. What I’m trying to point out is that being a butt is not criminal. What was shown in this particular video does not reflect the description in the original article nor the level of outrage in the comments. I’m sensitive to those who arenow speaking out against the bullying, but as Christians we also have a mandate not to conflate, slander, and misrepresent. The video, in my own opinion, is not evidence of what it was presented as. I wouldn’t want my kids to sit under that teacher, but acting like a butt isn’t criminal, just distasteful. How he was able to get away with this behavior for so long just shows how much people are willing to put up with in order to keep their own lifestyles running smoothly. The elders/leaders have a huge problem with a lack of integrity and should all be removed.

        1. Susan Vonder Heide

          How much a particular kid was harmed by this depends on the individual child. The fact that there might have been some kids in that room who managed to tune out the behavior does not mean that there were not other kids in the room who were deeply harmed spiritually and psychologically by the behavior. It is up to followers of Christ to care about all of the kids. Sadly, the other video (the one that people said was worse) was destroyed so that people could not see it which is interesting to say the least.

  15. My kids attended HCA for many years until we left the church. There is an interesting dynamic there that is hard to explain to outsiders. First, all teachers and staff are required to attend Harvest church. This is an unusual requirement and can lead to very unhealthy dynamics. This means that HCA often ends up hiring other HBF pastor adult kids, HCA parents, etc.

    There is also a SIGNIFICANT DISCOUNT given toward tuition to members of HBC. In fact, many parents have told me that they would like to leave the church, but they know that they cannot afford Christian school tuition anywhere else. So they feel trapped and stay at Harvest church “for their kids.” Many times when these major issues have happened with James Macdonald, friends I know have decided to stay to finish out the school year because they had children enrolled and would lose their discount if they stopped attending the church. I know for a fact that the Harvest-member school discount can be lost mid-year if you leave, because it happened to us. Often by the time the school year ends, the scandal has quieted for long enough that they go ahead and re-enroll for another year.

    Others stay because they or a family member is employed at the school and feel that they have an obligation to finish out the school year as a teacher or staff member. It is my opinion that HCA is one of the MAJOR reasons why families stay — scandal after scandal. They are led to believe that it is a superior school and that everywhere else is inferior. This is clearly shown in the video where James mocks another local Christian school. It is not a friendly competitive banter, it is a hard-wired belief of their superiority; and this feeling is obvious to others in the community. I know because we did end up going to another local Christian school and hear what the parents there think of HCA’s superior attitude when we play them in sports.

    Many people move to the Elgin area for HBC and HCA (we did); we knew of others who even moved from other states in large part to be a part of Harvest. Those who want out often believe that the public school districts in that area are not strong and do not consider them as options for their kids, and they know that going to another Christian school is much more expensive, maybe even not an option for them financially. Plus even if they can afford another private school, parents know their kids will have to leave friends and then continue to see old HCA friends when they compete against each other in sports while feeling the “shame” of going to what is perceived as being an inferior “B” school.

    Finally, parents are afraid that by asking questions or rocking the boat in any way, their kids could be affected. Trust me, people know that others have not been allowed to finish the school year in the past due to their parents’ questions. Even Dallas Jenkins mentioned in his letter about not initially wanting to speak out for fear of how it might affect his kids at HCA.

    For many going to HBC is so much more than going to church. It is everything — their entire social culture… church, employment, small group, school, sports, youth group, friends. Walking away while still living in the area is a major decision and can be very difficult knowing that all of those people will likely turn away from you and your kids. It is also hard when you’ve grown accustomed to the resources of Harvest that other schools/ churches cannot afford. Of course, really… neither can Harvest….

    1. greenhouse412,

      As an ex-HCA employee, you hit it right on the head. Excellent recap of our situation to. a. tee. Thank you for capturing in words such an accurate portrait of our experience as well as many others.

      I experience the same SMH (shake my head) reaction when people post things like ‘hasn’t enough been said already’ or ‘stop beating a dead horse’ that so many here (and at TED, TWW, etc) experienced. Only when someone has experienced FIRST-HAND what you wrote about above, can they FULLY comprehend how seriously corrupt, mind-controlling and severely manipulative this cult is.

      The only thing sadder than this is the reality that our child completely abandoned the faith as a direct result of the hypocrisy, lying and deep manipulation that they saw and engaged first hand.

      1. Susan Vonder Heide

        The worst thing about spiritual abuse in any church or denomination is the effect that it has on the most vulnerable, particularly children. We all need to pray that people who have witnessed or experienced spiritual abuse will be able to clearly distinguish between it and Jesus Christ and joyfully choose to follow Jesus Christ for eternity.

      2. exHCA staff- my child also walked away from Jesus because of what they saw in the evangelical industrial complex as well, including a Harvest plant in another state. Since then I have changed a few things.

        First, I have told my child and agreed that their observations of legalism and corruption were accurate. I want them to know that when they smelled a rat they were right.

        I’ve stopped attending Sunday “services” and now focus on fellowshiping with other believers over meals or in small house gatherings when possible. I will not support the EIC anymore.

        I pray daily and often. For my child, for other prodigals and for those wounded by the EIC. I ask for powerful encounters with the living God Leading to life transformation and true discipleship.

        The story with our children isn’t over yet. In fact, I thank God he has delivered my child and yours from pew sitting and lining corrupt leaders pockets with hard earned income. When these return to Jesus they will be well prepared to stand against that nonsense and to help hurting people out in the world.

        1. Thank you Fisher for your beautiful testimony of how things should be !
          Small caring groups that rightly divide the Word of Truth
          God Bless you and your family greatly as you spread the Truth!

      3. Yikes! Smells like a trap, sounds like a trap , looks like a ….. trap …… IT’S A TRAP!!!! RUN EVERYBODY RUN! PRIDE and MONEY, MONEY and PRIDE same old, same old……..
        Jim Jones GAVE everybody Kool aid , harvest WILL charge you for it….. RUN AWAY!

    2. Debra Szemplinski

      With the exception of ‘fear’ of repraisal, I agree. Three kids in HCA- charter member. Pulled out un ‘13 after Easter sermon (mocked Catholics, talked finance, how his mother ran ‘multiple corporations…) debacle. Miracles are all ariund us. The HCA staff are some if the finest Christians I have ever known! Total respect for these living testaments to the live of Christ. I only wish and pray one day I may do something in return for their kindness and tireless devotion! The teachers & staff of HCA are domestic missionaries. I am humbled to tears when I think of them.

  16. Yes! God did not save the temple but knocked it down to the very last brick.

    So what is it that the children of God are trying to save? Surely now that God has made his dwelling in us we are sinfully mistaken for worrying about preserving the puny junk properties (buried in UN-biblical debt)
    that we had no part in.

    Let God finish destroying them! He’s going to anyway. Better by far to meet in houses like 2000 yrs ago.

    Why would the same people who have been and continue to be spit upon, feel pressure to preserve the very spitters.

    Let them and their LLC ownership members use their ‘cunning ways’ to figure out how to save their secular fannies! The children of God have nothing in common with these people! Apparently it’s much easier to cure cancer than get rid of these wolfs.

    “But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord” (Josh. 24:15

    Matthew 18:20 (ASV) For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

    Everything will be better by far than what we have now! EVERYTHING!

    We didn’t create the debt and we are not responsible for it. Let the so called pastors and so called elders and so call mighty men give back all their ill gotten gain.

    I’ll bet you little r donald. is out there planning a repentance auction on his ‘Hog bike’ so he can give the proceeds back to his former place of business.

    1. We are in agreement Andrew! Let that other religion come along and buy up the properties just like the Crystal Cathedral , probably was the plan a long time ago , I sense that all the foot draggin’ is just a stall tactic for reasons I don’t want to know….. very evil.

  17. Please allow me to bring some humor and HBC / JMac positive spin to this incident. At least he grabbed the boy’s arm and not his inner thigh like the airplane incident:)

    1. Steve, if these videos were fake news, JMac, HBC and HCA would get a naysayer, bring up the ghost of Johnny Cochran and try to sue again for libel. Why have these entities not refute these videos if they weren’t true? What is fake news is the new leadership continuing to provide a false image of transparency. You would also appreciate the works of Ken Singer.

      1. I really do hope that these videos and sound recordings are making their way across the city and the country to news and media outlets in Naples to let everybody know a new sheriff is coming to town,
        by the way how did the son of J do this past weekend at the Osteens?

    2. Susan Vonder Heide

      It seems that the “fake news” was attempted when the video that some have said to be far worse was destroyed so that people could not see the full extent of what was going on. Yet, even this video gives a flavor of what was going on.

    3. Debra Szemplinski

      Your response to ‘truth’ and ‘evidence’ is call it ‘falsehood’? “Woe to those who call good evil and evil good.’ Why bother citing the source – that too will be denied.

  18. There used to be a term commonly used by church leaders to describe part of the Harvest culture, “Harvest Hard Edge”. This term accurately captures the tone that this church has had since the beginning. It’s ungodly. Can anyone find any evidence that this phenomenon has faded away?

    1. Susan Vonder Heide

      Good point about hard tone. Philippians 4:5 says “Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.”

  19. Joe Blow, I’d be very interested in knowing more about “Harvest Hard Edge” and the leadership DNA taught to Harvest pastors. Please share more. I still suspect we will see this same situation play out in some Vertical Church Network and Great Commission Collective churches. This video alone demonstrates the teaching that if anyone challenges you, not only don’t let them shake your confidence, get aggressive, be loud, even be physical.

  20. B School..😂🤦🏻‍♂️

    What shameful treatment of another Christian School. My favorite line is when he said, “I’m loyal to our church.” That shows his true view of Gods kingdom. The teachers at the B school are inferior in their ministry and service to God’s kingdom because they do not belong to the vertical brand. The students are inferior believers, because they do not attend the mighty HCA. He chose loyalty to his Church rather than THE church. Feeling there are limited resources in God’s kingdom, he views the ministry next door as an enemy rather than a partner working toward the same goal. The child of God recognizes that we serve a limitless God with limitless power and we are only instruments for his glory; insignificant and, when we are honest with ourselves, unnecessary. God doesn’t need us to be glorified. He doesn’t need our money or worship or anything we can give. My prayer is that HCA be blessed and Westminster be blessed by the Lord. It is God who sustains. Let him be our vision and Lord. Pray for the students of both schools to grow and mature in Christ-likeness.

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