Wednesday, January 09, 2019

Chicago Church Drops Defamation Suit

RNS reports that the Chicago-area megachurch Harvest Bible Chapel will drop a defamation lawsuit it had filed against a former teacher at the church's school and a former church member who have posted criticism of the church's founding pastor on their blog.  The move comes after a Cook County trial court refused to enjoin the online publicizing of documents that would be produced during discovery in the case.  In a statement posted on its website, the church said in part:
... [T]he court appears unwilling to protect our many friends, including those with whom we seek to reconcile. In good conscience we cannot knowingly subject innocent people, in many instances against their will, to a full subpoena process.
Surely the Lord could have caused the court to rule in our favor.... We receive these outcomes as God’s direction and have instructed our legal counsel to drop the suit entirely. With this decision, we can again focus our energies on continued growth in personal and organizational faults we have owned, enduring what is false, and striving to mitigate the damage such attacks bring to our church family and friends.