Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Truth about Leaving CCK

When a couple recently decided to leave CCK, Norm told them that no one who leaves ever does so properly and no one who has left is doing well spiritually. I was surprised. Where did Norm get his crystal ball? How is it that he knows how everyone who has left is doing spiritually? My family is very involved in a church we love, but I guess we can't be doing well because it's not CCK?

As to how we left, we met with the leaders multiple times over the years to voice our concerns only to be torn apart. When it became apparent that the church was becoming increasingly controlling and manipulative, we decided to leave. At that time, we again made our concerns known, met with the pastors, and left quietly, prayerfully, and respectfully. But I guess, we could not have left correctly, because it was our decision, not rubber-stamped by Norm. The fact that he would never have approved of our leaving is irrelevant to him.

I want to hear from all of you about what happened when you left CCK. What made you decide to leave? Did you discuss it with any of the pastors or other leaders? How were you treated after you left by the people still at the church? How is your life now? Did you make the right decision?


  1. I grew up in that congregation from my birth until I was past 10 years old; the second my family became less than "picture perfect" (human) we were in a sense judged and banished by the church. In my opinion now, that is a good thing. I still have family members and such in attendance of the church, and in my opinion it is an extremely coercive culture in which members are ostracized for progressive thinking and healthy questioning of values. People give everything to this church, their time, their MONEY, their hearts, and the second they act like a human CCK judges that they are poor christians and abandons them. I find it interesting that there are people who attend the church who are BARELY scraping by in terms of finances, and yet the lead pastor, his wife and his children drive BMWs and go on inetrnational vacations. A little bit discerning if you ask me. CCK is a cult and not representative of the Christian faith; they do not display a leadership style that indicates their genuine interest in the spiritual well being of their participants. I don't see the leaders of the congregation emulating the values they so feverishly procalim as christ like. When I think of CCK I think of judgment and lies; a need to make every one of their followers the same. Oh and don't even get me started on their educational system. I attended their so called "academy" as a child and when I transitioned into the public school system my education was SERIOUSLY lacking; I was far behind my peers and had a lot of catching up to do. Even now in my adulthood as a professional career person I can see the gap in my education over those few critical years. I hope that Norm and his lemmings are held accountable for their actions; lets pray to Jesus that these folks spend a little more time trying to fix themselves, cos clearly the task has been neglected for a long long time.

  2. I see that my first comment was not "approved" by the moderator. And you accuse CCK of censorship: shame on you!

  3. You're right. If you write it again, I will post it. But I won't guarantee that I will post everything that's written. You are welcome to start your own blog where everyone has to reveal their identity. I wanted to create a forum where anyone, including those who have been victimized, would have a chance to speak up.

    Anyone has the right to believe or ignore what is written here.

  4. The truth shall set us free. This truth is a hard one. I was 20 yrs old when the flashbacks began. I had a baby by then and I remember having visions of a hand touch a baby girl in a place that should never be touched. Around 28, major anxiety crept in. I started having panic attacks. By 29, the body memories were in full force. Here is MY experience. I REMEMBER! I remember those dark school days when the teacher took us to chapel. I remember when a man in a suit came to get me out of class for a lesson. I remember the long walk down the hallway. I remember the velvet curtain with the giant cross. I remember the conference room behind the velvet curtain. I remember bright lights, a long table, being tied down on the table, participating in strange ceremonies and rehearsing what seemed to be foreign words that didn't make any sense. I remember holding friends hands and men in suits making a circle around the table. I remember the dark closet. I remember old man's fingernails.I can feel body weight and hands on many places on my body. I remember telling myself "don't forget" just before my eyes rolled back into my head. I remember waking up while lying on the conference room floor and the way my breath feels in a small dark place. I felt dizzy, groggy. Counting. Always counting. I kept an invisible list of names on my right hand. There are 5. Five Men. Five suits. One per finger. I know the truth.

    1. To think that I probably know you - and was possibly friends with you during this time - and having no recollection of anything being "off" in those specific regards makes me feel .... well, there are no words. I remember hearing some
      strange stories about that room ...

      Thinking about you - this reply is years after this post so I hope you are doing so much better now than you were then.

      Anonymous stranger possible friend - I will be thinking about you.

  5. Dear Truth,

    Thank you so much for coming forward to talk about something so painful and so personal. I know that it has taken a lot of time and counseling, and probably many of tears and prayers as well.

    When you are ready, I know that I and others would like to have some clarification, especially about when and where this all took place. The events you describe here are far beyond anything I knew or suspected or heard about.

    Know that you and your family are a in my prayers as you. You are an incredibly brave woman and you have my respect.

  6. Whoa.......I am speechless. I think I am going to throw up now... That is by far the worst, most horrific thing I have ever read in my entire life. Did that happen at Northgate? I am so sorry no one was there to protect you.......

  7. Unfortunately the young lady tells the truth. Endless counseling, thoughts of suicide, wondering why God (and her father) did not protect her. . . . .If I were at CCK, I would not wait to have a Matthew discussion with the Leaders. Take your children and run out of there as fast you can. RUN AS FAST AS YOU CAN. SAVE YOUR CHILDREN!!!

  8. Oh, yeah James T. it happened at CCN. CCK is under the guidance and spiritual direction of the fathers of Northgate. Who took a bunch of Jesus freaks and put them in suits and taught them his ways. (We are going back to the mid 70s.) And who knows how far back it really goes. But it is time to stop this madness.
    I know that leaving those strong relationships is difficult, especially when they turn there back on you as if you are a Leper.
    But then it is one on one with Jesus. He is the compassionate one, He will lead you to liberty. It is not the Church who saves you, who heals you, who provides for you. It is the Father, and you can only get to Him through the Son, allow His Spirit to guide you out of this mess. It will be hard but, oh, what a joy it will be.

  9. What Truth said is true; she is our daughter. As the memories came, it all began to make sense . . . why this little girl could not sleep at night, why she would cry for hours because she didn't want us to leave her alone at bedtime, the nightmares, night after night after night. We took her to COH beause she complained of stomach pains but there was "nothing wrong," they said. We couldn't figure it out, we thought we had a safe place for her in the "Christian" school, she was never in day care, and I was a stay-at-home mom. But the signs were there . . . for years . . . and I didn't see them. No apologies can take away the grief and despair and darkness our daughter has experienced . . . . Her childhood was lost to predators who were supposed to teach her of Jesus and protect her from the evil one. "Father, forgive us for not knowing! Forgive us for putting man before you (I think that's called idolatry!), for being more concerned about "fitting in" than heeding the signs of abuse in our precious little girl. Forgive us for wanting to believe that we were in a Utopia world and not being on the alert! Forgive us for being so needy that we couldn't care for the needs of our child. Father forgive us for we have sinned against our little girl!"

    1. This happened at CCN? What time period? Who?

  10. Dear Truth,
    I too went to CCN and CCK. Where you described I remember. While I did not experience what you did I am curious to know more. I suffered abuse from a family member and I would like to talk to you privately. Please email me at No judgement here just want to offer help and aid in healing.

  11. PART ONE
    While I didn’t leave CCK for anything of a criminal nature, as have been the experience of others, I believe my reasons are still valid in the sense of being truthful about the state of CCK.

    I attended CCK from about 1992-2004. Most of these years were as a minor so I don’t believe I was ever technically a “member” of the church. It would be true to state that I never approached the pastoral staff with my reasons for leaving. I was rather put off by the stories of those around me who had put questions & concerns forth to Pastor Willis and others and were universally rebuffed. Although Pastor Willis stated on numerous occasions that there was an open forum there, I saw this was not true and therefore didn’t waste the time and emotion. Now I will add my two cents to the others, in hopes that this will be part of the final step in confronting the church leadership…as the Bible requires.

    My first reason for leaving (and these are in no particular order) is the spectacle that the worship service on Sunday mornings had become. Instead of being led into worship by example, as Pastor Stone had done, I was now being forced into worship. A Sunday didn’t go by when we weren’t commanded to worship a certain way, from telling us when to speak in tongues to telling us to dance in a more uninhibited fashion and on and on. It was clear that the more demonstrative apparently equaled the more devout. The content of the songs also went downhill. Some were chants, I suppose, but some were just crazy and disjointed. Praise and worship they were not.

    The second reason is, perhaps, the most crucial – the lack of Biblical reference in Sunday sermons. I was part of the team of people who transcribed the Sunday messages for the church website so I had a chance to see the notes firsthand. I realized one Sunday that the message I was transcribing had no Bible verse…anywhere. God’s Word wasn’t mentioned at all and I was appalled. I started to look back at the preceding messages and realized that they were either without Biblical references or they had a token verse somewhere that didn’t relate to the rest of the message. My interest lies in hearing a teaching that is taken from the word of God – not in hearing someone’s personal opinions or agenda.

  12. PART 2 - sorry, had to split it up.
    The third reason was the church’s inability to carry out the Biblical mandate. With a few hundred people and, I venture to say, quite a few dollars behind them we managed to be almost completely impotent in terms of reaching out to the local community and the greater world around us. Although much was said about being a witness to the Kingdom of God, little was done. We apparently gave a token amount to missionaries that we never got to hear from and nobody in our community knew anything about us at all. We had certainly never helped them nor met their needs.

    The fourth reason was that there ended up being no place for me there in terms of friendship with my peers. Although I had gained a few friends over the years, everything changed after I graduated from high school. I was one of the first people to decide not to go into the Master’s Commission program – and I didn’t apply for the program in any successive year either. It was not meant to be a personal slight to the program. I knew it required fortitude to complete and I, quite frankly, didn’t have that level of interest. This did, however, put me into a group of “have not’s”. I lost one of my best friends to the program, as she no longer had time (or made time) for me after going through it herself. I wasn’t included in what was going on because I wasn’t a graduate of the course and it was made clear that I was second-rate. At that point, my peers mainly spoke with me just to try to convince me that Master’s Commission was right for me. I require more of my friends than that. I was able to eventually make some friends with those who were also on the second tier but those were few and far between.

    The last reason, although there may be a few more minor ones, is that the church body had little say in what actually occurred within the four walls of the church building. There are supposedly those with member status but they have no voting power and certainly no veto power. All the ideas started at the top and filtered down to the laypeople. You either supported the idea or you were seen as being in rebellion. Since we were fed the line that we were THEE city set on a hill, I guess we were supposed to think that everything proposed by the leadership was also 100% on. No, thank you.

  13. I am so proud of my dear friend "Truth" for having the courage to speak up about something that has haunted her and caused emotional and physical pain for many years. The truth will set her free...and hopefully shed light on the HORRIFIC things that have and are happening at this church so that not one more person (especially an innocent child) will be sexually, physically, emotionally or spiritually abused. I pray it will also give courage to others who may have felt alone in with a smiliar burden to speak up and be set free as well...

  14. Emily,
    Thank you so much for sharing your experience. I think the state of CCK is a testiment to how our world is today. People often do not think for themselves and follow blindly. I am so happy to see that you and your whole family are not this way. In fact when I was shunned for leaving Masters Commision I remember after starting beauty school your mother brought Evan to me for a haircut. I cannot tell you how much that meant to me. At the time I think I was speechless and still carried so much shame from what happened. If it wasn't for people like your family I think I may have given up on Christians completley. I still find it hard to make friends with anyone who claims to be "Christian" I am working on that. I am also having a hard time entering into a church. I find I have so much anxiety. To others who posted on Norms blog and on here, what church are you attending now? I am searching.

  15. Courageous, strong and no longer afraid. “Truth” is ready to release the painful memories of her past. She is an extremely brave woman. Recognizing, internalizing and releasing is her path to spiritual, emotional and physical freedom. God did not do this. Satan did. God will now heal “Truth” in ways she can not begin to imagine. She must continue to find refuge in God’s loving arms. She must continue to believe, listen and follow God’s word while finding comfort in her faith, friends and family. “Truth” is courageous, strong and no longer afraid.

  16. To Truth,
    Last night I was haunted by your post. I commend your spirit.I could not go to sleep because I was haunted by a memory of someone telling me that bad things happened in that conference room. I was to young to understand what that meant. I think at the time I thought it was where they took children who disobeyed and since I was always obedient I never thought about it. I hope you do email me. I am trying to put the pieces of the puzzle together. Let us join hands in healing. Continue to be brave!!!!

  17. Part I

    I attended CCK for a number of years throughout my life. As much criticism as there is in staying anonymous, if you had been ostracized, lost friendships & threatened by family, you would also understand the need to stay anonymous. I choose to stay anonymous, because I hope to give courage to victims so they know they’re not alone and can feel comfortable to come forward themselves without having to give their names or be judged by others.

    A common way of thinking at CCK is, “One bad apple rots the whole barrel.” So therefore, if you were seen as rebellious or struggling, the other members never came beside you to walk with you or encourage you, instead you were abandoned and avoided like the plague. I cannot even begin to tell you how many times my fair-weather friends were there right beside me when I was doing well, but gone in a flash if I was in trouble. No one wanted to be associated with a lost sheep, because they could be guilty by association. I asked Dennis Trout once, about a former member who was struggling, and what I could do to help them or encourage them, his response was to stay away from them for they could have a negative influence on me. I’m sorry, but aren’t we to be salt to the world, light in a dark place? This individual wasn’t even ex-communicated, they were just a hurting friend, someone who had grown up in the church all their life, and yet another “daughter/son of the house” abandoned. It never ceases to amaze me how shocked people are when they discover someone’s left CCK. “They left? I didn’t know they left!” Members hardly notice nor dare to care and definitely do not ask why.

    How many of us know the term “the inner circle”? How many of us have been judged on our family or our status in the church? When I was younger, a leader once judged me because of the chick-flicks movies I had in the backseat of my car (PG might I add). That leader went to my sister and told her to distance herself from my bad influence based on the movies she saw in my backseat. I kid you not. They actually told my own family member to stay away from me based on that! Or how about the friend I brought to a youth basketball game? That same leader went to my friends asking if I was dating this person, and NEVER came to ask me about it. I almost got disciplined HUGELY for that one, if not for another leader who heard about it third hand (now gone from CCK) standing up for me and sharing the truth. I know you laugh cause these examples sound ridiculous, IT IS RIDICULOUS! These examples are minor and only the beginning of the stories I could tell. At one point I was demoted from a position of leadership within the church, because one pastor told “my covering” that by looking at me I had caused HIM to stumble. He had the audacity to put the blame of his own sin on me. 6 months later, no one could remember why I was disciplined in the first place and not back in leadership. It devastated me. I know of many who’ve been told, “You’ll never be good enough to marry so and so.” Who does this?!? Why the hell are people asking the church leaders who they can and cannot marry???!!! The covenant that a man and wife make is between the two of them and God, not Man-Norm-Dennis-Kevin-Eric-Wife-God!!

    Many truly believe, “If I submit myself to my authority, God will honor my obedience no matter what.” I believed it, for a long time. But in the midst of this my spirit wilted. I really doubted I could hear God’s voice anymore, after all I was told repeatedly, “I think you need to go back and keep seeking the Lord on that” and “God uses others to speak to you”. Suffering for Christ at the hands of your own church, your own leaders? Really? Is that God’s desire? Oh and you might respond, “But every church has their issues.” Have you been to other churches? No truly, have you ever been a member of a healthy, scripturally taught church before? Because if you did, you would see how messed up CCK truly is.

  18. Part II

    When I finally worked up the nerve to walk in obedience to what I knew God was calling me to do and walk out those doors, I wanted to do it the right way. I didn’t want it to be because of all the circumstances that I could attribute it to, all the times my pastors had failed me, left me uncovered, even hid me – I wanted it to be because the Bible was showing me another way of having relationship with Him, directly with Him. Because God was making clear that I would never become the person He had destined me to be, when others were continually disciplining me, judging me or accusing me of things that they hadn’t even confirmed with me were true. So I met with Pastor Norm. I told him that He himself had preached, “If you can’t grow where you’re planted, you need to go where you can.” I told him I wasn’t growing there. That people had placed judgments on me and every time I tried to walk in my calling, someone was cutting my legs out from under me or making up lies. I also told him that I disagreed with how relationships were handled, the interference of leadership in personal relationships and the division caused in families. I caught him lying about one particular situation and he completely denied it to my face. I knew for a fact he was lying to me. Amazingly, I was completely unemotional and so at peace through the entire meeting, I knew God’s grace was on me. I pleaded with him to recognize that he had lost so many out the back door, while he was welcoming new people through the front door. He denied that it was true and asked me to prove it, to name names. So I started to list off on my fingers over and over again the names of the children “of the house” and he said they all left for reasons of offense and bitterness. His response to me in our meeting, was and I quote, “I don’t believe God would call someone to a church and then call them someplace else. I don’t support your decision to leave and I’m sorry it’s because of these things you felt were wrongfully done to you.” Wow. If it was because of the things I had gone through in the past, I would have left years earlier, but I needed God to show me scripturally and He did. Norm’s response to me and inability to trust that I could hear the Lord for my life, confirmed that I was doing the right thing. And I left with a peace that was indescribable.

    I did lose friends over it and it was hard, one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. And many people thought of course, I must have backslidden or I was in rebellion, surely it was nothing on CCK’s part, the church can do no wrong. A member of CCK can excuse ANYTHING that happens to themselves or to someone else. It just goes to show how deep the deception runs. I don’t blame them; I was once in their shoes too.

  19. Part III

    Do not be afraid to ask questions; do not be afraid to ask why. Does knowing my name really earn me any more credibility in your eyes? Will you believe any of us any more knowing our identities? Or will you just dismiss it as usual? My stance on the church has been up until this point – I wholeheartedly disagree with what CCK is doing, but I still love many people there and unless they come to me, I’m not making it a point to go into the issues. I will just continue to love & pray for the members. But as of recently I learned of two more victims who came to me themselves, people I love and I trust who are also victims of child molestation that occurred years ago. It grieved me and I wept for the shame they have kept close for years, because of the fear to come forward. At this point, many of you may have already figured out who I am, but I don’t really care. It’s become so much greater than my own issues and now my stance is this: Enough is enough and its time to take a stand for truth. Things have gotten out of hand, children are STILL being victimized, many of you are highly deceived and the infection runs deeper than any of you realize. Your own peers and friends are victims and some are offenders, and many are still at CCK. You see them everyday, but you don’t know the truth of what’s happened to them or what they’ve done to others. Be someone they can trust and be willing to protect the broken no matter what it might cost you. Now is the time for freedom.

    And to those of you who have information and have been protecting these offenders within the four walls of your church, or you may have molested others and need to come forward, let me leave you with this well known quote we’re all quite familiar with,

    “Fall on the rock, before the rock falls on you.”

  20. Just for the record, I think we can all understand the safety that anonymity provides. And if the purpose of a blog post is simply to vent, I think that giving your name or not is not an issue.

    However, I believe that some of us are hoping for some justice to be meted out to those who are at fault. In that sense, my hope and encouragement is that if anyone has experienced a criminal offense against them, they should not only be specific but primarily be willing to be so with the police. This kind of throws anonymity out the window but it would end in the ultimate good, I think.

    So, maybe this can provide a starting point but please don't hide if that's you. We're all here to support you! I'll be praying. Let me know if I can help you otherwise.

  21. Monica, my heart is with you. Thank you for opening up about your memories. I cannot contact you today but I'm certain that we will talk in the near future. God is on your side.

  22. All I can say is "Thank you" to all of those who have begun to speak about their experiences and for the softness that you all have shown towards the abused. I have been praying for this day for 10 years - The day that those who have been abused can come forward and speak out against their abusers!

    I know that there is a process of reporting to the authorities that is taking place right now. If you need information on whom to speak to please feel free to email me and I can point you in the right direction. I have numbers of detectives who are waiting to speak to the victims of this church.

    Continue to forward this blog onto those you know and love. Those still trapped inside the walls of CCK. Those who have left. Those who were a part of Christ Church Northgate or Northgate Christian School (or some of you know as North Seattle Christian School). I know that there are many more who remember and need to speak up. There is safety in numbers! You are not alone anymore! There is a community of people praying for you! Here ready to do whatever we can to support you!

    This situation is bigger than all of us and it will take all of us to join together to see that the Lord reigns even in the midst of mans sin!
    Please do not stop. This is not over. We need to continue to encourage the victims to come forward.

    I have been praying and interceding every min of every day for all of you! If God is for YOU, who can be against you! Be strong and courageous for our God is with you!

    1. I'm a survivor of CC Northgate. I would like to talk with others about their experiences there. Mine ended badly.

    2. I'm a survivor of CC Northgate. I would like to talk with others about their experiences there. Mine ended badly.

  23. Truth,
    Thank you for your kind words. While I did not suffer sexual abuse at the hands of our church leaders I now believe my father knew what was happening there and that is how he justified what he did. I have heard of others who suffered abuse in their homes while their families presented themselves as the perfect families. My goal in life after working and confronting my abuser is to help others do the same. It is one of the reasons I am pursuing my degree and ultimately my masters and a doctorate in psychology. While I am not a professional yet I want to offer right now myself as a person to listen and be there for all victims. I feel your pain and I want to help you. Please, as Tina said before, report it to the police. You have the opportunity to ensure this does not happen to anyone else. As tough as this may be great healing will come and God's grace if you stand up for yourself and all victims. I posted my email earlier for Truth but anyone out there feel free to contact me. Bless you all.

  24. Oh my...
    I was sent an email with the link to this blog and does it stir up memories.
    My family attended CCK for a few years and was immediately "warned" by a good friend who had experienced CCN. But we had some good friends attending and we were so welcomed in that we continued, but with a sideways glance trying to be aware. What seemed apparent from the start was that there was an inner circle, not so much a pastor, elders & deacons, but more of an almost secret "club" of men who oversaw operations and even "possivle prospects" to join them.
    If you had alot of money, you were in like Flint with Pastor Norm, but later I was approached by one of the insiders who said something to the effect that with the right oversight I had the potential to become one of the "inner circle". I was very uncomfortable and after had already been seeing some questionable attitudes and beliefs, was now really entering into serious prayer on how I should deal with the matter. I did have a conversation with someone in some leadership capacity, but it was discounted as a misunderstanding.
    When concerns came up with other members, we were told that if we were to leave terrible things would happen to our family, that it always happened to those who left without doing it the "right way", which was not at all based on scripture.
    After much prayer I received
    confirmation from the Lord regarding my family's leaving more clearly than I have had ever before. I did not want to make a decision based on emotion.
    My last involvement was to attend a special service called to dispense rumors of inappropriate behavior of the leadership after being approached by some high profile believers in the body.
    All the claims made by the members were duly dismissed and the "perpetraters" were to be prayed for that God would open their eyes and deliver them from their deceptions. I knew these claims to be true, and thus the word preached from the pulpit were lies. That was the last time we were in the building.
    We prayed for friends who knew what was going on but remained, and gave the pastor and leadership up to the Lord, for to whom much is given, much is required. Thay will be accountable to God for all of their activities, teachings, etc. but I was nevr aware of all that has followed.
    It is a stronghold that can be brought down through much fervent prayer if we all remember to do battle on our knees for those who remain unwillingly or unable to break free...

  25. Did the leadership at CCK tell you to do anything specifically unBiblical? Anyone? The Bible says to submit to your authority no matter who are what it is they are asking you to do UNLESS it is contrary to the Word of God.

    I agree. Some of the standards and "taboos" of CCK are sometimes annoying and frustrating. But none are are violating specific commands in the Bible.

    Let me just say from personal experience (especially after being dismissed from Master's Commission) that after submitting and accepting their correction, they're not at all judgmental. We've moved on as if it never happened.

  26. Ugh-this stirs up such memories of disgust and torment from the CCN days. Having attended CCN from the mid-80's until the time that the church imploded, I have always known that to leave a church or expose the truths would be considered spiritual suicide. On more than one occasion, I stood my ground with the Hamann clan as well as with the Willis' clan, only to be told that I was young and didn't know my stuff. Little did they know that their instruction in me through the youth group and in the high school (I was in the first graduating class) that they made me stronger than expected.

    All I can say is that people need to continue to expose the church for what it is and bind together through these experiences.

  27. Matt. 23:8 8-10"Don't let people do that to you, put you on a pedestal like that. You all have a single Teacher, and you are all classmates. Don't set people up as experts over your life, letting them tell you what to do. Save that authority for God; let him tell you what to do. No one else should carry the title of 'Father'; you have only one Father, and he's in heaven. And don't let people maneuver you into taking charge of them. There is only one Life-Leader for you and them—Christ. (mess)

    Spiritual authority is unbiblical and a cause for abuse.

  28. I hope that all of you that commented, that experienced sexual abuse, have gone/or are going to the authorities. As hard as it is, the cycle will continue until the authorities can investigate.

  29. I am so proud of myself for leaving Christ Church of Northgate after only three years at the young age of 21. I knew that I was gay and that that was not tolerated within this branch of Christianity. I was also mad for being let down by a man high within the ranks of respectability 11 years my senior who said that it was "wrong". After nine months of becoming close, with sex, and then that statement. I knew then and there that Christianity was not for me. Actually I told God that I needed a break from all the mind control. A few years later and I was fully "out" and have never looked back. I only miss the comraderie. I have since found that in other places but it must be said how awful the discipleship program hijacks the minds of the devotees. This is fine if you want a safe predictable world without any democrats or homosexuals in it but it is not the real world. Learning to escape what others deemed "the only way" was one of the best life lessons of my entire life. It taught me to listen within instead of only outside of me. It taught me that it is ok to question. What I hated most about my Christian experience was the lingering insecurity about using my mind and my intuition the way God had intended it to be. Basically we were mentally hijacked but now are all the stronger and wiser.

    A few years back I discovered the Living with Siva series and could not believe that Lord Shiva was as real as Christ was to me so many years earlier. I cried tears of relief. I thought that God was off the table for me. I don't mean to provoke by saying that I am a Hindu now or that being gay is not the problem I was told it to be but I do need to declare it as part of my conversion process.

    Greg Rogers

  30. I was there when a young girl, 17 or so was made to stand in front of the congregation and apologize for getting pregnant and how she shamed CCN. I wanted to shout "Stop the madness"! Who among us is without sin? If she is made to stand there and take the punishment in front of the congregation... then lets all get up there. Who lusted today? Who was envious? Who cheated on their taxes? I too left CCN after I voiced my concern over the motivation of my "home group leader" and the leadership in general. Norm is a product of Jim Hammond. Hypocrites!! Don't do as I do... do as I say should be the motto.

  31. I never went to Masters Commision church. BUT. I live in a state where the church that we belonged to is doing the SAME thing as CCK. The "pastors" are leaving this good church to make their church just like CCK. Cause they have a child going there. It is one big cult and it's spreading into other states. How sad and sick. Reading all these post. It now makes sense why the "pastors" and ALL their followers act the way they do and it makes sense why my family was asked to leave. CULT CULT CULT. I am from a very huge healthy church known around the US and I've never seen or heard of this type of crap. So sorry to those who were abused by this "church" and so called leaders or pastors. I'm a pastors kid and I've never seen my father or his pastor friends EVER treat one or family like this. What a shame. and SHAME ON CCK AND THE STAFF.

  32. I am really glad I found this site. I never went to CCK, but I was at Northgate for years when James T. and his sidekick RV were in charge. After that place got done with me, I couldn't go back to any church for 2 years. Thank God that He led me to a real church where I could heal.

  33. Is Jim Hamann from CCN involved in CCK?

  34. Is anyone still reading this website? I went to Christ Church at Northgate for about 3 years, and was devastated by experiences there.

  35. I try in The Name of Jesus to make a difference everywhere I am . My wife and I have experienced people at CCK that are afraid of realness in The Lord and we just continue to be shaped by Jesus and not worry about other peoples actions. Everyone is going to give an account for how they lived on earth . I just focus on my own walk of Faith and Not sight humbly. 206-293-4076 celll [ prayer warrior Mr Frasca

  36. It's affecting a whole new generation. Thankfully, finally, the truth is beginning to come out. The control, the fear manipulation, the financial issues. The tower is beginning to crumble yet the pastor and his "queen" still think it's everyone else .so sad for all those who invested their lives in this cult. God is unraveling the twisted mess.

  37. I left CCK in the 90's after two incidents that (as a child) really bothered me - there were many issues I had with the church but when a church wide meeting was held in which the congregation was told to stop talking to a woman who wanted her leave her husband - I was out.

    There were many things that bothered me about CCK that as a 12yr-15yr old - didn't seem right:

    1. In Sunday School if you didn't raise your hands in worship - you were tickled until you did so.

    2. In Youth Group if you didn't bring your bible, a pen and a notebook - you weren't allowed in.

    3. Anything that didn't fit CCK's semblance of Christianity was clearly sinning and a reason for there to be issues.

  38. Excellent article. The blog is useful and more informatics. I think all searchers like this kind of article. Thanks for blog admin who write these useful article. If anyone want to search more Please visit this site, Christian counseling Northgate

  39. don't know if anyone is still reading this. i attended CCN for several years in the late 80's (during college), along with my brother and his family (wife, 4 kids). my neices and nephews went to the school there.

    while i had a fairly innocuous experience, *none* of my neices or nephews have since followed jesus. several of them blame their lack of interest in anything spiritual on CCN. i don't know if anything bad happened to any of them (and i'm now, sort of afraid to ask after readying all this, which i knew nothing about), but all talk about the CCN/Northgate School as a bad experience.

    wow. reading this is a shock and an eye opener. makes me really sad. :-( i also know of over 6 divorces that happened in those years or soon after, with leaders of some of the home groups. i've always thot that was very weird.

    this all comes to light and thought as mars hill is dealing with their own horrible problems and "leaders." so, so sad.

  40. I'm not a former member CCK. But our family did go to CCK's parent church Christ Church Of Northgate in the late 70's. And the bad experiences I'm reading here about CCK, are so similar to my truly awful experience at CCN, I had to chime in.
    I went to CCN during it's heyday in the late 70's when it had upwards of 2000 members. But even before I left, the evidence that is was a controlling, materialistic church was undeniable. The church had its own mini fleet of Cadillacs that the pastors drove. They regularly brought in guest speaker rainmaking pastors to guilt people into keeping up on their tithes. And the leadership at times leaned on members themselves that they felt weren't giving enough to the church.
    If Pastor Hamin caught wind of any of the home meeting leaders or Sunday school teachers holding their own Bible studies on the side, he would pull them aside and put a stop to it himself. My time at CCN came to an end in 1979 when my Mom had a fight over the phone with one of the assistant pastors who retaliated against our whole family viciously. The guy was such a vindictive bastard, that he not only forbade me from being friends with his son, he also slanderously accused my brother of being a homosexual in front of his entire mid-week congregation that he pastored. My brother never had a gay bone in his body. And it was no accident that my brother was serving overseas in the Army when that pastor got up and told that lie.
    In the early eighties, CCN got caught up in a
    scandal when it came out that their home meeting leaders had gradually been given so much power by the church over their home meeting groups, that they were helping make life decisions for their members on matters in some cases as significant as marriage. Eventually, membership dwindled down to just a few hundred. In the mid 2000's, CCN sold it's property, moved and changed it's name. To this day, I will not set foot in any church that has ever had any association with CCN. CCK included.

  41. Hi, it has been awhile since anyone posted anything, so hopefully someone sees the this. Thank you to everyone who posted. I have attended CCK, buty primary church was their sister church and was very similar. I have since " mostly" left that church and i feel like I have barely made it out with my life. Truly the path to recovery will be long and hard.

    I was hoping that Truth, and anyone who has had a similar abuse story would research Dissociatiative Identity Disorder...very very common for people with abuse...esp if they remember only bits and pieces or if they felt they are disconnected from it.

    I had a very similar experience and I was simply told from the church that my being abused had made me demonic, etc. And that was the reason for blasting anxiety, etc. Wasn't til I left the church and went to a psychologist (shunned at my church) that I was diagnosed with a dissociative disorder, and have now been able to pick up my life.

    I hope you all find peace and healing for what you've been through.

  42. Our family went to Christ Church Of Northgate back in its heyday in the late 70's. We met some wonderful people there that really do love Jesus at a time when our family was broken by divorce and hurting badly. I will never forget the friends we made there. However, I didn't realize it at the time, but the church itself was showing signs that it was getting off track. The churches pastors and their families were living like kings and indeed drove Cadillacs issued by the church itself and wore the most expensive suits I've ever seen to church every Sunday. And Pastor Hamman was control happy and clamped down on members that tried to do things like start a bible study on the side like one of my youth pastors did for instance. By the time home shepherding fiasco came to a head, I had been scorched by what turned out to be an awfull religous experience and was long gone. But I learned from the experience and landed on my feet at a church that is solidly focused on Christ. As it turned out, all our friends we met at Christ Church Of Northgate ended up leaving too. To this day, I consider it a lesson well learned.

  43. My late wife was raped by a pastor by the name of norm. this happened while he was at a baptist church.