An Open Letter to Kevin Kompelien (EFCA President Regarding how William Hamel Allegedly Legally Threatened Matt Boedy)

An open letter to EFCA President Kevin Kompelien regarding the alleged behavior of his predecessor William Hamel. William Hamel allegedly threatened a spiritual abuse victim in Glen Schrieber’s district with legal action. Kevin Kompelien as the heads of the EFCA needs to place a phone call or send an email and reach out and apologize for William Hamel’s behavior.

“Nothing changes until people decide to do the things they must, in order to bring about peace.”  

Shannon Alder

“A truly humble apology works to part storm clouds, calm rough seas, and bring on the soft lights of dawn; it has the power to change a person’s world.”

Richelle E Goodrich

Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.

Colossians 3:12-13 NKJV


Mr. Kempelien-

I hope this letter finds you doing well. I want you to know that this will be the first of many letters that I will write during your term in the EFCA Presidency. I want you to know that while I am a “done” with the EFCA I also love and care for the organization deeply. I have fond memories of an EFCA that was different and less fundamentalist. It was a time before the organization was being hijacked by the Neo-Calvinists. Your director Steve Highfill once said that the EFCA stood in the radical middle. I am telling you that “radical middle” is disappearing. If you want to read about my experience in the EFCA I will direct you to “A Personal Reflection on Fresno Evangelical Free Church; Known Today as The Bridge Fresno. Sometimes its healthy to have feedback and its even better to have the perspective of an outsider. You or others in the organization might find a new and fresh insight that you did not previously have. The most important issue I believe in your denomination is the situation playing out with Steve Estes and Community Evangelical Free Church. That has been written about in “Steve Estes and Community Evangelical Free Church in Elverson, Pennsylvania: A Painful Story of Domestic Abuse, Inappropriate Church Discipline, and Failed EFCA Polity.” I have refrained from writing you about the situation in Pennsylvania because I am waiting to see what Greg Strand and Eddie Cole can hopefully accomplish. This letter today is about another situation in the EFCA that I have been writing about. That situation is Matt Boedy’s Riverside Community Church in Columbia, South Carolina. You can read about Matt Boedy’s situation in “Disturbing Allegations of Spiritual Abuse at James Walden’s Acts 29 Riverside Community Church in Columbia, South Carolina.”

Mr. Kompelien, in a previous post called “Who Would Jesus Sue? Did Former Evangelical Free (EFCA) President William Hamel Allegedly Threaten Legal Action Against a Spiritual Abuse Victim in Glen Schrieber’s District?” I wrote about an alleged legal threat your predecessor made to Matt Boedy.  I have to tell you when I read the email that William Hamel allegedly sent to Matt Boedy I was stunned. I was surprised and shocked that email came from the head of the EFCA denomination. It was unprofessional, out of line, and over the top. William Hamel reviewing Matt Boedy’s situation is a part of his job. If he drew a paycheck from the EFCA then reviewing this situation in EFCA SE should have been treated with respect and dignity.

Mr. Kompelien the head of the EFCA can not treat people like that…that is not a servant’s heart. That is not appropriate at all. A person such as Matt Boedy should not be treated in such a way. Plus it shows the double standards in legal situations between churches and organizations vs. people in the pews. The president of the EFCA should be professional in his conduct and in his relations with people from the denomination. Matt was a part of the EFCA, and he has a long history in the organization starting in Florida and continuing in South Carolina. I have had the pleasure of getting to know Matt Boedy and listen to him about this situation and more. He is a dignified and special person that the EFCA had. Mr. Kompelien I am going to please ask you to do the right thing and apologize for William Hamel’s alleged legal threat. Its called for and its something that the EFCA owes Matt Boedy. You are the national representative of the EFCA and here you find yourself dealing with a situation from your predecessor that was poorly handled. Mr. Kompelien you need to reach out to Matt and offer him a profound apology for how William Hamel reacted and treated him. People make mistakes and I have learned that in my life and have done so recently as well. But sometimes people also need to have their faith rewarded and protected. You see Matt was taught in his EFCA church about how to handle conflict, and how to engage others. He has done this like me and others. When people are taught in services and sermons as well as Sunday School and Bible studies about how to live their faith, then the community which taught that should be able to practice it. That includes the EFCA Mr. Kompelien. And that is what I am asking of you, its what I hope you will do. It shouldn’t take very long, you could do it in an email of a brief conversation to Matt on the telephone. Here’s the catch this blog is going to reveal quite a bit about the EFCA in time. One of the biggest core issues is this…is the EFCA a denomination that is committed to honoring the Lord? Or is it a business entity that is committed to growth for the sake of growth and is not committed to doing the right thing? Conflict is inevitable as every organization and entity will have it from time to time. The EFCA will also have conflict. I wish I could tell you that all is rosy and that all is fine. It’s not…there are deep issues in the EFCA. Matt’s story while indicative of them also plays out in how William Hamel treated him. The ultimate way to dissolve conflict is humility. Its a struggle and yes I have made errors even recently in that frame of mind. But Mr. Kompelien I hope you can do the right thing.

This is going to be a short letter to you but I want to do this to break the ice with you. From time to time expect to see regular letters to you and the leadership in Minneapolis over issues as they arise. I would like to see this blog resolve itself in time so that I won’t have to write about issues in the EFCA. That would be beautiful, I don’t know if its realistic but its my personal hope. Have a good week Mr. Kompelien and please take care fo yourself,

Very Respectfully,

David Bonner


One thought on “An Open Letter to Kevin Kompelien (EFCA President Regarding how William Hamel Allegedly Legally Threatened Matt Boedy)

  1. Pingback: Eastern District Superintendent Eddie Cole Interviews EFCA President Kevin Kompelien | Wondering Eagle

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