Recently Kenji Adachi launched All Peoples Community Church in the Washington, D.C. area of Fairfax, Virginia. Does this new church illustrate how church planting is becoming a modern form of idolatry? Plus Fellowship Memphis is one of the sending churches and the question must be asked. Is a church that allegedly destroyed child pornography now duplicating itself in the Washington, D.C. area?
“A brand is the set of expectations, memories, stories and relationships that, taken together, account for a consumer’s decision to choose one product or service over another.”
“Idolatry is really not good for anyone. Not even the idols.”
Jesus then said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”
John 6:32-33 ESV
Fellowship Memphis State of the Church which was written about here. At 2:49 you can hear John Bryson talk about Kenji Adachi.
In Fairfax, Virginia at Eagle View Elementary School a new church plant recently had its first service. Called All Peoples Community Church it is led by Kenji Adachi. There is a lot to cover and with that lets start to examine this church plant.
Kenji Adachi’s All Peoples Community Church
All Peoples Community Church had its first service on September 18, 2016. The Senior Pastor is Kenji Adachi. As fate would have it I have written about Kenji Adachi in 2015 when I was doing a review of all the Cru Christmas and Winter conferences. You can read that information in “A Comprehensive Overview of Cru’s Winter Conferences for December 2015/January 2016 … Paul Tripp, Curtis Allen, Kenji Adachi and Scott Nickell are Some of the Speakers.” Kenji came from Osaka, Japan and his family moved to Greensboro, North Carolina. He attended school at North Carolina State University (NCSU) where he got a BS in Electrical Engineering. While at NCSU he was involved in Campus Crusade for Christ. Then Kenji worked for Honda of America Manufacturing for nearly five years as an engineer. He attended Dallas Theological Seminary and graduated in 2003 with a Masters of Theology and Pastoral Ministries. He moved to Fairfax in 2003 where he became the Associate Pastor for Ambassador Bible Church for 12 years. Ambassador Bible Church is an Evangelical Free Church and a part of the Eastern District. I used Ambassador Bible Church’s membership covenant as a discernment exercise here at The Wondering Eagle. After all this blog writes about the Evangelical Free Church of America as well. You can read about it in “Practicing Discernment: Analysis of Ambassador Bible Church’s Membership Covenant (Evangelical Free Church of America)” From September 2015 until May of 2016 Kenji Adachi became a church planting intern at Acts 29 Fellowship Memphis which is led by John Bryson. During that time he was working at planting All Peoples Community Church. All Peoples Community Church is planted with support from Acts 29, the North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention, Fellowship Memphis in Memphis, Tennessee, Church at the Cross in Grapevine, Texas, Village Church of Midlothian which is outside Richmond, Virginia and finally New City Network which is the church planting arm of McLean Bible Church. I have written about McLean Bible’s New City Network and there is much more analysis to do on this network. You can read more in “Why is McLean Bible’s New City Network Promoting 9 Marks’ Church Revitalization Conference?“
Is the DNA of a Church that Allegedly Destroyed Child Pornograghy in Memphis Being Duplicated in the Washington, D.C. Area?
The accusations are incredibly serious but they deserve to be looked at. This blog The Wondering Eagle helped break the story of the criminal allegations involving Fellowship Memphis. Plus The Wondering Eagle even went further in doing analysis then the Memphis Commercial Appeal. Here is the original Memphis Commercial Appeal article about Fellowship Memphis. “Former Grizzlies announcer Rick Trotter reportedly recorded women at another church in 2010.” The Memphis Commercial Appeal refused to name, names in the article. This blog did that in the following post. “The Sordid Tale of Rick Trotter, Bryan Loritts, John Bryson and Acts 29 Fellowship Memphis and Downtown Presbyterian Church.” In the process this blog connected the dots and analyzed the situation and helped reveal the depth of the alleged cover up of criminal activity. Former members and a couple of victims have contacted me and have encouraged me to keep writing about this situation. That is why Fellowship Memphis will be written about for the long term.
Here is the situation in the Acts 29 church that sent and trained Kenji Adachi to the Washington, D.C. area. It continues to reveal the depths of vile corruption which exist in modern evangelicalism, and especially the Neo-Calvinist movement. Rick Trotter was the worship pastor of Fellowship Memphis. Rick as it turned out is into voyeurism and allegedly placed a camera in the restroom of Fellowship Memphis. He also allegedly did this in a Memphis Chic Fil-A and his own home where he allegedly caught Bryan Loritts family and his own family on video. Rick Trotter allegedly recorded 100 women in their restroom of Fellowship Memphis including two underage children. Its my belief that child pornography was manufactured in an Acts 29 restroom in Tennessee. This church allegedly worked hard at covering up the alleged crime. After all to hell with that Romans 13 says about submitting to the state! The attorney for Fellowship Memphis allegedly told the church to “throw the evidence into the Mississippi River.” This church took the victims of an alleged sex crime and forced them to forgive their perpetrator. Over and over they were allegedly told that if they went to the Memphis Police they would destroy Rick Trotter’s life. Not Rick Trotter who allegedly engaged in the criminal activity in the first place. The Elders at Fellowship Memphis allegedly knew of the cover up. So did John Bryson, Ricky Jenkins and many of the pastors on staff. Then Rick was let go and eventually went on staff at John Rieves Downtown Presbyterian Church where he would allegedly engage in the same crime for three years. Did you read that? The neglect by the leadership of Fellowship Memphis created another situation where someone would allegedly go onto another church and engage in the same criminal activity further. In the case of Downtown Presbyterian Church (called Downtown Church today) a conservative estimate is that 1,500 women and possible minors were also subjected to alleged criminal activity. Included in that total is John Rieves’ daughter. John Rieves is the Senior Pastor of Downtown Church.
Fellowship Memphis which is deeply corrupt and is being dogged by these ongoing criminal accusations is the sending and training church of Kenji Adachi. The people who were allegedly involved, aware and knew of the cover up I believed helped train Kenji Adachi. It honestly makes me wonder…when criminal conduct like child sex abuse occurs in All Peoples Community Church what will be their response? If they cover it up then we will know that John Bryson has trained his church planting interns exceptionally well. But the foundation for this church is rotten and it begs a lot of questions and deep concern, which is what is guiding this post. Plus this situation in Memphis is also being discussed by atheists as well.
What Kenji Adachi Walked Away From at Honda of America Manufacturing
There is one thing I find profoundly disturbing about the Neo-Calvinist movement and its this fact. So many claim that they want to make a difference for the Lord and what do they do? So many walk away from secular environments where they can engage people and walk away from people to engage in church planting. After all what was Kenji walking away from at Honda? When I lived in the Midwest I worked in the automobile industry in the marketing side of the profession. I worked on an outsourced project that came from a major automobile corporation. In my procession I heard quite a but about the corporate culture in American Honda Motors in Torrance, California. In addition I also traveled once to one of the Honda manufacturing plants in Ohio for work. Honda is a complex and intense company, and there was much probably going on around Kenji at his job. What was going on around him? Lets look at some statistics on differing issues.
- 1 in 200 women suffers from anorexia.
- 2 to 3 out of 100 women is suffering from bulimia.
- 1 in 10 women experience depression in the weeks after having a baby.
- 50% of all adults never seek out counseling for depression.
- 1 in 5 people have a disability in some form.
- 50% of guys have looked at pornography in the past month.
- 1 in 33 men experience sexual assault.
- 1 in 6 women have attempted to be raped or have been raped.
- 17% of men and 8% of women will be dependent on alcohol in their lifetime.
- Of those who were abused as children, 90% knew their abuser.
- 1 out of 3 girls and 1 out of 5 boys have experienced sexual abuse before the age of 18.
- Nearly 40% of men and women will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their life.
This was all in the midst of Kenji Adachi and he decided to walk away from all this and more to go to seminary and eventually plant a church.
Is Church Planting Becoming Idolatry?
That leads me to this last and final question which I believe deserves to be asked. Is church planting becoming idolatry today? Consider you have many Neo-Calvinists who speak about spreading the Gospel and making the Lord known…and what do many of them do? They walk away from mission fields right where they are at. They walk away from secular places to engage in ministry and then church planting. Think of all the problems that were around Kenji Adachi when he was in his secular workplace? Think of the lives he could have shaped and molded. He could have had a co-worker who was struggling with alcohol in his midst? Maybe he had a single parent who sat in on meetings with him whose kid is having problems with drugs. He could have had a co-worker that he interacted with regularly that was dealing with a failing marriage. I could go on but the fact of the matter is those and so many other problems were most likely around him. And what did he end up doing in the course of time? He walked away from countless ministry opportunities. Many Neo-Calvinists do this every day. I think of my story of Andrew White who walked away from a skeptic and caused him more pain and harm in the end. There is all this talk of the Gospel and yet time and again many Neo-Calvinists walk away from situations in their midst.
It is my contention that what compounds the problem is that many Neo-Calvinist church plants only hurt the church in the long run. Yes I am aware that churches are born and die, but consider the following. Most of the people who will be attending Kenji Adachi’s All Peoples Community Church are going to have come from nearby churches in the local area. What happens is that people just swap and go for the next and newest church plant. While I am aware of the Acts 29 network and much of its problems many evangelicals are theologically lazy to do the hard work and ask the hard questions for themselves. That is one of the many goals of this blog is to get people to think for themselves and save them the pain and trauma of questionable churches and outfits. So is the church growing by planting churches such as All Peoples Community Church? No …it is my contention that the church is being harmed and that church plants such as Kenji’s just cannibalize people from existing established organizations. Meanwhile many a skeptic, Muslim and Buddhists and others stay away and do not get involved, which really defeats the purpose for why organizations like All Peoples Community Church exist. One thing I treasure about this blog is that I get the honor to be able to interact with people who will never darken the door of churches like Kenji Adachi’s. The Christian church should think long and hard as to why that is, and why they are working to promote a failed model that is intrinsically flawed. The systematic and systemic problems of evangelicalism rear their ugly heads in these church plants. What does one find? Authoritarian culture. Membership covenants. An organization which struggles with discernment and fundamentalism. And best of all if you are in an Acts 29 outfit you also have to contend with the DNA of Mark Driscoll which is still in the organization I believe. Yes this is the same Mark Driscoll who taught that women are penis homes and that a repentant women gets down on her knees and perform oral sex on her husband. In the “Gospel Centered” Acts 29 culture that abuses the word “Gospel” think of this as the “Gospel Centered Blow Job.” To those who read this post who are considering attending or looking into this Acts 29 plant in the Washington, D.C. area consider yourself warned about the deep flaws in this church. And yes while I know that no church is perfect there are far healthier ones out there as well. My recommendation to you is to keep looking, and keep searching. The Bereans will stay away from such places and shake the dust off their sandles and move on. That’s it for the day guys please know that I love you.