An Exchange With a Pastor –

I need to quit being too blunt. Please pray for me…


First let me say I have the utmost respect for you as Pastor and acknowledge that you are in ultimate control of your church and have all authority with respect to that local body of believers. I have mixed feelings about responding because I do respect your position and do not want to further offend you (Psa 119:165). I am sorry you have taken my message negatively, and will apologize up front if this message further comes across negatively to you. You say you do not appreciate my spirit, when you neither know me, nor appear to have any understanding of the ministry God called me to, While you are indeed responsible for what is put out in the public, I am also responsible for what I do with the asset of the church (the old domain) and what I deem is the best use of the Lord’s resources to provide continuity and help you in getting your new presence online.
In my opinion what you did (not saying this to be condescending or judgmental) is the same as taking out an ad to come visit your church this Sunday, and providing an address to a church building that will not be completed for another month, To me that would be pointless. I apologize for being so direct.
The old domain is listed in multiple places around the internet. It has links in business directories, Baptist directories, and possibly other ministry websites. When that domain expires there is a fair chance it will be registered by an advertiser or porn website. People looking for your church at that point could end up on a porn site. Having seen that happen in the past is part of what the Lord used to drive me to my ministry. I don’t know you, your education, or your heart with the Lord. I can tell you that we are having this discussion because one of your predecessors at that church had the same ideas and passions you do, but for whatever reason is no longer in the position you are in. I also have no way of knowing if you will continue in that position for the next week or until the Lord’s second coming. I respect the position and the man in that position, but I have to deal with pastors quitting, or getting fired on a weekly basis, and part of what the Lord has called me to do is try and provide continuity for a ministry asset to protect the reputation of the ministry and other ministries that have linked to that domain. You have chosen to discard an asset of the church (and the Lord). I responded positively to your request. That is between you and the Lord. If you had content up on the website we would not be having this discussion. The link to the new website would have helped you get your new domain up in the search engines quicker and eliminated much of the confusion you have a concern about. 
I understand and respect your point of not having to justify your request.
I however have no issues justifying my stand to someone that has no knowledge of the situation here at Baptist Ministries. We are both going to answer to the Lord for our actions on how this is handled. I am in the same position as you, only I find it difficult because as you point out I have to make decisions I am accountable to God for with no information provided by you aside from the fact that you want the old domain to go away. As I explained above, old domains do not simply go away. Part of what the Lord called me to do is try and make it go away under 1 Cor 14:40.
You have my sincerest apologies if this email offends you Pastor Garrard. I pray that you, your family and **** Baptist Church have a Blessed Easter in Jesus, and that the Lord blesses your ministry.
In Jesus’ service,
From: Pastor
Sent: Friday, April 18, 2014 4:15 PM
To: Bob Hoffman
Subject: RE: Church Website

The Website is currently under construction.  I have only been the Pastor here at Harvest for a little over a month and have been busy getting things set up in the church,  We just wanted to have things ready when we finished our site so there would be no confusion.  And to be entirely honest I really don't appreciate the spirit in which your email came.  Calling my request pointless when I am the one that is the Pastor of Harvest Baptist is a bit condescending.  I do not wish to stir you up or start an email back and forth, but I am the one that answers for what is put out into the public arena for this church not you.  So I would appreciate not having to justify my "pointless" request to someone that has no knowledge of the situation here at Harvest. 
Thank you again

To: Pastor
Subject: Harvest Baptist Church in Elizabethton Tn.
Date: Fri, 18 Apr 2014 12:23:41 -0500

The domain is forwarded, but you don’t have a website at that address, so it seems pointless at this time.
Please let me know if you need anything else from us.
Have a Blessed Easter in Jesus,
Bob Hoffman
P.O. Box 451951
Garland, TX 75045-1951
Missionaries to Cyberspace
Baptist Database
He is Risen!
From: Pastor
Sent: Thursday, April 10, 2014 7:22 AM
To: Bob Hoffman
Subject: RE: A message from a visitor of Missionaries to Cyberspace


the new web address is *******  ,   Thank you and may the Lord bless you.

> From: bob
> To: Pastor
> Subject: Re: A message from a visitor of Missionaries to Cyberspace
> Date: Mon, 7 Apr 2014 11:26:45 -0500
> Pastor,
> Please provide the new website URL. The current domain expires in November.
> It will go away then, in the meantime I will forward users to the new domain
> while waiting for it to expire.
> Have a great day in Jesus,
> Bob
> —–Original Message—–
> From: Pastor
> Sent: Saturday, April 05, 2014 12:25 PM
> To: bob
> Subject: A message from a visitor of Missionaries to Cyberspace
> Hello my name is ***** and I am the new pastor Of ****** We
> are setting up a new website for the church under a different web
> address than the one you have. We would like to have you shut down the
> unofficial site in order to not have any confusion on those looking for a
> church in our area. Thank you and you may get in contact with me via
> email or by phone. 

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