Important questions for church leaders

These questions are for elders, pastors and ministry leaders who outsource the feeding of their female sheep to women’s conferences like the IF Gathering. I ask because it seems like a huge discernment disconnect that you would trust your women in the hands of those who themselves lack discernment.

Here goes:

Were you wondering why this year’s 2017 IF Speaker lineup did not appear on the website except to registrants?  Were you reassured last October when IF Gathering founder Jennie Allen gently, regretfully, and tearfully distanced herself from her bestie Jen Hatmaker over the homosexual marriage issue? Were you relieved to learn that Hatmaker (Also an IF founder), mysteriously disappeared from the IF Gathering lineup of speakers? Are you convinced Allen is wise and discerning?

Even when she continues to unapologetically encourage your women to trust and follow a known false teacher?  Before you throw out the “guilt by association” card, please be a Berean and compare Beth Moore’s fruit to Scripture. You can do your homework here, here, here, here, and here.

One more question: WHEN are you going to take back your responsibility for feeding and protecting your flock from wolves?

Elders, pastors and ministry leaders, you’ve no doubt got a lot on your plates. And these days, the pressure to feed every sheep that comes your way is so time consuming. Especially from the women in your congregation. I mean, they seem to need a lot more than just a boring Bible study. They want laughter, and tears, and tears through laughter. And laughter through tears.

That’s what IF is all about: Feelings and emotions, and tapping into those giggle-tears to create something new:

IF:Gathering was founded by Jennie Allen, one of the neo-Emergent leaders and a contributor to the Emergent Nines Conference. The new Emergent leaders view themselves as spiritual directors ordained by God to create a new Christianity. (Source:IF:Gathering…is it a movement of God?)

Emergent?  Yes, you can see it clearly if you do your due diligence. Let’s do a side-by-side comparison of the “Unleash” purpose statement from IF’s website in 2017:

We tell stories of women being brave and changing lives from all their unique places and with their unique callings. We hope this will help you to dream about how you could impact your part of the world.

…to the Unleash purpose statement in 2013 when IF was founded:

We are a generation passionate about disparity and justice; we won’t sit idly by enjoying our advantages while the world suffers. By partnering with organizations like Food for the Hungry, coming specifically alongside women around the world, fostering relationships and utilizing our God-given gifts, we believe this movement not only transforms hearts but leaves a tangible impact on the entire world. (Source: Wayback Machine)

Neither one of these statements is biblical Christianity at all. It could very well be the mission statement of any atheist-feminist-social justice group.

I totally get the desire to have someone else take over the enormous task of emotionally stimulating women week after week. You’re exhausted.  You can only tell so many jokes from the pulpit. You can only conjure up so many heart-wrenching videos to evoke their brokenness. You can only inspire them to conjure up so many dreams for their lives, and jump through so many hoops to convince them that their dreams are really dreams that God Almighty wants them to achieve.

I can tell you not only from personal experience, but from the many, many letters I get from these broken women:

It. Doesn’t. Work.

Your sheep are starving.  So how about we stop outsourcing your job to feed and nourish women?   Let’s bring that job back into the fold of your own church, and let’s throw out those vapid storybooks from some author you’re too busy to validate and vet for safety.  Give your women real nourishment from the breathed-out SUFFICIENT Word of God.

Isn’t it time?

More research on the IF Gathering:

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8 Responses to Important questions for church leaders

  1. Gina February 12, 2017 at 7:42 pm #

    Yes, well said! I attended the IF Gathering this year with the young women of my church and I don’t even know where to begin with how unbiblical it was. I took many, many notes and brought them back to my husband who was as troubled as I was. I plan to take my concerns to the women who put this on for our church and to the Pastor if they don’t.

    One of my observations was that most women, with the exception of two, talked to us like we were at a teen youth rally. “Worship” leaders and even some speakers would start out with an emphatic, “let’s do this!!” Seriously? I felt like they were on way too much caffeine and looking at a bunch of 13-year-olds in the audience. A couple of other women agreed with me on that.

    Ann Voskamp was the obvious issue in the whole IF Gathering, because even the women who praised IF at the end admitted that Voskamp was off her rocker. I believe she is demonically influenced for sure. She said, “we need to transform ourselves.” She yelled the entire time, saying words like “cruciformation” and “cruciformity” over and over. She made no real, biblical sense; held a Bible up in the air but never taught out of it and even sounded like she was trying to brainwash us with her repetitiveness and tone. She got cut off and not sure if it was a technical error or if our leader “accidentally” shut it off. It was that bad!!

    LOTS of women speakers and ones telling their testimonies, seemed to not have a real understanding or conviction on the whole and True Gospel. The actual word and biblical definition of repentance were not mentioned/explained. There was a big push to die to yourself and pick up your cross, but it was a “die to your dreams, stuff, world, comfort, fear etc. NO mention of dying to sin and self as God explains in Scripture. Jennie started out with a focus on the “hurting and conflicted” and she says, ” I pray many experience Jesus” with the IF Gathering. Hmm.

    “The Word,” “Gospel,” “Faith,” “Disciples” was mentioned a lot, as well as ‘Jesus’ name, but NO true biblical use or honoring of them at all. I didn’t see the worshiping in Spirit and in Truth that God calls us to do. I think one woman may have mentioned sin/hell one or two times but didn’t want to touch the real meaning and truth of sin/hell at all. NO one did. Miracles of healing, hearing God speak audibly was mentioned a lot. One woman said, “I now know I’m worthy of Jesus,” and now she mentors young ladies to believe the same. Yikes!

    Lisa T., wow she should go into comedy; she is much better at that then actually teaching biblical truth. She mentioned God and Master over and over, but maybe said Jesus name once or twice at the very end. She reads Acts 1:7-8 and then says that this speaks of us (not it’s speaking of the apostles) and “people need to know that we hurt like they hurt.” No, they actually need to know Christ. Sharing hurts gets no one to heaven. And how does that have anything to do with those verses? She makes no mention of repentance. She ends with a teaching of Acts 1: 10-14, teaching about the three mounts of the Mount of Olives and correlating that with false teachings. I’m not sure what she was really teaching there. In the end she says, “Jesus won’t stand for false teaching and things that don’t honor Him”, and I’m like, EXACTLY!

    Most of their “worship” songs made me dizzy. They just.kept.repeating; repeating words like “to hear your voice and meet with you” and the word “oh”.

    I could go on and on, I haven’t even scratched the surface here.

    They are good at what they do, whether they know it or not or intend to do so or not, they are good at wrapping junk up with Christian words and elevating emotion to the rooftops, bringing just enough Christian terminology and feel-goods in to make women totally lose any weak grip they may have had on discernment. I think if you are going to have a worldwide stage where some women who probably don’t know Christ will be watching, they better give the whole Gospel!! That is their number one responsibility! Any true Christian would be concerned with this and do something about making sure the whole Gospel message was preached. What did they give instead? Lukewarm nonsense in the name of “jesus.” It saddened me, disgusted me and fired me up to keep warning women of things like this. I seems some of the women at my church were deceived by it all, women who I think would know better! I’d heard praises and “amens” and there were tears and more tears. This is serious business and we need to pray for all ensnared, deceived by and/or indifferent to this wreck of a women’s conference. May God have mercy!

    • Gina February 21, 2017 at 1:32 pm #

      Yes, that is my hope as well!

      • Nicole March 4, 2020 at 6:42 am #

        Gina, I think this is what is concerning to me too…women that I would have never guessed and that I think are strong believers, LOVE If Gatherings.

  2. Robin Steen February 12, 2017 at 8:21 pm #

    Thank you for sharing & the faucet never quits dripping of false teaching. I am so thankful for your. Moments and for Amy. It’s so important to expose the things done in the name of the real gospel and the real Jesus. I am greived to the core & have such apprection for those willing to speak freely in exposing the twisted versions of the true gospel. It’s hard to keep to keep up. Thanks for helping to expose the error. It’s hard to keep up with the age old lies always being repackaged over and over.

  3. Ed February 12, 2017 at 9:14 pm #

    Thank you for sharing this, Gina. I get teary-eyed at dog movies. Emotions are easily manipulated if we are not discerning, self-controlled, and most of all, grounded in the truth of God’s Word.

    • Gina February 21, 2017 at 1:37 pm #

      That’s a great point Ed. I saw how emotion was seemingly used to manipulate women into agreeing with what was preached.

  4. Manny1962 February 13, 2017 at 12:24 am #

    Jennie Allen:

    “In 2007 Jennie Allen sensed God telling her to disciple a generation. It seemed to be an impossible and improbable calling. Jennie knew that if this call was truly from God, then He would make it a reality. So for years she waited, took small steps of obedience, and watched God begin to open doors and give favor.

    The vision was to gather, equip, and unleash women to live out God’s calling on their lives. So Jennie, together with a team of friends, formally established IF:Gathering. In our wildest of dreams, we couldn’t have imagined what would ”

    Again with the “vision.” There’s enough truth mixed with error to confuse and deceive.

  5. Maggie February 13, 2017 at 4:14 pm #

    In hindsight, I’m grateful I never had the desire to attend special “women’s” events at church. It wasn’t out of discernment, just lack of interest. I think I would have just come away feeling “less spiritual” than the other ladies there. The Bible lite teaching I had at church for many years did not do much for my spiritual growth; if anything, I just kept feeling like if I could just try harder, I could do it, maybe I would be a more spiritual person. It wasn’t until I was out of that church and found solid Biblical teaching and was fed that I got past the just-do-better-and-you-will-make-it attitude. As a Christian, I still needed to hear the Gospel too.

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