Meanwhile, not all the Christian leaders invited by Rick Warren to the launch of the revised PEACE initiative accepted the invitation.
One of the critics who refused to honour Rick Warren’s invitation (even with an all-travel-expenses paid offer) is the very influential discernment and research ministry, the Lighthouse Trails. According to the Lighthouse Trails, Warren in his invitation letter, “stated that we attack him regularly and consider him to be an enemy” and would therefore like for personal interaction to iron out the differences.
Lighthouse Trails declined the invitation on the ground that “the matters we address in our books and articles deal with Rick Warren's public teachings and doctrine and have nothing to do with relationships.” The organization further adds “We do not consider Rick Warren a personal enemy, we do not hate him, and we do not attack his private life or character.”
Concluding, the Lighthouse Trails re-states its position: “However, regardless of his [Rick Warren] motivation, be it good or bad, we believe his public teachings, writings, and speeches promote contemplative (i.e., mystical) spirituality and the emerging church, both of which advocate New Age spirituality and are instrumental in restructuring the Christian church so it no longer represents biblical Christianity. This..... puts the spiritual welfare of millions in harm's way.” (http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/index.php?p=1100&c=1)
One critic who had cautiously attended part of the proceedings (a semi-private, recorded session with Rick Warren) was Bob Dewaay, pastor of Twin City Fellowship in Minneapolis, US. After the meeting, Richard Abanes, notable apologist and defender of Rick Warren made public statements saying that Bob DeWaay saw nothing wrong with Warren and his beliefs. An embarrassed DeWaay was compelled to write a statement reaffirming his continued belief that Rick Warren is part of a global movement to bring about a “One World church.” Bob DeWaay’s statement, which further reiterates his conviction that the Purpose Driven program of Rick Warren has New Age implications and is a path to deception is available at www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/index.php?p=1100&c=1
Meanwhile, confirming Rick Warren’s ever-growing influence in the inter-faith movement, he has been announced a member of the Advisory Council of the new Faith Foundation of Tony Blair, launched in New York on 30th May. Also Warren received in his Church a delegate of homosexuals at the last Father’s Day Weekend (June 13-15) and had a private reception with them thereafter.
For further insights on “Emergent” Church/spirituality, see a useful working definition at http://herescope.blogspot.com/2008/06/how-everything-must-change.html
For free e-books, In the name of Purpose: Sacrificing Truth on the Altar of Unity i by Tarmara Hartzel, click here http://www.inthenameofpurpose.org/page2.html