Mega-Church Censors Employees with Gag Order Contract
Mars Hill Church in Seattle, Wash. made news last week when it was revealed that the mega-church paid more than $200K to a marketing company get a book written by Pastor Mark Driscoll on numerous bestseller lists.
Now, college professor Warren Throckmorton reports on Patheos.com that Mars Hill Church requires its employees to sign to non-disclosure agreements, which they must obey or face losing their health insurance and severance pay when they leave their church jobs.
According to WORLD Magazine, Mars Hill Church's non-disclosure agreement threatens legal action if the employee has “any intentional or unintentional violation,” which includes saying anything disparaging about the church. This also includes the employee's spouse.
Former Mars Hill Church elder Dave Kraft, who refused to sign the agreement, told WORLD magazine that it "amounts to a gag order."
Throckmorton notes on Patheos.com that former Mars Hill Church leader Jeff Bettger has spoken out on Facebook in support of Kraft and claims Mars Hill Church members are "experiencing a form of Stockholm syndrome."
In Jan., The Charlotte Observer reported that another mega-church, the Elevation Church in Charlotte, N.C., requires employees and volunteers to sign a "confidentiality agreement" which also threatens legal action, if violated.