After Living Church of God sent the Scarboroughs the pathetic release of claims (see the previous posting) the Scarboroughs sought out an attorney. After reading the release form, it should be quite obvious that no lawyer would have ever let a client sign such a release as that. The letter below was sent by the Scarboroughs attorney in response to the release form.
If you notice the last paragraph of the letter, the Scarbroughs made it quite plain that they "would prefer to resolve this matter outside of court and are hopeful that Living Church will be agreeable to beginning discussions in furtherance of such goal."
LCG was written to over 40 times per the letter posted a few days ago and then they were sent a letter from the Scarboroughs attorney asking for "discussion" to work toward peaceful resolution. Instead of acting like the Christians they pretend to be, LCG made the decision to let the 7 day time period pass without a response. They could have PREVENTED THE WHOLE THING with discussion but they are so stiff-necked that they refused. It's inconceivable!
They are so short-sighted. Imagine how much bad PR LCG could have avoided.
It would be interesting to hear what LCG brethren will feel knowing that the entire lawsuit could have been so easily prevented?
LCG ministry has stated that they had insurance to cover this type of situation and I have heard from several ministers in LCG that that is true. What they don't want the members to realize is that the insurance has a HUGE deductible which they paid with tithe-payer money.
Can you imagine some poor LCG member who works his ass off to send in 10% of his money, thinking it's going to "preach the gospel" but in fact, it's paying insurance deductibles because the men at their headquarters have their heads so far up their asses that they can't be peacemakers (or grown-ups for that matter) and sit at a table for "discussion".
July 13, 2015
Living Church of God
P.O. Box 3810 Charlotte, NC 28227
Re: Patrick & Elizabeth Scarborough Representation
To Whom It May Concern:
This letter serves as formal notification that Mr. Patrick Scarborough and Mrs. Elizabeth Scarborough (hereinafter referred collectively as “the Scarboroughs”) have retained the Law Office of Nesmith & Rucker, LLP with regards to defamatory statements made against them by several agents of Living Church of God (hereinafter “Living Church”).
On or around September 20, 2014 during a church service at the Living Church in Charlotte, North Carolina there were several defamatory statements made about the Scarboroughs. The statements made specifically about the Scarboroughs were made during the announcements portion of the service by Mr. Bob League. These statements were made to communicate to the congregation that the Scarboroughs were what the Living Church terms as “marked” and were of such vile and loathsome character as not to be associated with by other members of the congregation. Members of the congregation reached out to the Scarboroughs during the church service making inquire about what had caused them to be “marked”. Thus, from the statements made during this service, it was clear that the statements were of and concerning the Scarboroughs.
In the accompanying sermonette on that same day that it was announced the Scarboroughs were “marked”, the sermonette was in its entirety articulating distinctions of congregation members that had discontinued coming to the Living Church, those “disfellowshiped”, those suspended, and those “marked” or “noted”. The speaker spent sufficient time explaining that members marked were done for the protection of the congregation because this designation “denotes the most severe of all” the categories. The speaker explained, using Biblical Scripture to support his position, that those members “marked” must be brought up by name because those persons cause discord and congregation members were to be put on notice so that they would not be at risk of following their “sinful” ways. While the speaker indicated that the details of why the member was badged with such “marking” were not disclosed to ensure slanderous statements were not made, the actual designation of this “marking” and statements made about the Scarboroughs at the time of the marking were, in fact, slanderous.
The accompanying sermon made by Mr. Rod McNair during this same service made many references to what can occur if the congregation associates with those that are “evil”, “liars” or those against the ministry and why it was deemed necessary to “get rid” of those persons or what the Living Church calls as “disfellowship.” This accompanying sermon to the defamatory statements previously made about the Scarboroughs earlier in the service, further painted an overall sentiment that the Scarboroughs were of vile character and should not be associated with by persons of the congregation. Mr. McNair indicated that former members of the congregation who were “put out” of the church were in risk of being “herded into concentration camps and tortured.”
Pursuant to North Carolina law, a Plaintiff has a cause of action for defamation by showing that the defendant: 1) made false, defamatory statements of or concerning the plaintiff; 2.) which were published to a third person; and 3.) causing injury to the plaintiff’s reputation. The statements made by agents of your church were defamatory and would constitute as slander per se in which the Scarboroughs would not have to prove special damages or malice as it is presumed based on the nature of your defamatory statements.
If this case is litigated, the Scarboroughs will be able to provide evidence that includes but is not limited to: testimony from members of your congregation that heard the defamatory statements; corroborating testimony that the Scarboroughs were “marked” based on a letter sent from your international headquarters written by Mr. Bob League and Mr. Rob McNair; Mr. Scarborough’s unique knowledge of the workings of Living Church based on him working in the church a history of defamatory statements made against former congregation members; and previous judgments won against you in a court of law for these same types of defamatory statements. If this case is litigated the Scarboroughs will likely prevail and be awarded a substantial judgment. The Scarboroughs will also seek attorney’s fees and punitive damages.
The Scarboroughs would prefer to resolve this matter outside of court and is hopeful that Living Church will be agreeable to beginning discussions in furtherance of such goal. We expect to receive your response on how you wish to proceed with this matter in seven (7) days from the date of this correspondence. If we do not hear from you by this time we will see your lack of response as an unwillingness to resolve this out of court and will initiate civil action in the Superior Court of Mecklenburg County. This letter is formal notice that any communication you have regarding this matter should not be directed to the Scarboroughs but should be directed to our office. If you should have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact our office.
Erica R. Nesmith