Thursday, February 1, 2018

United Church of God Statement On Allwine Guilty Verdict



UCG has released a statement on the guilty verdict of Stephen Allwine.  Many on Facebook are ripping them to shreds over it.  It seems they are more concerned about the public scrutiny of the news media into the UCG and the potential drop in income that may result.


[February 12018] Back in late 2016 we reported on a shocking and tragic event in Minnesota. Amy Allwine, wife of Stephen Allwine, was found dead of a gunshot wound in the Allwine’s home. A lengthy and in-depth police investigation ensued and Mr. Allwine was eventually charged with premeditated first-degree murder by a Minnesota Grand Jury. A trial began earlier this month. Because of the sensational nature of the facts surrounding the case, a considerable number of international and national media outlets covered the events leading up to and including the trial.
Last Wednesday evening, after deliberating a little more than six hours, the Minnesota jury involved in the Amy Allwine murder trial delivered a verdict—finding Stephen Allwine guilty of first degree murder. After now being declared guilty, his formal sentencing is scheduled for Friday morning, February 2. Given the grim details of the terrible death of Amy, we expect media attention to continue for some time.
At this point it is important to remember that this situation remains profoundly tragic in a highly personal way for many. The justice system has acted and rendered a verdict, which we as a Church respect. But we should remember that this process has been exceptionally hard on the families involved, and also for close friends and extended members of the families. As innocent independent victims of this tragedy they face a difficult and challenging mix of strong emotions—including renewed shock and grief that will last for some time. We need to recognize this. Jesus instructed us that we are to love one another, and now is an especially good time to fulfill that.
Minnesota law will call for an automatic appeal, so the process will actually continue in some form. It is our fervent hope that all will continue praying to our merciful Father about the entire situation and be compassionate about what the extended families are going through.
Here is an important point: while we certainly respect the verdict, at the same time we personally are not to sit in judgment. As Jesus Himself instructs us, “Judge not, that you be not judged” (Matthew 7:1). Jesus also tells us that “there is nothing covered that will not be revealed, nor hidden that will not be known” (Luke 12:2). We can have confidence that our all-knowing God is aware of all aspects regarding this tragic situation. We need to remember what James, the brother of Jesus, writes to us from a spiritual perspective: “Mercy triumphs over judgment” (James 2:13). As a result, we will not be making speculative comments about the verdict.
As noted, the details of the murder are terrible. Coupled with the fact that Mr. Allwine was technically a lay (unpaid) minister at the time of Amy’s death, this has made for heightened media coverage—which we expect will continue in some form. Regarding his status, it is important to know that during the police investigation Mr. Allwine publicly admitted to conduct that violated the established ethics policy for ministers of the United Church of God, an International Association. As a result, and given the policy’s zero-tolerance application of that policy, the Council of Elders removed him from the ministry in 2017. While that action has been appropriately taken, I do encourage all of us to continue praying to our almighty God for direction and comfort for all parties.
It is also important to note that some major media previously and erroneously asserted that the Church’s teachings on marriage and divorce may have been a contributing factor in the case. As we have been told by those who attended the trial, that was not a major focus during the actual proceedings. As a precaution, we did previously publish a public statement correcting this information, which is available on the members website . You are welcome to review and refer to that as needed. We may update it as appropriate.
Again, because the details of the murder are so graphic we expect a considerable amount of public attention about the verdict—both in the short-term and ongoing in the weeks and even months ahead. This public attention may have certain outcomes, including making things more complicated for the families.
On a related matter, given that both the United Church of God and the work that we do may come to the attention of the media as a result of this trial and verdict, we humbly ask that you pray that all will serve to ultimately further the will of God, particularly as it concerns what we have been called to do (Romans 12:1). As Paul writes with authority, “We know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).
Amy Allwine’s parents and siblings made this public statement: “We can summon no words to describe life without Amy. We loved her and miss her tremendously. We now turn to the path of privately healing and grieving.” We personally ask that we all join with them and all the families in praying for this healing.
May the work and mission of God advance urgently in these times of turbulent need. Thank you for your prayers. You remain in ours.

13 comments:

Connie Schmidt said...

The death penalty in Minnesota has been abolished since 1911

Hopefully he will receive life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Anonymous said...

the policy’s zero-tolerance application of that policy

I thought UCG paid handsomely for competent public relations. This memo is beyond embarrassing.

Lake of Fire Church of God said...

UCG Statement said, "We can have confidence that our all-knowing God is aware of all aspects regarding this tragic situation".

MY COMMENT - This sentence seems to imply that UCG is saying the Jury didn't have all the facts. Therefore, their minister is innocent in their eyes if all aspects regarding this tragic situation were known. Just when you thought Armstrong Splinter land couldn't get any weirder, they outdo themselves.

Richard

Anonymous said...


“Jesus instructed us that we are to love one another, and now is an especially good time to fulfill that.”


Yes, this is an especially good time to fulfill that. UCG members and attendees can start to show love for once by not cheating on their mates, not having affairs, not committing adultery, not murdering their wives, etc.

Anonymous said...


“It is our fervent hope that all will continue praying to our merciful Father about the entire situation and be compassionate about what the extended families are going through.”


Speaking of extended families, let us not forget about the extended family that got kicked out of the UCG when one of its members objected to being assaulted by a sexual predator in the UCG that the UCG leaders loved and supported.

Anonymous said...

First Romans 8.28 'all things work together for good to those that love God..' is a mis-translation. As a matter of observation, it is not true. Otherwise the wife being murdered is 'good.' The translation should read something like 'God is always with us in all our trials.'

Second, the Herb church culture is one in which verbal murder is rampant. It has to be since the church culture is one of tyranny. For instance, self esteem, self confidence, poise, is met with verbal murder by the ministry. For the sake of power and superiority, ministers regularly beat down and tear down members. Satan does not have a monopoly on murder. Herbs famous and often stated 'beware of the evil of self esteem (which he secretly valued)' is a example of him leading the way in verbal murder.

So what are the informal, under the table rules regarding murder? Perhaps "murder, but not too much, and don't go all the way. But some verbal murder constructively used is acceptable. God will understand and forgive."

The church distancing itself from a man murdering his wife is hypocrisy.

Anonymous said...

“It is our fervent hope that all will continue praying to our merciful Father about the entire situation and be compassionate about what the extended families are going through.”
My Comment: This is a prayer request that all Christians should honor. There is nothing that can be done to change anything regarding the entire situation, but God is merciful and willing to help those effected to draw strength to continue their spiritual and/or earthly journey.
AB

Byker Bob said...

This is pretty much boiler-plate, except that the writer mentions the attention the church will receive far too many times. Obviously that is the most important element to someone. I don't have a problem with people being asked to pray compassionately for the people who were most closely involved.

These splinters must frequently deal with the bad past history of their movement. When bad things hit the news media, things that would tend to make the church look questionable or bad, like a child dying due to the medical doctrines, or parents being arrested over vaccinations or excessive corporal punishment, the church never backed them. They expected the members to take one for the team. Basically, if you didn't follow church doctrine, you were going to the Lake of Fire, but the church insisted on you publically taking personal responsibility for the fallout, making it your own decision and commitment (obviously not pointing out the duress), and not citing the doctrines as being the law that was imposed upon you.

BB

Anonymous said...

That official UCG statement is disgusting.

Sweetblood777 said...

It appears that UCG is more concerned about their own ass than justice. They quote Mat.7:1 as using the word 'judge' but the Greek means 'condemn' which is a far more reaching decision.

If I were a member of UCG I would be seriously considering leaving this organization.

Anonymous said...

On a related matter, given that both the United Church of God and the work that we do may come to the attention of the media as a result of this trial and verdict, we humbly ask that you pray that all will serve to ultimately further the will of God, particularly as it concerns what we have been called to do (Romans 12:1).

REALLY ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!! ONE OF YOUR MINISTERS MURDERS HIS WIFE, FAILED LEADERSHIP AND YOU WANT YOUR MEMBERS TO PRAY TO GOD THAT MEDIA COVERS YOU IN A GOOD LIGHT? IF ANYTHING I HOPE THE MEDIA COVERS YOU AND GRILLS YOU ON YOUR VETTING PROCESS FOR MINISTERS AND WHY HIS WIFE DIDNT COME TO THE CHURCH TO COUNSEL.

UGH THIS IS WHY I CANT STAND SOME OF THESE COG'S. JUST LIKE RCG THEY TOOK THE MOST GULLIABLE AND STUPID AND EAGER TO SERVE INDIVIDUALS AND SHOWED THEM THE ROPES AND GAVE THEM A SENSE OF PRIDE AND MADE THEM BELIEVE THEY WERE TO BE ON A DIFFERENT LEVEL THAN MEMBERS. THE MAJORITY OF THESE MINISTERS IN RCG WERE UNEXPERIENCED, UNABLE TO GIVE SOLID COUNSEL, LOOKED THE PART BUT FAILED MISERABLY. WHEN RCG COULD NOT GET A HANDLE ON MINISTERS WHO DISAGREED WITH THEIR TYRANT PACK AND HIS WHIMSICAL PROPHECTIC MISUNDERSTANDING, HE FIRED THEM AND MADE THE CHURCH BELIEVE THE SPIRIT WAS NOT LEADING THEM.

MINISTER IN RCG DEAL WITH UNBELIVABLE PRESSURE, AND I COULD ONLY IMAGINE HOW ONE MIGHT SNAP AND SIN OR GET INTO A BRAWL WITH HIS WIFE AND HAVE A MOTIVE TO KILL HER IF ONE OR THE OTHER IS BEING INFLUENCED BY THE TOP DOGS, OR SOME INFIDELITY IS GOING ON DUE TO THE BURDEN OF THE COG TEACHING AND JUST THE SUFFOCATING LIFESTYLE THAT IT IS.

Anonymous said...

United continues to demonstrate why it is the least respected of all the major groups (not counting the likes of Restored and Philadelphia). Their lack of judgement continues to baffle. It is sad that a man of such a political and weak nature like Vic Kubik ever ascended to the presidency of the largest COG group. If you look at all the leaders from the various groups, he stands out as the weakest, most political and untrustworthy.

Martha said...

Wow. Just catching up on this after a busy weekend. Even in my current, anti-COG role, I think I could still write a better media statement for UCG than this weasely, verbose mess.

Hey Vik, in case you didn't get the memo, once the verdict is in, you can soften your CYA stance. Can and probably should. Matthew 7:1. Really? Jesus also said, "You have heard that it was said to those of old, "You shall not murder, and whoever murders will be in danger of judgment." Hmmm. Maybe THAT one should have at least gotten a mention.