The entire megachurch culture is foreign to what the Scriptures teach about the autonomy of the local church, the function of the church, and the church’s responsibility to train, equip, and edify believers while leading the congregation in reverent worship of the thrice Holy God and administering the ordinances. Megachurch culture has created, instead, a sort of “Christian social club” where people can come and hang out, have coffee and donuts, and check off the box of:
☑ “I went to church this week, so I’m good.”
Worse are parents who think that dropping off their teen kids to be supervised by the hundreds by a handful of young, newlywed, or unmarried youth pastors and staff members, is a benign idea. It isn’t. I know this because I grew up in a megachurch youth group, and it was anything but benign.
But when the youth pastor himself leads these young students into temptation, that should give everyone pause. That’s exactly what happened at Fairview Baptist Church, a Southern Baptist megachurch in Greer, SC which has parents angry and upset. According to multiple reports, this youth pastor, Cory Wall, passed out stickers that say “I ♥ Hot Youth Pastors.” Below is one irate parent who posted the image of the sticker:
An email was sent out by another pastor of the church, Scott Shipes, in response to the outrage caused by this youth pastor stating that they are investigating, but cannot release the details of the information because it is a personnel issue. Shipes also mentioned that Wall spoke about a “pornography addiction” with the students of which the parents were not made aware beforehand.
Cory Wall said that his joke was meant to poke fun at the “I Love Hot Mom” culture. “In hindsight, the joke was of very poor taste and a mistake on my part,” Wall stated.
Fairview also offered an apology on the church’s Facebook page and stated that Cory Wall had been placed on administrative leave while the deacons and personnel team investigated the matter further.