Showing posts with label Sugarland Chiow. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sugarland Chiow. Show all posts

Saturday, August 1, 2020

KKK and Grace Episcopal Deploy Same Hate Against Protestors

CNN recently covered independent documentary filmmaker Rob Bliss, who protested outside KKK headquarters and produced a video from his experiences. And guess what? Many of the reactions he got from KKK members were the same as I get from Grace Episcopal Church members.

I know, big surprise.

In addition to the ol’ one-gun-salute-to-Jesus, of which there were many, among other things he got the same rhetoric as Sugarland Chiow and perjuring priest Bob Malm deploy when they want to suppress criticism. Specifically, he got called a “domestic terrorist.”

You’d think that Sugarland and perjuring priest Bob Malm could come up with something a little more erudite than ugly KKK rhetoric, wouldn’t you?

Just goes to show: Hate is hate, whether it’s the KKK, Grace Episcopal Church, or so-called Christians like Lisa Medley, Alison Campbell, and Kelly Gable. Or parishioners who urge me to commit suicide.

Visit the CNN article here and Rob’s video here.

For those new to this blog, here is church attorney Sugarland Chiow’s claim that I’m a domestic terrorist:

Grace Episcopal Alexandria

And here’s the reference to KKK members calling Rob a domestic terrorist:

Grace Episcopal Alexandria

And here is a screen cap of the first part of the article:

Grace Episcopal Alexandrie

And as a reminder, here is the post from a then college-aged parishioner urging to me commit suicide.

Clearly, the KKK and Grace Episcopal share a common characteristic: They respond with hate, ugly rhetoric, and lies when someone challenges their views.

Sunday, July 26, 2020

Settlement Offer

Did you know that in 2016 I offered to settle my conflict with perjuring priest Bob Malm?

I did so in writing through attorney Matt Kaplan, who drafted the letter that follows. In it, we ask for three things from perjuring priest Bob Malm:
  1. Stop disparaging us.
  2. Stop interfering with the practice of our faith.
  3. Confidentiality.
Through Sugarland Chiow, perjuring priest Bob Malm refused all three requests, resulting in today’s state of affairs: An ongoing, public dispute, winding its way through the courts.

True to form, perjuring priest Bob Malm ultimately came to regret his decision, leading to his facially deceptive efforts to obtain a protective order by claiming he had been threatened. The end result, of course, was a profound escalation of the dispute that included lawsuits against Leslie Malm and Lindsey Malm Anders.

So, perjuring priest Bob Malm is not only a liar, but it was through his own mean-spirited stupidity that he got himself into the present situation. In other words, he got exactly what he asked for.

And here is Sugarland’s response:

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Welcome to Sugarland! Grace Episcopal Alexandria Rector Search Process Faces Challenges

Grace Episcopal Alexandria

You have to hand it to perjuring priest Bob Malm, Sugarland Chiow, and to a lesser extent Kelly Motormouth Gable — they have really done a number on Grace Episcopal Church and the search for a new rector.

Consider two possibilities:

First Possibility:

Mere use of the word “murder” in a blog, etc., truly is a threat and not protected speech under the First Amendment. In other words, welcome to Sugarland!

Jeffery Chiow, Esq,
In that case, we can look to Sugarland Chiow’s pleadings filed in the Venango Coubty courts, in which he says, “This is a case of domestic terrorism.” We can give context to this claim through his filings in the Alexandria Courts, in which he claims that I, “surely am dangerous.” How did we know that? According to Sugarland, it is by virtue of withdrawing my appeal. Thus, according to Sugarland’s reasoning, it’s appropriate to impose sanctions, for  as we well know, that is the best way to deal with dangerous people.

That begs the question: If I am a candidate for rector, do I want to serve a church that claims to be threatened by domestic terrorists? Unless I am totally cray-cray, the answer likely is no. That’s doubly the case if I have a family, and I’ll surely think twice when I realize just how expensive Northern VA is.

Second Possibility:

Why drink the KoolAid when you can swill the Sugarland Shine?
The second possibility is that Grace’s pleadings are not true. Thus, Grace faces potential legal liability, as well as the ethical and spiritual challenges posed by a priest who commits perjury, a vestry that supports his efforts, and parish leaders like Sugarland Chiow who aid and abet his efforts. Not to mention the ugly, inflammatory rhetoric coming out of the parish, including Sugarland’s court pleadings, Lisa Medley’s multiple lies and disclosure of confidential giving, and comments from someone, most likely Lucy Medley, urging me to commit suicide. In other words, welcome to Sugarland!

Wow. If this is the case, we’re talking about a profoundly toxic church. As Jesus said, “by their fruits you shall know them,” and this is one ugly, stinkin’ crock of goo. In fact, clergy who love God, love their neighbor, and haven’t lost their sense of smell due to COVID-19 can smell it ten miles away, twenty if they are downwind.

Rector candidates thus face the challenge not only of living in this environment, but also trying to fix it. Both are herculean tasks, especially after 30 years of Bob Malm. All I can say is yikes.

Of course, the possibility also exists that the parish will pull down another narcissist.  She, or more likely he, will come replete with a stellar resume, good looks (they are nothing if not well groomed), a carefully crafted image, athleticism (gotta look good on all fronts), tremendous verbal faculty, and an amazing ability to tell people what they want to hear. And Grace is, on its face, an target for another narcissist, for he or she will readily recognize that the church is a narcissistic organization, onto which they can attach themselves in record time. When he does, the narcissist will paper things over with earnest-sounding apologies, lots of hugs and smiles, the word “love” bouncing around in all directions, and more. But there will be no meaningful resolution, and Grace will have another layer of glitter affixed to its toxic infrastructure.

This is highly likely. While Mary Hix is, I think, wise enough to spot this issue, I don’t know that anyone else on the search committee is, with the possible exception of Tracy Enger.

That said, this presents a dilemma all its own for the narcissist: Should I run the risk of dealing with the six lawsuits now under way and the potential personal liability that attaches, or move on to easier pickings? My guess is most will consider this to be too much work to be worth the trouble, for narcissists are famous for underperforming at their jobs, while telling themselves and others that they are great.

That said, if Grace does pull down another narcissistic rector, things will get ugly in a hurry. Narcissists are invariably toxic, and they build narcissistic constructs around them. Given how far Grace Episcopal Alexandria, the clergy perjury parish, already is along that curve, if that does happen, Grace is a goner. Done. Kaput. No mas. Au revoir.

And a third possibility:

Of course there is a third potential outcome, which reflects the fact that many clergy are conflict avoidant. Specifically, many qualified candidates won’t want to parse these issues, but instead take a pass and move on. Given that TEC often follows the path of least resistance, that is a likely outcome, but one that will only become apparent over time as it becomes clear that B-list candidates are applying for what should be an A-list calling.

There’s also the possibility that candidates for rector take a preliminary look at applying, but quickly self-select and join this category, simply by asking, “What have you done to resolve this conflict?” Any sort of meaningful questioning will quickly reveal that, other than the token effort to slap some lipstick on this pig at the Fredericksburg meeting, the answer is nothing. And at this point we are no longer in a position to negotiate, for I have seen the middle finger from the good Christians of Grace Church far too often to be willing to talk to them, and have invoked my right under state law to have no contact from members of the church.

Moreover, klaxons will be sounding in all directions when candidates realize that the diocesan posture on these issues is one of no-criminal-charges-no-foul. That reveals just how toxic and broken things are, and it goes all the way to Bishop Goff herself. And it’s not like she hasn’t heard directly from me on these matters; she has many times, and instead sits in splendid silence in that fusty old antebellum heap, Mayo House.

And like any narcissistic organization, the denizens of Grace Episcopal Alexandria, the clergy perjury parish, will never concede the possibility that the organization suffers from narcissism. Indeed, it will all be the fault of that crazed former member, Eric Bonetti, who resigned from the church and then started harassing us. You know the drill, and Lisa Medley is happy to help you rehearse. If she’s not around, hit up Alison Campbell or Kelly Motormouth Gable. In fact, let’s grab a few drinks and talk about it.

Not matter how things turn out, thanks to perjuring priest Bob Malm, Sugarland Chiow, and now Motormouth Gable, things are not pointed in a good direction for Grace Church.

Welcome to Sugarland!

Sunday, July 19, 2020

Amazing Grace: Documents from Grace Episcopal Alexandria, a Toxic Church

Speaking of COVID-19 Stimulus Funds....

Grace Episcopal Church

COVID-19 relief funding is a topic that got a lot of attention on the diocesan weekly conference calls. Yet darned few Episcopal churches got money, the diocese got none that I can see, and Shrine Mont got a small amount. Nor did Grace get any, other than the funds that reached the school.

That begs the question: With much of the federal government still closed, and many parishioners sitting around bored, why didn’t the church apply? Or more to the point, given all the damage that Sugarland caused the church with his ad hominem attacks and ugly courtroom rhetoric, why didn’t he step up to the plate? Surely that would be a more useful way to spend one’s time than trying to drag dying women into court in violation of state law?

Sugarland, where are you when Grace Episcopal, the clergy perjury parish, needs you?

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

More on Sugarland Chiow and Grace Episcopal’s Fraudulent Concealment of Evidence

As we prepare to debate in motions court the issue of the statute of limitations and its applicability to my lawsuit against Kelly for her defamation per se, there is a damning wrinkle right behind the scenes that most parishioners would not spot. Specifically, Sugarland Chiow had an ethical and legal obligation to produce the email in question.

Pursuant to the ABA model rules, which govern attorney conduct and were adopted by Virginia in 1999, attorneys have an obligation not to conceal evidence relevant to the other side, to make full and effective efforts to protect and preserve information, and to avoid destruction of evidence.

We already know that Sugarland Chiow engaged in questionable conduct in this space. For example, he redacted an email from Jeff Aaron to Caroline Parkinson, the diocesan intake officer. In the email, Jeff revealed that Bob Malm violated church confidentiality provisions regarding clergy disciplinary complaints, for he wrote to Caroline Parkinson to discuss the matter, even asking if it was okay to engage in retaliatory conduct.

How did I find out about Sugarland’s concealment? I found out when he sloppily tripped himself up by providing an unredacted copy of the same email. Oops.

In the case of Kelly’s defamation per se, Jeff had a legal obligation as the church’s attorney to make reasonable inquiry about documents subject to discovery. Leaving aside the question why the email in question wouldn’t have been in Bob’s sent folder, he had only to ask vestry members or the diocese for relevant materials. Thus, Sugarland either has an ethical problem on his hands due to failure to adhere to the duty of care imposed on him as the church’s legal counsel, or he has an ethical problem on his hands due to the fact that he had access to the email in question but didn’t produce it.

In other words, no matter how you parse it, Sugarland Chiow at a minimum damaged the church’s reputation, and quite possibly engaged in illegal conduct. I think few would contend he met his ethical obligations as an attorney.

What’s even more ugly is the pervasive pattern of misconduct on the part of Sugarland, perjuring priest Bob Malm, and the church. From making up nonexistent places and events in Texas, to trying to drag a dying woman into court in violation of the law, to concealing evidence, to defamation per se by Kelly Motormouth Gable, to perjuring priest Bob Malm attempting to tortiously interfere with my employment, to perjuring priest Bob Malm’s going after Mike, it is hard to imagine a more toxic church, a more corrupt organization, or a more narcissistic entity.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Rogers, Joseph, O’Donnell and Sugarland Chiow Recognized for Government Contracting Work

Sugarland Chiow and his law firm were recently recognized by Chambers & Partners for their government contracts work. Chambers & Partners is a worldwide ranking service that lists attorneys by region and practice area.

In doing so, Chambers ranked Sugarland as a Band Four attorney. While this may not sound like much of an honor, the category is replete with luminaries that include Akin, Gump, Strauss et al, Reed Smith, and Venable.

Likely not factored into the ratings are Sugarland’s demonstrated propensity for referring to bloggers as “domestic terrorists,” his courtroom fabrications, his inflammatory and dilatory pleadings, his efforts to drag a dying woman into court, his false statements of law and fact, and his fake church shootings in fictional locations.

But then, Sugarland’s questionable performance as an attorney is perhaps mirrored in his law firm’s marketing materials, which themselves reflect careless editing. Indeed, in the firm’s press release, it states, “We are honored to be ranked among the top law firms in the United States for the work that we dedicate our time too [sic].”

Res ipsa loquitor, or “the thing speaks for itself.”

Monday, March 23, 2020

A Shout Out to the Bullies of Grace Episcopal Alexandria and their Validators

Social scientists have long recognized that witnesses to bullying occupy four roles. These roles are not mutually exclusive, and a bystander may occupy more than one role, or switch among them. Regrettably, three of the four roles involve unethical conduct, and members of Grace Episcopal Church almost without exception occupy the categories that are unethical.

The categories are:
  • Assistants join the bullying, often taking directions from the bullies
  • Reinforcers encourage the bullies by cheering, laughing, or otherwise actively supporting them
  • Validators know about the bullying but do nothing, giving "silent approval"
  • Defenders intervene and support the victims
(Quoted from the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut Safe Church Training Materials, found here).

In my experience, the vast majority of Grace Church parishioners and clergy are validators, who offer time, talent, and treasure to the church and ignore bullying, as well as Bob Malm’s readily verifiable perjury.

Bishop Susan Goff, Bishop Shannon Johnston, the Rev. Caroline Parkinson, and the Rev. Sven vanBaars, however, are reinforcers, aiding and encouraging Bob Malm and Sugarland Chiow. Indeed, Johnston sent out a letter supporting Bob, even falsely claiming that the matter had been “investigated and resolved long ago.” Nothing like having a liar for a bishop.

And several parishioners are themselves bullies, including Alison Campbell, Jan Spence, Lucy Medley and Lisa Medley. While all four may justify their conduct by claiming they were sticking up for Kelly Gable, last I heard God wasn’t hiring in that department. Not to mention 1) Kelly and I had resolved our differences before they jumped in, 2) Thanks to their childish antics, the church’s reputation is irreparably damaged.

Meanwhile, my question to Michael Guy, Jason Robertson, members of the search committee and vestry, and the parish at large is this:

Which category of bystander are you? If you continue to give money and say nothing, at a minimum you are a validator. And Jesus had very little use for persons in positions of authority who ignored injustice and oppression, especially when done in the name of religion.

As I told Susan Goff and other diocesan officials in writing, those of you who turn a blind eye to Bob Malm’s perjury and other misconduct are modern-day Scribes and Pharisees. You profess your faith noisily in public, but in reality you are the whitewashed tombs of whom Jesus spoke—pretty on the outside, reeking of corruption and filth on the inside. You are hypocrites. Same for Sally Schneider and her moronic condemnations of me, delivered in her saccharine voice. And same for Christine Cheevers, with her stupid assertion that Bob Malm is gone, and somehow I should just be okay with his bullying, perjury and more as a result. Not to mention that Cheevers’ efforts to shout me down show she is a bully and an asshole, and you can quote me on that.

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Wondering About the Header?

If so, the photo is of my mother, dying of COPD and suffering from advanced congestive heart failure. It was taken at the time perjuring priest Bob Malm and Sugarland Chiow attempted to drag her into court in violation of relevant law, as they neither had secured, nor attempted to secure, advance leave of court to subpoena her as required by state law.

Not surprisingly, the court summarily quashed the protective order.

In response, Sugarland Chiow and perjuring priest Bob Malm lied, claiming that she was up and about and doing fine, per a conversation with her lawyer.

Clearly she was not, and throughout her lengthy final illness, she suffered an acute anxiety disorder. That. combined with the pain of her fluid retention and bloating, not fully controlled with morphine and other meds, caused her profound suffering.

So, Grace Church members, Malm family members, vestry members, clergy, wardens, financial donors and diocesan staff/bishops: I hope you are proud of yourselves. How do you plan to explain your conduct before God?

Oh, and if you are silent in the face of this sort of conduct, you are every bit as culpable as those directly involved. “As you have done unto the least of these, so also have you done unto me.” And that includes Michael Guy and Jason Roberson. I’d also love to see how Sugarland Chiow attempts to explain the ethics of his conduct to his children.

Meanwhile, I would be interested to know how St. Gabriel’s and the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts feels perjuring priest Bob Malm’s conduct comports with their purported values.

The photo is used with Mom’s permission, given before she died. She believed it only fair that you see firsthand the suffering you caused.

Friday, November 29, 2019

As Bob Malm Transitions to St. Gabriel’s, An Important Reminder About His Lies

As Bob Malm prepares to settle in as interim rector at St. Gabriel’s, Marion Massachusetts, it’s important to remember that his lies even extend to information he provides church members.

In one instance, Bob and Jeff “Sugarland” Chiow falsely told the congregation and church staff via the talking points below that Mike and I left the church on our own. But if that is the case, why then did he instruct church staff to exclude us, including not publishing our names in church publications, or providing the door access codes? And why did he send us the following email?

Bob Malm and Sugarland Chiow lie to church members

Email from perjuring priest Bob Malm instructing us to find a new parish
Speaking of, having not communicated with Mike, why would Bob include Mike, received into The Episcopal Church 16 months earlier, in his email? Even if I arguably I left on my own, Bob had no reason to include Mike, but one: Spite. And it takes a particularly obnoxious piece of trailer park trash to come after Mike. Not to mention arrogant for assuming (wrongly, as it happens) that Mike would be interested in the Christian church after dealing with Bob Malm and his hypocrisy, as well as the collective hypocrisy of Grace Church.

And while we’re at it, why would Bob contact other volunteers to instruct them to exclude us? How is that Christian? Why would it be necessary if I allegedly had already left on my own? Yet that is what clearly occurred, as evinced by this email exchange with Mike Jones.

Email from Mike Jones

My take on things: Any priest who, like Bob Malm, lies to his own parishioners should no longer be a priest.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Here’s How Grace Episcopal Talks About Victims of Church Abuse

Before you pledge this fall, consider whether this sort of conduct by Bob Malm and Sugarland Chiow reflects your values, and those of Christianity. (Screen cap from their objection to my withdrawal of my appeal.)

Sorry folks—there’s nothing Christian about this sort of behavior. Nothing.

Maybe the church should make copies available in the Malm narthex, just so people know what they are getting into. Literally and figuratively.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

See for Yourself: Jeffery Chiow and Bob Malm Lie in Court Pleadings

Here’s another blast from the past. In this excerpt from a motion filed in the Alexandria Circuit Court, Jeff Chiow flat out lies to the court. Specifically, he claims that he would have proven that I was never licensed to practice law, and that I never served as a police officer. Both are untrue,

To be fair, in the practice of law, there are times one argues for an expansion of the law, or one postures. There also are times when one states in pleadings that, “The evidence strongly suggests...” or, “There is no evidence to support defendant’s claim....” In short, one not only leaves room for error as a way to preserve one’s credibility with the court, but also to avoid proffering false evidence to the court. Avoiding offering false information to the court is an obligation under the professional rules, as signing one’s name to a pleading means that the information presented is believed to be true, based on reasonable efforts by the attorney.

This is illustrated by the old law school tale, perhaps apocryphal, in which defense counsel, a heavyset man, loudly exclaims, “It simply is not possible that the plaintiff’s contentions about my client’s ladder are true. My client, XYC corporation, makes the toughest ladders out there, capable of holding many times the plaintiff’s weight. See for yourself!” Whereupon he scales the ladder, only to have the thing disintegrate under him, leaving him in a heap on the floor, and with a verdict against his client to boot.

Similarly, if one were to assert in pleadings that Bob Malm is a pedophile based solely on the fact that Bob is a priest, and many priests are pedophiles, that would be highly inappropriate and likely grounds for sanctions. I can’t simply show up in court with an unsupported assertion like that and expect smooth sailing. (For the record, I do not claim Bob to be a pedophile and have seen no evidence to support that conclusion.)

So, Jeff Chiow cannot assert his claims that I never practiced law, and never served as a police officer willy-nilly. These claims would need to be supported by research, and would properly be proferred to the court as, “There is no evidence to support the defendant’s claim....”

Moreover, having used multiple attorneys within his firm, as well as resources from another law firm in town, and having expended what he claims was more than $100,000 worth of legal fees, Jeff Chiow knew, or had reason to know, that this was the case. Additionally, it is hardly a great leap of logic for Sugarland, who claims to have done extensive research on the case, to surmise that it would have made sense to check bar records in Pennsylvania. After all, I did undergraduate there and was a state resident in 1986–facts readily ascertainable. Additionally, a Google search readily reveals information on having served as a police officer.

In short, Jeff Chiow lied to the courts. And while it does not appear he will face disciplinary charges for his misconduct, his behavior is damaging both to his personal reputation and to that of his client, Grace Church.

When one looks at the situation in the context of Bob Malm’s perjury, one quickly understands how Jesus came to refer to the Scribes and Pharisees as “broods of vipers.”

Thursday, August 1, 2019

See for Yourself: Grace Episcopal Says it is the Victim of Domestic Terrorism

Just in case you thought Grace Episcopal couldn’t be any more toxic, here is the relevant section of the church’s pleadings in the Venango County (PA) Court of Common Pleas, in which rector Bob Malm and church attorney Jeff Chiow tell the court that the church is the victim of domestic terrorism.

A bit of context: Sugarland Chiow tried to tell the court that the subpoena was “validly-issued” (sic), despite the fact that Pennsylvania law does not permit subpoenas in protection from abuse cases. Yet he claims to have expended more than $100,000 worth of time researching and preparing for the case. Nor is Jeff Chiow aka Sugarland newly admitted to practice law. Indeed, he is a shareholder at Rogers, Joseph, O’Donnell, which styles itself a “boutique litigation firm.”

Anyone get the idea that Sugarland was trying to pull a fast one on the Pennsylvania courts? If nothing else, Sugarland didn’t exactly enhance his credibility.

Of course, no matter how you parse it, the church’s claims are either true, in which case one might conclude that it is best to avoid the church; or they are false, in which case one might conclude that it is best to avoid the church, but for wholly different reasons.

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Good Article on Attorney Obligations to Verify “Facts”

One of the most troubling things about this case is Episcopal Church attorney Jeff “Sugarland” Chiow’s false statements of fact to the courts. For those who may be unfamiliar with the details of my case, Jeff Chiow, a former vestry member of Grace Church, repeatedly made false statements in his pleadings, including false statements of fact. These include:
  • That I had never practiced law.
  • That I never served as a police officer.
  • That I violated the existing court order.
While Jeff and his clients (Bob Malm and Grace Episcopal Church) may argue that they did not intend to mislead the courts, the first two are statements of fact. As such, it is not sufficient to simply say, “Well, my client told me.” There is an affirmative duty to conduct reasonable independent inquiry. In this regard, even a cursory review of publicly available data would have made clear that these statements were fabrications,.

Apropos the third claim, violating the court’s order, nothing in the law, the facts, or Sugarland’s pleadings themselves supports this conclusion. Intentionally misleading the court in this matter is a serious violation of an attorney’s ethical obligations as an officer of the court.

As one attorney and author states, “zealous advocacy is not synonymous with recklessness or indifference.” Meaning one cannot simply toss assertions out there and hope that something sticks, as Jeff Chiow has done.

Of course, in doing so, Jeff is doing so as the church’s representative, so as an organization, Grace Church is equally culpable.

Read the full article, published in the New York Law Journal, at

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Grace Episcopal School: Is Your Child Safe?

Subtitle for this post: Grace Episcopal welcomes pedophiles and felons, but not bloggers.

One of the issues that Bob has created for both the church and the school is concern among parents about safety. With that in mind, let’s explore the issue, while recognizing that safety includes both physical safety and spiritual/emotional safety.

Physical safety

In the realm of physical safety, Bob likes to stir up fears about outsiders; his wife, Leslie, allegedly has told third parties that teachers at the school fear I will come in and “shoot up the place.” Leaving aside the fact that I am polygraphed, have a full background check that goes back much, much further than a federal security clearance, and have successfully passed the police psychological exam (all of which is a long way of saying that Bob is full of bullcrud), the reality is that children are most often injured or abused by people they know.

With that in mind, let’s look at who’s welcome at Grace Church. This includes the parish pedophile, who as discussed before both has boundary issues with children, as well as 24/7 access to the entire building, thus providing ample opportunities to be alone with a child.

But the bad news doesn’t stop there. Another parishioner committed felony theft, using keys belonging to a family member to steal multiple laptops. Yet Bob Malm declined to press charges, and to my knowledge did not inform the vestry that a felony theft had occurred. And yet that person has been alone in the building on multiple occasions since the theft.

Given these issues, were I a parent I’d have some real concerns, both about physical safety and about the security of personal belongings. Persons willing to engage in felony theft are, by definition, much more likely than the population at large to commit a variety of serious crimes. And the pedophile already has engaged in inappropriate behavior towards children; there are additional warning signs that I am not at liberty to share here.

Spiritual/emotional safety

To my mind, the most risky aspect of Grace Church and school is spiritual and emotional. Why? Because these can be insiduous, difficult to address, and hard to prevent.

In this space, Bob Malm aka Dysfunctional Bob is not a good instructor for the school’s religion courses, as his content is not age appropriate. This lack of calibration is troubling, for it suggests Bob may also not fully recognize that, to thrive, children need to be in a safe, emotionally healthy environment. 

In that regard, I have personally seen Bob’s tantrums, as well as his petty machinations and smear campaigns. Of course, the larger issue is what values children learn when they see a priest, a perceived authority figure, who:
  • Lies to others.
  • Engages in smear campaigns.
  • Manipulates people.
  • Commits perjury.
  • Bullies innocent family members (think Mike)
  • Tries to subpoena a dying parent in an effort to bully me.
  • Uses an attorney, Jeff “Sugarland” Chiow, who takes personal vendettas into the courtroom and deploys unprofessional,  inflammatory rhetoric.
In short, anything other than the most superficial contact with Dysfunctional Bob may well be unhealthy for children, and indeed the miasma Bob exudes may even touch children indirectly, as parishioners take their cues from Bob.

So next time Bob starts bloviating about fences, panic buttons, rekeying locks, and changing codes on alarm systems, my message to parents is this:

You should be far more concerned about the security risks inherent in welcoming felons and pedophiles to the building, and giving them 24/7 access to the facilities, than to Bob’s ludicrous claims that he’s been threatened. And don’t minimize the unseen risks to children  of Bob’s repeated ethics and boundary issues. If nothing else, Bob’s conduct carries with it an important message and damaging message, which is that bullying is okay.

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Plunging Stock Market May Exacerbate Grace Church’s Financial Woes

With recent stock market activity showing some striking similarities to the market crash of 1987, and the double whammy of a possible partial shut-down of the federal government, Grace Episcopal Church may well enter 2019 in dire financial condition.

As I stated in previous posts, when factoring in depreciation and amortization, Grace has been running an annual deficit for many, many years. That trend, together with several related factors, has spelled a perfect storm in the making for quite some time. These factors include:
  1. An aging parish population.
  2. A costly physical plant.
  3. A wildly overpaid rector who often appears to place his own perceived self-interest ahead of the church.
  4. Decades of slipshod governance.
  5. Facially faulty financial reports.
  6. A rubber-stamp vestry largely controlled by Bob Malm.
  7. A refusal to save for the future.
  8. A culture that of denial and avoidance that has allowed the church to avoid dealing with these pressing issues for much of Bob’s tenure as rector.
  9. American culture, in which church membership is no longer normative, and where young people increasingly oppose organized religion.
  10. The hypocrisy of church hierarchies, including that of the Roman Church, and the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia.
Now, with the stock market appearing poised to tank, the church faces several challenges:
  1. Year-end gifts of appreciated stock likely will be reduced.
  2. Parishioners on fixed incomes will find it difficult to maintain current pledging levels.
  3. Families directly or indirectly dependent on the federal government will face financial constraints.
  4. Investments, including the Grace Trust, which is heavily invested in the stock market, will lose value, thus reducing church revenue.
  5. Banks that might otherwise be willing to lend to the church will seek to reduce risk in the event of another major recession.
All this, of course, ties into the loss of public confidence caused by Dysfunctional Bob and Sugarland Chiow’s rather disastrous foray into court, continued misconduct and conflict within the parish, the departure of Fanny Belanger, the fact that Dysfunctional Bob will retire in the not distant future, and Bob Malm’s smear campaign against members of his own parish.

Grace church surely is poised for big problems over the next few years.