Showing posts with label talking points. Show all posts
Showing posts with label talking points. Show all posts

Friday, November 22, 2019

See for Yourself: Bob Malm Refers to Me as a “Sad Individual, Starving for Attention” in an Email to the St. Dysfunction Vestry

Here we have another email in which Bob Malm tries to discredit me by referring to me as a “sad individual, starved for attention.” That’s a curious claim, since I state in writing in December 2017 that I wanted no further contact from Bob Malm.

As always, we see a total lack of appropriate pastoral presence on Bob Malm’s part, as well as the usual organizational narcissism of St. Dysfunction. And the “constant support” of the diocese—yet another reason to throw in the towel when it comes to the Diocese of Virginia.

Of course, there’s also no sign that Amy Medrick, or any vestry members, told Bob that this sort of discourse about Christians entrusted to Bob’s pastoral care is inappropriate. And while it would be inappropriate at almost any other church, this sort of thing is acceptable at Grace church.

Prospective interims, beware! This is the stained glass cesspool that is Grace Episcopal church.


Monday, October 7, 2019

Planning to Pledge This Fall? If So, Remember that Grace Episcopal’s Vestry Lies to Its Members

Know anyone else who’s gotten an email like this from Bob Malm?

And remind me, why exactly did Bob Malm direct Mike to leave?

Any church whose vestry lies to parishioners is one you should avoid at all costs.

My advice, worth exactly what you paid for it.

Friday, August 23, 2019

See for Yourself: Vestry Talking Points Demonstrate Questionable Veracity

When you elect people to a church vestry or board, you expect them to be honest and diligent, right? Well, in the case of the Grace Church vestry, you’d have just cause to ask tough questions about the former.

Attached is the vestry talking points document circulated about this conflict. In it are several questionable assertions:
  1. The document asserts that I left on my own. If that’s the case, why did Bob Malm feel the need to send an email to me and Mike, telling us we are unwelcome? And by did he instruct church staff and volunteers to exclude us? For the record, I didn’t transfer my membership until 2017. And it was not until 2018 that Mike and I asked to have our names removed from all Episcopal church records.
  2. If there is no truth to my concerns, why then do I have messages like the one that follows, from Peter Barnes, then senior warden, which was sent after one of Bob’s spates of inappropriate behavior. In it, Peter is very clear: “It’s Bob, not you.”
  3. As discussed elsewhere, at no point have I threatened anyone at Grace Church, and Bob knows it. Indeed, his actions, in which he tries to use his role as clergy to discredit me, claim that I am mentally ill, and stoke fears within the church prove the accuracy of my underlying contentions. 
  4. The use of inflammatory, prejudicial rhetoric in his pleadings, including his references to a non-existent church shooting in the equally non-existent town of “Sugarland Texas,” together with his treating this as a personal vendetta, underscores Jeff Chiow’s questionable ethics.
And, while I’m engaged in what Jeff  “Sugarland” Chiow delicately refers to as “ranting and raving,” for the love of the almighty, the header doesn’t get a question mark. Just because it references a question doesn’t make the clause a question. Sheesh.


Wednesday, September 5, 2018

The Irony of Life at St. Dysfunction

In all of this, there’s a great irony, which is that Bob has thus far gotten everything he wanted.

Bob wanted Mike and me out of Grace Church. We have both left the Christian faith, so that goal was accomplished.

Bob wanted a protective order and the court awarded him that. No problem there—there’s no sum of money large enough to induce me to go anywhere near Dirtbag Bob.

So what is he kvetching about?

Surely Bob didn’t think that there would be no implications for his reputation and that of Grace Church.

Now, of course, Bob wants those two outcomes, and silence as well. But it doesn’t work that way. It won’t work that way.

One thing Bob still hasn’t learned is that everything in life comes at a price. Sometimes small choices have big implications. For instance, not having a nightlight — a five dollar item available in any supermarket — resulted in Bob’s 2014 accident in which he broke his neck. (With falls being the number one cause of accidental death in the home, it’s also fair to point out that the decision not to take safety seriously was remarkably stupid on Bob’s part, but not inconsistent with his stated proclivity for believing himself to be invincible.)

Other times, it’s more readily obvious that our actions will have consequences. For example, by not acting as a Christian and by directing parish staff to shun and exclude us, and by falsely claiming that things like the name of a Richmond classic rock frighten him, and thus he needs a protective order, it should have been pretty obvious that people would conclude, at best, Bob’s a priest in name only. No surprise there. And it should have been obvious that this would impact the church’s reputation.

So, I am very happy to give Bob both of the original outcomes that he wanted. But having chosen a specific path forward that includes:
  • Confrontation,
  • Exclusion,
  • Dishonesty, including claiming that Mike and I left on our own, references to a fake church shooting in the equally fake city of “Sugarland Texas,” referring to me as “unbalanced,” “dysfunctional,” and a “sad individual,” lying about my previously having been an attorney and having served as a police officer, and
  • Bullying, like trying to drag my mother, dying of COPD, into court,
it’s perfectly fair and reasonable to tell the world that these things are all okay and part of life on Planet Malm.

Moreover, by pulling the vestry into things, including through dissemination of talking points that falsely claim we left on our own, Bob has damaged the church’s reputation at every level. These outcomes are part and parcel of Bob’s so-called ministry, and they are a damning reflection of the kind of priest and person that Bob is. Or, as Jesus puts it, “By their fruits you shall know them.” And by aiding and abetting Bob in his follies, Jeff “Sugarland” Chiow is every bit as culpable — and clueless — as Bob.

So, if you’re okay with these things, Grace Episcopal Church may be a good place for you, and Bob Malm may be an equally acceptable priest for you.

If you’re not good with these things, you may want to consider finding a different church, or no church at all.

And if you are presently an inhabitant of Planet Malm, you may want to consider whether these are behaviors you want to support. Personally, I would not choose to invest time, talent or treasure in any church or ministry in which these things are okay. The gospel of Jesus is about radical inclusion, love and acceptance, not about shunning, bullying, and lying. Moreover, Bob’s claims that he didn’t bully me are disproved by his very actions in this conflict. Oh, and remind me again: What did Mike, who had joined The Episcopal Church 16 months earlier, do to deserve to be included in Dysfunctional Bob’s Edict of Shunning? Folks can deploy the Jesus-babble about being “servants of Christ” all they want, but that’s just lipstick on a pig. Bob’s actions speak for themselves.

Finally, if you are clergy and thinking about the assistant position at Grace Church, just know that right behind the ostensibly friendly people and the pretty nave, these things are an acceptable part of life at Grace Episcopal Church, aka St. Dysfunction aka Planet Malm.