Fellowship Church in Grapevine, TX, USA
- Church: Fellowship Church, Grapevine, Texas
- Affiliation: Southern Baptist Convention (SBC)
- Type: Seeker sensitive; Megachurch
- Attendance: estimated 20,000
- Senior Pastor: Ed Young Jr.
- Statement of Faith
This entry has been posted in response to several requests for information. More resources may be added over time.
Ed Young is the founding and Senior Pastor of Fellowship Church. The church has its main campus just north of the D/FW Airport and operates four satellite campuses in the greater Dallas/Fort Worth area and one campus in Miami, Florida. […]
He has written 13 books, including The Marriage Mirror, Outrageous, Contagious Joy, Beauty Full, and Kid CEO.
Ed is a frequent conference speaker, and he provides resources for church leaders through CreativePastors.com and the Creative Church Conferences (C3). […]
Ed Young Ministries broadcasts a weekly television program throughout the world. Ed Young Television can be viewed nationally and internationally on TBN, Daystar and God TV.
– Source: About Ed Young Fellowship Church website. Last accessed Feb. 18, 2010
“Grapevine pastor wants married couples to have sex every day for a week”
God may have rested on the seventh day, but the Rev. Ed Young wants married couples to have sex all week long.
Once a day.
Beginning this Sunday.
The call to action will headline his sermon that day at Grapevine-based Fellowship Church. He plans to deliver his challenge while sitting on a bed.
In these days of financial crisis, rampant divorce and debates over same-sex marriage, it’s time, he says, to turn the “whining” into “whoopee.”
More fundamentally, he adds, the embracing of sex is about nurturing and strengthening marriages.
“Sex is like Super Glue. It’s a spiritual thing, an emotional thing,” he says.
And the marriage thing, he believes, should only involve a man and woman. God’s way, he says.
Jim Dale of Coppell said he figures the pastor is trying to create more buzz for his five-church mega-ministry.
“Draw ’em in, no matter what or how,” wrote the Coppell resident in a posting on dallasnews.com. “Sex? You betcha. That’ll pack the pews (or theater seats).”
Mr. Dale, author of a book about individual relationships with God, said he has attended Fellowship Church a few times. And he offered some praise: “I’ve got to hand it to them, they are brilliant marketers.”
Mr. Young says his challenge — following a seminar called “Leaving Lust Vegas” — isn’t about filling seats.
– Source: Grapevine pastor wants married couples to have sex every day for a week, Roy Appleton, The Dallas Morning News, Nov. 11, 2008
“Prominent Grapevine pastor linked to luxury”
DALLAS — Not long ago, the Fellowship Church in Grapevine was one of the largest and fastest-growing churches in the nation.
Its pastor, Ed Young, was making national headlines by encouraging married couples to have more sex.
But since that time, sources say membership has waned and some say Pastor Young may have lost his way — putting himself and secrecy over God.
He’s splashy and hip; his message contemporary and cool. His marketing is tops in the world of mega-evangelism, making huge waves with his sermon in 2008 titled “Seven Days of Sex.”
But in the past few months, it’s not theology but physics that may be impacting Young. Namely: What goes up must come down.
One former staff member who says he was close to Young but wishes not to be identified, described it this way: “The lack of accountability. The lavish lifestyle that keeps increasing, while the attendance keeps decreasing.”
Over the past few weeks, News 8 has been in contact with a number of individuals who were once close to Young at his massive Fellowship Church in Grapevine, disturbed by his direction and treatment of staff.
Young recently replaced his chief financial officer and replaced him with his personal attorney, business partner and fishing buddy, Dennis Brewer Jr.
With Brewer’s help and a complex series of business creations and transactions, Young is now jetting around the country in a French-made Falcon 50 private jet; estimated value, $8.4 million.
Records obtained by News 8 indicate Fellowship Church became the operator of the jet in March of 2007. News 8 discovered the jet parked in a hangar at Alliance Airport north of Fort Worth, tucked away where only a select few can see it.
Those who hear him preach every Sunday have never been told about the aircraft.
“The staff members are told that there is no plane, and several staff members who have actually been on the plane have denied that there is a plane,” said the former employee source.
News 8 has also learned that Young’s 10,000 square foot, $1.5 million estate on Lake Grapevine is not listed on the tax rolls in his name, but rather in the name of “Palometa Revocable Trust.”
Records show that Young was paid $240,000 a year as a parsonage allowance; that’s in addition what sources say is a $1 million yearly pastor’s salary.
Young declined to discuss his salary and compensation with News 8, but his spokesman said the pastor’s pay “is governed without his participation by an Independent Compensation Committee, relying on outside consultation with knowledgeable and experienced church leaders.”This YouTube video on Ed Young’s channel is titled, “Setting Things Straight and Moving On” and described as “Ed Young addresses a recent news report and sets the record straight . And in the face of adveristy, he shows once again the reiliance and ability of the church to stand united.”
News 8 has also learned that in 2007, Young sold the intellectual property of Fellowship Church’s marketing Web site, CreativePastors. He also sold the church’s membership mailing list to a newly-formed, for-profit company called EY Publishing.
Today, CreativePastors.com is used by the Youngs to sell his sermons and books for profit.
“When did the intellectual property, when did the preaching and the Bible notes and the books become intellectual property for the pastor?” asked Ole Anthony of the Trinity Foundation in Dallas. “That’s the property of the church.”
Anthony says he and his Trinity Foundation investigative team have been monitoring Ed Young for the past three years. He believes Young has fallen into the same trap as many other televangelists he has investigated over the years.
In the past few years, Young and his attorney, Dennis Brewer Jr., have created a number of for-profit companies generating money apart from Fellowship Church, including: Creative Pastors, CreativePastors.com, Creality Enterprises, Creality Publishing, EY Publishing, Ed Young Resources and UOI Resources.
All the businesses list the fifth floor of Dennis Brewer’s law office in Las Colinas as their office address.
But the resources used to generate the profits come, in part, from the not-for-profit Fellowship Church. For example, Ed’s favorite sermons that were delivered at the church.
SMU law professor Wayne Shaw is a former IRS agent who specializes in tax law. He says it’s not unusual for pastors to accrue wealth from church resources, but it must be disclosed and separate from any for-profit business.
– Source: Prominent Grapevine pastor linked to luxury, Brett Shipp, WFAA TV, Feb. 4, 2010
Ed Young addressed WFAA’s report in the video shown above, as well as in an entry on his blog:
A local reporter has spent what seems to be a great deal of time investigating me concerning my integrity as the leader of Fellowship Church. We have not seen the piece that was aired, nor will we give credence to it by watching. We do know that the report is scathing and creates the idea that I, along with my wife Lisa, have been dishonest in our business dealings and with our use of Fellowship Church as a means of obtaining personal wealth.
The reporter sent an email request for information, but refused to give us any details or information that he obtained from an anonymous source. He only said that he has spoken with former staff members about us. But we have no verification of who he has spoken with. We do not know his source(s) and it is irrelevant to us. What we do know is that this report was made based on fragments of information gathered out of context and anonymously, and that it disregarded documented information that the Board of Directors for Fellowship Church is privy to and that is known by legal counsel and accounting audits.
The piece insinuates that I keep secrets from the congregation of Fellowship Church and that I use Fellowship Church to create personal wealth. Let me say very clearly, Lisa and I have no secrets.
My life is lived in an aquarium, and I am not ashamed of that fact. Do I share every detail of my life with the congregation of Fellowship Church? No. But it isn’t because my life is secretive. It is because there are details that the proper people know, hold me accountable to and make the decisions based on what is best for Fellowship Church and its ministries.
I have never claimed to have lived a perfect life. I do, however, claim to live a life of integrity. I don’t make that claim lightly.
Before God, the Board of Directors and the legal and financial accountants have governed the workings of Fellowship Church and its staff. We operate in a manner that is “worthy of the calling of Christ Jesus” and have no apologies, nor would we change anything that we have done on behalf of the unbelievable ministry of Fellowship Church.
– Source: No Secrets, Ed Young, Feb. 4, 2010
The video shown above is shown in a follow-up post titled, Setting Things Straight and Moving On
The Get Religion blog notes:
What’s not clear, though, is the credibility of WFAA’s sources. They are (gulp) anonymous former confidantes of Young. That’s a red flag. And it’s unclear how much the reporter relied on them for the details of this story. It looks like a lot. Another red flag. And a hint that someone else needs to pick this story up and see where it leads.
Young responded on his blog with a post titled “No Secrets.” He then did more than just baldly deny the allegations by talking about it at church, in the above video. But It’s hard to know how Young could sincerely deny the allegations of the WFAA report because he claims he didn’t watch it. And I’ve written about enough pro athletes to believe that a high-profile pastor might, by personal rule, tune out the good and the bad coverage about himself.
But the WFAA report is too flippantly dismissed for my comfort. No one really seems to be addresses the specifics of the story, or breaking down the substance of the evidence. I’m not supposing the allegations are true, but all I’ve seen has been strategic redirecting. Certainly, this story could use a few more passes from a few more reporters.
– Source: Brad A. Greenberg, Follow the money; find the paper, GetReligion.org, Feb. 17, 2010
- Preaching Creatively: An Interview with Ed Young, Jr. Michael Duduit
Since becoming pastor of Fellowship Church in suburban Dallas in 1990, Ed Young, Jr. has led the church from its original 150 members to a weekly attendance of more than 18,000 people. Fellowship Church has been characterized by creativity in worship and preaching, and now the church is sharing its resources with others through its Fellowship Connection network and CreativePastors.com. Ed has recently joined the Board of Contributing Editors of Preaching magazine, joining his father (Ed Young, Sr., Pastor of Houston’s Second Baptist Church) in our first father-son Contributing Editor team. Preaching editor Michael Duduit recently visited Fellowship Church to visit with Ed about preaching creatively.