Talk:Jesus Army

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Multiply Christian Network[edit]

During the edit process we lost all reference to the Multiply Christian Network without discussion. I think it was intended to move it to elsewhere in the article but that didn't happen. There are Wikilinks from elsewhere to this article that reference Multiply, so we ought to mention it somehow. William Kay states that it is notable: "The Army is noted for ... its linkage with more than 40 other independent Christian churches in the Multiply Network." (William Kay in C. Partridge (ed), Encyclopedia of New Religions, a Guide (Oxford: Lion Publishing, 2004).) Another reference to Multiply is idea (Evangelical Alliance magazine), May 1999: "... Multiply Christian Network, which links more than 30 churches in England and Wales with others abroad. Multiply was initiated in 1992 by the Jesus Fellowship Church." Since the date of those two articles the number of groups has grown to around 250[1]. The article used to say: "The Jesus Fellowship is also linked to other churches and groups in the UK and elsewhere through the Multiply Christian Network." which is probably the minimum that is usable. John Campbell (talk) 08:55, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

I don't see a problem with the multiply info being reinstated seeing as it was accidently lost during the earlier edit process and have already agreed to this anywayManicpixie (talk) 15:18, 13 October 2008 (UTC)


I need to ask everyone to hold their horses. No sooner have I given up than Mike Aldrich pops up with two very useful sources, one from a newspaper last year and the other from George D. Chryssides, who I think you approve of as a source, John? Haven't checked because I should be packing my saddlebags to go flying tomorrow, but before I go, I just wanted to put these up because they amply support the CIC and FAIR references.

CIC (Cult Information Centre)

Sunday Mercury (Birmingham) March 4th 2007 (newspaper) (quote)The UK Cult Information Centre says that the mJA is on a list of religious groups it has concerns about. Spokesman Ian Howarth said: "We're very concerned about the Jesus Army. Over the years we have had many concerns expressed about it. "There have been no major changes that merit removing it from our list." (end of quote)


Exploring New Religions By George D. Chryssides Continuum International Publishing Group, 1999 ISBN 0826459595, 9780826459596

page 161 (quote) FAIR carefully and consistently monitored the Jesus Fellowship Church's development, even from its early Bugbrooke days, giving it adverse publicity in its quarterly magazine FAIR News. Not only did FAIR give prominence to the fact that many members handed over all their possessions to the Church, and to its disputes with the Baptist Union and Evangelical Alliance, unjusty portraying Stanton as an authoritarian leader who claimed an exclusive 'hotline to God', ...'(end of quote) I think these two secondary sources make it quite clear that these two organisations do indeed exist and have concerns about the JA.Bristol Sycamore (talk) 18:42, 11 October 2008 (UTC)

The original question was whether Reliable Sources referred to these organisations' concerns in the time after the Jesus Army rejoined the Evangelical Alliance -- we have already dealt with the earlier period -- as we need a check on whether their concerns are Notable and are other than an extreme minority view. The particular questions to answer will be if the Sunday Mercury article fits within WP:Reliable_sources#News_organizations. The Chryssides quote relates to the pre-EA period, and although it is Reliable is irrelevant to the point we are considering. However, his comment that this was "unjust" may need bringing out. We may need to seek others' opinions on this. John Campbell (talk) 09:08, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
The Sunday Mercury is a legitimate secondary source. Hard to see how you can dismiss it as anything else. The Chryssides quote is sufficient to confirm the existence and concerns of FAIR about the JA. I can't see why the EA is relevant to FAIR, a secular cult-concern group unlikely to be impressed by your membership of the alliance. FAIR was concerned about you, after all, when you were in the alliance the first time around. Bristol Sycamore (talk) 23:02, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
In case clarification is needed, I have never questioned the existence of CIC or FAIR, nor of their so-called 'concerns'. What I do question is whether the 'concerns' are notable and are now any more than an extreme minority view (see WP:UNDUE). The question over the Sunday Mercury would be whether that free local paper has a reputation for fact-checking and balance (see WP:Reliable_sources#News_organizations), particularly in view of the fact that the reporter came "undercover" and appears to be claiming to quote me although she never spoke to me.
The background is that the Jesus Army is well-spoken of generally and is in membership not only of the Evangelical Alliance, but also of Fusion and the Faithworks Movement, and of local groupings such as Faithworks Northampton and Churches Together in Northampton. It has played its part in Hope 08, ACUTE (Evangelical Alliance consultations on theology and doctrine), Challenge 2000, DAWN UK, and March for Jesus. Members of the UK and European Parliaments have visited the Jesus Centre projects, as have local mayors and councillors. The Jesus Army has been shortlisted for national awards by Premier Christian Media and by Faithworks. Members of the Councils of Reference for Jesus Centres include Anglican and Baptist clergymen, Salvation Army officers and New Church leaders as well as other professional men and women. When against that we have only a single somewhat shaky source this century, and one could readily argue that the claim is indeed exceptional. John Campbell (talk) 09:15, 14 October 2008 (UTC)
"The background is that the Jesus Army is well-spoken of generally". This is an extraordinary claim which would need some qualifying. You refer to numerous christian alliances, some of which I know for a fact do not self-police - the EA, for instance, which is a membership based on attestation and nothing more; membership does not imply approval, respectability or anything else....and could be seen as a mutually self-interested. Only if the country was generally Christian (and essentially evangelical, at that) could you make some claim to be generally well-spoken of, and even that I suspect would be a rather questionable claim requiring measurable evidenceBristol Sycamore (talk) 16:30, 14 October 2008 (UTC)
The pre/post EA thing is a red herring. I am not aware that when I raised the CIC list originally, I was interested in the EA at all. You introduced that dimension by mentioning your affiliation as evidence that despite the CIC and FAIR concerns you are now considered mainstream, but to secular organisations, which both CIC and FAIR are, your EA link is irrelevant. The two sources I have provided simply confirm the existence of concern organistions and the fact that they are worried about you. I'd have thought that if there is a time dimension to this, the onus is on you to provide secondary evidence that FAIR and CIC are no longer interested in you, not vice versa.Bristol Sycamore (talk) 23:12, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
This isn't really contentious at all, and we have discussed the point already. I think you may have forgotten the original train of thought. The article already refers to events and attitudes before the Jesus Army rejoined the EA, including anti-cult groups' opposition. You wanted to add extra material to show that the concern was a continuing one. You may recall that Manicpixie wanted to delete the new material on the basis that it duplicated what was already said, but you pointed out that you wanted to show that the concern continued. Either you want to show continuing concern, and need recent references, or you don't and the point is already covered. Which is it to be? I note by the way that you have not picked up on my comment on "unjustly". How should we deal with this aspect? John Campbell (talk) 09:15, 14 October 2008 (UTC)
Ok, I take your point, but the EA reference is one related to time-frames, not to the EA per se. You were thrown out in the 1980s and the earlier cult references refer to that time. The Chryssides' one refers to 1999, which is a good time later, and even if you insist that it is not up-to-date, it at least suggests a ten year period during which scrutiny by FAIR and CIC continued. The "unjustly" comment is his POV, clearly, but I am sure you will make some use of it. It is irrelevant for the point I am making, which has to do with whether or not there is verifiable evidence of the two groups having a continued concern about the JA. Manic pixie would have been wrong to claim that the material had already been included because he was referring to circa 1986, while the Mercury article was as recent as last year.Bristol Sycamore (talk) 16:22, 14 October 2008 (UTC)
You seem to have misunderstood what I wrote then Peter. My point was and still is about balance here. My comments earlier where about the fact that it is already included in the article that there was at one time a 'cultic' concern about the church. That issue was addressed and the church rejoined the EA., it doesn't need mentioning again in the form of outdated lists for the balance of the article. The newspaper report has already been discussed here and deemed an unsuitable source, 1 because is was 'uncover' and 2 because that reporter was quoting someone they'd not even talked to so the integrity of that report is questionable to say the leastManicpixie (talk) 23:03, 14 October 2008 (UTC)
No, Manicpixie, I did not misunderstand you. I know that you think that the cult concern is historical and that re-joining the EA in your mind is evidence that you are not considered cultic anymore. However, the cult concern continues to this far as the both the CIC and FAIR are concerned. Howarth is quoted in the last few years as saying that he doesn't know of any changes to justify softening the CIC's position. What I think you do not take into account is that neither FAIR nor CIC are christian organisations - they are areligious (FAIR says it respects freedom or religion, for instance, but that it is itself non-partisan). Neither organisation are swayed by the idea that a christian church is, by dint of being christian, incapable of cultic tendencies. The EA is not a policing organisation. Membership does not imply approval or respectability. What the quotes establish is that concern about your alleged cultism continues right up until last year - that your EA membership is entirely irrelevant.Bristol Sycamore (talk) 23:30, 14 October 2008 (UTC)
As you say, EA membership provides the timeframe for the discussion, not the determining factor. We have already listed the key factors in the article. As far as my point that the Jesus Army is well-spoken of generally, if you look at my list again, you will see that this is far from just the evangelical arena. I didn't mention invitations to Downing Street or the Houses of Parliament, either, which I could have done. John Campbell (talk) 09:10, 15 October 2008 (UTC)
I wonder what you feel has changed in the way you do things because I haven't mentioned having been asked to contribute to a parliamentary committee concerned about cults in the late 1980s, which listed yours. If needs be, I have letters from MPs too...expressing the concern of their constituents about the JA, not least of all (as he was your local man) Michael Morris MP (Northampton), who was a very active campaigner against the JA. I remember particularly being contacted by Jack Ashley, Baron Ashley of Stoke and enjoying that correspondence enormously. This was back in the days when you were less concerned in having the approval of the World. I am sure we can all wheel out our supporters, our MPs et al, but at the end of the day it does not make either of us "generally well spoken of", per se Bristol Sycamore (talk) 16:14, 15 October 2008 (UTC)

Article expansion[edit]

I have expanded the article adding extra details with referencing to external sources, and sprucing up the order of the material, in an attept to move the article higher than "Start class".Smileypirate (talk) 14:07, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

Glad to see it's been upgraded to B class. Smileypirate (talk) 12:27, 12 January 2009 (UTC)

Well done, you have done a remarkable job of entirely re-writing the article without any attempt at consensus. Indeed, I don't think it would look out of place on your own website. It is a great piece of pro-JA marketing.Bristol Sycamore (talk) 19:39, 9 March 2009 (UTC)

I have flagged up sources here and there in order to maintain a NPOV, as well as a few minor edits for clarity etc. Normaljames (talk) 10:43, 26 March 2009 (UTC)
Regarding the sentence about 'anti-cult groups' which I have edited. FAIR is now called TFST and does not have the Jesus Fellowship on their list; the same is true of the Reachout Trust – the Jesus Fellowship is not on their lists. The phrase‘Groups like’ has been left to allow for a breadth of criticism at that time, but the sentence has been clarified as past tense in order not to be misleading.Whitestonecapn (talk) 13:58, 8 October 2009 (UTC)
The section of the article which you have edited relates to historic information and shouldn't be edited to reflect recent content changes to currently existing websites. I shall be reverting your edit, and adding citations for the inclusion of both FAIR and The Reachout Trust. Please don't let that deter you from editing the tense of the section if you feel it is misleading in any way. btw, FAIR is not now called TFST, the publication arm of FAIR continues as 'FAIR News Publishing Limited' although on their new website the online archive which used to include the Jesus Fellowship in their yearly top 10/15 'number of concerned enquiries recieved' list (mainly within publications with the '90s) is currently unavailable. It is only the FAIR advisory service which has been handed over to TFST. Whilst I also acknowledge that sometime within the last year, The Reachout Trust has removed articles concerning the JA from their website, and have withdraw their 'NF010 - Jesus Fellowship' pamphlet from the 'Cult factfile' section of their online shopping store, their recent change of stance shouldn't affect a paragraph which focuses on opinions in the 1990's . Oh, and if you have a potential WP:COI when editing this article, please could you mention your involvement on your User page, thanks ... --Mike Aldrich (talk) 19:01, 15 October 2009 (UTC)
Just to point out that we've been over some of this ground before, further up this talk page. When the Chryssides quote was suggested, I wrote "The Chryssides quote relates to the pre-EA period, and although it is Reliable is irrelevant to the point we are considering." As you say, the period this section refers to is presumably immediately following re-entry into the EA. However, I agree that the source serves to indicate the Notability of FAIR's views. Strictly, we haven't found an acceptable quote for Reachout: it can't act as a source for itself, according to fundamental Wikipedia principles. We obviously don't need to repeat material from earlier in the article here and so I'm at a bit of a loss as what to suggest. Personally, I think it attempts to say too much here. Maybe a recasting of the tenses is the best we can do. John Campbell (talk) 17:05, 20 October 2009 (UTC)

Noel Stanton (1926-2009)[edit]

I guess the article ought to reflect Noel's death. An anonymous editor attempted to do so by editing a source, but that is surely the wrong way to do it! I've flagged up Noel's dates, but some better change would be helpful. John Campbell (talk) 14:48, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

Celibacy and marriage[edit]

This needs fixing. A large portion of it is a direct quote from a citation but not made clear that it's a citation.Muleattack (talk) 03:19, 24 December 2011 (UTC)

Bugbrooke Community[edit]

Soon after mving to Northampton,I learnt that the Jesus Fellowship are sometimes known as the Bugbrooke Community. This is implicit in the article rather than explicit.Vorbee (talk) 21:39, 12 June 2016 (UTC)