Of course the private jet is extravagant, and in my view so is a $240,000 a year for a parsonage allowance, which is not part of what sources say is part of his $1 million pastoral salary. I’m thinking the salary thing should be easy to find out, as just about all churches make staff salaries available, but I wonder if that salary is addition to work he does outside of the church, like writing books and speaking engagements.
As I’ve written before, I’m often torn when it comes to the salary of pastors. Of course I don’t expect them to live in poverty, and I certainly want them to be compensated fairly, it’s just I don’t know how to define fairly. I remember once being asked if I thought a pastor that does the same amount of work as a CEO of a large corporation should get paid the same as that kind of CEO, since the work is about the same in terms of scope and managerial manpower. And I still don’t feel like they should, just as a generals and commanders in the military have similar roles as a CEO or a mayor and governor yet get paid well less, because they do it out of love for country.
I took at look at the church’s website and there is no official response, but Young did make an entry on his blog where he seems to be dismissive of the report he hasn’t even seen. Part of it is posted below:
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.