The council of the Baptist Union of Great Britain and Ireland has expelled from the Union the Jesus Fellowship Church (Baptist) at Bugbrooke.
The council's general secretary said the council wish to make it clear the Jesus Fellowship was free to act as they believed God was leading them. 'Our decision does not imply judgement of their standing before God.'
He said the decision was made because developments in church government and authority and the change from a local church to a form of nation-wide organisation made it impossible for the Union to recognise the Fellowship as a local Baptist church.
He said the Fellowship's membership had been almost entirely nominal for many years, as illustrated by their lack of involvement in denominational life and their unilateral programme of recruitment and extension in the close vicinity of other Baptist churches without consultation. There was also the issue of adverse publicity for many years.
He stressed the Union's decision was not made with any anti-charismatic or anti-house church motives.