Senior Elder Quits Posts with Church

Seattle Times/March 16, 1988
By Marsha King

Jack Hicks, a senior elder with Community Chapel and Bible Training Center, yesterday resigned his leadership positions with the church, according to elder Greg Thiel.

Hicks was on the board of directors and vice president and general manager of Community Chapel. No reason was given for the resignation and Hicks was unavailable for comment.

Meanwhile, attorneys for feuding sides of Community Chapel will be back in court again tomorrow for further refinement of a temporary restraining order issued yesterday in King County Superior Court.

The order, in effect until the case goes to trial, prevents elders in the church from interfering with Donald Barnett as pastor and president of the church.

Judge Jim Bates said he will seek an early trial date to settle the matter.

Attorneys for the elders said they will ask tomorrow that the restraining order be made mutual, preventing either side from making drastic changes in the church until the outcome of a trial.

The elders ousted the pastor March 4 after accusing him of sexual misconduct. To remove him they filed new incorporation papers with the state and changed the church bylaws.

At issue is the way they voted him out. Last week, Bates ordered Barnett reinstated pending the trial.

James Leach, attorney for the elders, said he is requesting a mutual restraining order because he fears Barnett will attempt to remove the entire staff.

Barnett, the affidavit says, also has attempted to prohibit the elders of the church from having worship services.

The affidavit says Barnett directed the staff of the church to meet with him Monday. Of 103 employees asked to come, only 10 showed up, and 79 signed a letter saying they wouldn't work for him.

Barnett said yesterday he might be forced to fire staff members if they don't cooperate.

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