MCC Leaders Respond to Resignation of the Rev. Mark Bidwell

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From the Office of the Moderator
Metropolitan Community Churches
For Immediate Release: 29 September 2011

Metropolitan Community Church Leaders Respond to
Resignation of the Rev. Mark Bidwell

Top leaders of the Metropolitan Community Church expressed shock and sadness about recent events that the Rev. Mark Bidwell was in the company of Mr. Steven Fitch when Mr. Fitch apparently died of a drug overdose.  Details of the September 21 events came to attention through a police report that became public on September 27.

The Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson, Moderator of the Metropolitan Community Church, said, “We are deeply saddened whenever drug addiction impacts an individual or a community.  No community across this country is immune from the scourge of illegal drugs, but when it hits close to home, we are reminded of the commitment we have to teach people about the harms of drug abuse and to be a place of spiritual healing for those who are recovering.”

Ms. Jackie Walker, member of MCC Detroit, said, “MCC national and local leaders are responding in every responsible and appropriate way to learn what happened and to care for the congregation.  Our Elders are working with the church board and members and are offering assistance and pastoral care.”

Church officials received notice late on September 27 that Pastor Bidwell was with Mr. Fitch on September 21 when illegal drugs were allegedly in use.  In less than a day, Rev. Bidwell was suspended from duties until all the facts could be ascertained.  Rev. Bidwell has since resigned as pastor of MCC Detroit.

Rev. Wilson said, “MCC Detroit’s forty-year ministry is extraordinary.  We have asked our whole denomination and partners in faith to pray for this congregation as they deal with the shock and pain from these events.  We know that God is with them and will be with them as they face this crisis with courage and faith.”

Press Contact:
The Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson, Moderator
Metropolitan Community Churches