Crystal Cathedral founder resigns from board
Rev. Robert H. Schuller preaches on March 11, 1998 at the Crystal Cathedral.
March 13th, 2012
07:44 AM ET

Crystal Cathedral founder resigns from board

By the CNN Wire Staff

(CNN) - The immediate plans of Rev. Robert H. Schuller, the founder of the Crystal Cathedral Ministries in Southern California, and his wife are unclear after they resigned from the church's board of directors over the weekend, their lawyer said Monday.

The Crystal Cathedral, a Protestant church that helped spark the megachurch movement in the United States after opening in 1970, entered bankruptcy procedures in 2010 after years of infighting among Schuller's family and church leaders.

The Schullers have been locked in a legal dispute with other board members. Talks to reach a settlement broke down last week, according to a statement from the Schullers over the weekend.

"We cannot continue to serve on the board in what has become an adversarial and negative atmosphere, especially since it now seems that it will not be ending anytime soon," Arvella Schuller, the pastor's wife, said in the statement.

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The couple's "immediate plans are up in the air right now," their lawyer, Carl Grumer, said Monday.

The Crystal Cathedral campus was sold to the Roman Catholic Church last year in a deal approved by a bankruptcy judge in November.

Schuller, now in his 80s, was known for his internationally broadcast "Hour of Power" TV show. His role on the board had already changed last year when directors voted to make him honorary chairman rather than a voting board member.

In 2006, he stepped down from the pulpit as senior pastor but continued to preach and sit on the church board. His son, Robert A. Schuller, stepped in as senior pastor. Two years later, after a dispute with the board, the younger Schuller was voted out by the board.

CNN's Greg Morrison contributed to this report.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Catholic Church • Christianity • Church

soundoff (308 Responses)
  1. I'm Glad

    he sure looks like a crook

    March 13, 2012 at 11:25 am |
    • Battsman

      Looks can be deceiving.

      Well not in this case, but they can be deceiving in other cases.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:34 am |
  2. WeShouldTaxTheChurch

    Tacitius, in 30 years (assuming you're not already old) you'll be the only white person in your neighborhood...but of course these little facts are ignored by the media.

    March 13, 2012 at 11:19 am |
  3. JessSayin

    "Unless the Lord builds the house, they that labor, labor in vain."

    March 13, 2012 at 11:15 am |
    • The Jackdaw

      Funny, the only god that i'm aware of that swong a hammer was Thor.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:31 am |
    • AZPatriot

      @The Jackdaw

      Actually, Jesus is a carpenter. He's out back building my shed right now. Excellent work, BTW.

      March 13, 2012 at 12:16 pm |
    • GodPot

      @AZPatriot – Just make sure you limit how much water you let him have, you don't want him getting drunk on the job...

      March 13, 2012 at 12:19 pm |
    • What, what, what ???

      Now there's a new one. "swong"... Look THAT up in your Funk and Wagnal's.

      March 13, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
  4. liz48

    God is house cleaning!

    March 13, 2012 at 11:13 am |
    • The Jackdaw

      Humanity needs to clean house and start by throwing out God.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:14 am |
    • ajk68

      And let the atheist tyrants rule the world...

      March 13, 2012 at 2:03 pm |

    Finite Universe – zero and one are equal (matter can be infinitely divided into nothing – God is Nothing that created everything out of emptiness) "At the Planck distance and the Planck time all physics, as we know it today collapses. This is the reason we call the beginning of the big bang a singularity. You cannot apply ordinary reasoning there. Zero and one have no sense there.OK?" J-P Burri There should be no doubt in anyone’s mind that the Big Bang views one and zero as being equal, since it states that zero appeared out of the absence of zero; then zero created something. Many scientists believe or have faith that light does not have mass, thus they believe the Universe is Finite. Religion promotes the most commonly accepted idea of the group. If light does not have mass, then it would be impossible to move an electron. Light described as a particle means nothing, if it has no mass since it would be impossible to distinguish from nothing because no mass means void of substance. If it has no substance, then nothing is present to distinguish the particle from other particles.
    The Big Bang theory prevents any condition where something has always been. Infinity is defined as the difference between one and zero. Once one and zero are the same according to the big bang, the definition of infinity as stated above is no longer valid. If the big bang occurred, all math's must deal with the proof of 0=1.
    Infinite Universe – zero is not equal to one (there is a point where matter can't be divided – God is Something that can neither be created nor destroyed that is dependent on nothing.) An infinite universe lacks a beginning, so there is no one set past or a given future.

    March 13, 2012 at 11:10 am |
    • BasedInReality

      And you got your Phd in Physics when and where?

      March 13, 2012 at 11:15 am |
    • A Universe 4 Free....1+(-1) = 0

      God cannot "create" anything. The "act" requires time, a priori. Good try. Try again.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:20 am |
    • The Jackdaw

      This unintelligible rant reminds me of the preacher in Deadwood that is talking to the cows about cleanlyness.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:22 am |
    • Brad

      I'm not a physicist, but I have considerable training in mathematics. I'd encourage you to revisit and revise everything you've said and maybe get back to us later.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:24 am |
    • A Universe 4 Free....1+(-1) = 0

      The fact that there IS a Plank time /distance should telly him something.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:31 am |
    • Battsman

      Troll 4
      Suckers 0

      March 13, 2012 at 11:33 am |
    • What, what, what ???

      god = material. OMG. How stupid can one get ? Then she didn't create herself. Try, try, try again.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:59 am |
  6. The Jackdaw

    Churches should only be tax free if they can prove that 50% of their income is going back to the community through cherity. Otherwise, you are clearly a business, not a church, and need to pay taxes.

    March 13, 2012 at 11:09 am |
  7. Brickell Princess

    Churches are such a dirty and deceiving business. Unfortunately, people are not smart enough to realize this. Case in point, a few years ago I bought a church in Coconut Grove (Miami, FL). I bought the building since the congregation was flat broke and was moving to a more manageable location. I put it up for sale and in no time fools were calling my office asking my assistant how I could sell a church and why I had put the church up for sale. Such small minded people are the same ones that fail to realize that churches are just a business of deception....nothing more.

    March 13, 2012 at 11:08 am |
    • The Jackdaw

      Wait...the churchies wanted to know how you could dare to sell a church after they themselves had sold it to you?????

      March 13, 2012 at 11:13 am |
  8. The Jackdaw

    Awww, how sad. A super $$ jesus userper has stepped down. boo hoo hoo.

    March 13, 2012 at 11:07 am |

    If God created something from nothing, then both something and nothing would be apart of him. The problem is that something and nothing are total opposites. Like good and evil. Nothing is associated with no movement, something is associated with movement and to be both would be like saying that truth and lies are the same. If God created something from nothing, he would not be a jealous God because he could easily turn something back into nothing. The point here is that no scripture in the Bible specifically states that God created something from nothing. Science is promoting it and the church is beginning to accept it.
    Baptism is associated with accepting Jesus and being saved by grace. Being saved by grace means you should have received a punishment for your sin which hurt other people. The problem is that Grace tends to be put above The Greatest Commandment Matthew 22:37. If Grace were above the Greatest Commandment, then the devil could be forgiven and he would be in heaven. The devil does not love God and this is the reason he is not in heaven. The purpose of following the law is to show others that we love God. Unfortunately, those that view Grace above the Greatest commandment are using the law as a means to judge others as being not good enough to follow it. This is the common argument against the Jew. Love or judge, the choice is yours! Matthew 22:37 states you are called to Love and the law tells us how. Not knowing that God loves us is associated with our inherited sin from the fall of Adam and Eve. For God so loved the world that he sent his son not to condemn the world but to save it. Christ forgives our old sinful ways, since being born again is associated with a change in behavior because we now see that God loves us and therefore we now desire to love him. If grace is infinite, then it would not be a choice to love God. If grace is infinite, there would be no reason to change our ways and become a new creation or be born again. If grace is infinite, then God would accept evil and thus be evil. To forgive and not expect any change in behavior would produce more of the same behavior that the original forgiveness required.

    March 13, 2012 at 11:06 am |
    • liz48

      I agree with you 100%...I have begun to study Hassidic Judaism and I have a much clearer and better understanding of Jesus, Our Redeemer and Lord. Man has the ability to change his environment and the potential to live out the Victory of the Blood of Jesus. It is not a given if one deliberately lives in darkness and never seeks forgiveness.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:17 am |
    • A Universe 4 Free....1+(-1) = 0

      Quoting the babble to prove the babble is circular, I telly you what. Try try again.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:22 am |
    • The Jackdaw

      Yes, circular arguments are not arguments at all.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:38 am |
  10. MennoKnight

    As a rule we Mennonites build plain buildings, have low paid pastors, many of whom are dual income and teach that everyone is clergy, not just the pastor.

    Where do we get these "crazy" ideas from? We look at how the New Testament Churches seemed to run and we try to follow those principles ourselves.

    These ideals do not lend themselves to mega churches very well.
    And that might just be the answer we need.

    March 13, 2012 at 10:56 am |
    • DW

      Only one word. MONEY is why.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:07 am |
    • Rich

      Just because someone builds a church doesn't mean the Bible is taught there.

      As Christians were to be Christlike, yet in Mega-churches those attending are frequently taught that God wants you to be financially wealthy, while Christ Himself was poor.

      No, Christ doesn't want us to be poor, just not overly focus on money and thus take our focus off of Him.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:12 am |
    • Tacitius Talks

      It is called Nicolaitanism from the Greek – Nikao – Clergy, and Laite or Laity – the concept of Clergy/Laity split. The idea that the "clergy" is some how more "holy" and important than the laity. It is the major belief of every Christian sect – Catholic and Protestant. Only groups like the Plymouth Brethren, Mennonites, Quakers, Pietists, and Amish don't really hold with this. The Baptists play "lip service" to abhorring Nicolaitinism, but in practice, they embrace it.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:12 am |
    • Brad

      I belong to a Lutheran congregation of about 1300 members. Every adult is eligible to become a voting member and participate in all planning and financial activities. There is complete transparency in all administrative matters. I suspect that if the congregation grew much larger then that would be deemed impractical. Mega churches seem to function as a service industry, even a sort of entertainment industry, which is far from the nature of the founding churches of Christianity.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:18 am |
    • J.W

      Hey cool another Mennonite.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:23 am |
    • liz48

      Thank you...yes, this is a Truth of God's Word. It will be wonderful if the Mennonites go into the other areas of the Word of God too, like the spiritual gifts of the Holy Spirit and the gift of tongues, which the Lord said would enable believers to go out and be His witnesses. We see the change in people like Peter who was afraid to acknowledge the Lord, and then wanted to be crucified upside down once he was endowed, as Jesus promised with power after the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

      This is not about the pentecostal denomination but about the Word of God. We find pentecostals who neglect the Word of God and pray in tongues; and that is disobedience. Jesus said man shall live by every Word that proceeded out of the Mouth of God – Matt 4:4. We are told to cut off from those who have a form of godliness but do not display the power of the Lord – 2Tim 3:5

      March 13, 2012 at 11:25 am |
    • MennoKnight

      I hope that I did not come across and say as saying "just we Mennonites do things right".
      I know many Lutherans and who's churches who are a great and Godly example.
      I am only speaking from my own experience as a Mennonite.
      That said, I agree fully with your ideals that transparency is the only way to run a church.

      Tacitius Talks,
      I agree with you. I see the the problem on a regular basis. I am a young Mennonite Pastor and every week it seems that I have to beat down the notion in our church and community that I am somethings special above others. You do a good job at preaching or reaching out into the community and suddenly you get lots of praises that can become something that it is not intended to be.
      Problems come when people start taking that praise in and thinking "Hey, I am pretty special. I am pretty great."
      While we as Mennonites teach against such ideas it is really easy to fall into this trap.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:31 am |
    • MennoKnight

      Thanks Liz 48,
      It might surprise you but I did do a 12 week sermon series from September to November of 2011 on the spiritual gifts. Now if we could only get our live streaming to work well. You can get some of our sermons at http://www.wmbc.ca
      And don't forget to give us lots and lots of MONEY!!! Oh wait, never mind.... 😉

      March 13, 2012 at 11:39 am |
    • Brad


      My apologies. No comparison was intended, I just wanted to identify my perspective and express agreement with your views. All the best to you.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:44 am |
    • Mark From Exton PA

      You are talking about the Mennonite churches of old! The reason I say that is pastor's were chosen and ordained by lot. Today they go through a 2 year license period then possibly ordainment. The day's of pastor's being a farmer and also a pastor are done and gone. That is unless you are a conservative mennonite congregation. Today the kid's coming out of seminary feel that they have been called to be a full time pastor and do not want to find an additional job to supplement their income! Who is to blame for that? You could say that it rests with the seminary they are going to, but then again, do most pastor's today look at being a pastor a calling from God or a job! That question I will allow the people to answer!!!!

      March 13, 2012 at 11:47 am |
    • John Bell

      Church buildings are not "holy"...they are simply buildings. Christians are "the church"...not the building. Sadly most "churches" are in business to do the work of the YMCA or the local gym. This is the "social gospel". And also....percentage wise there are probably as many hypocrites in the church as there is outside of it.

      March 13, 2012 at 12:57 pm |
    • What, what, what ???

      They ARE "holy". When they are "blessed", the electrons start going around backwards.

      March 13, 2012 at 1:15 pm |
    • MennoKnight

      Mark From Exton PA,
      I know what you are talking about, I am one of those young "successful" pastors that you are talking about with the Seminary degree.
      Read my other posts and you will see how I feel about how things like this are going.

      March 13, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
  11. dutspup

    its all about taking in the money and avoiding paying taxes and that is it! People are fools for following organized religion, fools!

    March 13, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • Bob B

      Organized religion for the most part is a scam. The church that they show is such a waste of money. Instead of wasting the money on these shrines, it should be used to help people. The fact that churches don't pay taxes should end.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:15 am |
  12. Just_the_Obvious

    A fool and his money are soon parted. A big headed fool and his money part even sooner. The Schuller family's time in the spot light has past. they have lived a good life off of other people's money (redemption of your soul is not cheap). Now it is time for them to go on welfare.

    March 13, 2012 at 10:34 am |
  13. Mtfrommd

    ""We cannot continue to serve on the board in what has become an adversarial and negative atmosphere.."

    Well, you reap what you sow. The megachurch and its political 'evangelism' appears to be one of the greatest damages done to Christianity in this country in recent history, aside of course from the rampant pedophilia protected by the church that just bought them out in a mega merger. (Wait, is this religion or business?...)

    March 13, 2012 at 10:32 am |
  14. ToddEdwardJones

    Is Schuler now free to berate flight attendants in public without endangering the reputation of the church?

    March 13, 2012 at 10:31 am |
  15. babs

    Let's all worship Zarathustra
    Just the way we used tah!
    I'm a Zarathustra boostah!
    He's good enough for me!

    Let's all worship Aphrodite
    She's beautiful but flighty
    She doesn't wear a nightie
    but she's good enough for me!

    Gimme that old-time religion!
    Gimme that old-time religion!
    Gimme that old-time religion!
    It's good enough for me!

    Let's all worship Old Coyote
    Though he takes too much peyote
    I'm a real Coyote toady
    He's good enough for me!

    Let's all worship Momma Tiamat
    She always knows just where it's at
    Then she'll kill you in seconds flat
    but she's good enough for me!

    Gimme that old-time religion!
    Gimme that old-time religion!
    Gimme that old-time religion!
    It's good enough for me!

    Let's all worship Susanowa!
    He really is a blowah!
    Now he's got nothing to showah,
    but he's good enough for me!

    Let's all worship mighty Isis!
    She's clear-headed in a crisis!
    She hasn't any vices
    so she's good enough for me!

    Gimme that old-time religion!
    Gimme that old-time religion!
    Gimme that old-time religion!
    It's good enough for me!

    March 13, 2012 at 10:29 am |
  16. Rami

    I'm starting my church, send me your money. Cash only darn it.

    March 13, 2012 at 10:26 am |
    • momoya

      You should write a book about how easy it would be to take money from rubes by starting a religion–then go out and do it.. It worked for L. Ron Hubbard.

      March 13, 2012 at 10:27 am |
    • ﺶCHEﺶ

      Hey, you're not good at this.
      You forgot to post your mailing address where donations or money could be mailed to. $15/yr Post Office Box in your area is all you need. That's how ALL these corrupt Mega-churches started.
      Also, don't forget to register and make political contributions to GOP Repukeclowns Party for protection. They will cry foul on your behalf when the Gov't wants to chew your ASS.

      March 13, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
  17. Sammy C

    Werever Rev.Robert Schuller goes next I hope he doesn't have to fly to get there. He may decided to assult another stewardess on the flight over.

    March 13, 2012 at 10:26 am |
  18. TG

    Jesus said that "every kingdom divided against itself comes to desolation, and every city or house divided against itself will not stand", and then uses Satan (his archenemy) as an example, saying: "In the same way, if Satan expels Satan, he has become divided against himself; how then will his kingdom stand ? "(Matt 12:25, 26)

    Thus, the religious empire that Mr Robert Schuller has built, is crumbling, and "will not stand". In fact, all false religion, called a harlot and named Babylon the Great at Revelation 17, in the near future will crumble into total ruin. Revelation 17:16 says that "the ten horns" or the governments of the earth, "will hate the harlot (or false religion) and will make her devastated and naked, and will eat up her fleshy parts and will completely burn her with fire."

    March 13, 2012 at 10:20 am |
    • richunix

      So what was yours called again?

      Stephen F Roberts: “I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.”

      March 13, 2012 at 10:38 am |
    • Bonnie

      Yes, TG. Apostasy, or a turning away from God and His code of conduct is happening in all churches now, for they have deviated from His word. The "churches" have been teaching the lie of the 3-person god-ghost or teaching the Jesus is Almighty God, himself. Revelation chapter 18 then warns people to GET OUT of false religion or else they will have a sharing with "her" Babylon the Great, the MOTHER of the harlots.

      March 13, 2012 at 10:48 am |
    • Tacitius Talks

      Every pagan culture that is polytheistic, holds to a Most High God. Christianity and Judaism adhere to that concept and ignores the "lesser deities" referred to diamonkos or demons. . Islam worships one of the Pantheon – of "lesser gods" – aka Shin or the moon god of the ancient Amalekites. The Bible supports that there are many "lesser" deities. If you have spent anytime in the "world", particularly primitive cultures, you will have seen things that are beyond explanation of Mathematics and Physics. There is a realm, that believers refer to as "spiritual" that cannot be explained by the Physical (Science and Mathematics) The outright dismissal of a spiritual realm, because it cannot be scientifically explained shows that most of our so-called "scientists" are not "scientists", but closed minded fanatics.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:25 am |
    • BasedInReality

      You guys could do with some real history on your bible regarding who wrote it and who and why it got put together the way it did. You do realize that you cannot rely on anything in it for accuracy in quoting the jesus character as jesus and all his disciples were illiterate and they did not have any scribes following about writing things down. It was all made up decades and decades, even centuries after the supposed time of the death of jesus by anonimous writers and added to and subtracted from for centuries thereafter. Not to mention the fact that if you study ancient hebrew history, you'll find that they were originally an upstart tribe from Cannan and worshipped a pantheon of gods. It wasn't until around the 6th century BCE that they picked out YHWH and decided he would be their only god then took ancient Babylonian creation stories and rewrote them into their holy text which they frequently rewrote after each disaster their group had. You've been duped my friends. It is all hogwash. Do your own research.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:33 am |
    • What, what, what ???

      A 21st Century human, talking about "satan". You cannot be serious.

      March 13, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
  19. invain

    Thou shalt contact a lawyer....(for $250.00 an hour)

    March 13, 2012 at 10:10 am |
    • Siladar

      Yep. That's an Hour of Power all right!

      March 13, 2012 at 10:22 am |
    • Frank-in-NV

      That's a good one! I needed a laugh. Thanks invain.

      March 13, 2012 at 10:24 am |
  20. WeShouldTaxTheChurch

    Mission Accomplished!! Church is Bankrupt? I thought all churches were supposed to be non-profit. Again, Mission Accomplished! No profit made here! 🙂

    Allah Akbar!!

    March 13, 2012 at 10:08 am |
    • AGuest9

      "It's a trap!" – Admiral Ackbar

      March 13, 2012 at 10:26 am |
    • JD

      You do realize churches have to pay power and water bills just like anyone else, don't you?

      March 13, 2012 at 10:28 am |
    • Brad

      There is no distinction between a church being non-profit and it's risk of becoming bankrupt and non-profits can make money but it can't be distributed – it has to be retained for the purpose of the organization.

      March 13, 2012 at 10:30 am |
    • Tacitius Talks

      Unless you are a mosque, it which you are totally underwritten by Saudi Arabia. This means that every Mosque in the United States is acting as an agent of a foreign power. This is not racism, this is a fact. I would have a problem if a Baptist church were acting as an agent of a foreign government. But of course these little facts are ignored by the media.

      March 13, 2012 at 11:16 am |
    • WeShouldTaxTheChurch

      I guess that church won't be paying them power and electric bills no more! (southern English engaged for this reply)

      March 13, 2012 at 11:17 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.