The untold history of Potter's House
This letter was taken from another website, you can find it here.
What I am writing is all first hand information. I was on the original board of Christian Fellowship Church under John Metzler. I was also assistant Pastor for 6 years and a member for 12 years. I was counseled by Wayman Mitchell prior to my marriage to my wife, and instructed by Mitchell as to my ministry. At one time I highly regarded him as my mentor and prophet to the church. I pray for all who have gone through the pain that came with Potter’s House Churches. Even as I traveled to Australia and abroad I found casualties of the Christian Fellowship ministries. God is able to heal all. And it is my desire that all seek fellowship with a true and Living God, and let no man stand between you and the Resurrected Christ.
I am going to give you a bit of history many do not know of Potter’s House Church. The Christian Fellowship Church was NOT ! started by Wayman Mitchell. It was founded by a wonderful man of God named John Metzler. John and Wayman attended Life Bible College together and went into the ministry under Four Square Gospel. Later as John Metzler had his marriage end in divorce was asked by Four Square Church to leave. (they did not and I believe still will not ordain divorce people). John became an evangelist in California and came with 2 of his daughters and new wife (Donna) and her 2 sons to live in Phoenix. As it was, he founded a small church on Cave Creek Road in 1976. The name of the church was Christian Fellowship Church.
Then as John and 4 other church members were returning from preaching in Sedona in December 1978 all were killed in an auto accident crossing a bridge in Black Canyon City south bound on I17. Pastor Mitchell came to the little church and asked if it wanted to join with Four Square Churches. By vote the church became part of Four Square. And the Christian Fellowship, 501 tax was held by Wayman Mitchell, Donna Metzler, and Silver Gaddis the new pastor of the church. As time went Wayman Mitchell decided he did not want to be a part of Four Square Gospel any more. Much discussion was made with Roy Hicks, and John Holland of Life Bible College. It was not a friendly split but all ministries under Wayman Mitchell were directed to leave Four Square and become part of Christian Fellowship Church. Silver Gaddis, and Donna Metzler signed over to Mitchell all documents. The name “Potter’s House” was derived from the Saturday night “coffee house” ministries, as was “The Door”.
The rest is history……..Mitchell became very controlling. Placing demands on the churches that he himself left Four Square over !! such as demanding all churches pay tithe to Prescott. I have in my possession tapes of Wayman Mitchell, preaching “Prescott will never be a Mother church” and stating “at no time will I expect churches to tithe to Prescott”. This doctrine would change in years. That if a church did not tithe to Prescott the Pastor was to be immediately removed, without notice. I know of one pastor (close friend) who came for morning prayer to find the locks of the church had been changed, without any notice. This is how he and his family found out he had been fired for disobeying Mitchell, what a poor testimony of Christian ethics ! In this case, as with all who decide to move on to another church, you can count on being ridiculed from the pulpit. The Pastor will generally instruct the congregation to strictly avoid all who seek worship elsewhere. Even if they are immediate family.
The congregation is told to not call, write or pray for those who leave, because once they “have left the fellowship” they are out of God’s will. In addition it is preached if you do not tithe you will not make heaven,… “no thief can enter the kingdom”… There was once a time I moved to another part of the city. I decided to attend another church in “the fellowship “because it was only 2 miles from my house. I was told by the pastor I was not welcome and that if I wanted to continue with Christian Fellowship Church ” (where my blood family was) I must attend the old church that was 25 miles from my house. This was when I began to ask questions.
Something forbidden in Potter’s House. You must never, never question the Pastor, or ask him to explain the Biblical reason for the church’s stance on an issue. You will be a “back slider” and “devil”. After leaving Potter’s House I walked in pain. I left friends who I knew were told I was evil. I was not allowed to attend “Home Bible Studies” of church members, and was told that I was a regular object of jokes from the pulpit. But God brought me peace. I have joy I never knew, and good Christian family who love me when I go through hard times. I found mercy in God, something I did not know in 12 years at Potter’s House. I sleep well. I eat great, I love Jesus and I have NO HATE for any member of Potter’s House. I regularly run into others have who left the organization and are strong living testimonies for Christ !!
Thank you for building an information center on Cults, and Controlling Ministries.
May God Bless you and your family.