Darrin Patrick, R.I.P. (Updated with Seacoast Church Statement)

I have sad news to report: Pastor Darrin Patrick died yesterday. Multiple sources have provided conflicting reports about the cause of death.

Patrick currently was a teaching pastor at Seacoast Church in Charleston, SC. He founded megachurch The Journey in St. Louis, MO and was former Vice President of the Acts 29 Network. He leaves a wife and four children.

In 2016, Patrick was removed as pastor from The Journey for pastoral misconduct and recently was the subject of an article by Ed Stetzer in Christianity Today regarding his restoration to pastoral ministry.

His last Facebook entries dealt with the emotions and difficulties of being a pastor.

Seacoast Church just released this statement on their website:

SEACOAST CHURCH STATEMENT ON THE PASSING OF PASTOR DARRIN PATRICK

Charleston, S.C. and St. Louis, M.O. – May 8, 2020 – Seacoast Church today issued the following statement: “We are saddened to announce the sudden passing of Pastor Darrin Patrick. Darrin was a loved member of the Seacoast family, the teaching team, and pastoral staff and we are mourning his loss. Darrin had a gift for teaching the Word and a heart for encouraging other pastors. God allowed Seacoast to be a part of Darrin’s story in a time when he needed a family. He was a gift to us and we are thankful for the time the Lord gave him to us. His influence and impact cannot be measured. We are surrounding the Patrick family with our prayers and support during this time.”

Darrin Patrick served as a teaching pastor at Seacoast Church, and was also the founding pastor of The Journey Church in St. Louis, MO. He is a founding member of the Pastor’s Collective and the author of multiple books including the Dude’s Guide to Marriage.

Additional information on memorial services will be shared on seacoast.org as plans are formalized.

Updated at 5:58pm

Darrin was target shooting with a friend at the time of his death. An official cause of death has not been released but it appears to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound. No foul play is suspected. On behalf of the family we would ask that their privacy be respected during this time, and that all media requests be directed to Margaret Little.

This statement appears to leave some question about whether Rev. Patrick took his own life or suffered an accident. All sources I have spoken to about the situation believe he took his own life.

Image: Creative Commons via Wikipedia, Author: Justin Brackett

 

What is Going on at Acts 29?

By now, it is common knowledge that Acts 29’s CEO Steve Timmis was fired. According a report in Christianity Today, he was let go “amid accusations of abusive leadership.” The ripple effects are significant. His church in the UK is investigating and his publisher stopped selling his books. All of this is in the CT article.

The essence of the charges against Timmis involve micromanaging and defensiveness when challenged. According to the CT piece, Acts 29 staff members brought this to Acts 29 president Matt Chandler’s attention in 2015. However, Chandler led the dismissal of those staffers and required them to sign non-disclosure agreements in order to get their severance packages.

It is worth noting that Steve Timmis was on Acts 29’s board when Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill Church was removed from the Acts 29 Network in August 2014. Now we learn that within a year of that act, Timmis was accused of nearly the same actions and protected by Chandler and the Acts 29 board. What changed?

Another name on the list of board members who removed Driscoll was Darrin Patrick. In 2016, Patrick was removed from The Journey in St. Louis for “pastoral misconduct.” Steve Timmis was on Patrick’s restoration team. Now Patrick is back in business.

While none of this may influence how to plant a church, those who are in the market for such services should be aware of what they are getting into.