Tribute to Crystal Cathedral choral director a sign of rift

ORANGE COUNTY

Crystal Cathedral asks choir to sign anti-gay paper

March 17, 2011 | By Associated Press

The "Crystal Cathedral Worship Choir and Worship Team Covenant" recently handed out to members states that they should commit to being Christians by following the Bible in every way, the Orange County Register reported Tuesday.

Several choir members at Orange County's Crystal Cathedral say they're upset over a document they've been asked to sign that takes a strong stand against homosexuality.

Former and current choir members say they are particularly offended by a statement in the document that refers to homosexuality. Longtime church members say this is the first time they have seen the cathedral take a firm stand against homosexuality.

Sheila Schuller Coleman, daughter of the founder and senior pastor of the megachurch, issued a statement saying the document is intended to "clarify expectations placed on them as ministry leaders." Don Neuen, the cathedral's longtime choir director, left the church last year because he disagreed with Gretchen Schuller Penner's view that choir members should be "vetted" to make sure they are good Christians, the Register reported.

"These were the best 10 years of my life," an emotional Neuen said Thursday.

Orange County Register

October 07, 2010

By DEEPA BHARATH

GARDEN GROVE - Several members of the Crystal Cathedral's congregation will independently hold a tribute Sunday night for the megachurch's long-time choral director, Don

But things ended on a sour note for the choir director. He said the "last straw" for him was when Gretchen Schuller Penner, who directs the "Hour of Power" programs, told him that she would be "vetting choir members" going forward and that she would make sure that they were "emotionally and spiritually fit for the Crystal Cathedral."

Neuen said he quit last month after 10 years of conducting the renowned Crystal Cathedral choir, which was featured in the "Hour of Power" program broadcast worldwide to millions of viewers. Famed pianist Roger Williams left the church earlier this year, also after a difference of opinion with a Schuller daughter.

See: Orange County Register Article

Neuen, the most recent member to resign after a dispute with founder Robert H. Schuller’s children, now in charge of the ministry.