LOVE IN ACTION OR LOVE INACTION?
The Wirral Christian Centre has been in operation under the leadership of Pastor Paul Epton for more than 35 years. In the past Pastor Epton has claimed to have received many "visions from God" including one promising a five thousand seater church with numerous community outreach and social programs.
A later vision had Pastor Epton overseeing house groups more than twice the size of the promised five thousand seater church. Neither vision ever came to fruition and today as he enjoys semi-retirement the Wirral Christian Centre continues to struggle with an unusually high congregation turnover.
SO WHY DID GOD NOT FULFILL HIS VISION?
An obvious question one might ask is why did Pastor Paul
from God never come to pass? Were they indeed visions from God? If they were then what prevented them from coming to fruition? Ironically
the answer might lie in something Paul Epton himself once
"Do not be ambitious which will lead to a Godless pursuit of power and position, but do be open to the call of God in your life and He will open the door to His gift and call in you. He will close the door to vain ambition."
WHERE ARE ALL THE PEOPLE?
A great many people have attended and left the Wirral Christian Centre over the years. Repeated controversies have contributed to an unusually high congregational turnover. The sheer number of such incidents are enough to raise alarm, but individuals have always tended to choose not to proceed with complaints, especially given the fact that Elim themselves are unwilling to get involved and have even described themselves as "powerless" to intervene.
Because of this the leadership of the Wirral Christian Centre have remained unchallenged in their behaviour, repeating the same patterns, of what some have called abuse, year after year, controversy after controversy. Today that leadership, which includes Paul wife, now includes his son, Greg Epton, and also an extended family member, Hannah Epton.
INTEGRITY, QUALITY, AND AUTHORITY
In his 1988 book 'Love In Action' Rev. Paul Epton wrote, "We are going to build a Christian community of such integrity, such quality, such authority, that society will have to take notice of it." Now many years after those words were written, and despite moving to the Oxton Congregational Church, the Wirral Christian Centre still remains largely unnoticed and unaccomplished.