U.S. Supreme Court Rejects Local Church Lawsuit against Harvest House

On June 18, 2007, the U.S. Supreme Court brought an end to The Local Church’s six-year, $136 million legal battle against Harvest House Publishers and authors John Ankerberg and John Weldon. The Local Church was appealing a January 2006 Texas appellate court ruling in favor of Harvest House. After the appellate decision, The Local Church requested a rehearing, which was denied. The Texas Supreme Court also rejected the case twice. [Read more...]

Leading Evangelical Scholars Call On Local Churches/Living Stream Ministry to Renounce Doctrines, Legal Attacks

More than 60 evangelical Christian scholars and ministry leaders from seven nations have signed an unprecedented open letter asking the leadership of the Local churches and Living Stream Ministry to withdraw unorthodox statements by their founder, Witness Lee. The letter also calls on the movement’s leaders to renounce their decades-long practice of using lawsuits and threatened litigation to respond to criticism and settle disputes with Christian organizations and individuals. [Read more...]

Local Church: Texas Supreme Court Denies Petition for Review of Defamation Lawsuit

On December 1, 2006, the Texas Supreme Court denied review of the Local Church and Living Stream Ministry’s $136 million libel lawsuit against Harvest House Publishers and authors John Ankerberg and John Weldon. At issue in the case was the book Encyclopedia of Cults and New Religions (ECNR), which The Local Church claimed was defamatory of them. [Read more...]

Publishers urge Texas Supreme Court not to hear libel claims

Led by the Association of American Publishers (AAP), a coalition of groups representing publishers, booksellers and librarians have filed a brief urging the Texas Supreme Court not to review a ruling by the Texas Court of Appeals in Houston, an intermediate appellate court, which granted summary judgment to Harvest House Publishers in a libel action brought by a group called The Local Church. The brief characterizes the ruling by the Texas Court of Appeals as correct in all respects. [Read more...]