Sheila Schuller Coleman leaves Crystal Cathedral board
The Crystal Cathedral announced Wednesday morning that Senior Pastor Sheila Schuller Coleman has temporarily left the church’s board of directors, "while the ministry goes through a time of transition," according to a statement.
Schuller Coleman was serving as the church’s chief executive officer and the board’s non-voting interim chairman, and is the oldest daughter of founder Rev. Robert H. Schuller.
John Charles, who has been employed by the church in various administrative positions for about 15 years, will take over as interim chief executive officer and president of the ministry. Charles most recently served as the spokesman for the church.
This month, the sale of the church property to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange in a $57.5-million bankruptcy deal was finalized. Under the plan, the Crystal Cathedral Ministries and its trademark television show, the "Hour of Power," have three years to find a new worship space.
"The leadership changes to the board of directors for Crystal Cathedral Ministries are temporary and we believe that they will be good for the Crystal Cathedral during this time of transition," according to the statement, which was released through a public relations firm.
Charles will be board chairman, a change that will allow Schuller Coleman to focus on the future of the ministry, according to the statement.
"I’m very grateful for John’s help and support at this time," she said in the statement. "We're prayerfully considering many options regarding the new location for the church and the ministry and are excited about the future. We're confident we will end up where God needs us most."
The statement came after days of speculation by longtime congregants that Schuller Coleman had been ousted from the board of directors along with Jim Penner, the executive producer of the "Hour of Power." There was no mention of Penner in Wednesday's statement.
According to the statement, the church will have no further comment.
-- Nicole Santa Cruz
Photo: Sheila Schuller Coleman speaks to the congregation at the Crystal Cathedral. The Crystal Cathedral announced Wednesday that Schuller Coleman has temporarily left the church’s board of directors. Credit: Anne Cusack /Los Angeles Times