A Revealing Timeline of It Is Written Oceania And The SPD

This timeline was assembled by Darren Jones from Brisbane.  It is shared with his permission.

 

April 2007: Gary Kent commenced 'It Is Written Oceania' ministry in Australia on Channel 9 and Channel 10.

Gary working for the Greater Sydney Conference at the church plant, ‘Fountain in the City’ and producing IIWO television programs.  IIWO money held at the GSC.

2009: IIWO and Gary asked to move from GSC to the Adventist Media as IIWO is a television ministry.  IIWO trademarked by SPD/AMN CEO.

IIWO is moved to Adventist Media for all operations.

2013: AM CEO/SPD registers the NAD brands here in Australia, It Is Written and Voice of Prophecy.  Tension develops in the workplace.

2014: Last IIWO Management Committee consisting of the church administrators and lay people held before being abandoned and decision making unilaterally, without consolations with IIW USA and NAD, transferred to AMN CEO.

2014/early 2015: A group of administrators go to Brazil to check out the Hope Channel strategy.  This strategy unites all ministries under Hope Channel.  Adventist Media votes to implement the strategy.

2015

Zora on the left

2015: Zora Prostran is employed as IIWO Manager

*Early June AMN CEO, Neale Schofield says to go ahead with the Channel 7two contract in front of Gary, Robyn, Zora, John Kosmeier.  AMN CEO said he would prefer that money be spent on Hope Channel but gave the go ahead.

*9 June: Neale Schofield, James Standish and Kalvin Dever remonstrated with Gary for two hours about the proposed on-location filming.  A majority of the AMN employees heard their behaviour.

[Editor's note.  James Standish contacted F7 on Sabbath morning 5-27-2017, and claimed that the account of this meeting is not true (that Gary was "harassed and shouted at").  F7 contacted church members in Australia last evening, and was informed that four individual eyewitnesses agree that Darren's account of the meeting is accurate].  

*Gary leaves for on-location filming.

*Zora sends the programs to Channel 7two.

*AMN CEO sends an email to Gary retracting his permission. He wants IIWO on 7two cancelled. *Zora not informed of this decision in time since Gary could not check his emails regularly due to on-location filming.

*AMN CEO, who worked in the same building as Zora, did not notify her of his decision.  He has, on a number of occasions told Zora and Gary verbally and in writing that he did not want to communicate with her whatsoever.

Discrimination2.jpg

*9 September 2015: Zora sacked from the position of IIWO manager, despite Gary's intervention, for putting the IIWO programs on Channel 7two.  Reason for sacking: “Insubordination to AMN CEO.”  Only 2 staff working for IIWO now.

*Kalvin Dever, new AM CEO, implements the new Integrated Media Strategy under Hope Channel.  Takes all the IIWO funds, takes down the IIWO website, Facebook.

*Gives Gary a new job description and employment contract. Gary refuses to sign it, since it calls for IIWO to be integrated under Hope Channel, annulment of the Brand Licensing Agreement with It Is Written USA, IIWO management committee annulment and funds raised to be allocated as Hope Channel leadership deems appropriate.  Gary is threatened by Glenn Townend and Kalvin Dever to be sacked.

Gary appeals to IIW USA.  Trying to find a way to keep the ministry going.  His fiduciary duty to the donors is to keep the brand and the ministry going.  IIWO brand ownership taken to the legal counsel of the GC.

*Amazing Facts trademark application lodged by SPD.  AF asked SPD to drop the registration. SPD did so only after the matter was addressed legally.

*May 2016: new temporary IIWO management committee self-appointed by AMN until brand ownership decision made by the GC. The committee consisted of 4 church administrators and Gary.

2016

Looking for a place to base IIWO. Discussions of where to find a base between SPD, IIW USA and Gary.

Email from Glenn Townend to NNSW Conference, IIW USA and other parties proposing IIWO moves under NNSW Conference or AUC.  NNSW Conference preference expressed.

Lionel Smith told Gary to seek help from NNSW Conference.

February: NNSW Leadership conference weekend, a video of Gary and Justin Lawman shown announcing partnership between the conference and IIWO.  MOU was ready to be signed between the conference and IIWO and IIW.  Zora’s work visa applied for as IIWO Manager by the NNSW conference and their immigration visa consultant.  A 4-year work visa approved.

A donor agrees to pay for the wages of IIWO manager.

March: Zora returns to Australia and volunteers for IIWO.  NNSW Conference provides car and accommodation for Zora for a period of time.

Glenn Townend changes his mind and leaves IIWO under SPD.  The structure of the ministry changes again without the appropriate approvals as required by the IIWO structure documents and pre-existing agreements.  The donor with a full knowledge of the situation, decides to fund Zora’s wages and Zora’s job through NNSW Conference.

Zora’s job description changed to Media Liaison Manager, reporting to NNSW conference president.  Job offer signed by the secretary of the Conference and Zora.  NNSW Conference did not notify the immigration department of the change in the job title.  The conference could fund the job. The donor with the full knowledge of the situation decides to pay the wage.

July: A donor pays Zora's wages straight into a NNSW Conference Media Evangelism account. Gary is not a signatory on the account.

Gary is not a signatory on the account nor has he any access to it.  Zora is paid by NNSW.  She continues to work for IIWO until another manager could be found.

IIWO moves to the Dora Creek offices.

IIWO manager position advertised and some applicants interviewed.  No one suitable found. Candidates interviewed by Gary Kent, an IIWO Management Committee Member, AMN CEO. Zora continues to assist at IIWO.

Zora attends and represents IIWO at all camp meetings.

Zora is at the Lake Macquarie partnership last October when Glenn Townend was there on the Friday evening.

November: Gary speaks to Lionel Smith and Brad Kemp individually about employing Zora in an official capacity as the IIWO manager.  Was not told No, but Brad was assigned to explore the option.

November: GC Legal Counsel, Jennifer Gray sends an email to NAD and SPD ruling that the IIW brand belongs to NAD and an MOU or brand licensing agreement should be arranged.  SPD has not yet recognised this decision.  

December: Position of a video editor for IIWO advertised.  Someone found in the USA, the IIWO Management Committee suggests to begin the process of applying for a 457 work visa for the video editor.  Recommend IIWO use Peter Brendling, an Adventist who contracts as the SPD visa consultant.  He is the external person mentioned in Kalvin Dever's emails to the donors.  After four months of working on the visa for the editor, he finds Zora's name on the NNSW Conference list of valid 457 work visa recipients.  He reports this to Lionel Smith, the SPD and AMN.  They say that in getting a visa for Zora through the NNSW Conference, Gary was acting dishonestly.  When questioned, the NNSW Conference, say they are totally confused and don't know who is employing Zora or who was paying her, thinking she was doing It Is Written.  The SPD is saying that this puts their 457 visas and their status as an employer of 457 visas at risk.  Note: the visa was arranged by the NNSW Conference and her wages paid by a donor into a NNSW account to pay Zora.  Only NNSW visa status could possibly be jeopardised not the Division’s, since SPD and NNSW conference are legally two different entities.

*The SPD/AM say they gave Gary full procedural fairness when terminating him.  Please see the Final Week below.

Final Week

Sunday 7 May: Gary arrived back in Sydney after working on location for 4 weeks on a direct flight from Washington DC to Sydney.

Monday 8 May: Gary is ambushed in regular IIWO Management committee meeting by 4 administrators in an extra agenda item regarding the employment of Zora and serious allegations regarding his employment.  Gary is jet-lagged from the flight.  No minutes from the meeting ever received.

Tuesday 9 May: Gary initiated contact with Brad Kemp regarding the meaning of the discussions about Zora’s employment at the IIWO Management Committee meeting.

Thursday 11 May: During an Adventist Media board meeting, Brad Kemp, a member of the IIWO Management Committee as well, phoned Gary three times asking him to resign immediately.  He put pressure on Gary to do it without giving him the time to consult with his wife.  Not procedural fairness.

Sunday 14 May (Mothers Day) At 1:45pm, a short email from Kalvin Dever telling Gary to be at a follow-up meeting, on Monday 15 May, at 11am.  Gary asked for an agenda and they said there was no agenda, it was a follow-up meeting from the previous week.  No offer of a support person given.

Monday 15 May 11am at the SPD: Lionel Smith and Kalvin Dever Summary Dismissal meeting. Gary asked to bring a support person to the meeting.  He took his brother-in-law with him.

The employer did not provide Gary with any evidence or documentation they had gathered. The representative of the employer did not provide any evidence they had collected in their full and objective investigation into these serious allegations.  Gary was not asked for an explanation or given an opportunity to explain his actions.  The employer has shown bias and prejudice in their process.  No official minutes of meeting were kept or given to the employee. However, the support person kept some general notes of what happened in the meeting.  Gary was given a summary dismissal with no right of appeal.  All preaching appointments and evangelism campaigns cancelled.

Kalvin Dever said he would show Gary first a letter to the donors notifying them of Gary’s dismissal.  Gary was not shown the email sent to all names (emails) on the IIWO database, both Adventists and non-Adventists.  Kalvin also said no public statement will be made to the church at large.  That email and articles in the Record and Adventist Today created a social media storm and very strong reaction by the donors, supporters and non-Adventists as well.

Takeover of IIWO by SPD/AMN is accomplished.  Gary is stopped from doing his job – preaching the Gospel of Christ to the lost and perishing world.  A diabolical campaign was started to discredit him and take his credential away.  The ONLY reason for Gary’s dismissal is the employment of Zora.  It appears that she was just a means to an end; the SPD was determined to terminate Gary Kent one way or another.

This quote by a church member from Australia sums it up well, in our opinion:

Wow, to think that the history could have been: Donors fund ministry.  Gary and team produce great content that leads people to Jesus.  Repeat until Jesus comes.