Dismissal of Gary Kent – Actions of Ministry Partners at Annual Partnership Meeting

Media Release
31st May, 2017

The It Is Written Oceania Partners were informed at their Annual Partnership weekend by Pr Glenn Townend, President of the South Pacific Division, that Pr Gary Kent’s dismissal as speaker/director of the ministry was not the result of adultery, misappropriation of funds or doctrinal differences.

Speaking direct to a capacity audience of over 300 Partners, Pr Townend, when pressed further over the reason behind the dismissal, would not provide any additional comment.  No clear reason was given for the extensive and open public dismissal as first reported by Adventist Media Network (AMN).

Through the course of the evening the representatives of the South Pacific Division (SPD), Pr Glen Townend, Pr Brad Kemp, Dr Steve Currow and the CEO of AMN, were called to order on their responses to several points including:

• Why did the SPD/AMN dissolve the original IIWO management committee in 2015 without
advising members or ministry partners?
• Why were IIWO Partners never advised or consulted about the 2015 Integrated Media Ministry strategy that handed management control of IIWO and its funds for AMN and Hope Channel?
• Why was the licensing agreement between IIW International and IIW Oceania ignored?
• Why did the SPD register the Voice of Prophecy and It Is Written brands without their
• Why was the written request of the General Conference to return the It Is Written brand to It Is Written, North American Division ignored?
• Will the SPD be returning donor funds (as it’s only fair and just) as a new strategy was
implemented without the knowledge of donors?
• Why was IIW International not consulted before Pr Gary Kent’s dismissal as the licensing
agreement gives them veto over the Speaker role?
• Why has Pr Gary Kent been openly and publicly humiliated by the SPD/AMN by the release of
media statements to both church members and the public at large?

A long-standing partner in the ministry, who is a member of local court, showed the AMN press release about Pr Gary Kent to defamation lawyers who stated courts could order $5-$10 million in settlement. 

The meetings started with prayer and a pause mid-way through the meeting was sought for more guidance of the Holy Spirit.  The Sabbath started with lesson study time and divine service led by President of the SPD Pr Glen Townend on trust.

During the 1 ½ hour question time a motion from the floor was raised by long term Donors & Partners of the ministry, that SPD and AMN had been less than transparent, defied the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists and breached the trust of partners of the ministry.  The motion reads as follows:

A motion for a show of hands as a vote of non-confidence in the IIWO Management Committee and AMN Board.
We believe that the AMN Board and IIWO Management Committee:
i. acted in breach of the IIWO licensing agreement in dismissing speaker Pastor Gary Kent without IIW international’s prior approval
ii. defied the General Conference direction to hand back IIWO and IIWI brands
iii. has not been transparent with the Partners that support the ministry about the Integrated Media Strategy that gives control of IIWO to Hope Channel

The motion was moved, seconded and a vote by show of hands took place with a unanimous decision.

At the end of the evening a written vote of no confidence was collected.  Many refund request and donation cancellations were received and no new pledges or donations were received.

Follow up motions that were all passed included:

• Motion moved to spill the existing IIWO Management Committee comprising only divisional and conference employees and nomination of a new committee, made up equal church and donor based members, was passed with the following Partners Nominated: Mark Sowerby, Sam Godfrey, Kelvin Jakes, Zora Prostran, Michael Zdravkovic, Bob Kalaf, Suzi Wharton, Charmaine Wigglesworth, Nita Taylor and Les Relihan
• A motion was moved that the new Management Committee uphold the 2009 Memorandum of Understanding with IIWI.
• A motion that Pastor Gary Kent be reinstated as the Speaker / Director of IIWO.
• A motion that Pastor Gary Kent’s ordination cannot be part of negotiations over his dismissal.

During the evening a spontaneous applause was started which ended with every single person in the room standing in support of Pr Gary Kent’s immediate reinstatement back to the ministry.

Newly elected lay members of the IIWO Management committee:

Mark Sowerby, Sam Godfrey, Kelvin Jakes, Zora Prostram, Michael Zdravkovic, Bob Kalaf.


This Statement issued on behalf of the newly elected Partner Representatives of the IIWO
Management Committee.


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