Texas Megachurch Says Disputed Retirement Benefits Were to Be Funded From Natural Gas Revenue

Crossroads Christian Church in Grand Prairie, Texas, revealed Monday that a disputed supplemental retirement benefits package for which former executive pastor Mel Dietz and his wife Vicki sued for millions of dollars was to be funded from natural gas revenues that could not support the plan overtime.

The explanation comes after a jury decided last week that the church failed to provide the couple nearly $4 million in supplemental retirement benefits despite employing them for more than 20 years.

“Crossroads is disappointed that compelling evidence was not present to provide the jury with additional facts, which could have changed the outcome of the jury’s decision about the Supplemental Retirement Plan,” Andrew Stubblefield, lead trial counsel for the 8,000-member church and an attorney with Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP, said in a statement to The Christian Post. “Crossroads remains unfailingly committed to its mission, its ministry, and its members. Once the verdict is finalized, the Church will weigh its options for further action.”

release from the law firm representing the couple, Clouse Brown PLLC, said Dietz worked at the church that preaches financial freedom, from 1995 to 2015. He oversaw church operations and multiple construction projects at the 150-acre campus.

His wife worked directly for Crossroads’ senior pastor, Barry Cameron, as his executive assistant. Both Vicki and her husband were participants in Crossroads’ Supplemental Retirement Plan. According to The Dallas Morning News, at the time of the couple’s retirement in 2015, Mel Dietz’s annual salary was $238,194 and Vicki Dietz’s was $94,667.

Jurors in the couple’s case against the church determined that Crossroads needed to pay $2.3 million to Mel Dietz, and $1.4 million to his wife.

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Source: Christian Post