Crystal Cathedral reels from founder Robert H. Schuller’s resignation

Crystal Cathedral, the Orange County megachurch that was founded in 1955, is reeling from the resignation on Saturday of its founder, Rev. Robert H. Schuller, and his wife Arvella.

Schuller resigned from the board of Crystal Cathedral Ministries, citing an "adversarial and negative atmosphere," according to The New York Times. A streak of firings a few days earlier had removed Schuller's daughter, Gretchen Penner, and two of his sons-in-law from the board.

On Sunday, Rev. Sheila Schuller Coleman, also Schuller's daughter, told the congregation, "This is the last Sunday that we will worship in this building. With the vulnerable economic situation combined with the hostile relationship with the ‘Hour of Power’ board, the local church has decided that we need to find a new place to worship."

The firings and subsequent resignations centered around the church's financial troubles, declining donations and the suspended production of the church's "Hour of Power" broadcast, said NBC News.

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This leaves the church's congregation in turmoil, as Crystal Cathedral Ministries filed for bankruptcy in October 2010, citing debt of $43 million. The church itself was sold to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange in February 2012 for $57.5 million, according to NBC News.

Schuller and his wife have alleged that the church owes them money for copyright infringement, intellectual property violations and unpaid contracts, according to Reuters, which cited their attorney Carl Grumer.

The success of the "Hour of Power" broadcasts enabled Schuller's congregation to open the Crystal Cathedral in 1980. According to The Times, by then the church was drawing 10,000 worshippers a week. However, aggressive expansion coupled with decreasing membership and donations left the church millions of dollars in debt.

Schuller Coleman pledged to continue her work at an undetermined location, under the new name Hope Center OC.

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