Outreach Magazine Scam

One thing for which I have absolutely zero tolerance is so-called Christians trying to rip people off.

I don’t want to be one of those bloggers who uses their blog to whine and complain, and I like to keep things positive, but I am mad

While I was at SonRise, I subscribed to Outreach Magazine for a year.  Then I found out our lead pastor subscribed, so after a year, I let my subscription run out.  They kept sending me renewal notices, which I threw away without opening.

Then recently I received the following letter in the mail from Outreach, typed on pink paper:


We are concerned about the status of your account.  You have not responded to the last three invoices we have sent with your payment or notified us that there is a problem.

When you began your subscription, you requested us to bill you and we have sent you issues of Outreach Magazine in good faith.  You have received your subscription, but we have not been paid.  Your subscription has been cancelled for non-payment.  It is our desire to extend this final opportunity for you to settle your account and reinstate your subscription.

Please detach the above invoice and include it with your payment in the enclosed pre-addressed envelope we have provided to help you meet your extended due date.


Lynne Marian

Associate Publisher

And then at the bottom was another request to pony up immediately, followed by several ways to pay.

Now I was pretty sure that our church secretary had sent a check to pay for my initial subscription, but as you just read, Outreach claimed: “You have received your subscription, but we have not been paid.”  From those words and from the generally abrupt and acccusatory tone of the letter, it sounded like I owed them money.  They gave the impression that my account was on the verge of being sent to a collection agency and damaging my credit.

So I called Outreach, and I couldn’t believe what the woman on the other end of the phone told me.  “Oh, that’s just a renewal notice,” she said.  WHAT?!?  Apparently the folks at Outreach don’t have enough confidence in the ability of their magazine’s content to be able to sell, and so they try to trick you into renewing by lying and saying that you owe them money when you really don’t!

I still have a hard time believing this.  This is supposed to be a magazine about attracting people to Christ, and yet they try to deceive people into paying for a subscription they don’t want!  I don’t know if it’s just “Lynne Marian” or if it runs throughout the organization, but I hope the people doing this are canned from their jobs and replaced by other people who have at least a hint of ethics.  It’s junk like this that makes the world think Christians are a joke.

Published in: on May 24, 2007 at 2:39 pm  Comments (4)  

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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I doubt Lynne Marian is a real person. When you get a magazine read the fine print in the front. It can be very revealing.

  2. So true, so true. It’s a shame that our society has become so accustomed to people trying to rip us off that “fine print” is such a commonly used term for “what’s really happening.”

  3. Lynne Marian is a real person. But I can assure you she never wrote that letter and, in fact had nothing to do with “renewals”. I say “had” because she fulfilled your wish and was “canned” several months ago. Why? Her attitude, interestingly enough was a lot like that letter. Though considering the corporate culture over there (defined by control and manipulation) it’s not surprising they tolerated people like that for so long. I know because I worked there, but thankfully, was able to extricate myself from LM’s grasp while I was still sane enough to do so.

  4. Thanks for the update. The letter above was written over a year ago, so it may have been her. I’m sorry to hear that you had such a negative experience at the magazine, but glad to hear you’ve gotten through it! Thanks for stopping by.

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