Things fell apart when the younger Mr. Schuller tried to institute basic good governance rules used by many nonprofit organizations. He wanted to remove anyone with a conflict of interest from the board. That meant unseating some of his sisters and their husbands as well as his parents, who were also employees.
The coup came in July 2008. Mr. Schuller said he was told his preaching was “not anointed.” A three-person Office of the President — two of whose members were his brothers-in-law — was created to run the cathedral. He was given the limited role of pastor of the local congregation, and removed from preaching on “Hour of Power.” He quit.