"They said my sermons weren't adequate for the 'Hour of Power.' Then by October they said that I couldn't preach any time on Sunday mornings, and with that I resigned. So you tell me whether I was kicked out or whether I resigned," he said.
Robert A. Schuller's daughter, Angie Schuller-Wyatt is even more blunt.
"When you mix faith, family and fame it's a toxic combination. And people start vying for positions of power. And I think that's what led to the Crystal Cathedral crumbling," she said.
Robert A. Schuller now runs a successful Christian media network with his son-in-law called AmericanLifeTV, that they recently purchased from the Unification Church.
His daughter Angie has a website called SpiritualWellness.com, that helps victims of spiritual abuse.
The Shuller's who are still holding on at Crystal Cathedral include Angie's aunt, Sheila Shuller Coleman, Robert H's daughter, now senior pastor.
It fell to her to break the news of the bankruptcy on the steps of the chapel.
In January, faced with a $55 million budget deficit and a 27 percent drop in revenue over the last two years, the church began slashing costs.
At a news conference last month, Schuller Coleman echoed her father's popular proverb, "Tough times never last, but tough people do." She stressed that the church's "message of hope will continue."
Schuller did not return phone calls seeking comment.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.