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This open letter is to Megachurch pastor John Gray, who is hit again with alleged infidelity. I write to you on behalf of thousands of people who have supported your ministry through its highest moments and valley experiences. Many have stood with you, as you endured one scandal after another, and even now, some will continue to do so after this most recent allegation. One thing that is certain, when you have been blessed to speak to the multitudes and stand on the platforms that have been afforded you, there is no such thing as processing in private. Your life is an open book.
We all have fallen short many times, and for this reason, it has been easier to endure your frailties as a man. However, as God’s messenger and mouthpiece, those who feel called to bear that responsibility must be held to a higher standard. Yes, the Bible says all have sinned, but that is in reference to our nature as humans and should never be used as a “free pass” to live as you please.
Although your temptations and apparent struggles do not negate the calling, your continued submission to them suggests a different response from you needs to occur. In early 2020, after being on the air for three seasons, the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) pulled the plug on your reality show, “The Book of John Gray” due to similar allegations and other controversies. Among those disputes was an apparent scandal that involved an extramarital affair that you seemed to acknowledge before insisting the relationship, while inappropriate, did not include physically cheating with “that strange woman.”
Less than one year later, you found yourself in jeopardy again with another infidelity. This time, you allegedly FaceTimed yourself into another cheating scandal. At that time, you stood in your church alone and publicly apologized to your wife and congregation, declaring that this time, your repentance would be true. You advised the listening congregants that you were submitting to “a process of restoration” that will, at times, take you away from the church.
According to you, this strenuous process was not sought after previously, because “I incorrectly assumed that my church could not survive financially without me always at the helm.” You added:
I never submitted to anybody in those other areas, whether through shame fear or an inflated sense of worth. Well, the church needs me to keep preaching so that everybody can be able to take care of their families. If God needed someone who was stuck in sin to help Him then I ain’t read the Bible.
God’s Church is His business and it is my prayer that a mature Relentless Church will continue to sow into this great work while I continue to seek the help, the health, the healing, and wholeness that I deserve. My kids deserve a whole father, not a fragmented puzzle piece of a man. Some weeks you’ll see me. Others you won’t.
Now, a year later, another alleged mistress claims that she had had virtual sessions with you for a month before realizing you are the well-known Pastor John Gray. After the news got out, fans who had previously forgiven your actions sounded off.
However, YouTube personality Larry Reid stepped into the situation to offer some clarity on the alleged affair. Reportedly, after having a personal conversation with the alleged mistress, Reid posted a video suggesting you were dealing with deep-rooted pain that you were not comfortable sharing with the public. He said:
I know that Pastor John Gray is not wicked, he is wounded. He is not telling his whole story.
You said during a recent Instagram Live that you were thrust into the limelight while confessing things Reid alluded to. Whether by force or because you sought a greater platform, the public stage was and is still yours. You must understand how hypocritical it is to shine when “all is well” and then attempt to pull the “privacy” card whenever a scandal arises.
As a trailblazer in an era where people are clamoring for leadership, you must now understand the weight of your actions. Not just as a man, but as a public and outspoken male figure in the Black community, where murder, prison and absentee fathers continue to leave a vacuum. I am not condemning you; the church deserves greater responsibility for your public aspirations.
While I support utilizing your gift in the midst of stormy weather, there comes a time when the crap pile gets too high, and it is time to retreat from the public eye and spend more time with the gift-giver. Thank God for grace and mercy, not just for you, but also for the rest of us, who remain grateful for new mercies…EVERYDAY.
On a talk show a few years ago, you apologized with claims of immaturity and how much pain your wife endured while navigating the growing pains of manhood. The latest scandal is proof positive that your apology needs to include a sabbatical, which will allow you to do the personal work necessary to become a better and more responsible husband, father, and leader. According to the most recent public confessional rendered on Instagram, you seem to understand the necessity.
The Bible is filled with stories surrounding people who have messed up, gotten it right, and gone on to do great things for the Kingdom of God. This open letter has nothing to do with “judging” you. It is an effort to encourage you to go through the process necessary for inner healing. The moment you accepted the call, you simultaneously agreed to a life that requires a higher standard.
Pastor Gray, this open letter is not an attack against you, nor am I suggesting you never preach again. That would be ludicrous and a travesty with a gift as great as yours. However, it would be beneficial for you to fall back and work on yourself for a powerful comeback. You owe it to yourself, your wife, your children, and those you have been graced to lead. Remember, tough times do not last always, and there are people near and far rooting for you and cheering you on.
Opinion by Cherese Jackson (Virginia)
YouTube (TashaK): Pastor John Gray’s Other Woman EXPOSES Him for being UNFAITHFUL to his Wife!
Greenville Online: John Gray: Relentless Church pastor
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