This is a letter received from a former Criswell College student who was there with Gilyard at the beginning of his "career".
I have been given permission to share her story, although all personal references to her have been edited. She has been brave and courageous in giving her personal testimony.
She has decided to do this after one of my friends encouraged her to do so. Along with responding to the questions below that were presented to her after her initial statement.
“I was a student at Criswell College with Darrell Gilyard. He was the most dynamic and gifted preacher I'd ever heard. As a student at Criswell, we were afforded sermons from the who's who in SBC churches. Vines was a regular guest. I don't care how many times you'd heard his (Darrell’s) life story of living under a bridge; it always brought you to tears. Darrell was put on a fast track and protected from the consequences of his actions. Therefore, the monster we know today was created. I'm just learning of just how many times he has betrayed God and his church.
The first was while Darrell was an assistant pastor at Concord in South Dallas. He accused the pastor of having affairs and other wrong doings when it was actually him who was the cad. As students, we only knew that Dr Patterson wanted us to know. We all banded around Darrell when Rev. Bailey stood against him. We all assumed and were led to believe by the CC (Criswell College) muckety muck, that the accusations were untrue and that it was just Rev. Bailey's jealousy of Darrell's abilities that had him speaking against Darrell. We had no idea that 25 women were accusing him. We thought it was basically just Rev. Bailey. I remember the problems and the tension between Concord and FBC/CC. (FBC in Texas) They "mended" fences and Rev. Bailey was invited to preach at the semi-weekly chapel. Most students boycotted Rev. Bailey's sermon.
I remember how proud we all were of Darrell's first appearance on Jerry Falwell's TV program. We had watch parties and taped it to be played many times bragging that "I know him!" Falwell put lots of money and time into the production of that first show. Why did people keep protecting him even after his adopted mother called in with the facts after that show aired? This could have saved untold women, and now children, from the abuses they have suffered.
Darrell then pastored a series of churches in Texas and Oklahoma. He didn't stay at any church for long. He and the school administration were able to keep the student body from finding out why. I had no idea that he tried to rape a female student. he tried to rape while in school. I think I have a good idea who it was because she dropped out of site, moved and left no forwarding address. Through all this, Jana stood beside him, supporting him. (Darrell is VERY convincing and most would never believe him capable of the things he's done.)
Then came Victory Baptist Church and his numerous affairs there. Bless Jana's heart. I do not blame her for divorcing Darrell. I was crushed to discover Darrell's true nature. After standing with him when we thought he had been wrongly accused, I felt as betrayed as Jana must have felt.
I do not understand why Page Patterson has protected and shielded Darrell for so many years. My guess is that Paige is living vicariously through Darrell since Dr. Patterson will NEVER be 1/10th the preacher Darrell is. Paige and the administration of FBC and CC created a man who never had to face the consequences of his actions because they protected him and swept his indiscretions under the rug. Within 2 weeks of his resigning in disgrace from Victory, Darrell was back in Florida at the pulpit of yet another unsuspecting congregation.
Thank you for putting the spot light on this issue and doing the work that is necessary to expose the charlatans in our denomination. May our Lord bless you!
Then my friend responded back to her:
Hi, you have a very interesting perspective, thank you for sharing it. Can we have your permission to post your email on one of the blogs for others to read? We would be happy to withhold your name if you like. So please let us know if we can use your letter to post on our blog... (Received permission as long as her name was not there)
A couple of follow up questions:
1. Is Rev Bailey still around? Do you know if he is still pastoring? What is his full name? Do you know how he might be contacted?
His name was E. K. Bailey, but in doing a quick Google search I've discovered that he is deceased. However, his family is still around and you can do a little research and find contact information at http://www.ekbailey.org/Index.cfm?FuseAction=Page&PageID=1000000 His wife and son are very involved in the ministry he started and I'm sure they would be willing to clear EK's name and reputation. DG tried to bring him down after he was found out and accused so I'm sure they will give you some first hand insight into the late 80's.
2. Before DG went to Concorde, were there allegations that you knew of at Criswell College against DG? Were there credible allegations made by women at Criswell against DG? Did PP defend DG against those allegations at the school?
Everything was very hush hush. I didn't know that there were 25 women accusing DG at Concord until I read http://stopbaptistpredators.blogspot.com/2007/12/two-sbc-presidents-knew-lot-but-what.html I'm thinking back and whoever the woman is that he tried to or did rape was effectively kept quiet.
I do remember one dropped out suddenly, moved and I've never heard from her since. She was a gorgeous petite woman who very well would have fought back. I was startled and hurt by her sudden departure. Back then, the student body was only a couple hundred students and we were a very close knit group.
The allegations made by Rev Bailey were chalked up to jealousy over DG's abilities. We were never told the extent of the accusations. We were only told that Darrell had discovered that Bailey was having affairs and the like and that the accusations made by Concord were an effort to ruin a man of God.
We all stood with Darrell against the evil Bailey, or so we were led to believe. PP (Patterson) was a master manipulator. He was full of his own self-importance as was his wife Dorothy. They came across as really insincere. I think wrapped up in their own self-importance would be a really good description. PP wasn't the evangelist and church grower that his father was, nor was he the orator that DG was. He was riding the coattails all the time.
This was also during the time the conservatives were trying to take back over the convention from the liberals. PP was a very absent president and it caused a lot of friction with the board and the faculty. He had the blessing of WA Criswell so he was safe at CC. The school created a new position for him and appointed a new president because the school was suffering from his lack of attention.
(Note: I deleted some info that pertains to her personally but her accounts are from the years 1984- 1988)
PP was somehow able to keep things very quiet. I don't know if any of the faculty from that era would be willing to talk. Maybe some of the ones who have left might be willing to talk.
(I deleted the list of people to try and contact for privacy reasons)
3. Some of the newspaper accounts back then quoted PP as hinting that those opposing DG were racially motivated. Was your recollection back then that PP was leading people at CC to believe that Bailey had other motives in discrediting DG? In what manner did PP lead the students to believe that DG was innocent and that Bailey was out to get him? Did PP ever come out and verbally defend DG?
I wouldn't doubt that PP would have attributed DG's "persecution" to race. PP led us to believe that EK was jealous of DG and that it wasn't so much race as it was just envy of DG's abilities. PP's support of DG was absolute and if anyone spoke against him, there were real consequences. Since EK was black and the majority of Concord was too, the race issue wasn't an issue, as I remember it. It was just that EK was used to being the "go to" black preacher in Dallas and DG was going to usurpt that position. We were told that the accusations were patently false and that DG was completely innocent of anything that EK accused
4. PP has recently defended himself by saying he did try to stop DG by getting him to resign from Victory Baptist after it was found that he had sex with women he was counseling. Is your belief that PP protected Gilyard based on PP's failure to stop DG sooner than this?
I don't know that PP has a conscious. After finding out the extent of DG's sexual misconduct over the last couple of days of research, PP was in the cover-up up to his red hair. DG was the rising star and PP's ticket to the big time. PP was power and fame hungry back in those days. He was making himself a name with Judge Pressler reclaiming the SBC for Christ. DG figured prominently in this, I'm sure. See what good conservative schools can turn out...great preachers like DG. Makes me wonder what other skeletons PP has hidden in his own closet. I've never trusted him because he seemed like such a fake person. This probably colors my perceptions, but then again my impressions may have been spot on.
(Deleted more personal info here but she knew DG personally)
DG was working in better men's wear at Dillard’s at that time (while in school).
I know that we stood up and vehemently defended DG against the big bad EK.
Keep me posted to new developments, please. As one who was personally misled, I feel very betrayed and want to see him punished for his sins and crimes. One warming thought is that child sexual predators are the scum of the earth in prison and they are not treated well at all by the other inmates. Prisoners have standards, too, and harming a child is the worst thing one can do and be locked up! ”