Monday, June 8, 2009

The Trail of Tears

Since the plea bargain I have received so many emails from caring people from my past, people that also watched Darrell Gilyard preach back in the late 80's early 90's and revered him. Most of these people knew of my situation with him and also of the scandal that that all became public once his past was fully seen. But there are still many that simply did not know and are now shocked. They wondered what happened to him, why he wasn't a regular at First Baptist any longer, but assumed he just moved on. There have been pictures of our church youth group tour days posted on the popular "facebook" site, in many of these Darrell is sitting in a pew with his arms around teen girls and no one thought much of it. They have held onto the pictures and just see the memories of being with this "famous pastor" and of the fun we had as a huge group of kids that love the Lord and were on the road telling people about Jesus. No one really saw any red flags, atleast not any that they mentioned. Why, you may ask? Because he was presented to us as a Pastor/Evangelist that we were very blessed to have the honor of touring with, and because we should have been able to trust him. Because people just don't think to be careful of a Pastor, to be weary of "innappropriate behavior". I am sure at that time if anyone had a "complaint" it would have been scrutinized and maybe even blamed as "overactive teen imagination". After all, this is the "great Darrell Gilyard", a famous southern Baptist Preacher. Many were fooled, epecially his victims.

But, he wasn't safe, as I along with many others found out. This post is to make us really think about what to do next time, not that anything big will necessarily change, but maybe someone will be more wary if they feel things are not "feeling right". You see, he had a past, a long history of sexual problems and it was all dismissed. Look at the situation today, really look at it and see that a great injustice was done and know that it will probably happen again. The reality is we have to face the facts that there will be more situations where people feel it is best to "cover up" these sins and "forgive" and no real action will be taken. This is a sad reality, but it is evident - especially as you read again the details of this long road and how long it took to get this criminal sentence and his admission of guilt by his plea bargain.

It has been a true "trail of tears" and devastation. Pastor Wade Burleson did the best job of creating and posting a timeline based on the facts. This was posted on his blog last year, I have asked his permisssion to post it again here. It is baffling to me upon reading it again, what in the world does it really take to get the churches attention? How many cries for help are really needed? How many witnesses? How much "grace and forgiveness" is extended to the abuser by being sensitive to his position, but yet the "victims" are trampled, humiliated and left alone to deal with it, most of the time placed in absolute shame by the ones they went to for help. What a shame.

My personal note: In addition to all of the information below from the past, we now know that he has fathered children (atleast 3 confirmed); he has solicited sex through text messages to teens (part of the plea was that he asked for those charges to be dropped); he has molested teens in his office during "counseling"; he has had many relationships with women, single and married (while he was married); there have been payoff's, silence being the condition; people that have also had their credibility ruined after trying to report alleged rape or other sexual misconduct - the list goes on. I kept an actual notebook as the information poured in listing the proof against him. It could have all been avoided years ago, by the actions of many along the way.
Wake up call, what does it really take?

Tuesday, September 09, 2008
The Sordid and Strange Darrell Gilyard Story and What It Reveals About the SBC ,The Florida Times Union reports that Darrell Gilyard, a former Southern Baptist pastor, will appear in Florida court this month to defend himself on charges of lewd and lascivious conduct against a fourteen year old girl. Gilyard, who resigned January 4, 2008 as pastor of Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida after his arrest, is an interesting case study regarding the old, but sad axiom in the Southern Baptist Convention - "It's not who you are, but who you know that gets you places." Though one cannot be sure of the motives of those involved in the following story, it seems that there is an air of "us vs. them" mentality in some SBC leadership circles that leads to cover ups and excuses for inexcusable conduct among SBC ministers.

Darrell Gilyard burst on the SBC scene when he preached at the 1989 Southern Baptist Convention Pastors' Conference at the instigation of Paige Patterson and Jerry Vines. Gilyard related to SBC pastors how he had grown up as a homeless teenager, living under a bridge in Jacksonville, Florida, only to be miraculously converted and called to preach. He expressed gratefulness to both Vines and Patterson as he articulated the need for young, conservative gospel preachers to follow the leaders of the conservative resurgence. His message received a standing ovation at the SBC Pastor's Conference, and a star had been born in SBC circles. Jerry Vines had "discovered" Gilyard in Jacksonville, and Paige Patterson had discipled Gilyard as the young preacher attended Criswell College in the mid-1980's.

Gilyard would later repeat this "homeless" story on Jerry Falwell's Old Time Gospel Hour television broadcast, only to have his adoptive mother, Barbara Davis of Palatka, Florida, tell the media afterwards that she had raised Darrell from age 5 to 19 in middle income comfort, and that his story of living homeless under a bridge was a lie. Unfortunately, lying was the least of the problems of this young man who was fast becoming a rising star among Southern Baptists. While Gilyard was at Criswell, a long litany of sexual allegations against Gilyard came to the surface. It was during this time that Gilyard, with the encouragemnt and recommendation of Paige Patterson, became a staff member at Concord Missionary Baptist Church in Dallas. What happened next is unconscionable.

Predatorial Behavior Explained Away
According to The Dallas Morning News, Concord's Senior Pastor, E.K. Bailey said a dark side of Mr. Gilyard began to emerge while "ministering" at Concord. Rumors began to fly that the associate pastor was making advances on women in the church. In 1987, within two years after his hiring at Concord, Mr. Gilyard was fired in front of 1,500 members of Concord Baptist for having had inappropriate sexual relationships with at least, according to Pastor Baily, twenty five women members of the church.

Mr. Bailey said officials from First Baptist, Dallas, Texas, the church that sponsors Criswell College, attended the open service during which Mr. Gilyard was fired. Though Criswell College and FBC Dallas representatives were present at the Concord service where Gilard was fired, Patterson later decided there was not enough "evidence" to further investigate Mr. Gilyard or discipline him in terms of Criswell College or Gilyard's ministry among SBC churches. Gilyard was promoted among SBC churches by Patterson, Vines and other conservative leaders. In fact, according to Pastor Bailey, "Paige Patterson wrote me an unkind letter over the whole ordeal (Gilyard's firing). He basically told me that he would have come out to my church and solved the problem for me if I had told him first." Notice, according to the letter, the problem was not the young ladies being victimized. The problem was not the sexual impropriety of Mr. Gilyard. The "problem" was the public firing. It never would have happened if Patterson had been involved.

Pastor Bailey, now deceased, said First Baptist Church, Dallas, Texas and specifically Paige Patterson, continued to promote Mr. Gilyard throughout the predominantly white Southern Baptist churches. "You saw his star rising and rising," said Pastor Bailey, "and you knew what kind of a person he was." Pastor Bailey's comment illumines the theme of this post: "It is not 'who' you are, but 'who' you know that matters in the SBC."

Let me illustrate. After Gilyard's termination at Concord in 1987, he had little trouble gaining employment as assistant pastor for Hilltop Baptist Church in Norman, Oklahoma. Hilltop is a Southern Baptist Church and Senior Pastor Dan Maxwell hired Gilyard in 1988, less than a year after Gilyard was terminated at Concord. Maxwell had previously hosted a series of "conservative resurgence" pastors' meetings at his church at Hilltop, with Paige Patterson as the guest speaker. A former staff member at Hilltop, who would later serve with us at Emmanuel, told me that Pastor Maxwell hired Gilyard in 1988 at the sole urging and recommendation of Paige Patterson. Patterson told Maxwell to hire Gilyard, in spite of the allegations in Dallas, because the women in Dallas could not be believed. This squares with what Pastor Maxwell would later recount to The Dallas Morning News when he explained why he had hired Gilyard. "Paige Patterson said he had been out there (to Concord Missionary Baptist) and talked to the women and there had been nothing to the allegations. He (Patterson) could not substantiate them." However, less than a year after Gilyard arrived at Hilltop, allegations of sexual misconduct against Gilyard surfaced at that Southern Baptist church as well. Two women told Pastor Dan Maxwell that Mr. Gilyard had made sexual advances toward them, and a third woman confessed to having an affair with Mr. Gilyard.

Pastor Maxwell says he took this information of Gilyard's misconduct to Dr. Patterson. Dr. Patterson called and spoke personally to the woman who said she had an affair with Mr. Gilyard. After Patterson spoke to the woman, he told Pastor Maxwell that he did not believe the woman's story. "That individual's story changed many times," Dr. Patterson later explained to a reporter of The Dallas Morning News. "That bothered me," he said.

What is disturbing to me is the fact that Patterson is "bothered" by the womans story and not by the fact Gilyard is once again accused of sexual impropriety; particularly since Patterson already knew of Gilyard's 1987 sexual misconduct at Concord Baptist Church. Patterson was "bothered" by the woman's story at Hilltop, but NOT by Gilyard's alleged sexual misbehavior at Hilltop? Gilyard was terminated from Hilltop in early 1989 by Pastor Maxwell, and the friendship between Maxwell and Patterson, according to a staff member at Hilltop at the time, was terminally breached.

Back in Dallas in 1990
After being released from Hilltop in 1989, Mr. Gilyard made his way back to Dallas, Texas, and with the assistance of Patterson, Gilyard become the associate pastor at Shiloh Baptist in Garland, Texas. Before long, sexual misconduct allegations surfaced at Shiloh against Gilyard. Once again, Dr. Patterson intervened on behalf of his disciple. In 1990 Dr. Patterson met with two women who represented friends who, they said, were involved with Mr. Gilyard. Don Simpkins, a pastoral counselor, also attended. Mr. Simpkins said Dr. Patterson asked him to counsel Mr. Gilyard once a week. "I was supposed to "polish the rough edges," said Mr. Simpkins. Mr. Simpkins said that after a few visits with Mr. Gilyard, he suspected some "personality disorders' and wanted to test Mr. Gilyard . "He refused," Mr. Simpkins told the Dallas Morning News, "so I called Paige to let him know it wasn't going well, but he never returned any of my calls."

Gilyard was fired from Shiloh Baptist Church in 1990, only to wind up as pastor of Victory Baptist Church in Richardson, Texas a few months later. In July of 1991, reports of sexual improprieties by Pastor Gilyard at Victory Baptist (his fourth church in four years), burst into the public realm. The allegations by the women at Victory Baptist Church who claimed to be his victims are so bizarre that I will post them verbatim from the July 14, 1991 Dallas Morning News article that made them public:

"When it came to women (Gilyard) would not allow them to usher, serve on the finance committee, teach men or take classes with them.But outside the church, according to the women who claim to have been victimized by him, Mr. Gilyard spent most of his time with women. Those who talked with The Dallas Morning News about their experiences asked to remain anonymous . . . A woman joined Victory Baptist shortly after she moved to Dallas last year. Mr. Gilyard offered her a job at the church. "He called about 10 o'clock one night and said he wanted to talk about my work," she recalled. "We talked for a while like that, then the conversation shifted and he started getting real personal. He wanted to know what attracted me to him. I should have hung up, but I felt flattered.' She said the phone call became more sexually explicit until finally she hung up. I felt dirty and sick afterward," she said.She said she told Darrell DeBoard, the administrator at Victory Baptist, two or three days later. The woman said she also quit her job at the church and moved out of town that weekend.Mr. DeBoard declined to discuss the incident, saying he could not violate a confidence . . . Martha Dixius, a social worker who taught Sunday school at Victory Baptist, said a woman in the congregation approached her in November for help. The woman, said Ms. Dixius, had "a trust level of a 7-year-old. She is very naive.' In a counseling session, Ms. Dixius said, the woman told her that Mr. Gilyard had noted her visitor's card and phoned her the next day with an offer to show her through the church. During the tour, he asked her questions a bout her personal life.The next evening about 6 p.m., the woman told Ms. Dixius, Mr. Gilyard drove to her apartment and called her from his car phone. "She let him in her apartment because he told her he wanted to talk about some of the problems they had discussed the night before,' Ms. Dixius said. "She told me that by 6:30, she was raped." The woman told her she was too confused and frightened to call police. The woman told Ms. Dixius that Mr. Gilyard continued to go to her apartment for six months and have sex with her. "He would - call her from the car phone and say, "I'm coming up, let me in,' and she would be too frightened to say no.' After counseling the woman for four months, Ms. Dixius referred her to another counselor. The two counselors met with the woman and Darrell DeBoard, administrator of Victory Baptist. "The word "rape' was used a lot," Mr. DeBoard recalled, "but I understood that to be emotional rape. She was graphic with details, so it was hard not to believe that something had happened."

It was only during the time that the Dallas Morning News made the above allegations against Gilyard public that Paige Patterson ended his support of Gilyard. Gilyard had been fired from FOUR churches in FOUR years for allegations of sexual misconduct from dozens and dozens of women. Patterson knew of the sexual misconduct allegations against Gilyard at Concord Baptist Church in 1987. He knew about the sexual allegations against Gilyard at Hilltop Baptist Church in 1988. Gilyard preached at the Southern Baptist Convention Pastors' Conference in 1989 after being introduced to Conference leaders by Patterson and Vines. Patterson knew about the sexual misconduct allegations against Gilyard at Shiloh Baptist Church in 1990. Patterson knew about the sexual misconduct allegations against Gilyard at Victory Baptist Church in 1991.

Again, The Dallas Morning News made public the sexual misconduct allegations against Gilyard on July 14, 1991, at least six years after initial accounts of Gilyard's sexual improprieties surfaced at Criswell. Since that day in 1991 Patterson says he has had nothing to do with Darrell Gilyard.

Gilyard left Dallas in late 1991 and went to Florida where he eventually became pastor of Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church of Jacksonville in 1993. The state of Florida is now seeking to prosecute Gilyard for "lewd and lascivious conduct" against a fourteen year old girl while serving as pastor at Shiloh in Florida. The sordid and strange Darrell Gilyard story has yet to end, but there are some lessons we can learn from it in the SBC.

Lessons Learned

(1). Information is power - to either check or correct poor leadership.

One wonders if glowing recommendations regarding Darrell Gilyard and his "ministry" would have continued from SBC leadership, in spite of their knowledge of allegations of sexual impropriety against Gilyard, had it not been for the public revelations of the Dallas Morning News in 1991. Thank God for a free, independent press. In addition, we thank the Lord for those women who have been victimized by Gilyard but are now making their voices heard in order to prevent other predatory behavior. Tiffany Croft, a young lady who became a victim of Gilyard's immoral conduct, wrote to me this past year expressing her desire to stop Gilyard from victimizing other women and girls. Croft eventually started a blog of her own called Let's Stop Darrell Gilyard Together". She is proof that every voice counts. She has made a difference.

(2). Southern Baptist churches would do well to remember that the qualifications for effective pastoral leadership are measured by the words and testimonies of those church members who have been recipients of a pastor's love and ministry - not professional endorsers.

In other words, though it is often not "who you are, but who you know" that gets you places in the SBC, a wise church will discount the big names on a resume and do due diligence with those people who have experienced the ministry of a pastor over the course of years. Likewise, big name denominational leaders may say negative things about people they do not like, but the "proof" of effective pastoral leadership is in the people being led.

(3). It is a shame when those outside the SBC must call our leaders to account for their actions because we Southern Baptists are too fearful to hold our own leaders accountable.

The Survivor Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) called on the trustees of Southwestern Theological Seminary to remove President Paige Patterson for protecting Darrell Gilyard from being held accountable for his sexual misconduct in the 1980's and 1990's. SNAP believes victimized women and girls could have been protected from the predatory behavior of Gilyard had Southern Baptist leaders, particularly former SBC Presidents Vines and Patterson, held him accountable when they first were informed of his behavior. On January 9, 2008, President Paige Patterson officially responded to SNAP's request that Patterson be removed:

"Christa Brown and the SNAP organization have alleged that years ago, and even in the present, I have protected Darrell Gilyard, most recently the Pastor of Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida, when he was involved in sexual misconduct. These snap judgments by Brown and others are misinformed and inaccurate. "

Patterson goes on to write about how he "moderated" the 1991 meeting where Gilyard was terminated from Shiloh Baptist Church in Dallas, but . . .

(a). He does not answer why in 1987 he rebuked Pastor E.K. Baily for terminating Gilyard from Concord Baptist Church after "twenty-five" women accused Gilyard of sexual misconduct.

(b). He does not answer why he recommended Gilyard to Hilltop Baptist Church in 1988 AFTER knowing the charges against Gilyard at Concord.

(c). He does not answer why he arranged for Gilyard to speak at the SBC Pastors Conference AFTER he knew of the sexual misconduct allegations at BOTH Concord Baptist and Hilltop Baptist churches.

(d). He does not answer why he refused to "believe" the stories of the women who claimed to be having sexual relationships with Pastor Gilyard; that is, not until The Dallas Morning news reported the stories of these women publicly.

(e). He does not answer why he arranged for a "pastoral counselor" to work on "the rough edges" of Darrell Gilyard in 1990 after Gilyard had been terminated from his THIRD church in THREE years (Shiloh Baptist, Dallas, Texas) for sexual misconduct instead of working to remove Gilyard from all pastoral ministry.

Why Bring All This Up Again Now?

Southern Baptists have proven we do not like to air our dirty laundry. When things become known to the outside world, we attack the messenger, rather than deal with the problem. We must change our approach. Southern Baptists must stand up and speak out, rather than mock or ridicule those who do.

According to the blog Abuse and Christianity, Darrell Gilyard has been back in the pulpit of a Southern Baptist affiliated church while he awaits his trial in Florida. Rather than act as if Southern Baptists would never ignore sexual predators in the pulpit, rather than mock and ridicule those who expose our lack of moral judgment, we should learn from our history so that Southern Baptist churches and pastors will not be tempted to repeat it.We must understand that if we don't clean up our own house, nobody else will.
In His Grace,Wade


Anonymous said...

Your blog has&will continue to be a blessing to your readers.God(Jesus)really used you in mighty way,I am very glad that you allowed him to use you.I have learned so much from this blog&blessed.I hope one day all of us that been on this blog can sit down&fellowship over lunch,can't forget about Brother Rod(my pastor)for all his insight.I have learned so much from both youall.

your brother in Christ Ajamu(aj)Jordan

Anonymous said...

This blog has been very informative. I do think this chapter is now over, if we aren't careful this blog can easly become a blog of gossip. We all know that would not be accepted by Christ. We now need to pray for all involved the victims and Gilyard. They all seemed to have a serious need for counseling; what caused this, what allowed this to continue and are you really ready to start over. In most of the cases Gilyard did not force the people into submission.
Something to think about.

Bro./Pastor Rod Hendrix said...

"This blog has been very informative. I do think this chapter is now over, if we aren't careful this blog can easly become a blog of gossip. We all know that would not be accepted by Christ. We now need to pray for all involved the victims and Gilyard. They all seemed to have a serious need for counseling; what caused this, what allowed this to continue and are you really ready to start over. In most of the cases Gilyard did not force the people into submission.
Something to think about."

June 9, 2009 10:13 AM

"He who does not remember history,is doomed to repeat it"

Herein lies the problem.

What caused this problem?

(1)All of the signs displayed by Darrell were ignored by Jerry Vines,Page Patterson and many of the leaders at Shiloh. And if we refuse to remember this tragic story,I assure you it will happen over and over again.

(2)The Bible is cystal clear in revealing what we should look for in a leader and Darrell habitually failed the Biblical test.

(3)You say they need counseling!What kind of counseling? Secular or Biblical? What Darrell needs too do is for the first time is really repent for what he has been doing for over 22+ years. Even at his sentencing,he stubbornly refuses to publically ask for forgiveness.

(4)A lack of Biblical discernment.You can't rise above what you know about Scripture. Rogue Pastor's count on people being ignorant of Scripture; A
nd ignorant people are ripe for Pastoral abuses.

(5)What allowed this to continue?
There are several reasons.(a)Yes men who are leadership postions who have no love for God.(b)Many of these people are in it for the position,money or notoriety or enamored by the Pastor himself.
(c)Others just don't know or don't care.

(6)It is true that Gilyard may not have forced himself on everyone. But what most fail to understand is their is a spiritual aspect in play here because of the pastors supposed calling by God;Couple this with the peoples vast amount of scriptural ignorance,Church leaders protecting the culprit and possible Satanic influence(Satan does exist you know); You now have a recipe for Pastoral abuse.Many of Darrells victim believing that he was the annointed of God were afraid to say "no".No man annointed by God would for 22+ years abuse the people as Darrell has.

(7)I say lets continue to respectfully disuss and learn from this story and others like it;If we don't,we will be doomed to repeat it!

Ramesh said...

Tiffany, when this trial is over, please do not give up. Continue to speak up. I would encourage you to think about writing a book that describes your journey, travails and the Grace that showed you The Way.

Here Christa Brown has just published her book.

Also this link is not directly related to this blog, but very enlightening.

adventures in mercy > Another Molly: Blogging About Life in a Bible-based Cult (ACTS, Christ as Life, New Creation Fellowship).

Anonymous said...

Now that Gilyard has been convicted and sentenced, it's time to move on. It's starting seem as though you are more focused on the the person than the cause, which I thought was to remove sexual predators from the pulpit. I'm certain there are more out there. Move on, please.

Anonymous said...

My intent in my earlier comment of (10:13am)... In life we dwell on history to much and we miss the blessing of the future. There comes a time we must accept the past, learn from it and move forward. I agree with most of you Darrell should have been stopped years ago but we must allow God to do it His way. Once God moves he needs no help nor cheerleaders.
This has also revealed there is trouble in the lives of those that put Gilyard on a pedestal including the victims. We worship God all Mighty and not the messenger. Truly examine what the intent is now. To continue to ponder on one's sin or to examine one's self for sin. Shiloh is a great church and will continue to be because God is the leader of His church. Shiloh is not a perfect church because there is not and will not be one until Christ returns. We need to pray that God uses Gilyard to exalt Him as He sees fit. Gilyard could come out of jail and becaome one of the best evangelist of all time. It is up to God. Remember Saul/Paul he was the worlds most fierce terrorist. God made him one of the world's best spokesperson for Him (the new testament tells his story). Be ready for God's next chapter in YOUR life or you may get left behind.

Anonymous said...

No, would you move on anon 1:50 pm, it shouldn't be hard for you to stop coming to this blog. I think Tiffany got this.

Anonymous said...

Now that Gilyard has been convicted and sentenced, it's time to move on. It's starting seem as though you are more focused on the the person than the cause, which I thought was to remove sexual predators from the pulpit. I'm certain there are more out there. Move on, please.

June 9, 2009 1:50 PM

As pastor Rod has said...We should all remember history. It is history that kept the Apostle Paul humble before God and man. He never forget what he had done. Therefore, let us never forget lest we fall into the same traps over and over. While we do not dwell on the past, we must never forget it.

This blog in many ways is healing and closure to many. You on the other hand sound as though you may have some underlying reason for wanting to move on in your timing. Let's continue in this process and let God sort all else out.

Thanks Tiffany.

Anonymous said...

As pastor Rod has said...We should all remember history. It is history that kept the Apostle Paul humble before God and man. He never forget what he had done. Therefore, let us never forget lest we fall into the same traps over and over. While we do not dwell on the past, we must never forget it.

Primitive statement!

While we must never forget history we should never dwell on history; duh. Paul remembered his past only to be stronger nd more humble. His books tells us how to move forward knowing his past. Not dwelling on it.

Tiffany Thigpen Croft said...

In love I must say I think you are missing the point. The focus right now is really not about Darrell Gilyard, but the travesty of how long it went on, how many cries for help there were, how many people looked the other way, and how in the world can it possibly be stopped? What does it really take?

I am not attempting to harp on Darrell specifically, but it is a huge opportunity for a lesson to us all. If we do "move on" then we are doing the very thing that allowed this travesty in the first place. We must look at it and see where changes could and should be made, decide what it takes to be "enough" as far as "credible complaints" and when to step in; most importantly, who steps in and who do they answer to for accountability so that they do not make the same errors that Patterson has made. We can not learn from it if we do not look at it.

I read these words that Pastor Wade posted back in the beginning of this and it struck me again how crazy this is, how the cries for help were not heeded. The huge injustice that was done cannot be corrected completely. We simply need to really heed this lesson.

The final thought is that we do not know how Darrell will come out of this. We are not the Judge or jury, but we have to realize that to just "move on" means that whenever he is released, how will we know that he does not move somewhere and do this again? If he does not repent and get real help, or if he gets help but fools his counselors through his vast manipulation, then we will still have a problem. I do not know what that means in the future, but I do know that I do not want to find out 3 or more years from now that he has done it again while everyone "moved on". That would be a repeat of 1991 until now.

I do not wish to continue to blog about this per say, I actually am tired of talking about it and wish I could just "move on", trust me. I receive no joy or fulfillment from this and I do not "need" to do any of this to "feel better" - I am not sure what my role is from here forward, that is up to God. But, Darrell will stand before Judge Weatherby again to receive the sentence and begin his stay, this post was a reminder of why we are at this point. Not to throw stones, but to take note and hopefully spear someone on to figure this out. Maybe God is prepping someone right now in their hearts and will tell them when it is time to act on behalf of the church as a whole with these problems, maybe, just maybe we will see changes.

Wouldn't that be something to celebrate?

Anonymous said...

To anon 2:26pm June 9

The difference between Saul/Paul is this: Saul (at that time) thought he was doing what was right Timothy 1:13. He believed that he was helping God. Now you’ve got to ask yourself a question: Did Darrell Gilyard believe that he was helping God or was he doing :what he has done out of ignorance? I don't think so. Come on anonymous. Poor analogy. Gilyard knew that what he was doing was totally wrong and that's why he tried and did have it covered up for so long. The thing is this...God will and can use him, but I have to beg to differ with you in that it's all up to God. No it isn't! It's up to Darrell. He has to first REPENT (meaning to turn away from the direction in which he is/was going and turn towards God).
p.s. are you an undercover Gilyard fan?

Anonymous said...

To anon 2:26pm June 9

Thats 1 Tomothy 1:13

Anonymous said...

i do get your point. Has anyone gone to the SBC or any other group to maybe get something in place that will help prevent this in the future.
That to me is real concern for the need and not hammering on the person.

Anonymous said...

anon 2:41p June 9

I have but one question for you...What grade are you in?

Anonymous said...

No, I am not a Gilyard fan at all. I am a fan of the gospel. It is up to God how He will make all of this work out for His glory. Again not about Gilyard but about the Lord. Gilyard may have or may never repent; but how this works out will be for the glory of God.
As for Saul/Paul, you are right Paul thought he was doing the right thing, in Gilyard's case he was doing the wrong thing as I truly hope he know it. However there ore no obstacles to large for God. Satan even has to have permission from God.

Tiffany Thigpen Croft said...

Countless people have gone to the SBC for help.

Go to Christa Browns site and read about it, here is an exerpt:

Southern Baptists reject sex-abuse database

"Under pressure to fight child sex abuse, the SBC's executive committee said…the denomination should not create its own database to help churches identity predators or establish an office to field abuse claims.” Associated Press >

"Instead of protecting its followers from sexual predators, Nashville's Southern Baptist Convention leaves churches to fend for themselves." Nashville Scene >

"The very fact that Baptist churches are autonomous signals that they need the information that the convention could provide." Tennessean editorial >

"To argue that a list of Southern Baptist ministers who are sexual predators violates the self-government of a local church is illogical." Burleson op-ed >

"Baptists miss an opportunity." Dallas Morning News editorial >

"Holy hypocrisy!" Winson-Salem Journal editorial >

Anonymous said...

anon 3:01p June 9

You forgot to answer the other question...What grade are you in?

Anonymous said...

If they won't comply, pressure them and/or protest. Not in front of Shiloh (not affliated with the SBC). In front of Southern Batist Churches.

Bro./Pastor Rod H. said...

"Gilyard could come out of jail and becaome one of the best evangelist of all time."

June 9, 2009 2:26 PM

I'm sorry Anon.2:26pm Darrell by his on actions has disqualified himself from pastoral,evangelistic or any other type of Church leadership position.The only avenue left for him once he gets out of jail,is to find a church that is faithful to the Word of God and find himself a seat in the pews![1Cor.9:26-27;1Tim.3:1-2;Titus 1:6-8,16].

Tiffany Thigpen Croft said...

I second that motion!

Anonymous said...

God qualifies whom he chooses. Are you saying repented sinners are not qualified to preach?

Anonymous said...

anon 3:47p June 9
Ma'am/ sir
What are the qualifications of a pastor? (1Tim.3:1-2 Titus 1:6-8,16) Gilyard is no longer blameless, therefore, he is DISQUALIFIED. What does blameless mean?
Please supply (contextual) Scriptures to support your reasoning.God is serious about preachers, teachers, leaders etc. Just read James 3:1.

He can be saved, but saved to do something other than lead in the capacity in which he was.

Richard Marks, PhD said...


Been doing a lot of traveling lately and decided to see what has been posted recently.

After reading your latest June 8 blog, I am saddened and sorry that you had to endure not only Gilyard's behavior but also those of the church leadership.

YOU are type of William Wallace (albeit a female) as you have taken on a BIG organization (SBC in one sense) to help another. You were concerned for the one sheep whereas, others are only concerned either about themselves or the 99. Thanks for searching out the one sheep that was wounded and giving them a voice.

I have worked with many adult sexual abuse victims by ministers and rarely do they caught.


Richard Marks

Anonymous said...

Tifanny, does Gilyard report for prison June 11th?

Ramesh said...

ABP > Book says SBC lacks system of preventing sexual abuse.
A book released in advance of the June 23-24 annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention claims the nation's largest Protestant faith group has more than 100,000 clergy, but no effective system of denominational oversight to protect children from sexual abuse.

This Little Light: Beyond a Baptist Preacher Predator and His Gang is a combination memoir and exposé written by Christa Brown, an anti-clergy-sex-abuse activist.

Brown tells her own story of being sexually abused by a youth minister at the Texas Southern Baptist church of her childhood and how years later as an adult she met a bureaucratic response when trying to warn denominational officials there might be a sexual predator in their midst

Ramesh said...

Stop Baptist Predators > Harsh words make my point.
Did you see the article about my book in the Associated Baptist Press? Did you see the first guy’s comment underneath the review?

Take a deep breath and take a look. Here’s what he says:

“This woman is on nothing more than a vendetta against the SBC because she's still having problems as a result. Her constant desire to get publicity is evidence of her penchant for hateful revenge. Frankly, I suspect her alleged experience really happened, and yet it's still just a story without substantiation. Being Baptist had nothing to do with her experience. It happens is all walks of life and it's unfortunate. The article states that she 'found him on her own.' What more compelling evidence can there be but that this woman still has mental/emotional issues she can’t overcome? Writing a book to keep herself in the victim spotlight maybe. Indeed, the SBC has examined her whining and has done exactly the right thing according to Baptist polity—it has to be left to the local church…. This woman seems to have done little to acquire a spirit of forgiveness. Her story is not unique. Some Baptist pastors do have lapses of judgment in this area. And so do Presbyterians, Lutherans… Catholics and all the others. This woman writing a book to keep attention on herself serve no useful purpose….”

Ramesh said...

Off Topic:

Fbc Jax Watchdog > Update on Lawsuits - and Copy of JSO Internal Affairs Report.
Readers: Its been some time since the lawsuit was filed against the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office and the State Attorney's Office over first amendment freedom of speech and establishment clause violations in the First Baptist Jacksonville blogger matter - so I thought I would give you an update on where things stand.

- the lawsuits have been moved from state court to federal court; discovery process will likely begin sometime in July or August;

- I am told the case number assigned to the case in state court was 2009-CA-6666. No kidding.

Tiffany Thigpen Croft said...

Once again, TRAIL OF TEARS....this is such a sad post (the quote regarding Christa Brown's book) but I must say that I have seen myself that this is how they feel about Christa and anyone else on the road to figure out how to stop this behavior. I was warned to "be careful" or "not align myself" with Christa and others on my blog - it was unbelievable to me that "Christians" would set out to do harm to another and still see themselves as "Godly leaders". These men (and the women that participate) in this "silence the messenger" mentality are not Godly, are not spiritual, are not looking out for the sheep and are more concerned with "the bigger picture" of the body of Christ. Huh??? We are the body of Christ! If the least of these are being hurt, it is your job to stand up like a ferocious lion and protect the flock! Not the one that comes in to destroy them, when you hide secrets (leaders) or belittle the victims, you hands are just as dirty as the one that hurt them in the first place - because you have now allowed them to move along to hurt again, and again, and again.

The difference between a Pastors caught in an adulterous affair is so vast between that of a sexual predator.

Yet I must say, I have seen that a man (Pastor or leader) caught in an affair is treated much more harshly and loses his position rapidly, family crumbles, he becomes isolated and few reach out to counsel him or his family, they become the "elephant in the room" if they try to continue at church.

BUT, you find out your Pastor is sexually molesting children or raping women - here is the general response:
"Let's keep this quiet, wouldn't want to disturb the flock, the bigger picture of the Body of Christ. How would the world look at us if they knew we had this kind of sin in the church? Now be a good little victim and just move along, forgive him, he is a "man of God" after all, it is what God would require of you. Shame on you if you ever speak of this again (shame), you might want to not tell even your family (shame), but definitely not anyone in the church (secret), and by the way what were you doing to solicit this? I mean were you dressing provocatively? Did you flirt with him? (Blame the victim - shame)Does anyone else know about this that could 'back up your story'?"
Part 2 below:

Tiffany Thigpen Croft said...

The victim, already in emotional turmoil now takes on added shame, secrets, and sees that all involved are to blame as now the one she looked up to and went to for help has made her out to be a potential trouble maker. She is told to forgive, but given no tools by which to get through that journey - it doesn't happen over night. The victim is then supposed to do what? There is anger, shame, a feeling of ugliness and dirt, sadness and depression if the sadness isn't dealt with, trust issues, isolation...what does a person on a literal emotional "hospital bed" do when they are to tell no one and deal with it on their own? Go to God you say? Well, that is obvious except (in the shoes of the victim) you must remember that many times the abuser has used God against them for his own manipulation, so they may now be confused about God or feel such shame that they can't approach Him.

People do not understand until you are there or watch someone walk through it. It is impossible to fathom. For many of you that understand, the part that is hard to fathom is that Godly men would behave this way and cover up the sin. It seems that this is just impossible and could never really happen - but it does, more than you can imagine. Just read the quote about Christa's book again - this man states that it is a fact that this goes on "Her story is not unique. Some Baptist pastors do have lapses of judgment in this area." But then he goes on to say that she has done nothing to acquire a spirit of forgiveness. Really? How would he know that? Does spirit of forgiveness to him mean that you go away and keep quiet? So by her becoming a voice for this problem and trying to get help from the SBC label her unforgiving? It is so far from scriptural the way these people think. Where is the heart of God?

There is so much work to do. I believe that God has bigger plans for all of this and I do not know how He plans on cleaning house, but He must be grieved. I also wonder if He will allow it to continue and let us see just how corrupt the roots are and allow us the chance to fully see God and turn our eyes from man. We have elevated Preachers and spiritual leaders to a place that blocks out God and the Holy Spirit. Much of the time we as people tune out the still small voice of reason and tune into the "spiritual broadcast hour" of whatever the latest and greatest preacher has to say. We pour our hearts into their "ministry" and hang on their every "prophecy" or "word from the Lord" without ever applying it to scripture ourselves. We give financially, along with our time, talent and resources - all because it "feels good" and we "feel important" being a part of this or that ministry. Only later we come smashing to the ground when we learn that this person/people were self seeking or had become corrupt in the process. We then fall apart at the seams because we have been leaning on this leader for all spiritual food, we haven't been standing on our own on the Word of God (though we may think we are) and we find that we are dry and God is not our Rock, we had elevated this person to be and now that he's not, we are reduced to sand (which is all this person was foundationally anyway, shifting sand). We think we are "done with church", "Christians are 'all' hypocrites", we "will never trust another".
Part 3:

Tiffany Thigpen Croft said...

Yet, God is just allowing this as one more chance to come back to our 'First Love' - He never left, we were just distracted on this journey to do as Adam and Eve did and partake of the tree, to have a better understanding of God. It was all a sham from the enemy in the garden thousands of years ago, and the sham is continuing today.

Now, we may have totally good intentions in following spiritual leaders - please don't misunderstand. But the problem is anytime we take our eyes off of our 'First Love' God and His word we are on shifting sand that could fall out at any moment. The minute a preacher says something that the Bible doesn't back up, the minute you are asked to do something that you feel is not God, the minute you gossip about someone that also doesn't agree with your preacher, the minute you align yourself with a plan that you yourself have not covered in prayer and been quiet to listen to what He tells you, the minute you join a ministry and give it your all and forget you have a family that God gave you to love and nurture as a priority, the minute you separate yourself from your family that don't agree with the direction your Pastor is taking you, the minute you decide I am...going to do this, give this, repeat these words, further this ministry and 'idolize' this pastor....without FIRST going to "I AM" and asking His will and then listening for an answer, you are in the garden where God has just asked Adam and Eve what is wrong and why are you hiding from me? He will allow you to confess and stand there naked before Him to hopefully realize your weaknesses and fall back on Him.

I am not saying to not trust Pastors, attend church, do ministry...I am saying that we are in a time in History where it has become one of the highest paying jobs out there and we have begun to idolize these men and follow them thinking we are following Christ - many times only to wake up at some point realizing with all of our good intentions, we have been deceived. Now, God's word still stands and whatever seed/fruits have grown in you from this can still grow in God, but have you taken your eyes off the Master in the process?

Tiffany Thigpen Croft said...

I believe that this is also what has happened in these areas and with some in the SBC and the Church leadership individually (not everyone) - I believe that they may even have good intentions, but they to have taken their eyes off of the Master and are looking to each other for leadership and advice, they feel it is best to "not make a deal of it" or expose the problem because it would be an embarrassment to Christianity. HUH??? Wouldn't the sin of covering it up and the damage to the sheep be much more embarrassing?

Would you really stand before the Father and say "Well, I knew you could handle it, so I turned away and asked everyone else to keep it a secret, I knew you would be embarrassed God and you couldn't work on these unbelievers with this type of distraction on your hands. So I rallied the troops and we covered up, we told the masses that the Preacher was "moving on to another ministry" and I didn't warn them or speak negatively because I knew that is not 'what you would have me do' and you could handle him from here God. What was that God? Oh, yeah the victim, well we had questions about her all along, she dressed a little loosely, and she always hung around the church working on her Sunday school class, or coming for counseling. Yeah, we feel she may not be credible. We dealt with that God...aren't you proud of us? What was that God? Oh, you wanted us to minister to her and her family? Oh, well we were afraid of her, what if she made the same claims against one of us? Yes, God, I think you could have handled that, but I was worried...well, yes God, Father, I see your had a plan and I missed it. You really would have ministered to the broken minister also if we had just held him to accountability? Really God? Oh, you needed him broken completely to work on him? Oh, so when people started talking about him because we weren't doing anything, you were also trying to break us so that you could regain our attention and focus? Wow, oh Lord, I see it now, I am a fool, I thought I was 'working for you' and I was deceived. But the ministers I look to for guidance were telling me handle it this way, I took THEIR advice (she gave me the apple)...oh, those aren't the ones you wanted me to be accountable to anyway? Why didn't you tell me? Yes, I remember that time you nudged me and I didn't listen...oh God, what a mess I have made...Yes, I says 'I' have made, yes I admit that you have not been leading me because I haven't let you..."

Do you see?? God certainly doesn't need us, but HE does use us many different ways. Sometimes He just uses us to help us to learn a lesson also. This tragedy with Gilyard could be a vast lesson for us all. But we have to choose to look, pray and listen.

And we have to "come out from among them and be ye separate" - this doesn't always mean separate from the 'world/sinners', but also just from things not of God.

Bro./Pastor Rod H. said...

"I am not saying to not trust Pastors, attend church, do ministry...I am saying that we are in a time in History where it has become one of the highest paying jobs out there and we have begun to idolize these men and follow them thinking we are following Christ - many times only to wake up at some point realizing with all of our good intentions, we have been deceived."

June 11, 2009 10:47 AM

Tiffany,money,power,prestige,influence,noteriety these are the motivations that drive most of these charlatans getting into mininstry. We had better understand that not every man that's a Pastor has been called by God. Paul stated "follow me as I follow Christ! I have a small ministry and the members give well; I could'nt even imagine if we had several hundred or thousands members what we be collecting! Now imagine;;were can a man go where people will give their money freely and there is basically no accountablity? "AH" the Church!!! If a man has a gift for gabb and can quote two are three Scriptures people will follow him blindly no matter his character!!! The sad thing is that the Bible is replete with references to these predatory wolves in sheep clothing,yet because people are careless and indifferent about seeking and knowing the truth of Scripture,they make themselve victims to these unscrupulous men! And according to the Bible it is only going to get worse! In my short term as a minister I have never seen a time when people are so indifferent and gullible to Biblical truth!Not many Bereans in the bunch[Acts 17:11].Tiffany with the exception of a few Pastor's who have blogged in; The silence from the Pastorate is deafening!! As predicted the Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy that a time was coming were people will not tolerate "SOUND TEACHING"[2Tim.4:3-4].And that time is "NOW"!!!

Lydia said...

It is interesting to note how many folks have come on here urging you to 'move on'.

As someone very involved in the marketing and operations end of several mega churches, I can tell you this is THE message that is passed down from leadership whenever a scandal surfaces. They really do see this position as Biblical. They could not be more wrong.

In PR circles, we know that changing the subject quickly makes a huge difference in the effect of the scandal. The ONE thing you do not want folks doing is figuring out HOW the scandal happened. It leads to too much questioning of the leadership and other serious problems surface. It is about saving face and saving positions.

So, they make those who keep questioning out to be sinners who refuse to 'move on'.

But, we all know that if we do not get to the root of HOW it happened and why it was ALLOWED to happen, it WILL happen again. As a matter of fact, if we dig, we find out our leaders are not qualified as per scripture. They know this and have much to lose if you figure it out, too.

As one elder told me after a pretty big scandal that we were able to keep somewhat isolated, "I don't care about the truth, we need to move on from this before our ministry suffers'.

What he did not realize is that we HAD NO MINISTRY because we did not value truth, scripture and the purity of the Body. We had elevated our ministry success over our very own brothers and sisters in Christ! And over truth of the scripture. Nickels and noses became the measure of spiritual success.

That is what I am hearing in these comments. People hate dealing with conflict and truth. Some truths are simply negative. We have identified several SBC leaders who knew there were serious problems with Gilyard who promoted him anyway. We have a duty to future victims and to the purity of the Body of Christ to deal with this.

Remember, those that promoted Gilyard knowing the truth about him have been mentoring other young pastors for a long time. These young men learned from their example. This problem is FAR from over.

So, those saying 'move on' are part of the problem of institutionalizing sin. They say, 'let God handle it' forgetting that the Epistles are also the Inspired Word and give us instructions on dealing with sin in the Body. God expects US to handle it HIS way. That is why HE left instructions about removing the sinning professing brother from the Body of Christ. Not hiding his sexual perversion.

Tiffany Thigpen Croft said...

Thank you Lydia. I enjoyed reading your imput, this is exactly how I am beginning to see it and it is troubling to me.
Seems it has become a business.

Ramesh said...

Off Topic: Help for bloggers

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Richard M said...


Keep up the good work. Denial comes in many forms and it is difficult for people to get past their emotional ties to an organization or a person and becuase of this it clouds their judgement. Many today believe, innocently I might add, that keeping things secret, is a benefit. It is not, it only enables.

When I worked at FBC JAX, I can say from my experience there, that I dealt with many cases of people who shared they were being sexually abused by a parent, step-parent, etc. With the full support of Vines, I turned these folks over to the State. We, the leadership of the church, have an obligation to the VICTIM, NOT the offender.

I have read the post of the Dallas paper on Patterson. I am sad to see his coverup. I know that your experience with a pastor years ago, was not pleasant, but as for me and my stand, Protet the offender.

Now, to the issue of the Church and its business focus being foremost and not the people. I came across a quote a couple of years ago that I think is pretty telling:


I sat in a service here in the past few weeks where during the service 4 minutes were committed to selling a DVD of a passion play, and in other services the selling of CDs of visiting singers. I wonder what Father thinks when he sees us selling products when we were supposed to come to worship.

Richard M.

Anonymous said...

There definitely needs to be better profiling and screening measures involved when selecting a minister. It is not just about passionate preaching. This guy was not filled with the fruit of the Spirit he was filled with adrenaline and warped hormones. Bad doctrine is permeating our pulpits on what it means to be filled with the Spirit. It is all about the fruit of character.... not tongues, healings, which are secondary aspects.

Anonymous said...

"This guy was not filled with the fruit of the Spirit he was filled with adrenaline and warped hormones. Bad doctrine is permeating our pulpits on what it means to be filled with the Spirit. It is all about the fruit of character...."

Amen, Amen, Amen. Even Satan knows correct doctrine. Too many churches are looking for charismatic orators who can bring in the numbers.

Anonymous said...

"Amen, Amen, Amen. Even Satan knows correct doctrine. Too many churches are looking for charismatic orators who can bring in the numbers."

June 14, 2009 10:44 PM

Anon you are absolutely correct!


Anonymous said...

Good Day, My heart went into a deep and sorrowful sadness never before experienced. I first hear him
(Darrell Gilyard) preach on Revelation at Liberty
Baptist as a guest of Jerry Falwell, and I was awed at
his knowledge of the Bible. Yes deeply sadened, by
his life as a youngster growing up under a bridge.

What happened is only known by Darrell and God, and
I'm sure God has forgiven him. But the sin will follow him to his death. Yes please pray for him and his family

Anonymous said...

Hey Anonymous June 25:

You need to know: the story Darrell Gilyard told about living homeless under a bridge was a total fabrication by him--he totally LIED. He was raised in a middle class home by an aunt. He was never homeless or hungry! Please read earlier blogs on this site that give the details.

Thanks for posting the info on the "ministry" Gilyard set up in Fla. before he went off to prison.

Tiffany, I don't think you're going to be able to shut down this site for at least, oh, maybe 3 years...unless there is a major act of God in the man's life while he's behind bars.


Anonymous said...

so much pain. God is not pleased with men or women of God that use his name to hurt and abuse. Jesus never hurt nor abused anyone! Stop hiding behind that old saying...The Devil made you do it...the devil is a have all the control... not the Devil...he has nothing until it is given to him...God has all power...and you do not have to give anything to him... he has it all... Coming from a Church that was blinded for many years by the Pastor There. He was much worst that Gilyard.... I have no clue why he did not make the papers... he had 6 or 7 babies from different women in the church.. they sat by one another for years...I have heard terrible things that this so called Pastor Did and I was more shocked than hurt.... Man is Man and when he has allowed the temptation of evil to over take the Goodness of the Lord...well I do not find any reason why he should keep being a Pastor...The souls that these men have to be responsible for is astounding... I wonder do they really believe what they are preaching about? The Pastor that I was under for 12 years did alot of lying, cheating, stealing, and he still preached on Sunday... but all he was saying was touch not thy anointed one and do the prof-et no harm... I wonder why that became his topic every Sunday for the last 10 years...I pray those that have been abused by these sexual predators can seek help if needed and move on. They only get away with what they do because the victims are too ashamed to talk about it.... sad but true... GET the Word out...before some one else gets blessed...always...

Peaceful and Constantly Praying for those who are seeking God's Face.

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