Ted Haggard’s New Church….My Visit

If you attend St. James in Colorado Springs, Ted Haggard’s new church, the first thing you will notice is that the new church is within eye-shot of the mega-church he founded in his basement , New Life. Ted Haggard started his new church two weeks ago in the barn on his property. When God calls someone to the ministry the Bible says, that calling is without repentance. What that means is when you are called of God; it is a life calling, a life of service, there’s no going back. There is no changing your mind. If you fall, you repent, receive forgiveness, pick yourself up, receive your healing from the Spirit of God and then get back to work. It is you that failed, not God. He still requires of you. This is something that I have had to come to terms with in my own life, as God convicted me to return to the ministry. Ted Haggard believes that the Lord called him to minister to Colorado Springs 28 years ago and he is continuing in that calling.

I decided to go visit Ted Haggard, and St. James this Sunday without forming any preconceived opinions about it, and write about my experience there honestly and openly. As I pulled onto the property, there were quite a few cars in front of me. I waited in line as I watched the parking greeter direct the cars where to park.  I thought to myself, thank the Lord for those that have already volunteered to assist with the parking. As I pulled up I realized that it was Ted Haggard directing parking, greeting each car as they pulled in for the service. I stood and watched as he greeted every car, taking the time to shake the hand of everyone in every car that came.

As the service was about to start, I watched Ted as he greeted people, shaking their hands as they entered the barn for the service. He was jovial and very warm, laughing and enjoying the fellowship with his new congregation.  There was also an excitement, almost with a twinge of nervousness, like that of a teenager on prom night. He was very much at ease seeming very comfortable in his own skin. I was taken in by the humility that seemed to encompass his personality, a sincere humility that seems genuine and can only come by God working in one’s life.

It has been 3 ½ years since Ted resigned at New Life Church amidst the scandal that he very openly talks about. He made light of the scrutiny of his life by the media, stating, “If I want to know what I am thinking, all I have to do is read the paper”, this I believe in reference to the many negative articles that have blasted him in the last few years. Let me say this to the Body of Christ, Ted Haggard has openly repented. Ted Haggard has asked and received forgiveness from God. We as the Body of Christ are commanded to forgive him, even as we have been forgiven. And I mean TRUE forgiveness, the kind where you pray for and uplift someone before the throne and seek God that He might be glorified in their lives, that’s the kind of forgiveness I am talking about. The Lord tells us in Jeremiah 31:31 “For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.” If it’s good enough for God, it is good enough for me.

For this article that is all I am going to say regarding that, as I believe that God is a God of restoration, and that’s that. Whether or not you think he should be a minister is a matter of personal opinion. Ted himself states, I may not be qualified to be a pastor, but I know I am qualified to serve others in need. I have learned a great deal over the last three and a half years and have deep desire to help others in need. I do know much more that I did prior to my crisis in November of 2006. I know more about compassion, understanding, kindness, love, and peace. I want to help people. I know that when we suffer, a loving hand, a kind voice, a gentle touch, and practical assistance can make all the difference in the world. Depression, loneliness, personal failure, embarrassment, and disillusionment can be powerful forces in a person’s mind in difficult times.

On my blog today, I want to talk about what God is doing instead of what Ted has done.

As the service began, people kept filtering in for the next 10 or 15 minutes. As I looked around the barn, it was completely full, with standing room only. Chairs had to be set up outside the barn door under a tent, and they were also full. I looked up in the hay loft and there were worshipers also standing in the hay loft, which was working as an overflow. I almost wished that I had been up in the hay loft as I have never worshiped God in a hay loft. The Pastor announced they would have a new meeting place in a couple of weeks. It was easy to see as the barn could barely accommodate all those who came and a larger space will definitely be needed.

I was reminded what it must have been like for the early pioneers as they set up make-shift churches anywhere there was a space, mainly in barns and taverns.  I thought as I sat there that there had been many humble beginning in a barn, including the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. There was a mixture of old and young alike, without any distinction being seen regarding class or race. There were folks from all walks of life.

I listened as he opened the service affectionately welcoming everyone to the “Barn Church” as he called it, St. James. Ted Haggard shares that St. James Church is for anyone, Democrats, Republicans, Independents and those who go to Tea Party rallies. If you are straight, gay, bi, white, Hispanic, Native American, or a confusing combination, you are welcome at St. James. Those working to overcome their sex or drug addictions, St. James is for you. If you have a friend or family member who struggles, St. James is for you. Adulterers, Ex-cons, everyone is welcome.

When it was time for the offering I was in for quite a surprise. Ted instructed everyone to take out an offering, not their tithes, but an offering. Then when everyone had it hand, he further instructed that we share our offering with someone in attendance as we felt led of the Lord. I must admit, being a minister and the son of a minister, I have attended many church services but I had never participated in an offering like that. It was different and quite refreshing. During the offering a young man came up to Pastor Haggard and asked the body to pray for him as he was battling a drug addiction. Ted’s words that St. James is to be a place where drug addicts were welcome suddenly became a reality. The Spirit of God was at work leading this young man to the service, and convicting him of his sin, as he openly confessed his addiction, and asked the Body of Christ for support. This was a forbearer of the message to come and the symbol of what Pastor Haggard’s message is to St. James.

As he began his message, Ted proclaimed St. James to be a church with a “No Stones Environment”, in reference to our Lord’s words,” Let He Who is Without Sin Cast the First Stone”. He went on to share that we as the Body of Christ need to encourage our brethren as the Holy Spirit works in their lives. We as believers should offer support and encouragement, rather than condemnation to those who struggle to overcome various issues in their walk with Christ. The Body of Christ many times executes judgment instead of encouragement for those in need he shared. I have to agree, as sometimes we as believers are very hard on other believers who are struggling with sin in their lives. It is wrong and in contradiction to the Word of God to judge your brother, we are to uplift and pray for our fellow believers and even non-believers alike that the Spirit might work in their lives and Christ might be glorified. It is our role to encourage, Pastor Haggard said, and God’s role to judge. He went on to say that many times Christians use the scriptures to judge and hate, when we should use the scriptures to encourage. I said Amen.

In closing Ted shared that it is a practice of St. James to randomly call someone of the congregation and ask them to bring their prayer list forward. The members are asked to keep a private prayer list in their pocket of needs. A man named “Tiger” was called forward and Pastor Haggard directed a portion of the collected tithe were to be given to someone in need on the man’s prayer list. Tiger shared that he would share it with a man and his family who was following Christ and was in need as the man had just been released from prison for armed robbery. The words Pastor Haggard had shared in the opening almost seemed to be prophetic as a drug addict openly shared his struggle, and was embraced in love by the Body,  and a now ex-convict was being helped as he was in need, by the tithe of the church. It gave me a good feeling all over, and I was touched inside. Real people, real needs….real solutions, that’s a real church!

All in all it was a great service, I left feeling I had been fed, both by the message and by my interaction with the Body of Christ. In finishing let me urge you to pray that the Lord will be glorified in all that is done at St. James. Lift them up in prayer as we are commanded to do in James 5:16, “Pray for one Another”.

 I like the “No Stones Environment” approach at St. James. We have many foundations and doctrines in our churches, the “No Stones Environment” should be in the doctrine of every church, and put over the front every sanctuary everywhere to remind believers that we are not to cast stones or judgment but rather share love and encouragement. At St. James it is a foundation of their church that no one is allowed to cast stones, a message all of us should take to heart, including myself.

Categories: Body of Christ, Forgiveness, future, God, Grace, Jesus, Preacher, Restoration

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70 replies

  1. I agree, the gifts and the calling of God are without repentance. AMEN

  2. I was touched by this article…I have prayed for Ted and Gayle and they are friends of mine on facebook…I love them and I am so happy for them…they have suffered enough and I felt the same about Jim and Tammy Bakker…It’s about time the body of Christ becomes just that..we cannot reach people with the old methods we used for years…we have to love them where they are and embrace them as Jesus did..I wish I could go to Ted’s church, or could find one here in Jacksonville, Fl. like his..thank you Darrell.
    Blessings to you,

  3. Just wanted to drop you a note and say thank you for your kind words. It is so wonderful to see people of courage speak with boldness and clarity. I appreciate you.

  4. Hi i have read the article i have a sense of Gods blessing on this gathering of God’s people, Jesus had compassion for people so stay strong in your beliefs St. James church, and Ted keep close to people who care for you and your walk, you are called by God….Well done Andrew

  5. Good article. Thanks for sharing. I bless you in the name of Jesus!

  6. Thank you so much for sharing the experience that you had at St. James. Bro. Haggard is correct in that we the Body of Christ needs to start acting like the body of Christ. We need to quit throwing stones at our brothers and sisters and start praying for them, lifting them, & showing them compassion. I believe that the body of Christ persecutes those who have fallen more than what the world does. We are also the ones who seem not to be able to forgive. Why would the sinners want to be a Christian if we act no better than what we do? Aren’t we suppose to be Jesus with clothes on for them? (They are to see Christ who dwells on the inside of us.)

    God bless,

  7. Darrell, I live over in Europe, but am friends with Gayle and Ted. I am sorry not to be there to experience St James myself. But it was refreshing to read this article. This church sounds like a breath of fresh air. I am proud of Ted and Gayle and wish them all the best. I would love to see churches here with such a heart. People in Europe are so over religion.

  8. Thank you, Darrell, for sharing your insights regarding your experience at Ted Haggard’s new church, St. James, in Colorado Springs; and most importantly, for your reflections on his message.

    When we cast judgment on others, we are separated from the bond of brotherhood that Jesus’ love for us seeks to ensure. It is one of the tools Satan uses to manipulate us into believing we have rights over others and sit on higher ground due to our developing egos.

    God has used Ted Haggard mightily to remind us we are all sinners. Through profound humility, we learn to heal one another through the blessed power of forgiveness and love.

    There is something sacred about worship in a hay loft–I could picture Jesus sitting there with you–experiencing all that is real, in the name of glorifying almighty God.

  9. Darrell Creswell, great write-up on Ted and Gayle, thanks. I am looking forward to hearing from you as you now come back to your ministry. I am sure our Lord Jesus Christ has some exciting times ahead for you also.

  10. Hi Darrell, it was my pleasure meeting you yesterday morning at Saint James Church. In your article you express the very heart of Jesus, my very sentiments. We so need Mercy, Grace, understanding … in the Church. Hope to see you again next week. I am the redhead that sat in the front row, that Ted pick on, as usual, ha, ha
    God bless you. Ilda Barker

  11. WOW! This blog is amazing! I’m going to print it out and put it in my Bible. Your gift of writing is bringing so much glory to God that you don’t even realize to what extent. THANK YOU for being obedient in writing this. In closing to your blog, I say, “AMEN!”

  12. I remember watching a documentry on TED 7 his families struggles after he was kicked out of the town he lived in.
    God Bless him & his family for keeping their spirits up….it reminded me of the “christians” of the old days burning” witches” ….
    I hope he gets to tv …its to far for me to drive .

  13. These are the first words from another minister in any positive light that I have anywhere for what Ted Haggard is doing. Where are all these big friends men of God from before he fell to stand beside their fallen brother and now help him to his feet. Thank God for you Dartrell for having the courage to do and say what is right, I pray that because you wrote these kind words you are not osticized by so called men of God as Ted has been…Thank you for your honesty….I will pray for Ted and St James that Christ will get the glory

    • Well Robert, I am not a big man of God, but just a humble servant with a laptop. I always try to follow the leading of the Lord..if it brings me haters ..so be it. I will serve the Lord. Thanks for the post Darrell

    • Where are all the minister friends? I’ll tell you. They were all there at the beginning of this mess to reach out to and pray for Ted. They offered encouragement, restoration. Tommy Barnett particuarlly gave Ted the chance to get a fresh start. Please don’t take shots at the men God put in Ted’s life that tried to encourage him. I am a friend to Ted, not one of those mentioned above. I think the hard part here is that no one looked at how to restore Ted to his calling in Colo. Spgs. They were focused on restoring Ted’s soul. Period. Has that been accomplished? Only Ted and God know. And maybe only God. Restoration is tough business for those of you who’ve never been through it, or led it. I’ve been through it. The problem is those leading the process need to offer love. Yes. Forgiveness, YES. But TRUST has to be earned and rebuilt and that is up to the individual being restored. Its supposed to be hard. When a sacred trust is violated, it takes time and effort to restore. The whole problem in this mess is YES forgiveness… but is it time to TRUST again? I don’t know. I hope so. Ted appears to have moved ahead in spite of those he said he was accountable to. That is NOT a good sign. But I also understand that sometimes, some of those don’t understand a call to a particular area. And how does that work? In reality, it would have been good to bring in an interim for New Life and let Ted be fired. With the intention that possibly he would be brought back there later. Still, the problem is and has been – if you extend restoration to a position too soon… the person being restored can often overlook true soul searching that is needed. Its a mess. And its real easy to armchair quarterback all of this from your computer. Real life restoration is messy, hard, dirty, thankless work. My only word to Ted is – I’m glad you are experiencing grace… now Don’t Do It AGAIN!

  14. Reading this made me think of the times I have been hurt. With out the Holy Spirit I could have been/ bac bitter. But I took all my hurt and pain on my knees and confessed them to Jesus. I ask God to forgive me of the attitude I had with this person and to free me of anger and hurt.It did not happen right at that moment but as I began to release those hurts more and more of the love of Jesue began to fill my heart. I don’t want to one day have Jesus tell “how can I forgive you if you can’t forgive those who have hurt you”. God knows I have not been a “perfect” christain”, but who has? As the saying goes,I’m not perfect but forgiven. God bless you Darrell and that goes for Ted too.


  15. Interesting article. I attended Ted’s former church once, which is to say that I really knew nothing about it or him, except the reputation he/it had, and the dramatic fall from “favor” so to speak. I am glad that he has recovered, and it sounds like he is quite humble, and that is great. The only thing that bothers me, and this is not unique to Ted, is the idea of this being “Ted’s church”, or “Ted’s new church”, or any such permutation. The emphasis on caring for one another is great, but without an emphasis on each member supplying and contributing that piece of Christ that resides in them, the body will never reach maturity. Again, this is not unique to Ted, as opposed to any other pastor. The emphasis HAS to be taken off of a single man, or group of men (or women), and placed solely on Christ. The elders of the body are to lead by example, but not take a place of prominence among the people, so that the emphasis is off Christ himself. In my humble opinion, again knowing nothing of Ted’s situation, the mega-church mentality does more harm to the people who pastor it, as God never intended that in the first place, but also does harm to members of the congregation, whose responsibility to seek Christ are delegated to the “hired man”. Just some thoughts.

    • Thanks for posting Mark. And I apologize for using the statement Ted’s church, without proper explanation. I did not mean it in that manner, as I was using the story to inform the reader of the new start of St. James, as many readers would not be familiar with St. James. Ted Haggard, St. James as well as any and all church are the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ and are inhabited by the Body of Christ. Point well taken and received. I should have used better terminology, my bad. As far as the mega-church comment. I prefer to base my personal opinions in line with God’s Word. After Peters first 2 sermons, there were 8,000 saved, that’s a mega-church. The scripture does not really address church size other than the Word says they were added to the church daily. They being more than one, do the math , it adds up fast. The early church was not 8 people meeting in somebody’s kitchen somewhere, but as you said that is your opinion and I respect and honor that. That was my 2 cents worth………Blessings Darrell

      • Darrell,

        I appreciate your response. I guess my point is in questioning how we define church, and what does leadership of that church look like? The difference, in my mind, between the 8,000 plus in the Jerusalem church, and a modern day “mega-church”, is in the leadership structure of that church. In my mind, “church” refers simply to the “ekklesia”, or to followers of Christ. The only basis for differentiating one ‘church’ from another in the NT was based on geography, the church at Corinth, the church at Rome, etc. Sure, each location may have thousands of believers in that region or city, but that does not mean that all met at the same time every week (and in reality they probably didn’t, or else you couldn’t have each one sharing a psalm, hymn, etc.) Also, from a leadership perspective, the NT describes a plurality of eldership, with each member of the body mutually edifying other members, thus resulting in growth and maturity of the body. When I say “mega-church”, I speak of a segregated body of believers, led chiefly by an individual, who may or may not have “elders” under him. This puts EXTREME pressure on this one individual, a responsibility that I don’t believe God ever intended. Plurality of eldership assures several things: I’ll have to finish in a second post, sorry!

      • Continued:

        Plurality of eldership assures several things. First, the purity of the body is preserved, by taking the responsibility for hearing from the Lord off of one man, and spreading it out among multiple, mature chosen individuals. This also places the emphasis for leading of the direction of the body on the Holy Spirit, reducing the tendency of man to need to be in control. Second, it limits the load on one individual, a load that I have had pastors of much smaller churches lament about. Third, it promotes greater community maturity, by taking the focus off of one individual, and placing the responsibility on each individual to rely on the Spirit to be fed. Fourth, it opens the door for each individual’s gift, or the piece of Christ that is within them, to be expressed and shared with the body. I read the NT and see a much greater emphasis on “one-anothering” than on one man leading the show. In fact, Paul specifically states “call no man father…. for one is your father… (not exact quotation). I hope this explains where my comment regarding mega-churches stems from, and hopefully I wasn’t too verbose. What I dislike about blogs is the inability to catch voice inflections and facial expressions. I appreciate the conversation.


      • I agree with you Mark, all churches from small to large should have a board of elders representing that local body that the pastor is accountable to…lol…I catch your feeling without your expressions and I can tell you are a good man of God who loves both the Lord and the body of Christ. I can tell you from experience, it is no easy task working as a pastor in a body of 1000s of believers, nor is it always easy dealing with a deacon board in a large body, I understand it’s even harder some small churches from some of my pastor friends. You make many great points, and one is the burden of responsibilty should be shared among the elders…but from my experience someone has to be in charge or the boat goes round in circles….Blessings as I loved your comments, informative, spiritual, well thought out and with plenty of depth for contemplation..Thanks Darrell

      • I’ll make one last comment, then leave you alone! What if there was no “pastor” as we see today? What if the given body at a given location had many people with the gifting to pastor, as well as multiple that had the gifting of evangelist, prophet, apostle, etc.? I see no evidence in scripture for the idea of a “lead elder”. I understand what you are saying, about things going around in circles, but what if we’ve missed the paradigm altogether, and have never really learned, as a body, to hear the voice of the Lord? I think man has a hard time trusting in God to truly lead and build His body, so we feel a need to step in and take that responsibility. These comments are not meant to be offensive, and I hope they do not offend. I don’t claim to have it all figured out, but I think the conversation is good to have.

      • To Mark;

        I absolutely see your frustration with the Mega Church. Even mid-size and smaller churches fall prey to so many issues that make me want to bash my head into a wall.

        What you said about each being able to give a song; a prophecy; a tongue; etc… it’s so true that many, OK, most are ambivalent to get up and share in such a huge church, and yet, this was the way Jesus showed us how to do church.

        I have researched a bit on Home Churches; specifically “Grass Roots” or “Organic” Groups. I can’t recall the name of the one I’m specifically thinking about here in San Diego. They seem to mesh denominations; which I found so frustrating. I am baptized in the Holy Spirit, but can’t place myself in the midst of those who want nothing to do with the power of God.

        I am in a very peculiar place right now praying about exactly where God wants me. My children are grown and I wonder as I “wander” in my heart. LOL.

        I say that to say this:
        There has to be a place, a balanced place where people can move into the gifting and callings on their lives. Where the Holy Spirit can move in many, not just one or two who “move” each service.

        I was at a church where the Power of God resided like I have never experienced in my 44 years of existence; yet…after three years there, well, actually two, I could not stay.

        This same problem was there. Only one or two moving in the Spirit. The pastor is incredibly violent verbally sometimes [although his doctrine is right on], that I just cannot sit under him.

        Where is the place that God can bring us to move in the Gifts AND use each person as He wills? This is part of my quest.

        P.S. Darrell, I read everything you wrote too. Blessings.

        Melissa/San Diego

  16. I am so grateful to you for this wonderful report. It really cleared up many things for many people all around. Thank you so much and may God continue to richly bless you.

  17. Thank you so much for posting such an encouraging report of the wonderful happening at the home of Pastor Ted. May our Lord richly bless you.

  18. After our sitdown today at Ted’s I wanted to get home to read your blog, which I enjoyed very much. It was like rehashing our whole conversation pertaining to the church, redemption, forgiveness, and restoration. Have a great trip if I don’t see you before.
    Look forward to our friendship,

    • It was great seeing you again after all these years, I will be sure to give a shout out to Matthew and Tommy Barnett from you as well as Jo and Paul…Blessings Herb…I will be sending you an email in the next week or two for that cup of Java…Blessings Darrell

  19. I will also share, for what its worth, that the Lord is REALLY working in my heart regarding my attitudes and thoughts towards others. I am finding just how much I DON’T want to love the unloveable. Your post was one of several that have touched my heart in that regard, and for that I thank you. We are quick to judge as humans, and the greater the level of success the greater “joy” there is in judging. How sad.


    • Hey brother, I think your heart is right where the Lord wants it to be..seeking…asking questions…loooking for answers, not a bad place to be. As for me, I used to could sling rocks with the best of them. Possibly could have given King David a run for his money….These days as i have returned to grace and know the depth of my weakness and the greatness of His strength, I live now in a “No Stone Zone” …lol…I tell you there is a great little hidden verse that made me think once a upon a time shared with me by Tommy Barnett….Jude 22….. there is some of you having compassion, therefore making a difference………food 4 thought -I’m just saying….I appreciate all your comments..I mean it I REALLY do…love ya brother D

  20. Darrell,

    Please don’t mistake my comments as slinging stones. It would never by my intention to accuse the brethren. I am simply asking questions, which I believe have a good basis to be asked, and questions are never a bad thing. I don’t claim to have all the answers! 🙂


    • As I was thinking about your comment after my last post I realized that I don’t think you WERE saying I was throwing stones. I forgot that I posted twice.

    • Oh I didn’t, I am just saying when I was away from the Lord, I used to throw stones at every kind of ministry…I was talking about me, not you brother…and your questions and post are among the best I have seen on here(besides mine of course…LOL) Blessings Mark

  21. Hey Darrell! Great blog! Check mine on my site too! Feel free to point people that way! Loved the way you write! All pictures are on my facebook by the way! I couldnt find your email address! Peace!

    Tony Webster.

  22. I am so glad I found this blog post. Quite honestly, I really didn’t pay a lot of attention to the whole scandal way back when. The church we used to attend (we have since moved) had something similar happen a while ago and it is still rather painful.

    But what I am excited about is the way St. Jame’s is now worshiping. Years ago I was part of a mission in Haiti. Church was completely different there. At one service, a woman who had burned her sister’s house down came to the sister, asked for forgiveness from her and asked for forgiveness from God. She then asked Jesus to be her Savior. I knew I was witnessing miracles. The church exploded with JOY when this woman became a Christian. Spontaneous singing and praying commenced. The Haitians worshiped God with all that they had. I was in love. This churches capacity to love and forgive changed my life.

    When I returned home, I found that I no longer was satisfied with monotonous worship. It was hard to convey my thoughts and feelings to those around me. I’m sure some thought I was judging the way they did things. That was never my intention. I just want everyone to have a similar experience, but there is nothing like it where I live. My family is currently “homeless”.

    But now I have hope. I can see that I am not alone in the desire to have a more authentic and dynamic church (not meaning “exciting”, but “active”). It is REALLY hard to love those that have made big mistakes, but I am learning more and more each day. This is what we are called to do. It does show me that Jesus really is absolutely amazing, though. Amazing.

    So thank you again for your story. You have really encouraged me today!

  23. Dear Beloved in Christ,

    Greetings! to you and the saints of God over there, from Mindanao island, Philippines in the mighty name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ !
    I’m Bro.Edgardo E. Grande Sr. , 54 years old, married with four children. I was converted to the Lord in 1989 and became a Minister, Discipler and Church Planter in central Mindanao region, southern part of our country.
    Now at present, I’m pastoring a small church with 21 families members located in the village of Tuganay, Carmen, Davao del Norte province. I ventured to send you this letter perhaps your church could help us build our faith in God to a real and genuine Biblical truth, by sharing to us your Church Doctrine and Practice and your update messages and publications.
    Please pray for us, especially the needs of this Gospel works because preaching the Word of God here is not an easy task. We hike far distance under the heat of the sun and cross rivers to do short cut in order to preach the Good News unto the people who do not know the Real Great Truths about Jesus Christ saving faith. We suffered persecutions, trials and even empty stomachs, but we are not discouraged because we have deep compassion for the lost and dying souls.
    We are more than happy if you will do something for us, for the sake of Christ and for the Gospel to be widely spread here in the Philippines at large. In this connection, we need your prayers for our Discipleship Training, a 9 months class program with 33 enrolled students. Our students don’t have Bibles for thier deeper study and personal use.
    Our earnest prayers to God that He will not reject nor neglect our sincerest and humblest request to your Church, cause we are Truth Seekers!
    Your loving and caring reply will give us more strength in this mission field. GOD BLESS you more.

    Yours for the Kingdom,

    Bro. Edgardo E. Grande Sr.
    Prk Cabilto, Visayan Village
    8100 Tagum City, Davao del Norte
    Mindanao, Philippines

  24. Dear Darrell Creswell;

    Im from New Zealand, and I’m a Samoan and I just want to say you are dead right!!! I think at times we as the church forget that we operate different to the world does, the world says kick them while there down and take over, BUT God says pick them up and Re-concile them back to ME!

    We as the Church have a huge part to play in society and church in regards to re-concilliation. We are commanded to love thy neighbour that includes when they have committed the wildest Sin’s.

    Bless you Brother,
    Your Brother from New Zealand

    Hi to Ted,

    • Yes, the church is very quick to not forgive the brethren. They forget that Jesus died not only for their sins, but for their brother’s and sister’s sins as well. The power of the Holy Ghost is the only thing that will give us a supernatural revelation about these things. We can’t love in the flesh. We can’t forgive in the flesh either.

  25. Hi Darrell,

    I am late on my response but I did come across this article a few months ago and have read it several times since.

    I love the heart of this article. God is no respecter of persons and even on of the comments I read above that God’s call comes without repentance.

    This past year and a half has been really hard and really good for me as I was a pastor who had a crisis of my own. With God’s amazing Grace and Unfailing love, I have gone through much healing of my own. God has even restored my marriage! Thank you Jesus!

    Through all of this journey I have come to realize one think that I think the church all too often forgets….No one is beyond restoration….

    Based on 1 Cor. 13

    LOVE REMAINS indefinitely in existence or in a particular state or course, it limitlessly abides, carries through, persists, lasts, and outlasts, outlives and carries on.

    LOVE IS enduring without complaint in difficult or disagreeable situations, it is tolerant and suffers long.

    LOVE SHOWS gentle consideration towards others, it is benevolent, charitable, compassionate, kind- hearted, sympathetic, tender, warm and merciful.

    LOVE is NOT coveting, grasping, greedy or begrudging.

    LOVE is NOT boastful, proud, flaunting to show off, exalting or glorifying self.

    LOVE IS humble, lowly. It is NOT contemptuous, scornful, arrogant, disdainful, dismissive, high and mighty, overbearing or superior in attitude.

    LOVE IS courteous , polite, considerate and gracious.

    LOVE is NOT disrespectful, impolite, manner-less and uncivil

    LOVE IS courteous, becoming, and proper.

    LOVE is NOT indecent, indelicate, rough, loose, offensive, shameful, vulgar and unlawful.

    LOVE does NOT insist on its own rights or its own way.

    LOVE is NOT concerned about its own welfare at the expense of, or, in disregard of others.

    LOVE is NOT selfish, LOVE sacrifices itself for another person’s benefit.

    LOVE IS generous.

    LOVE IS amiable, good natured, calm, patient and tolerant, NOT easily aroused to anger, or exasperated or offended.

    LOVE does NOT assess, estimate, evaluate, rate, expound on or give serious thought to, reason, or examine evil done to it.

    LOVE OVERLOOKS and disregards suffered wrongs.

    LOVE does NOT rejoice in wrong doing

    LOVE REJOICES when right and truth ascend in strength and superiority, when they are in use and continue to influence.

    LOVE BEARS UP under anything and everything that comes.

    LOVE IS ever ready to believe the best of every person.

    LOVE HOPES endlessly under all circumstances.

    LOVE ENDURES everything without weakening.

    LOVE NEVER FAILS, fades out, or becomes obsolete.

    LOVE IS WITHOUT END!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  26. Hey that was amazing….I went to work at a camp there a couple of years ago and people where telling me all about what happend and I dident know what to say…well a few days after that I did my resurch I seen the bio on him etc. Well this is what I think about it all.Yes he sined but you can make things right with God and ask for forgivess. Sometimes in live we fall but the great thing about God’s love is he forgive. But one thing I hate the most about all of it is that people clam that thay love God and want to be more like Jesus but once people fall we tend to bash the kick them talk about them etc. So you get the point God love’s everyone the same no matter what we do all we got to do is ask for giveness. God love you all God bless ted and his family and all thats not perfect.

  27. You have a lot of comments, I did not read them all, I read what you wrote. I don’t know Ted, but I know God is the God of everlasting love. He forgives me each day for my failings. As the Power of the Holy Spirit grows in my life I learn to sin less and less. Joseph Prince does a Youtube that changed my life about sin and forgiveness. Jesus died for our past, present and future sins. As long as we stay repentant and humble; faces to the ground. I will be reading more of what you write. You write about real life; like I do, and I seem to only enjoy writing about real life. God Bless. Melissa Session, San Diego.

  28. blazingabroad

    I appreciate your comments. I grew up, so to speak, in Charismatic circles, so I have seen a lot of what passes for the move of the Holy Spirit. Having walked away from that environment, I am continually surprised to see how close we were to understanding, and yet how impossibly far away we were at the same time. After years of processing, I now believe in much of what I did as a charismatic, but from a different context.

    Regarding fellowship with believers who “want nothing to do with the power of God”, I can only say that I find no basis in scripture to not fellowship with other believers, apart from sexual sin, and such things. Differences in beliefs were never a reason. Unfortunately a lot of believers have been turned off from these aspects of the Holy Spirit, because they’ve seen them overdone so often in the past. I believe that, as we all fellowship together and seek Christ as one, in unity, not forcing our desires for spiritual manifestations on those that are not comfortable, that we will all together mature into the full expression of the Holy Spirit amongst us, including prophecy, tongues as appropriate, healing, words of wisdom/knowledge, etc.

  29. Mark:

    I would be incredibly interested in your heart on walking away. The context in which you believe now. Can you share?

    I completely understand your frustration; it’s pretty much where I am today, yet, I have hope that I will find a place to worship, even if it’s not in California.

    For me, as I’ve been studying in depth the four Gospels and the New Testament I have found exact scriptures and they are not just one that tell us to have nothing to do with those who do not stick with the elementary teachings of Christ. And the Bible is clear about those elementary teachings; …

    It’s not about judgment for me, as it was. It’s about the Holy Spirit being allowed to do It’s Full and Complete work, which in my studies, is only done when we receive the Gift of the Holy Spirit and Fire.

    I’ve been writing about all of this for four years as God’s been dealing with me and changing me from a woman who knew religion to a woman know now has relationship.

    I even found a scripture that states that the Gifts of the Spirit play a major role in soul saving. When you don’t have the Five Fold Ministry operating and you don’t have the Gifts in operation you have a powerless group of people.

    Just religion.

    Anywho… I still have a lot that God is showing me, I am humbler each day and seeking His face that I can bear what He is showing me and find my way through with grace, peace and as a woman who’s heart is after God.

    I totally agree believers have been “turned off” by those who infect their flesh into the moving of the Holy Spirit; however, that is no reason to stop operating in the Gifts of the Spirit. No reason to stop speaking in tongues.

    Maturity comes when we can love those who pervert the Gospel; when we can see through the “Blood of Jesus” glasses we are to wear in the Spirit. Our sick, sick and I mean perverted sick generation must see the Gospel in power. If they see no miracles, signs and wonders; why would they believe. If the Spirit of Prophecy does not “read their mail” and show them that God knows every aspect and tiny detail of their life; they have no reason to believe that there is a higher power of Love.

    And no we can’t force others to believe in the power, as you say. Spiritual manifestations. But when there is no anointing via the Holy Ghost in our midst, when your in a group of people who refuse the Gospel in power; how will those manifestations take place? How will the anointing consume us if we’re not praying in tongues, singing in tongues, hearing the Spirit interpret the heart of God for that day.

    I have already written too much…
    God Bless,…
    Interested in your heart deeper on the matter.

  30. One example
    There is no fellowship without the Holy Spirit.
    This is just one of many.

    1 John 1 (King James Version)

    1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; 2(For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) 3That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us:

    I Tim

    What they saw and heard was the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and Fire. Tongues, miracles, signs, wonders, casting out devils, laying hands on the sick [of which these are the elementary teachings of Christ too.] I don’t have that exact scripture on me right now.
    God is desperate for us to fellowship with Him in the Spirit not only so we can know Him and fellowship with Him but so that we can set the captives free.

    I Tim Ch 2 v 7
    7Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which ye had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which ye have heard from the beginning.

    …the word which we “they” heard from the beginning. ACTS.

    It’s all over the Word.

    24Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard

    from the beginning.

    If that which ye have heard
    from the beginning

    shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father.

  31. Thanks,
    It was great to see St James church through your eyes! I don’t know Ted personally but have met him a few times when he was still New Life’s Lead Pastor and looked up to him. Like many I often wondered about what happened to him after he was removed. When I heard about his decision to start another church I was curious. To be truthful a bit concerned as well. I pray for God’s best for the group that is being started at St James. Ted is living the message that he used to preached which is to live under the tree of life. The world needs to see and hear that God is gracious and forgiving. We do a disservice to Christ when in one hand we hold a Bible and the other a stone. I hope though that he can partner with someone and not go it alone. How was the worship time? Was there other leaders connected with him?

  32. i think that you have been the most positive person i have read on since this problem begun GOD RICHLY BLESS YOU. To Ted i say more grace DO NOT GIVE UP

  33. I just saw Ted and Gayle on TV- one hour special about them. I wish them well.
    Ted is either bisexual or a gay man who is hiding again. How about being authentic, Ted? You would have a lot more credibility.

  34. Hi
    Thanks for your balanced article. Sometimes we forget that we were forgiven, and continue to judge. I mmediately Pastor Ted said he was sorry three years ago, God forgave him. But men whose “sins” have not been exposed continue to judge.

    I pray for Pastor Ted, may God uphold you to lead those who are too poor to attend the cold comfort cathedrals. Amen

    Thanks again Darrell

      • Our Heavenly father will raise Pastor Ted up. I never knew him before or heard him preach. I just saw him on the news about his fall. I felt so bad for him. I fall all the time and our flesh at times can be very weak. I always find it strange that when someone first finds God how much the church has mercy and when the new convert has a problem with sin how much the church tells them that God forgives them and does not hold anything against him. But when a man who has a gift from God to encourage the church to hang in there and never give up, his brothers stones him and tells him he’s not welcome here anymore.

        I watched Ted on his new show and all i could say is wow is God ever going to use Ted and wife to spread the gospel again. I am proud to call you my brother Ted and our God will raise you up just like he wants to do to all of us. I am so thankful that God does not hold anything against Ted and he is proud of him. Go Ted Go!!

  35. I forgot to check the box beneath earlier

  36. I really love what you did and write , going overthere and sharing it with us, that is what the church is call to be, a place for sineers, thankyou for this article

    • 1 Cor. 14:24.But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or outsider enters, he is convicted by all, he is called to account by all,

      25.the secrets of his heart are disclosed, and so, falling on his face, he will worship God and declare that God is really among you.

      Jesus never Mollycoddled sinners. He was in the woman at the wells face with her sin and told her “Go, and sin no more”

      Jesus said: John 4:16 Jesus told her, “Go and bring your husband.” 17-18The woman answered, “I don’t have a husband.”

      “That’s right,” Jesus replied, “you’re telling the truth. You don’t have a husband. You have already been married five times, and the man you are now living with isn’t your husband.”

      Recognizing sin is not Judging or throwing stones. Throwing stones was literally ending ones life.


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