The Gospel According to Q. Does Senior Pastor Gary Peterson of Rock Urban Church in Grandville, Michigan Believe That Democrats Conspired to Murder George Floyd? Plus Gary Peterson’s Troubled Past

On July 5, 2020 Gary Peterson the pastor of The Rock Church in Grandville, Michigan showed the congregation a Q Anon conspiracy theory video. Q Anon is a discredited conspiracy theory that states that COVID-19 is an attempt to derail President Trump and that Democrats killed George Floyd in Minneapolis. In digging deeper this blog found some disturbing information about Gary Peterson allegedly engaging in embezzlement at Wellspring Church  also in the area. Furthermore there are additional allegations of Peterson having a sexual affair with a male intern at Wellspring. If there are more stories about Gary Peterson this blog is willing to tell them and provide a platform.

“All religion, my friend, is simply evolved out of fraud, fear, greed, imagination, and poetry.”

Edgar Allen Poe

So do not fear, for I am with you;
    do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
    I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Isiah 41:10 NIV

This afternoon I planned on working on another EFCA post, as this blog writes about the Evangelical Free movement. Then I saw something on The Friendly Atheist that made my jaw hit the ground. And in researching it discovered more facts to the story. Honestly this blog never imagined that I would be writing about evangelicals and Q Anon. Anyone who thinks the Q Anon conspiracy theory is legitimate needs to make an appointment with a psychiatrist and start their medicine. But let’s get started. 

 

The Latest with Q Anon

Q Anon is a disturbing conspiracy theory that picks up where Pizza Gate left off. This blog wrote about it previously in the context of evangelicals in the following post. “The Conspiracy That Some Evangelicals are Embracing: Q Anon and a Solid Read in The Atlantic Magazine About this Dangerous Belief System.” Q Anon has been labeled by the FBI as a threat and has the potential to incite domestic terrorism. You can read more about that here and here.  The other day the Los Angeles Times had a story about how Q Anon is influencing the Republican Party with a number of candidates embracing the theory. You can read that article in, “Satanism and sex rings: How the QAnon conspiracy theory has taken political root.” Q Anon believers still believe that Hillary Clinton is involved in pedophilia, which is a feature of these kind of  conspiracy theories. And on Twitter the disgraced and discredited former National Security Advisor, Michael Flynn administered an oath to Q Anon. That was how Flynn spent his July 4th.

 

Q Anon Video Shown in Gary Peterson’s Rock Urban Church in Grandville, Michigan 

On July 5, 2020 Gary Peterson who is the senior pastor of Rock Church in Grandville, Michigan showed a twelve minute long video about Q Anon. It was actually recorded by someone in the congregation and you can see it below. 

The video that Gary Peterson showed claimed that Democrats had killed George Floyd and that they created COVID-19 as a myth to derail Donald Trump’s presidency. The video which was taken done from YouTube for misinformation also claimed that Democrats are staging an insurgency to try and stop Donald Trump. The video was recorded by someone who attended the Rock Urban Church. It was uploaded to Twitter. Meanwhile the Rock Urban Church took down the sermon from their YouTube page. The video got a large amount of attention on social media. It also generated articles at The Friendly Atheist and Relevant Magazine. You can see both in, “Christian Megachurch Plays QAnon Conspiracy Video to Open Sunday Service” and “This Megachurch Used Its Sunday Service to Spread QAnon Conspiracy Theories.” From what this blog learned the situation was reported to the Michigan Attorney General’s office.

 

Pastor Gary Peterson Fled Another Church For Embezzlement Issues and Did Peterson Have an Affair with a Male Intern at Wellspring?

Gary Peterson from my research founded the Rock Urban Church in the suburbs of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Grand Rapids is the second largest city in Michigan and the largest in the western part of the state. Rock Urban Church is a large church. The website doesn’t have a biography of Gary Peterson. However, this blog learned that Gary Peterson does have a blog. Instead it discusses people like Zach Rasmusson of the worship ministry or Nick Schippers of the drama and dance ministry. 

Gary Peterson is not new to controversy. Gary founded Wellspring Church in Hudsonville, Michigan which he fled at one point also. In researching Wellspring I found some very interesting information including some people saying that it was a cult. Peterson was asked to leave the church and what triggered the claim is that he allegedly had a sexual affair with a male intern. Now I don’t care if people are gay or not, and honestly I can care less but to be in a position of leadership and allegedly abuse it for other reasons is what spiritual abuse is all about. Look at how the founding of The Rock Urban Church is described.

“The Rock Church” is a newly formed church and currently meeting at Celebration Cinemas Rivertown Mall in Grandville, MI. Its senior pastor is Gary Petersen whom recently came from Wellspring Church in Hudsonville, MI. He was asked to resign by the board for a sexual affair that he had with a male intern staff member. This coupled with a pastoral personality cult (narcissism) and misappropriation of funds sent him packing. Pastor Gary (PG) has a known history of homosexuality and it dates back to a prior church in Florida. Each time he was asked to leave and each time he started a new church on his own. This time he took all of his staff members to start his own church. They follow him very closely and have covered up the affair. Many of these staff members upon hearing the news took over one hundred thousand dollars worth of equipment and furniture. A criminal investigation is currently under way by the Ottawa County Sheriff’s department and warrants have been issued. This moral failure on PG’s part cannot go unnoticed and without the help of the community will continue to occur with other bodies of believers. PG admitted openly to the failure when first approached by the board and there is still no repentance for his behavior.

You can read more about this issue of Gary Peterson allegedly having a sexual affair with a male intern here
Gary Peterson also faced embezzlement charges coming from his time of leadership in Wellspring Church. What he is alleged to have done is open up a credit card through the church that was unknown to the staff which he used for personal purposes. Here is how the Western Michigan press described it.

Court documents show how Petersen allegedly stole about $3,000 with a credit card that church leaders didn’t know about. The documents allege Petersen opened an American Express card connected to a Wellspring Church bank account in 2006.

Investigators say Petersen charged about $1,400 on the credit card for a cruise with his wife in Rome, Italy in 2010. Then, Petersen allegedly spent about $1,500 from the credit card to pay for a resort vacation in Avon, Colorado.

From what I heard his settlement was to repay $4,000 back to the church. If you want to read more about the embezzlement by Gary Peterson you can do so in the following news stories.

  1. ABC, “Pastor allegedly used church money to pay for vacations.” 
  2. ABC, “Pastor charged with felony embezzlement.” 
  3. Christian Post, “Michigan Pastor Allegedly Stole Money From Church for Lavish Vacations.” 
  4. Fox News, “Local Pastor Accused Of Spending Church Funds On Lavish Vacations.” 

 

Dealing with Another Narcissist And Some Thoughts

In researching this story it went in a direction that I did not anticipate. At first I thought this was going to be another pure story about Christian nationalism and evangelicals being into conspiracy theories. Then as I probed deeper I discovered what happened at Wellspring, allegations of embezzlement and further allegations of having an affair with a male intern. Gary Peterson in this blog’s view is a conman. He is a fraud. He’s basically the Mark Driscoll of lower Michigan. What happened at Wellspring also supposedly happened at his prior church in Florida. It sounds like he runs into scandal and then picks up and moves to another part of the United States. If anyone has any additional information about Gary Peterson please contact this blog and I will be happy to give you a platform. The email address is wonderingeagle261@gmail.com. I will ask this, since Gary Peterson is a conman is the reason why he pushed an over the top video about Q Anon is that he needs to fleece and pressure people to give to the  church so he can live extravagantly?  Remember Michigan like other states had shut downs, and the narcissists are going crazy.  As for Q Anon it is a discredited and flawed conspiracy theory that has no credibility. The video that Gary Peterson showed has been rebuked point by point by the Associated Press. This video reveals the issues that Rock Urban Church deals with race. After all if you believe that Democrats killed George Floyd in Minneapolis, you have issues. The best thing people can do is walk away from Rock Church. And if you believe in Q Anon contact a licensed mental health counselor. 

 

10 thoughts on “The Gospel According to Q. Does Senior Pastor Gary Peterson of Rock Urban Church in Grandville, Michigan Believe That Democrats Conspired to Murder George Floyd? Plus Gary Peterson’s Troubled Past

  1. This is obviously not an endorsement of qanon, but everyone in the direct chain of command who is accused of contributing to the death of George Floyd is a Democrat, starting with Derek Chauvin, and encompassing his city and state’s political leadership. Mayor, city council, district attorney, state attorney general, state governor, state house and senate delegates for Minneapolis, House representative, both Senators. It was widely reported that Amy Klochubar’s VP chances were eliminated when her role in perpetuating Chauvin’s career came to light. We shall see with the trial if there was any sort of conspiracy (since Chauvin and Floyd knew each other it is possible that the killing was planned) but I don’t believe the politicians conspired specifically to kill Floyd. However, inasmuch as the politicians perpetuate the system I could see BLM claiming that they conspired to kill Floyd. It would not be the least accurate thing BLM claims.

    This is why I am amused by people saying that in order to make things better we need to vote for Democrats. Where did Democratic leadership get George Floyd? If voting for Democrats was the answer, why hasn’t the 40 years they’ve controlled Minneapolis been long enough to solve the problem?

    The reason these conspiracy theory videos spread is that they contain a kernel of truth to lend credence to the lies. Kind of like the lies that Satan tells us. The most effective lies are even mostly true.

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    • Peter conspiracy theories are the result of lazy individuals who don’t take responsibility for their thinking. Conspiracy theories show what happens when people reject science and truth. Conspiracy theories pop up around factually proven issues. Vaccines are successful and work. COVlD-19 is a serious health crisis, etc…… What conspiracy theories also reveal are people’s narcissism as well.

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      • I wonder where we should draw the line between conspiracy theory and just a normal falsehood. Is the 1619 Project a conspiracy theory, or simply propaganda?

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      • What conspiracy theories also reveal are people’s narcissism as well.

        “You’re so Vain,
        You prob’ly think this plague is about you —
        You’re so Vain!”

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    • BTW Peter can you show me where there is the edit or order by Minnesota Democratic leadership saying that George Floyd should be killed. Can you produce one please?

      As my previous response shows, I’m on the side saying that they didn’t. Here’s what I wrote:

      We shall see with the trial if there was any sort of conspiracy (since Chauvin and Floyd knew each other it is possible that the killing was planned) but I don’t believe the politicians conspired specifically to kill Floyd. However, inasmuch as the politicians perpetuate the system I could see BLM claiming that they conspired to kill Floyd. It would not be the least accurate thing BLM claims.

      One of the claims of the left is that the system, rife with what they refer to as white supremacy, is rigged against minorities and perpetuated by those in power. This is baloney (in almost every way) but it’s compatible with claims of a Democratic conspiracy against Floyd.

      It wouldn’t surprise me to learn that qanon and BLM agree on something major. Conspiracy theories often transcend ideology. I have heard that conspiracy theories are rife within the Arab world. Given most Arab governments, believing in conspiracy theories there might be completely rational. When I was in high school, one of the substitute teachers was a conspiracy theorist, and was allowed to give a presentation to the student body about the JFK assassination and why he believed the official explanations didn’t add up. I’m not sure I could see that happening today, though from time to time you do still get a journalist saying 9/11 was an inside job, so maybe.

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  2. Does Senior Pastor Gary Peterson of Rock Urban Church in Grandville, Michigan Believe That Democrats Conspired to Murder George Floyd?

    “Q-Anon Said It,
    I Believe It,
    THAT SETTLES IT!”?

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  3. This article (actually titled “The Church of Q-Anon”) showed up on a link on Internet Monk a few weeks ago:

    https://theconversation.com/the-church-of-qanon-will-conspiracy-theories-form-the-basis-of-a-new-religious-movement-137859
    “Followers of the QAnon movement believe in wild and dangerous conspiracy theories about U.S. President Donald Trump. Now a faction within the movement has been interpreting the Bible through QAnon conspiracies.”

    And some of their “deciphering” sounds like Bible Code Numerology applied to Q-Anon Q-Maps. Like the convoluted “plain readings” of End Time Prophecy types during my time in-country.

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  4. Pingback: Jason Webb Who Resigned From Elmbrook in Scandal in 2018 is Back in Ministry at Great Lakes Church in Kenosha, Wisconsin | Wondering Eagle

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