Former PFM Board Member Roger Gales Accused of Grooming Minors, “Non Consensual” Sexual Violation

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43 Responses

  1. Mike E. says:

    Thank you Michael my friend for you unwavering support for victims and your willingness to call evil exactly what it is. These elders are obviously navigating a pretty tough situation. I will give them that. But why it’s taken so long, and why they didn’t use the word rape is hard for me to understand. God HATES this crap! I know because God hates evil, and this is straight up evil. Full on. The damage it does to people both spiritually and emotionally is incalculable. I maybe missed it, but did they say anything about involving law enforcement? 😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡

  2. Michael says:

    Mike,

    I’m assuming the victims wanted privacy and I understand that.
    Still…I have big problems with how this was and is being handled…

  3. filbertz says:

    Michael, I agree with Mike E. in that the soft-peddling of the terminology undercuts the severity of his actions. I imagine when these dudes preach, the gloves come off, but when one of their own crashes and burns, they tip-toe around with vague generalities. Argh!

  4. Michael says:

    fil,

    Exactly…and how many times have we seen this?

  5. Mike E. says:

    Yes, I do understand that also, Michael..I pray for those poor souls..it will be extremely difficult for them to recover. Can we do anything for them, besides just prayer? Probably not I know…it’s just so frustrating to not be able to help people who’ve been hurt so badly. I’ve simply had enough of this crap! Poor crushed traumatized souls who now have a barrier to overcome in their relationship with God. As if we all don’t have enough barriers already. These people need our love, not just our prayers and our outrage. 😭

  6. CSA Survivor says:

    I work as an advocate for sexual assault victims. In many times, reporting to police is typically further traumatizing, especially after childhood sexual trauma when police ask questions that put the responsibility on the survivor (“why didn’t you report it earlier?”).

    There are many reasons why people choose not to report to the police. One of the main reasons is that statistics show that for every 230 rapes reported to police, only 4 rapists spend any time in jail.

    https://www.rainn.org/statistics/criminal-justice-system

    So how can we provide justice for sexual assault victims knowing it’s unlikely they will receive justice via the legal system? We ask the survivors themselves. We ask survivors, “what does justice look like for you?” In some cases it’s through process called restorative justice (http://restorativejustice.org). Sometimes the survivor wants to see their abuser complete a batterer’s intervention program specific to sexual violence. Other times, it’s simply knowing that the truth is out there and that the survivor is believed.

    Just wanted to share some info on alternatives to seeking justice via the legal system.

    Thank you for sharing this here. I hope the survivor knows they didn’t do anything wrong and they are believed.

  7. Mike E. says:

    CSA Survivor–thank you for that valuable input. As a survivor myself, I can attest to the limited and sometimes even more damaging involvement of law enforcement. You said, “we ask the survivors.” But how do we ask them when we don’t know who they might be? I suppose that’s probably God’s way of saying, “this one ain’t yours buddy.” But I just agonize over this. I’m angry and it makes me feel so powerless.

  8. Michael says:

    CSA Survivor,

    Thank you…and feel free to write for us on this topic any time!
    This is valuable…

  9. Wow… their body language is very revealing.

  10. BryonM says:

    It blows my mind that the knee jerk reaction of about a third of congregants is to keep a sexual predator in the pulpit, leader of staff, church, and chair of a board of directors. Someone help me understand this?

  11. Michael says:

    BryonM,

    It’s what they’re taught…

  12. Steph says:

    Laura, I thought the same. Especially the one on the right. There’s not a human on Earth that’d miss that.

    And Michael, once again, correct. It is what they’re taught. Blind obedience.

  13. So creepy, but not legally a crime. Might as well put Woody Allen in the pulpit because he’s a great artist much like this guy is a great “servant.” *barf*

  14. Michelle says:

    The New Victor, I would say that it *is* a crime to rape a girl, which a “clear, egregious, sexual violation that was not consensual” sure sounds exactly like to me.

  15. Clarity says:

    They want to put a period on this. How very “Calvary Chapel-ish” of them. Gross. They’re speaking about rape. Groomed children that were eventually raped. Call it what it IS. The old “I say jump you say how high” can be used in the opposite here. Calvary Chapel says “Stoop!” and they’ve replied enthusiastically “How low!” Shame on the culture of keeping everything covered up, but a relief that more and more will be exposed. May God give grace and peace to all of the victims. I will continue to pray for them as they are of the utmost importance in these situations.

  16. Captain Kevin says:

    Laura and Steph, Please forgive my ignorance, but can you please explain more about the body language? Guess I’m not very discerning when it comes to that.

  17. Steph says:

    “..culture of keeping everything covered up..”.
    Yes. It. Is.

    Circle the wagons and try to put a period on it….what???!!? Unacceptable

  18. Dave says:

    So didn’t expose it because of the holidays. Then didn’t expose it because of a missions trip. Then didn’t expose it because of Corona. Now is a good time during the country’s turmoil. Got it. Sounds like a good plan.

  19. Steph says:

    https://qz.com/572675/to-spot-a-liar-look-at-their-hands/amp/

    This guy on the right seems much too animated and frankly, a bit too positive as he’s relating such horrendous information. As his pal reads the letter, he frowns and nods. Oh so downtrodden and supportive. Calvary Chapel as an entire denomination has a plethora of problems; but they’re not always this cutesy.

  20. KG says:

    Steph, this church isn’t a Calvary chapel church. It never has been.

  21. Homer says:

    I went to heritage for over nine years. I had an idea about some of this; but do you really want to think and believe it to be so? Now, looking back on several things, it’s all clear now. Decisions made that Ray Charles could see were bad. Yet you’d hear, “we prayed about it and God said yes.” Which god? Not the One Who wrote the Word. I saw people leaving that place like it was on fire. It went from over 800 when I arrived to under 200 when I left. A total circus of leadership. I’d be shocked if there’s a hundred still there. Well, not really. After all, there was about 80 seventy five to eighty year olds who were clueless. Probably still are.

  22. Steph says:

    KG,
    My mistake. I read Calvary Chapel in the heading and thought they were at least affiliated. Michael is pretty good with stuff like that. Then I saw sermons by both Roger Gales and Peter Klaus listed on the Calvary Chapel San Clemente site and thought that I confirmed that they were at least affiliated…..But I believe you. They are not and never were in the denomination that’s not a denomination. Got it.

    Either way, both places have some major issues.

  23. Steve says:

    This is horrible. Why are Roger’s Sermons still on the church website?? I thought Jim Glynn Left the church years ago?

  24. Lisa says:

    As you predicted, the video has been removed.

  25. Bryan says:

    Incredibly sad and disappointing all around. Still haven’t heard anyone in leadership own this, apologize, and seek to help the VICTIMS of sexual abuse and predatory behavior, which started under Jim’s leadership. Another attempt to sweep the gross reality of this crime under the rug and keep the institution going at any cost. The fact that Roger was allowed to step down via video in December makes this whole thing that much more unbearable. Someone has to own this for the sake of the VICTIMS. God loves mercy, not sacrifice. At some point leadership has to own up to its failures for the sake of the VICTIMS if this congregation’s religion is going to have any sense real Christ-like love.

  26. David says:

    Please repost the video. It is no longer viewable.

  27. Evangeline says:

    So I have not seen the video but can’t that be used to go to the authorities? Video is no longer able to be viewed. These things are so disheartening it breaks my heart that these things are allowed!

  28. DavidM says:

    I watched 2 1/2 minutes and just couldn’t stomach any more bs, using words like “kind of”, and “needed a little more information”. And, of course, you wouldn’t want to miss out on a trip to Africa for the sake of your own congregation. Then they “just sat on it”!?! With “leaders” like these weaklings . . .

  29. EricL says:

    Delay, delay, delay. Pastor flees in December, but the rest of the leaders can’t let the people know about his crimes because of Christmas. Gotta take January to find out more details, so more delay. Interim pastor prioritizes a trip to Africa over the congregation, so February is out. Claim they wanted to talk to people in March finally, but COVID (which didn’t bring a lockdown in the state until the end of that month, so they had already delayed most of that month too). Then delay for April and May because they claim they want to talk to folks “in person”. What a mess.

    I hope the church will finally get their act together and pay for outside professional counseling for the victims of this sexual predator who used his church leadership role to find his many victims. There is no quick recovery from this for the victims, and there should be no attempt to get past it quickly by the congregation. They were deceived by an evil man for years. There needs to be soul-searching, repenting, grieving, reparations to the victimized, and probably all new leadership. I don’t think a short video brings them anywhere near to putting a “period” on this. This mess is too vast to try sweeping it under the rug and pretending it’s now gone.

  30. Michael says:

    I know more about this than I can print…and everyone involved needs to find a job outside the church.
    Way outside the church…

  31. L says:

    Horrible.

  32. Gaylyn McStay says:

    As a victim of sexual abuse in the church as a minor ….I’m so saddened to see another wolf being protected.
    True repentance is coming clean and agreeing with God about your sin.
    Unfortunately, drain the swamp is not just for unbelievers and politics and we are called as Believer’s to expose the darkness and defend the weak . There is no restoring . Ministry lost because of your ongoing actions . Period . These men prey on using the scriptures as a weapon and the forgiveness and grace from the body of Christ . Expose it and protect the sheep . Be like the Good Shepherd.
    Had I felt someone in my church would have protected ME as a child over the church and the reputation of the church …I would have been saved a lifetime of heartache.
    I pray these victims know the faithfulness of GOD and that they know He is Love and love (agape) protects . I pray they don’t mix up His character over the sin against them .

  33. Ralph Dacut says:

    “We are not sharing this information with you in order to harm Roger or intentionally bring shame to him” ??

    What? What about the harm and shame the he brought to his victims? |

    I understand the ‘Do unto others’ Scripture reference, but that is NOT applicable here. I understand that some may reference, ‘Take the log out of your own eye’, but this is intentional and sustained predatory actions by one who held the highest position in this church.

    Totally agree Michael that anyone who comes forward with additional information on this man’s actions need to go to the authorities, not the church elders.

  34. Em says:

    Okay, read this and…..
    “Daddy (pastor), Uncle Roger did something bad to me. I think it’s called rape. He did it to some other of your children, too.”
    ” Daughter, are you sure? Well, I’ve got to go to Africa and do God’s work but I’ll have a talk with Uncle Roger when i get back. In the meantime try to stay away from him. Okay? ”
    “But Daddy….”
    ” Love you dear. We’ll talk about this some more when i get back ”
    😲 😲 😲

  35. Devin says:

    I attended there for 12 years and left shortly after I realized how poorly the Church was handling the assaults. Personally I never made much of a connection with Roger and found his weekly messages mostly un- inspiring. I to felt that he was a bit Creepy and he told me once that the Children’s Ministry was the best place to start serving in a Church which I did for many years. Most importantly everyone I can say for certain the Roger showed very little interest in Children’s Ministry and “never came into any of the classrooms for any reason for the 8 year I taught Sunday School” there which I thought was kind of sad and weird.

  36. Mike McStay says:

    Roger Gales is accused of grooming minors to satisfy his lust for pedophilia, and raping a minor. He deserves to stand before a judge & jury, his victims, and the church. Anything less is unjust to the victims and their families. He must be held accountable for his actions. Siding with the predator accused of such immoral and violating behavior, rather than the girls destroyed in Gales’ wake, demonstrates lack of leadership and discernment. Toss Roger Gales in general population for some prison justice. It’s sad that criminals have more convictions than Christians if Heritage Church leadership continues to take such a weak stance on Pedophiles.

  37. Billy Jack says:

    For those of you who have never been in full-time ministry, I’ll let you in on the unfortunate reality of which you are totally unaware…. pastoral ministry is miserable in many ways. I did it for 20 years and left pretty disillusioned and discouraged – mostly because of leadership and people in the congregation.

    I served with Potter’s Field for years when we started the school. I’ve stayed at Roger Gales home a few times, my kids have stayed there, and we are still friends with some of the family. As some of you start throwing stones at sinners, just remember that those who show mercy will themselves be shown mercy. This is no attempt at excusing Roger, he is suffering for his sins and will for the rest of his life. (And yes, I know his victims are too and that means, in your mind, he should suffer because he caused it). All I’m saying is that people are so often quick to throw mud, especially with sexual sins, but don’t forget to unzip your heart and start sharing all of your sexually deviant behavior and thoughts as you sit in judgment of others.

    Again, not an excuse or some call for no accountability for this, it’s just a different world when you are the pastor. It is lonely and unrelatable to the “flock”. Think about your life as having 3 legs…. Family, Work, Spirituality. For those not in ministry, if one, or even two of those areas of your life are in turmoil, you still have a third to “rest” on. The Pastor has ONE leg. His family / work / spirituality is all tied into one leg. If any of these areas are messed up, they tie into the others. Unless you have personally lived that life, you don’t know what it feels like. It sucks. Once sin and shame begin to take over, it is a horrible rabbit hole that feels as if there is no way out.

    Again, let me be clear, no sexual predator should be in leadership. Anywhere. Ever. Just tread lightly and remember that for every story, there is 90% more of the story that you’ll never know.

  38. Thatsmeinthecorner says:

    Billy Jack

    Truth

    Our crosses are hewn from different trees,
    But we all must have our Calvaries;
    We may climb the height from a different side,
    But we each go up to be crucified;
    As we scale the steep another may share
    The dreadful load that our shoulders bear,
    But the costliest sorrow is all our own—
    For on the summit we bleed alone!

    Frederick L Knowles

  39. Michael says:

    I’ve been a pastor for over thirty years with very difficult family issues.
    I’ve never come close to what Gales did and never will.
    Your description of the ministry indicates a poor theology of ministry to begin with…

  40. Former Member says:

    I Pray for ROGER and TRACEY, I miss them, I DO NOT NOW NOR WILL I EVER believe Roger is the monster people are making him out to be. He has a genuine love for God and people. I was at Heritage for 5 beautiful years,I FELT LOVE AND FAMILY SAW MIRACLES HEALINGS IT WAS BEAUTIFUL.This is my part, I did not realize until today.. that we are in a spiritual battle, and I looked so up to Roger, he was a man so fullof love and compassion, a man after Gods heart, I believe that,but A MAN, AS DAVID, and he had a huge target on his back,and I neglected to pray for him as I should have,for protection,and frankly to see him as human w potential weaknesses or temptations, my mistake. I should have asked him,and truly cared, Roger how are YOU >REALLY ? How can I be praying for you ? I can only imagine how trapped and ashamed and what a hypocrite he must have felt like at times… heartbreaking, the full story.. well we certainly have nor heard it–from the young women or Roger,and frankly having known him, I will not believe everything I am being told. I think some people may have motives that arent right, God knows,and if what they were saying was true I feel certain charges would have been pressed. So, until you have the stories from the women themselves, I would be cautious about believing everything you are told.AND PRAY FOR HIM, AND HIS FAMILY AND THESE YOUNG WOMEN AND THEIRS AND LET HE WHO BE WITHOUT SIN CAST THE FIRST STONE.. AND BE A FRIEND A BROTHER A SISTER TO YOUR PASTOR, COVER THEM IN PRAYER SATAN ROAMS ABOUT AS A LION SEEKING TO DEVOUR AND DESTRY.and the gentlemen who thinks he is above being tempted …be careful when he think you are standing so firm, pride is a dangerous thing, and anyone who is hiding secrets or temptations or thoughts find someone you can trust and get open and pray..dont give the devil a place..and if by some chance Roger and Tracey read this I love you both and I forgive you and I pray for you both You are in my heart always and I dont know what or how all that happened but I know you will repent and God is still going to use you to continue the kingdom,he did not throw David away,but there were consequences and David learned and never repeated that sin I know you will know who this is. I love you both and thank you for your love now get back up again ,

  41. Michael says:

    The creep was a predator.
    Never has owned his sin.
    People like you are why the church is a freaking jungle full of predators.

  42. Mike McStay says:

    Roger Gales is accused of raping a child, grooming MINORS (aka PED0PHILE) Wake up church! Whether you’ve been in leadership or claim you “Know” him. These are serious allegations and the children deserve their day in court. Who cares about subjective feelings, put yourself in the shoes of the VICTIM. Both criminals were crucified next to Jesus, held ACCOUNTABLE for their sins, one recognizing the Lord, the other did not. Children speaking up about the abuse, if he’s innocent, so be it, let him defend himself. If he’s not, your sloppy grace is pathetic. Wake up church.

  43. once young women says:

    “Dear Former Member” and whomever else who cares to listen….

    I have known Heritage and the pastors there since the day it started in the san Clemente library and I was in Junior high. I know all the original leaders and elders and those that came in along the way. Born and raised christian and my family was good friends with everyone.

    I was in my early teens and 20’s when Roger was grooming. I was not a victim because I was not a broken women that “needed” his fathering, but I can tell you for a FACT at least 10 young women I was close to at the time were broken and he always approached them in the most creepy way that was unacceptable for a grown man or a pastor or anyone!!!!!! These young women I know for a fact are very affected by what he did and will have scars for the rest of their lives. Many of them are going to therapy. I left the church shortly after due to a cult situation (mentioned below) that the church sent us to and I rescued myself out of but was to numb after to care any more about pastors being messed up. Most of the girls I know from that time all tell me that they thought Roger was creepy too but again, being a young woman in the church you have 0 credibility and you are believing and hoping the Grown Men and women leading the church have your back!!!! But that is not the case at all in this instant. I remember bringing Roger up to some people at the time (20 years ago) that he was Creepy and inappropriate and all I got was silence.

    The reason I didn’t have the motivation at the time to push the issue, was I had recently escaped a discipleship program I had been “blessed and sent out to” from heritage which ended up being a controlling religious cult experience. Masters Commission. Once at 19years old I had been spiritually and mentally abused and realized what was happening, I reached out to the pastors and elders of heritage and got ZERO help or acknowledgement or healing from the staff which included Roger. (Accept his help afterwards in taking in more women victims which the grown men in the church didn’t listen to and swept our experiences under the Rug)

    I also, believe it or not, after all that went to potters field to try and still give heritage a chance with helping on building project. During that trip I could clearly see that potters field was a messed up cult religious controlling experience and NO ONE in the heritage church saw that or acknowledged it until it was exposed on it’s own!

    WAKE UP!! If it didn’t happen to you and you think Roger is so great you are blind!!!! It happened and it happened to many and I can tell you first hand Roger is a human that has big problems and did horrible things to broken young women that he should go to prison for! I don’t care how many times he went to other countries to do good or how many times he prayed for you. Look up sexual predator’s, look up psychopaths, they are manipulators. Congratulations, you have been manipulated if you see no wrong in him.

    Churches and leaders need to acknowledge the wrong that happens and have real consequences or this will just be a continuous cycle. I am sorry Billy Jack if you had a bad life as a pastor, you signed up for it and could have left if you didn’t like it. No one had you chained there. At this point with all the spiritual abuse I have been through and seen I really don’t even know why we have men leaders in the church?! If you have a heart for it or get called to do it then do it and do it with out abusing others. If you can’t do that or it’s too hard to deal with people and their messy lives then do something else. Under no circumstances should there be victims of abuse in the church. So many once young women and others I know now have left the Church because of Roger, and MC, and Potters field and the lack of accountability that happened with all of those. Believe it or not I sill love God and I realize men and women are sinners and will always make mistakes. But where is the justice in the injustice.

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