Gaines' decision creates legal questions
Children's advocates say Tennessee law is clear.
"Itis that every person is required to make a report to an agency likeDepartment of Children's Services if they have reason to believe thatsomeone may, a child may have been molested or abused," said NancyWilliams, with the Memphis Child Advocacy Center.
Accordingto Bellevue Pastor Steve Gaines' own words, he didn't just have reasonto believe it, he had a confession from one of his ministers, whoadmitted to molesting a child.
"InJune of this year... I had a confidential meeting with [name removed]and he shared with me regarding this activity that took place some 17years ago in his family," said Gaines in an address to Church membersthis week.
"Nomatter when it happened, it's got to be reported," said SusanMackenzie, a Memphis attorney who has represented adult survivors ofchild sex abuse.
She says reporting abuse is important because it could encourage other victims to come forward and prevent additional crimes.
"Childsexual abuse is rarely an isolated incident if an adult has sexuallyabused one child the odds are there other children out there," shesaid.
Tennessee's reporting law applies to everyone. There are no exceptions, not even for clergy.
"Itis that responsibility that we all carry and if we fail in thatresponsibility there needs to be some consequences to us," Mackenzieexplained.
Andthere are consequences. Not reporting child abuse is punishable by upto three months in jail and the possibility of a fine. This wasincreased just last year by the Tennessee Legislature from a maximum of$50 to $2500.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bud Lilliard
Itdoesn't matter if his meeting was confidential, Gaines was obligated toturn this guy in as soon as he knew of the molestation. What if the guydoes it again?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Steven Balbie
Here it comes....Memphians foaming at the mouth to trash a chruch.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: guy memphis
onceagain there's that famous Christian forgiveness that i've heard so muchabout...what ever happened to love the sinner but hate the sin... theway i see it there's not much differnce between you and the muslimextremists.........
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Thomas C. Jenkins
Your article says he has not been criminally charged, is he under investigation?
How did Bellevue know this man would not molest again? If he did theywill never be able to pay all the verdicts against them. Baptists don'thave the money the Catholics have. Sounds like they were foolish to me.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: former christian girl
17years ago. This happened 17 years ago, and people are just now findingout about it, and they want the guy out. No if's and's or but's aboutit. Judgement. That's all these folks are doing. I can't even describehow this makes me feel reading how these "christians" responded to this17 year old, possibly 17 years over and done with, incident. And peoplewonder why I don't want anything to do with the Church anymore.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Current Bellevue member
Yes,it was 17 years ago, but his victim is still suffering. The only reasonGaines knew about this is because the victim has been talking.Obviously he is not over it. The Bible has explicit standards forservice in the church, this child molester has not met those standardsin 17 years, if ever.
Former Christian, we are to love this man and we do. I have prayed forhim all day long today. That does not mean he is fit to serve in thechurch. Would you trust him around your children?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: CFS
Jesus does command us to forgive.
That does not mean we escape the consequences of our actions. KingDavid commited adultry and had the lady's husband killed. He wasforgiven, but the consequnces of his actions were extremely painful forhim and his children.
The action of sowing and reaping applies to every human being.
Once you realize how much you need forgivness you will realize how much you need to forgive others.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Mother
Thereal question is why did our pastor not protect our children from thispedophile? He's known about this perv for 6 months and has donenothing. He only addressed it because of the website. What else is ourpastor covering up?
Thisman did not molest a church member, it was his relative (probably aminor since this is who molesters like to prey upon) and most likelyhappened at home therefore as long the the person does not presscharges Gaines has no responsibility to turn him in. As long as theperson who was molested does not press charges he gets off scot free. Isure wouldn't want him counseling my child or taking him on a trip oreven praying with him so he does not belong in that job.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Actual Bellevue Member
Mostof the people I talk to at church were very hurt by this, but hurt muchmore by those at "Saving Bellevue". I am tired of the group pretendingto care about the church, all they want to do is get Dr. Gaines toresign. I find it interesting that no one dares to mention Dr. AdrianRogers in these conversations. Dr. Gaines did not create these issues,he inherited them and did the best he could.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Disgusted in Memphis
The problem that is starting arguments appears to
be that the church is not REALLY saying what this
man did. That leaves room for speculation, and is
leading to arguments...THE MAN HURT TWO
Idon't know enough about this situation to comment on it specifically,but it appears there is a lack of understanding out there of"forgiveness" vs. "consequences". Folks, they are two completelydifferent things. Being forgiven has nothing to do with not sufferingthe consequences of actions.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: You must be nuts
Disgusted in Memphis,
Steve Gaines proved that he is not qualified to run a soda fountain by the way he handled this.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue mom 2
Pleaseleave Dr. Rogers out of this. He knew nothing of it and deserves noassociation to it. Steve Gaines may have inherited problems, but he hascreated more than he ever inherited by his arrogance and lack ofjudgement.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue father
Dr.Gaines must resign immediately. He has proven he lacks the judgment topastor Bellevue Baptist Church. I learned of this about an hour agowhen a friend in another state called me. How did he know? He heard iton the Michael Reagan radio program. Gaines, the whole now knows whatyou did. Take chances with your own children!
Mustsay that this "secret" surfaced as as result of other serious issueswith this church and it's leadership...it is not the root of theproblem, but has surfaced nonetheless, as have other immoral acts. Thepoison that has crept into this church is the purpose driven movementand as a result, the church has become worldy...people are drinking thekoolaid by the gallons. Deception at it's highest!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: belleue teacher
Ourpastor has been under a microscope from day one and I can assure youfor every person who is complaining there are a hundred who will notsit back and allow the complainers and trouble makers to run him off. Isuggest that those of us who support our beloved Pastor to form a groupand call the media to come and hear our voices which are crying out,"Pastor stay and Mr. Haywood and followers LEAVE"
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevuer
Somemay read this and wonder if this happened before he became a christian.The answer is no. Before he was a Bellevue minister? The answer is no.I have never heard of a church allowing a pedophile to stay on theirstaff of ministers. I can't believe he was put over the records ofchildcare workers, over homeschooling, and over the prayer ministry.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Another Bellevue Father
Disgustedin Memphis is wrong. I thank God for SavingBellevue.com for getting thetruth out. Secrecy in the church is why we are having this problem.Steve Gaines, Brian Miller, and any other man who knew this 6 monthsago and hid it from the church needs to go. So there you have it. Iadmit Steve Gaines must go.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Thishappened 17 years ago under the watch of Dr. Rogers. There is not anydoubt that he did not have some knowledge if the counseling has trulygone on for years. It seems Dr. Gaines has inhertied many problems thatwere previously hidden by the prior church leadership. The man needsprayer but does not have any institution where children are present.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Watchman
Thispastor has known about a child molester in our church's midst for sixmonths and he continued to let the child molester/rapist roam ourhalls. Not only that, but he also continued allowing the rapist tointerview those who want to work with our children. One of thequestions the molester/rapist was charged with asking these people was,"Have you ever been sexually molested?"
And this after this pastor told people to leave who simply asked forsome administrative accountability. He asked them to leave while he washarboring a child molester and rapist. And now, instead of asking therapist to go, Steve Gaines has put him on PAID leave.
It's time for both of these men to resign--the rapist/child molester and the senior pastor who harbored him.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Not a Steve Gaines Fan
PraiseGod for SavingBellevue.com for getting the truth out. The men whosurround Steve Gaines and Gaines himself love to operate in secrecy.The church deserves to know the truth. A lot of our members want tostick their head in the sand and protect thier investments. So thereyou have it. Steve Gaines needs stop being a minister period.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Someone who pays attention
Itwas mentioned that it was resolved and forgiven 17 years ago untilsomeone recently mentioned it was not fully resolved... that's why Mr.or Mrs. Current Bellevue Member. I say close it down and build anamusement park (how far off is it really from being one anyway). itcould be a relgious based theme park.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Deborah W.
"Moralfailure" does not come close to adequately describing the heinous actof incestuous child molestation. Anyone who can read or was in thatchurch service to see or hear the "prepared statement" issued by thechurch leadership should be outraged that they were not told the truthfrom the pulpit unless you consider "moral failure" and raping a youngchild the same thing. I do not. Paul Williams must leave the ministryforever as should anyone who had knowledge of this abomination anddidn't do everything within their power to protect other children whowere in harm's way. How could anyone with a conscience care more aboutprotecting the confidentiality of the child molester than aboutprotecting the children he could prey upon.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: 14 Year Member
For a brother found in sin, we are scripturally
required to seek his restoration to fellowship via
confession and repentance. This does not mean
we are required to restore him to leadership.
Williams' reputation is damaged beyond repair and
he should resign or be removed.
Steve Gaines became aware of this situation nearly
six months ago and left Williams in a position of
leadership. He has consistently mishandled
scandal after scandal, admitting (and apologizing)
for as little as possible. Literally none of the
accusations leveled against him have been
answered in full. He has lied to the congregation
and disallowed any forums where the truth could
be easily determined. He lacks the integrity,
judgement and wisdom to remain in the pulpit and
should likewise go.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Outsider lookin in
Iwill PRAY for the entire congregation. The enemy, your adversary islooking to kill,steal, and destroy the labor of LOVE that Dr. Rodgersand the entire ministry worked hard to build. Build each other up inLOVE, and it shall surpass all. PRAY for this family, because too manyfamilies are being destroyed because of foolishness. If the offenderREPENTED unto GOD, and HIS FAMILY, That's all that matters!!!!!PEACE!!!!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Who is following your kids
How did Steve Gaines determine that Shelby county and Fayette county childeren were safe?
Adeacon asks questions about the church's finances and is removed fromhis office. A pedophile confesses he has raped his son and is allowedto remain on staff and his secret sin is hidden. And Steve Gaines isyour man?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Disgusted with Steve Gaines
SteveGaines made a decision he had no right to make when he held this inconfidence and put our children at risk. Don't dare bring Dr. Rogersinto this; he did NOT have knowledge of this or this man would havebeen gone long ago. The only reason Gaines even came out with it now isbecause it was about to be exposed by the TN SNAP representative. Andaccording to the family the issue may not be resolved, ie: abuse maystill be happening.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: 30 year Bellevue Member
I loved Dr. Rogers.
I love Dr. Gaines.
It is a shame that some are so thirsty for the Dr. Gaines' blood thatthey are literally rejoicing at the news of this terrible event.
We should all pray for the victim, the family, our church, our leadership and our pastor.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Charlie Brown
Goodgrief. Those of you defending Gaines, ask yourself this- would you wantsomeone who molested children teaching yours? Being a caregiver foryour children? How angry would you be at a principal or adminstratorwho withheld this information about the teacher because he or she wasin counseling? I am going to bet you would be horrified at the thoughtof a molestor having contact and would be calling a lawyer to sue theschool district. Should a church, religious institution, and/or itsleaders be held to a different standard than public school teachers andadminstration? If Gaines knew and did nothing, losing his position at a church should be the least of his worries.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: former BBC member
Forsix months this pastor knew that a molester who raped his own son wason staff and did nothing????? I thought pastors were shephards who keptwolves away, not let them in with the sheep.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue member about to leave
SteveGaines had no right to make the decision to hold Paul Williams childmolestation in confidence. He should have been fired immediately!! Heput the children of Bellevue at risk!! The only reason he came out withit now is becuase it was about to be exposed by the TN representativeof SNAP. Otherwise the man would have roamed the halls with ourchildren for probably years to come. Don't dare bring Dr. Rogers intothis. He did not know of this or this vile man would have been goneyears ago!!! Steve Gaines has brought nothing but shame on Bellevue andhe needs to go!!! He has destroyed a long legacy of Godliness in ONEshort year!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: A Memphis Grandfather
PaulWilliams committed a crime. He raped his own child. He should bearrested immediately along with Pastor Steve Gaines for covering upthis crime and keeping it confidential for six months. How many morechildren has Williams raped during the past six months? Both of thesesikos need to spend time behind bars.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: one the side
Baptistare interesting ,you can't gamble,drink booze,smoke pot or cigs,but youcan molest little boys and be a minister in the largest church inMemphis
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Karen mom of 3.
Thisis an awful day for our church, for me and my family. I am sad thatBellevue would allow a child rapist to stay on for 6 months at the wordof this man who has raped his son and who knows who else this hashappened to. Then for our church to continue to pay his sallary whilethey look into the matter is beyond my understanding. He should be letgo and criminal charges filed. We must look out for the safety of ourinnocent children the ones who do not have a voice. Please call a spadea spade! A sin a sin! Get this man and Steve Gains and the others thatstand by him and allow these horrific things to continue out of ourchurch.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: 20 yr bellevue member
Gaineshas been ripping bellevue apart since the day he came here. He has runpeople off that suffered to get this church built. Gaines' formerchurches are glad he's gone. Allowing a pedophile to remain on staff isthe last straw. Gaines must resign. And NO Pastor Rogers knew nothingabout this.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Time to remember
BBC lady staff members, do you remember your first staff meeting with Dr. Gaines?
Didn�t he make crystal clear what would be appropriate clothing while working at Bellevue?
Didn�t he say something like��If it�s to low, to short or to tight youwill be sent home to change and if again, on another occasion yourclothing is determined to be either to low, to short or to tight youwould be fired? Is this not close to fact? Readers, can you see wheresome of us are having a very difficult time with Dr. Gaines judgments?Fired for improper dress and suspended for child molestation? This isthe dilemma discerning individuals struggle with day in and day outwith Dr. Gaines integrity.
I�m not going to try to impress you with how much I love Dr. Gaines andhis family. But I can assure you no one loves him more than ChristJesus and Christ paid for Dr. Gaines sin as well as yours and mine tosatisfy God�s demand for justice. When Dr. Gaines placed his faithwhere God placed his sin� on Jesus�. He became a new creation. Allthings became new. Old things were passed away. However Steve Gainesdid not become perfect. We, as fellow Christians have a brother who maybe a showpiece in our midst of what is called �The Peter Principle�.This principle states that an individual in a work situation may bepromoted to the level of his or her incompetence. An example might bean excellent mechanic who deserves a pay raise but in order to get onemust be promoted to Shop Foreman� and does a poor job of managingothers so must be let go rather than demoted. Dr. Gaines is of greatvalue to God. Let our judgments be written on the �stones� in ourhands. Let our attitudes over the sins of another not become our sin.Pray!
May we be known for our love for one another.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Visitor
Finally, the whole Memphis comunity knows what a mess we have at Bellevue. Its time to change the leadership from top to bottom.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: 28-Year Bellevue Member
SteveGaines allowed a child molester to remain on staff for 6 months beforehe decided to tell the congregation. This is disgusting. Regardless ofwhat any member chooses to believe or not believe regarding all of thenumerous issues that have come up since Steve Gaines arrived, thisspecific issue should infuriate all to ask for his resignation.
Steve Gaines jeopardized our children, our volunteers in the variousministries (because Paul Williams was a counselor), our integrity, andour Lord Jesus Christ.
When he learned of the situation in June, he should have immediatelyplaced Paul Williams on suspension with pay, pending an investigation.Instead, Steve Gaines took this pedophile�s word that �nothing else hashappened� and left him in his leadership position on staff in June,July, August, September, October, November, December�.
Steve Gaines should resign immediately. This is just one of the many issues going on at Bellevue.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Saddened
Those of you who say the problems at Bellevue
were there before Dr. Gaines came, are correct;
but not in the way you think. Many of the upper
leadership purposefully hid sin in the ministry
staff, and volunteer positions from Pastor Rogers.
How do I know? I was on staff for several years,
and witnessed many cases of sin being swept
under the rug. Some of these were slight
offences, some were very serious. I resigned my
position, after I stuck my neck way out, and got
my head chopped off by brow beating,
intimidation, and character assasination. What
was my offense? I dared to question the
leadership. I asked several times to include Dr.
Rogers to help resolve situations, and was told, he
can't be bothered by these things. However, Mark
Dougherty and other ministers knew full well of
these thing and choose to keep them from Dr.
Rogers. I had moved on before Dr. Gaines came
as the Sr. Pastor; but when I heard of these things,
I was hardly shocked. The upper leadership
somehow found someone to lead them in the way
they wanted to go. I pray for the dear people at
my former church, prayer is the answer for this
WMCTV.COM Visitor: General Observation
Inthe future, those in any leadership capacity, secular or spiritual,need to notify the police when credible allegations of child sexualabuse are reported. The police are trained to confidentiallyinvestigate allegations. If there is sufficient evidence the case willgo to court. Either way, the potential problem is addressed and youdon't harbor someone and potentially allow them to harm others 5, 10 or17 years down the road. Be assured, sexual misconduct is highly proneto repetition.
"There is a point in the life of every problem where it is big enough to see but small enough to do something about."
I am not a member at Belluvue but I will pray for their wisdom during this time.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Sick beyond words
As a mom whose very young child was
molested in another church by a choir
member who the pastor knew was a
convicted pedophile, I can assure you
that no parent would want anyone
connected in any way with molesting
children to be allowed to remain on
staff at a church. This pastor felt
obligated to keep confidentiality. The
pedophile confessed to prevent the
truth from coming out. The day he was
confronted, he drove to another church
and again "confessed" to another
pastor. No parent wants a pedophile's
"privacy" protected by counseling
confidentiality. This pain is
unbelievable for all involved. May God
forgive us for not protecting the
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Get to the root of the issue
Whatyou all are struggling over is an enterprise. People will tear oneanother apart to control it and the image of power its assetsrepresent. It is of the world. What you have: is it for what Christsuffered?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Mom
I'mtired of hearing that the Saving Bellevue website is the problem! It'sonly a problem for the leadership who want the Bellevue membersclueless. Guess what folks - we knew weeks before Gaines "admission"and called the church demanding information! You bloghaters have thewebsite to thank for any action that has been taken. Get your head outof the sand. GOOD GRIEF!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Prayers to you all
Myprayers are with the members of the church.Please don't let this comebetween you all.Stand strong together.Pray together.Let Gods will bedone and remember what your there for in the first place.You all are afamily and you need one another now more than ever.For the love of Godand Dr.Rogers be as one.Don't let this destroy your church.You all wantwhat's best for your kids.Show them how a church is meant to cometogether in a time of need.God allows things like this in our lives inorder for us to learn a from it.Thank God for reminding you of the needkeep a watchful eye on your children.
I truely pray your church can come out of this stronger than ever.Gods blessings to you all.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: NC Baptist homeschool mom
Iam so sorry to hear about all of this trouble and dissention atBellevue, and I know Pastor Rogers would be broken-hearted over it. Butas a Baptist I have a question. The pastors of a Baptist church servewith the consent of the congregation; they do NOT tell the church whatto do. If the deacons should agree that the offending pastor should befired, then the senior pastor should not be able to overrule thatdecision. The Lord requires of us love and forgiveness, but He alsorequires that we pay the earthly consequences for our sin. It soundslike this man should have been fired for the protection of the childrenin the church. Where is the church, as a group of Christians, in takingresponsibility for getting rid of this man, instead of letting thesenior pastor run things?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: CMG
Ithink you have to look at this objectively. Lets say I joined thechurch, was baptised, professed to be a follower of Christ. Now, Iconfess to you that I am a pedifile, having raped my own son andprobably others that I'm not going to admit. I doubt this was anisolated incident. That type behavior doesn't just come out of nowhere.What are my chances of becoming a pastor, leader, teacher at yourchurch? ZERO. Why? Because I have a serious problem that has harmedchildren and could possibly harm others. I would not be a goodinfluence on the children nor would the parents of the churchs childrenagree for one second that I should have any position of power. Why?Because that makes since. Demanding accountabilty to the congregationis not a personal attack on Paul Williams, or Steve Gaines, or any ofthe other hypocrits running your church. If you don't demand these menbe accountable for their actions and their decisions then you owe eachand every child in that church an explaination for why you do not havethere best interest at heart. Look them in the eye and explainyourselves. What are you teaching? You can do whatever you want justdon't get caught? If you do get caught and you come from money andprestige, we will protect you? Come on! Get over WHO did this and lookat what he did and get him out of the position. NOW. Steve Gaines, I amsure Rogers had to know about this. He knew everything. It isunfortunate you had to inherite this but...you did. You should be heldaccountable for the way YOU handled this information. You handled thisinformation irresponsibly. Your priorities were mixed up. You protectedthe Williams family, something Paul himself didn't do, instead ofprotecting the Bellevue family. You owe the children an explaination.You owe the parents an explanation. You would not have allowed this hadthis man been a "nobody". In fact, if a man resembling Jesus as hewalked on this earth, homeless, not particularly actractive, poor, youwould NEVER allowed this. Wrong is wrong. You, all who are involved inthis, know who you are and you know you are wrong. You have simplyjustified your behavior because of social status and church politics.Shame on you all.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: A Christian
Icommend the pastor on not jumping to conclusions and rash decisions.The person accused has been suspended and asked to stay off campuswhile this is investigated. Today you only need to be accused ofmolestation or anything of a sexual nature to become immediately guiltyand to be looked upon as leper and to be forever banned from societywithout a trial. That's to say just to be "accused". "guilty" isanother thing.
If this happened yesterday or a year or two ago but 17 years ago. Howcan facts be correctly given after 17 years? If it was known then whywasn't something done then instead of now? Investigating something thatwas done 17 years ago must be done carefully.
No one knows the circumstances, just what we read here and we hear byword of mouth. I reserve my opinions until the truth comes out andagree with the precautionary measures that has been taken.
A Church is nothing but a group of sinners who have come together toworship and better themselves. Those who are without sin throw thefirst stone!
He has done nothing wrong while at the Church or since then 17 years ago as far as we know. If that's the case what do you do?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: concerned member
Iknow that Pastor Gaines is a wonderful pastor and I am thankful forthis Godly man. I don't think that he should leave, but if he does Iwill too.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: outsider
It saddens my heart to see a Church that Pastor
Adrain Rogers founded, thrived, and looked like a
place of love could turn out like this. Even though
the Pastor made a poor judgment, He is still a
leader and was pick to replaced Dr. Rogers. I know
that you miss your pastor, I would too. But instead
of saying what he is doing wrong, Pray and ask
GOD to lead him to the Pastor that you need, not
what you want.
As for the pastor, your flock trust you and even
though you have God's law, GOD says you must
obey Man's law as well... you should have involved
the authoriites. I will ask that God be with you
and your chiurch.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: church member
Ithink that pastor Gaines is good pastor,but I think he should relievedminster williams of his duties as soon as he confessed and theninvestigate it futher.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Concerned Father at BBC
Whereare the police in this? Are they investigating this very serious crime?I have not heard anything they have had to say. Why aren't we up inarms that the police have done nothing to let us know they want toprotect our children? Does him being a minister give him a free pass?God help us if it does. I understand that even if this did happen 17years ago the statute of limitations does not expire until the child is35. Come on Memphis, WMC get us some answers. Please.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Kelly
Pleasepray for our church and our loved pastor during this time ofproblems...I feel that Saving Bellevue is doing more to hurt Bellevuethan help...I understand that whatever this minister did was wrong, butto have our church time and again plastered on the news is hurting nothelping...I pray that we come together as a church and tell SavingBellevue to quit "saving" us because this type of "saving" we don'tneed.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bruce
Ibelieve that Jesus forgives sinners no matter what they do. Thisdenomination should find it in their hearts and go back to the Bibleand read scripture about forgiveness. 70 times 7? Yes.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Amk
Thisis very saddening, i also believe this man should of been suspendedwhen it was first known. But it seems many are more interested in moredirt on Dr.Gaines than the well being of children. How many of you areactually praying for our pastor? or our church?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue mom and member
Iam saddened by what I read here and hear on the news. I have been amember of Bellevue for over ten years. I was saved & baptized underDr. Rodgers. I prayed that God would move Dr. Steve Gaines heart toallow him to come to us. I believe that Dr. Gaines is doing a great jobwith what he is handed. I am a previous molestation victim and I am achildcare worker who had to appear before Paul Williams in order to beapproved to work in the childrens department. It kind of leaves me sickto realize that I spilled my guts and shared my emotions with someonethat was the abuser. However, I do not believe that anyone could haveknown until Paul and/or his family stepped forward to confess thatthese actions had occurred. It is not fair to blame Dr. Gaines for whatanother person has done many years ago. We never know what is in thehearts of those around us. Only God knows all. In my own situation, Iknow that it IS possible for the abuse to be centered on one person andit CAN stop. That has happened in my own family. I have reconciled withmy abuser and developed a close relationship. That could and can happenin Paul Williams family. His family and our church family need PRAYERand encouragement to go on in the face of this adversity. We CANreconcile the body of Christ. We can forgive and be strengthened bythis trial. Satan loves to set us against ourselves. Please Please donot let this happen. I love Bellevue and all that it has to offer us.Could Dr. Gaines moved quicker or done some things different? Sure.However, I don't believe that he maliciously kept Mr. Williams on staffto put our children in danger. I just wish that all that wasdissatisfied with Bellevue would just leave and not cause a stink. Whyrip apart and destroy? Why not calmly take your opinions and go whereGod may lead you?
Please Leave My Bellevue Alone
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Pam Williams
You don't counsel child molesters.
You pick up the phone and call the police. No matter what position theyhold, child molesters are criminals of the worst stripe. The place fora child molester is jail, and constant monitoring for the rest of theirlives. Try to remember that folks.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: concerned west tn observer
It is such a shame that certain groups at Bellevue
have not been able to know or come to know the
wonderful Godly heart of Steve Gaines. The folks
at savingbellevue ought to be ashamed for
continually persecuting this man. No one could
ever fill Adrian Rogers shoes and I bet Steve
Gaines would be the first one to agree. Adrian
Rogers is gone and the Lord led Steve to Bellevue
for a purpose. If everyone had a prayerful spirit
and let the Lord lead we all might be amazed at
what He has in store for this church.
Whyhas the police not gotten involved? Child molestation is against thelaw and why is he still allowed to be a minister in the church? Whenthis starting coming out he should have been let go of his duties.There shouldn't be an inside incestigation.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Linda Williamson
Judgenot, least you be judged! Bellevue has been a wonderful church, but theDEVIL is at work. Just because people say they are Christians doesn'tmean they truly are Christians!
There have been those who have wanted Dr. Gaines to leave even beforehe came because they didn't like him or he want do what you want himto. If you are one of those, YOU NEED TO LEAVE. Find another church youcan run and Bellevue alone.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Lisa
Manywho have been victims of incest or molestation have memories which denythem the freedom to live without hate, bitterness and resentment, fearand/or a desire for revenge. Yet you can be free and even findforgiveness for the abuser in your heart. Jesus and Stephen, at thetime of their deaths, were both able to forgive those who executedthem. Both looked to heaven and asked God to forgive the sins of thosewho were guilty. If you are a Christian, you have authority andinfluence with God concerning remittance of sin or retention of sin(John 20:23). God will listen to your prayer. Just remember that Jesuscame to forgive rather than to condemn (John 3:16).
To feel truly free, it is important that you forgive your abuser.Holding on to the resentment and anger will only hurt you and you willnot feel totally cleansed. Once you pray for the person and ask God toforgive him or her, the heavy burden within your heart will be liftedaway. Although it is often hard to forgive and forget, you can REMEMBER WITH FORGIVENESS.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: MegaChurch Despiser
Yaknow, it's rediculous when you get a MEGA church like Bellvue and allthey are worried about is how many members it has and who gives howmuch money on sundays.
This incident is 17 years old, it happened THAT long ago. They arebeing judgemental and ignorant to say the least. If this incident isn't"taken care of" then let the FAMILY handle it and stop humiliating thisman so that the church can make sure everyone knows "it isn't them"
What a crock, what ever happened to basic religion, since when do youhave to belong to a super church to get into heaven? Hypocrites if I'veever seen them myself...glad I don't go there.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Pastor Sanford
Whata shame,the church finally gets a great man of god,and the people arecrucifying him already,Dr Rogers I feel would be so ashamed the way thepeople of this great church is treating Pastor Gaines and his wife.Does he still feel the nails everytime we fail.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Donald Jackson
Afterreading all this about the mistrust and outright hatred of Dr. Gainesit's clear that satan is at work and is winning at turning you churchmembers who are obviously without sin against a true man of God. What ashame! If you don't like him leave yourself. Some of you say that Dr.Rogers knew nothing of the abuse but how do you know, I rememberhearing him say many times of the imperfection in his own life becausewe are all full of sin. I do believe that the molester should be firedbut leave Steve Gaines alone and get on with serving the Lord.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue member and parent
Theprimary reason that Paul Williams should be fired and Dr Gaines'leadership capabilities questionedis that Paul Williams hid this sin inhis life for 17 years or longer and did not responsibly offer hisresignation at any time. Thus the moral failure started long beforethat depraved act and has persisted to this day.
Dr. Gaines failed to see that this man has been lying and trying tohide his dispicable sin for all this time. He has demonstrated that hedoes not have the wisdom to lead and protect those whome he sworebefore all of us to protect.
As a parent will discipline thier child out of love for fear of wrongbehavior becoming a lifestyle, so love shouild have demanded that PaulWilliams be relieved of all duties forever.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: VISITOR
Welive in the most crime infested City in America. Few other places canboast the level of racism, political graft, and sloth. Is it any wonderyour church has problems. Big churches, like big cities are the besthiding place for disturbed individuals and disfunctional families. Youcome close to deifying the former pastor. Something about false idolscomes to mind. It is obvious that no one will be able to take hisplace. Not because he was so great, but because your faith is sosuperficial. Everyone makes mistakes, even ministers. That's what graceGod's .
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Ithink it is unfathomable to allow a child molestor to remain in aleadership position in the church. Those who are in favor of allowinghim to stay because it happened years ago are rewarding him for livinga double-life and hiding his crime. I think that is unexcusable. Thefact that Dr. Gaines has shown more compassion for the former molester,than the actual person who has been molested is troubling beyond words.I think this lack of judgement must resul in his resignation.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Dr.Gaines needs to immediately step down. His inaction left thousands ofchildren vulnerable to a child rapist. We can debate for days about themusic or the style of a service, but when you intentionally putchildren in danger, you need to step aside. For all of our sakes.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: DMD
Mostof the people I talk to at church were very hurt by this, but hurt muchmore by those at "Saving Bellevue". I am tired of the group pretendingto care about the church, all they want to do is get Dr. Gaines toresign. I find it interesting that no one dares to mention Dr. AdrianRogers or previous church leadership in these conversations. Dr. Gainesdid not create these issues, he inherited them and did the best hecould. Dr Gaines is being crucified in the name of religion forcircumstances that happened before he arrived.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Visitor
Whywould there even be a question of keeping Gaines on as pastor? If hewas aware of this and allowed the man to continue working withchilderen, he is just as sick as the child molester. So many "sick"people hide behind religion to do these awful things. And they havetheir "following" from the Church backing them up. This is just crazy,why would there even be a question of whethere Mr. Gaines kept his joband why is the child molester still in the Church?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Eric
Ilove and fully support Dr. Gaines. He is doing a great job and his hasa heart for the Lord. He is not perfect, none of us are, we all makemistakes. Dr. Gianes is an honest man, he would never do anything tointensionally harm BBC. It saddens me that saving Bellvue website hasbeen ongoing. It is a cowardly act and needs to be removed from theinternet. I have been a active Bellvue member for 13 years have seen ahuge growth on the church. It is a great church eager to serve theLord. What is the reason for trashing the leadership of the church? Ifyou are not happy, attend another church! Pastor Gaines was lead by Godto Bellevue to be our Pastor. Since Pastor Gaines has been at BBCattendance in both services has increased as well as Sunday school,giving, and Wednesday night classes. Obviously things a going well.Stop trying to destroy my church and Pastor. Bellvue Baptist willrecover from this attack by satan and grow stronger as a result.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
DrGaines does his very best to follow and apply the WORD OF GOD in hisevery actions. We are far to quick to blame Dr Gaines for something hehandled in the best way he knew how following the teaching of Jesus. Wemust believe and support Dr Gaines and not be so quick in blaming himfor handling this problem in the best way he knew how. We need tosupport Dr Gaines, not run him down.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue mom and member
Ilove my church and I love my pastor. God is Sovereign in all things.God placed Dr. Gaines in authority over us; not to be perfect, but tobe used by God for His purposes. I believe that the search committeediligently and prayerfully search for our current pastor. I don't trustin any one person but I do have faith in God's sovereign ability toredeem and reconcile. As a church body, we need to quit tearing apartour own body. Pray for unity and consolidation. Pray forreconciliation. Pray for our Pastor and other church officials. PrayPray Pray and have faith that those prayers will be answered in God'sperfect time and perfect way. For those that don't agree and don'twant to live under God's appointed man at Bellevue, then please seekGod's guidance in where else you might attend worship services.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Grieved and Concerned
Fromwhat I know, the majority of Bellevue's members know nothing about allthe other incidents that involved Dr. Gaines' ineptness and lack ofjudgment. Why? Because he instructed all leaders and teachers not todiscuss anything about the different incidents that showed his poorjudgment or lack of discernment. If a person persisted in asking orwanting to discuss, they were to be told that they were"trouble-makers" and should leave the church. The leader would alsotell them not to watch the "Saving Bellevue" site. Therefore, sadly, ifa vote were held today, the majority would probably approve his stayingon, simply because they are totally in the dark about what has beengoing on for many months. I am praying for God's will to be done andalso that God have mercy on us all.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: J.YOUNG
ONEQUESTION WOULD SOME THIS UP....PASTOR GAINES AND ALL MINISTERS AT OURCHURCH .... WOULD YOU TRUST YOUR CHILD ALONE WITH THIS MAN? I DID NOTTHINK SO..SO WHY PLACE OURS IN DANGER..GET YOUR HEADS OUT OF THE SANDAND STOP THINKING ABOUT YOUR EGOS AND THE NUMBERS OF ATTANDENCE ANDTITHES PROTECT YOUR FLOCK ITS TIME FOR GAINES AND ALL INVOLVED TORESIGN AND MOVE TO CALIFORNIA WHERE THEY ALLOW THIS
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Memphis Grandmother
Would Dr. Gaines call this a "past moral failure" if Paul Williams had raped one of Dr. Gaines children - 17 years ago?
Would YOU want to attend a church where RAPE is called a "past moralfailure" and then covered up for six months by the Pastor who thinksthat RAPE is a "past moral failure". What a crock! The members atBellevue are out of their minds to keep Steve Gaines - He is guilty ofharboring a criminal at your church. Don't any of you have a spine?Stop giving a paycheck to Paul Williams while he is "on leave" - Firethis child rapist and then call the police to have him taken off thestreets of Memphis not just your church campus. He is a danger to allof our children and grandchildren. What is wrong with you people? Don'tyou understand - THIS MAN IS A CHILD RAPIST!!!!
As for your Pastor, Steve Gaines, how in the world can you excuise hissix months of covering up a felony crime, a addmited child rapist???
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Former Staff Member
Havingworked under Dr Adrian Rogers, I can tell you with absolute certaintythat he did NOT know of Paul William's sin. Had he even heard a rumor,or suspected even a word out of line from anyone on his staff orcongregation, he would have hauled them into his office to get to thebottom of it. If he had found anything at all that was even close to a"moral failure" he would have then hauled them in front of the churchand promptly fired them. I can also tell you that while he would stilllove the person, he would condem the sin and would not mince words bycalling it simply a "moral failure".
Gracious sakes folks, as for Paul Williams, the man REPEATEDLYsodomized his own son for YEARS! He was forced to bring it to thepastor for other reasons we do not know at this time, but I canguarantee that Steve Gaines knows. The savingbellevue.com website wasonly recently made aware of the situation that took place six monthsago, they did not instigate anything and if David Brown with the TNchapter of SNAP had not contacted them, NO ONE would know about it andPaul Williams would still be on staff. Come on folks, Steve Gaines isto be held accountable- he willingly, knowingly allowed a CONFESSEDPEDOPHILE roam the halls with our children for all this time! What areyou thinking???
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Proud Bellevue Member
Iam a Bellevue member. I really think that this was handly poorly, butthis situation can not destroy this wonderful church. I was blessed tobecome a member when Dr. Rogers was head of the church and true enoughhe would have handled this completely different- and for the record Iwill NEVER believe that Dr. Rogers knew of this. The church needs toremain united and not become divided. Satan is trying to have a stronghold and this can not happen. As for Dr. Gaines stepping down I reallyam at a loss of what should happen.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Godconsiders Paul Williams' act an abomination. 17 years ago or not, heshould not have been allowed to retain his position. Teachers of youthgo through stingent screeing to find these issues. If something of thissort is found in your past, Paul Williams was the man you needed to goto, for discussion. Steve Gaines should have fired him on the spot. Forhim to not take immediate action, shows his lack of leadership, and isnot fit to head the church. I love Bellevue, and I believe God allowedthis to happen in order to "clean house". I contiue to pray for thefamily members involved and the healing of our church.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: former Bellevue member
Iwas a member of Bellevue for 12 years in the 80's and 90's. There wasnever any internal controversy, and in that regard, Bellevue wasdifferent than most Southern Baptist churches in Memphis. I suppose Iwas a member during Bellevue's best days, because I certainly don'trecognize the Bellevue I remember in the things I hear now. Bellevue'sreputation has suffered, and it is a sad thing to see.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Howeasy it is to Monday quarterback another's decisions. From everyone towhom I have spoken only loving concern for Bro. Steve has beenexpressed. Those who know his genuine humility and tender concern forhis people and their spiritual wellbeing are grieved beyond words thathe has been attacked by these troublemakers. We love you and will notlet you go, dear pastor!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: RAY LOTT
EVERYONE LET DR ROGERS REST IN PEACE I FULLY BELEIVE THAT DR. ROGERS HAD NO KNOWLEDGE OF THIS
WMCTV.COM Visitor: P.B.M.
Iremember the morning service that Dr. Rogers washed Dr. Gaines feet,and turned the church over to him willingly and freely. It breaks myheart that Dr. Rogers trusted Dr. Gaines with our church. Dr. Rogersprotect our church!
Mr. Williams knew that Dr. Rogers would have ended his positionimmediately, to keep this from him, and to tell Dr. Gaines almost ayear into his 1 year anniversary(9-11),is very upsetting.
I am just concerned that how many others(unreported child rapist) arewatching our children while we are in our bible study's and worshipservice. I really don't want to leave, but I am really concerned forthe safety of my children.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue parent
Ibelieve something had to bring this to light after 17 years. Anothervictim? I am seriously concerned! I have supported our pastor blindly,but when your children are put at risk..one must take the blinders off.If you don't have children, please don't get mad at those of usconcerned.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: forgiven
I think all of us who are bellevue
members,should want mr.williams out&should pray for him.But at the
same time let's all remember a great "quote" from DR.ROGERS,"folks,thedevil would rather start a church fight anyday,than sell a barrel ofwhiskey"! We all must stay focused&handle this&all situations
with prayer&guidance.The last time I,read,THE BIBLE,GOD still guides&we follow HIS LEADING!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: A 17 year member of Bellevue
Iagree with Mrs. Rogers. Dr.Rogers would have taken immediate action.But, I believe he would have followed Jesus' example, i.e, shownmercy'rather than judgement,' I don't know what 'staff positionalactions' that would entail, but he would not have had 'hate' as hisinspiring force. (If he were still alive and acting consistant with histeaching over the 17 years I knew him, I believe Dr. Rogers would becrying and be forced by his beliefs to resign his position as pastoremeritous if he could see how the members of Bellevue have and aretreating his successor, Pastor Steven Gaines.
The public shouldnote, just prior to his passing the mantel to Dr. Gaines, Dr. Rogerspredicted that there would be members of the Bellevue membership whowould not be able to accept whomever followed him. He said there wouldbe strife and a division of the membership. In fact, he went on to say,"That will be good for those who can't accept change as well as thosewho remain loyal to the Bellevue Ministry, and his pastor, Dr. StevenGaines. He foretold a division that would occur, and said, that intime, there would be a split...he said the split would be good forBellevue's Ministry. i.e., It would make the bretheren closer and wouldweed out those who would, if they could,continually cause strife amongthe faithful.
Soooo, Let not your heart be trouble. You believe in Christ...Youbelieved Dr. Rogers followed the teachings of Christ as well as taughtthem with integrity...Believe also that Christ will bring only good outof what is happening at Bellevue.
Pray for Dr. Gaines and his family...and the church family at BellevueBaptist Church. We are going through a time of trial, the author ofwhich is Satan, i.e., he will lie, bring forth situations to divide,use faithful bretheren who have had their feeling hurt, and those whoare now so old that we can't accept changes that would allow the youthof today to experience Christ in a meaninful way for them.
My wish and prayers is that NOT our will be done, But God's Will bedone in each of our lives...and the life of the body of Christ thatworships at Bellevue.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Iwould just like to worship my Lord and Savior again without having allthis hoopla interfere with my learning about God's word from the Pastorthat I love. I have been thinking and praying for months for thesecomplainers to hit the door...I am about ready to hit it myself and totry to take my pastor with me. You trouble makers will never besatisfied. That is becoming obvious. All I can do is pray for you.
ITHINK WE SHOULD SHOULD STOP AND PRAY FOR THE CHURCH NOT JUST FORBELLVUE BUT FOR ALL CHURCHES SATEN IS WORKING TO BREAK UP AND THIS ISJUST WHAT HE LIKES STOP ALL THIS TALK AND START TO PRAY MAY GOD BLESSUS ALL DAVID
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Ex-Bellevue Follower
Itappears that Steve Gaines wants as much control over Bellevue as he canget. Shouldn't the deacon body be deciding what to do in thesesituations as a group?? Why does Steve Gaines write his own rules and,why on earth are some people still attending Bellevue letting him getaway with it? Sin and destruction are a cancer to a church but Bellevuecan be saved IF they get rid of Steve Gaines. I've seen and heardnothing good from Bellevue since Gaines became it's 'pastor'. I wouldnot recommend this church to any families looking for a church home aslong as Gaines is there.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: B
Giveit a chance please. A member since 1972, Bellevue daycare worker onSundays, I have two children there every Sunday. Something like thishas been our worse nightmare & hopefully nothing has happened toany of the children. Please do not rush with the knee-jerk, moblynching mind. Our unfortunate "legal process" makes us, I do not likeit either but please give this a chance to work out. The book can bedeceiving, lets see whats inside,OK ?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: me
Thisis why I don't go along with organized religion, especially theorganizations whose foundation is obviously money that STAYS within thechurch. Maybe if the "leaders" of Bellevue took some of the millions ittook to build the baseball fields, movie theatre, hundred-acre "templeof God" (which, by the way, I'm sure God is SO proud...thought yourriches were to come in Heaven?)etc, instead of sending it to thirdworld countries to people who really need it, and to those missionarieswho are REALLY doing God's work, maybe this wouldn't have happened.Maybe if the "leaders" hearts were in the right place, these slightoversights would have never happened.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Concerned Mother & Grandmother
Thosecalling for Dr. Gaines resignation are doing so because of hisarrogance, his intimidation and hurtful conduct toward severallong-time staff members, deacons, and church members, the numerousexamples of poor judgment. This tragic revelation is the latest in aseries of missteps by this pastor.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
What's really disturbing is that we have been paying this child molestor with our tithes.
I applaud Mike Spradlin for his courage to stand up and speak out.Anyone who knows this man, knows he is telling the truth. You can seehow many people actually support Steve Gaines. I believe there werearound 800 people at Wednesday night church. Let's see, that's out ofhow many? 29,000 or more!!!!!!
Comeon now - 17 years ago. You have no way of knowing who knew what andcertainly nobody will speak up now. Who knows if Dr. Rogers knew or not- you will never know - period. A man went to his pastor for help.Isn't that what we are told to do? What if it was you and he went andblabbed it? You would want his head on a platter. He took this man'sconfession and who knows what was discussed. It is between the man, hispastor and God. When he found out it may be happening again, he put theman on leave - now everyone wants both their heads on a platter. So arethe stone throwers going to dig into everyone's past that teaches aclass, keeps the nursery, hands out bulletins, etc? The bible says: Forall have sinned.... If you decide to go somewhere else, it will beanother problem - maybe someone working in the kitchen didn't washtheir hands after using the restroom. There was only one mold for Dr.Rogers and everyone is trying to force Dr. Gaines in that mold. Getover it - he won't fit. He has his own mold that the majority voted onto call him to this church. Don't let the devil get his way onsplitting the church. This is the time to stand together!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Howquick we are to blame our Pastor (Dr Gaines) on how this situation washandled. Of course we have all the facts and are able to judge just howgood (or bad) Pastor Gaines handled this situation. Based on ourknowledge of the facts, we call for Dr Gaine's resignation. In realitythese types of decisions are based on preconceived ideas of what may ormay not have happened. We are all too quick to blame Dr gaines for theway he handled this situation. This is kind of like the "blame BUSH"mentality of so many people in our world today. They always seem toknow the correct way something should have been handled. In realitythey are people of little faith looking for any way they can to rundown our Church and our pastor. What they should be doing is prayingfor the unity of our church and our pastor along with the Paul Williamsfamily. Jesus will forgive us for our sins (no matter how bad), but weare often reluctant to forgive others. Instead of forgiving, thesepeo-ple want to convict. How sad it is that we have people with solittle faith. Those that condemn Dr Gaines and our Church should take along hard look at themselves. Are these people so pure that they thinkthemselves sinless? They really need to be applying the principles thatJesus teaches us.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: not a member
Over2000 years ago the apostle Paul was forgiven for his horrid crimesagainst Christians. He is accountable for spreading the Gospel thrumuch of the world. What is being spread today?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Mom of 3, Bellevue Member
Ilove our pastor, Dr. Gaines, and I loved Dr. Rogers. The problem isthat everyone wants Dr. Gaines to be Dr. Rogers and that will neverhappen. Dr. Rogers, we miss him dearly, passed away and Dr. Gaines cannot be him. If you are a member, you need support the church bysupporting our chosen leader. Saving Bellevue is a huge problem withour church. Everyone is too busy finding fault in every word andmovement of Dr. Gaines when these people need to be spending time inprayer for our church and our pastor. Our church needs to focus onGod!!!! As to the issue at hand, hindsight is ALWAYS 20/20. I see thelogic in his thinking. This happened 17 years ago and has servedBellevue for 30 years. The man I am sure repented and was askingforgiveness from Dr. Gaines and our pastor granted this. Hopefully Dr.Gaines has learned from hindsight to always report a criminal act nomatter when it occured. But more than anything I hope Dr. Gaines willstay at Bellevue. If our church can not come together with him, I willleave also!!!!!!!!!!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Concerned Bellevue Mom
AsDr. Rogers taught us, we are to hate the sin, but love the sinner.Also, he taught us although we are forgiven of our sins, we still mustdeal with the consequences of that sin! Steve Gaines must deal with theconsequences of his absence of integrity and responsibility with regardto this situation of the sexual sin of this minister. Steve Gaines putmy children and other children in harms way by allowing this man tostay for 6 months! He has forfeited his rights to remain in the pulpitat our beloved BBC! God, please have mercy on us!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: geraldam
Satan'sgreatest joys is when he can split a church. This man has beenagonizing with this for many years. He is not and has not been a threatto children. The only reason anyone knew of this is because he broughtit up himself. Dr. Gaines has tried to protect the man as well as thecongregation. Satan can not and will not win!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Gardendale follower
Thisis the same Steve Gaines who fired a minister at GFBC for having anillicit relationship with another member; i.e. an assistant orchestraleader and a member of the orchestra. Seems to be mighty one-sided.Maybe he needed the support of PW with all the problems he has beenhaving.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Iam a current member and find it very hard to listen to the rawarrogance and Hollier than though messages coming from the pulpit andthe disgraceful administrative decisions that are being made. I wouldlike to see a public church wide vote on him staying.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Praying for the William's fam.
Iknow the accused personally. God forgives us or our sins when ask(thoseof us who are saved)never to bring them up again. I am NOT defendingwhat has happened (17 years ago)by any means......this is a veryserious situation. The last thing this family needs is ridicule. I amgoing to pray that the Lord punish the tounge of those who know nothingof the details and still continue to talk.I am also parying for thefamily of the victim for healing. God nows all.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Puzzled
It'sa church matter. Why does the media think the whole world should knoweverything in the world? Let Bellevue handle the situation. Dr Gainesdid what he thought was right. He did inherit the situation. Seems likejust a few people have always been against Dr Gaines the minute he setfoot into Bellevue. Maybe those few people ought to leave.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: exbellevue member
themen involved in the admin. at bellevue have lost their focus and towhom their committment should be given. their main focus is savingbellevue at all cost and have lost sight of whom they serve. the listis endless. gaines, mark, chuck, harry smith bryan miller etc. thesemen need to get out of this picture and examine their hearts. this isunbelieveable. paul williams should be removed without pay (the widowsmite) and investigated. please do not let bellevue cover this up withthe pretense of investigating it. steve needs to leave now and bellevueneeds a good housecleaning now. please to protect the body of
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Viewer in West Helena
You without sin cast the first stone. If Dr. Gaines should go they're probably many others that should resign.
Ifeel like this is another witch hunt for Bro. Steve Gaines, whom I loveand fully support unless I am ever given a reason not too. Under hispreaching, I have grown so much closer to the Lord. He reminds me ofthe Apostle Peter - the man made many mistakes - but God continued touse him. Dr. Gaines made a few mistakes along the way - and hasadmitted to them and asked for his congregations forgiveness. I don'tfeel like this issue should be a call for his resignation. There aresome that have been after him since the get go -- and they are usingthis horrible event to turn others against him.
The real focus here should be on the Williams family. Think about themthis Christmas - as they have to relive the horror of 17 years ago at atime when families are supposed to be together. I'm not saying that Mr.Williams should be allowed to be a minister at the church - not by anymeans, and the Lord and law will deal with him accordingly. However,his family needs prayer - not judgement.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Laughing Stock
Wakeup members of Bellevue. Be prepared to lose respect from all people offaith that live in Memphis if your pastor continues in this capacity.
I am embarrassed for you.
Bellevue has been a bulwark of this community and the current group of church "leaders" make a mockery of Dr. Rogers' legacy.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: 30 year member
Thereal problems swirling around Dr. Gaines have yet to come to light. Ido not know what the problem is but there is something not right. SteveGaines and most of our leadership needs to do the right thing andresign and the sooner the better. We need a pastor and a leadershipthat will openly and honestly answer questions and be accountable andnot the white wash, politically correct non-answers provided by the socalled Communications Committee.
Thank you Mike Spraddlin for your stand and call to do the right thing.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Forgiven and Forgiving
Thetruth is that our church (along with others)is under attack -- butsurprisingly the pawns are disgruntled church members who did not landin the positions desired when Dr. Gaines came on staff. Now, he isbeing railroaded! People, (Christians??) -- stop and think who is beinghurt ---- it is the body of Christ and YOU are responsible. Spend yourenergy for Christ and not against Him!!!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Pennie
IThink people need to think about the season and the reason forChristmas! If you are a Christian and read your Bible and believe whatit says and listen to your Pastor, you will know that this is just theend of time and the devil at work!!!!!!!. Steve Gaines must be a trueman of God or the devil wouldn't be fighting so hard to get him out ofthe church. Maybe the Baptists are worried about how real his preachingis. I know a home town where he is welcome back anytime!!!!!!!! Keepbelieving Steve because we believe in you.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Former Bellevue Member
SGwants to stay? Sure, but my family is leaving!!! After 24 years ofgoing to Bellevue one man who has been there for one year is forcingmany people out under the guise of like it or leave. Well, he won, weare leaving.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Whenthe prostitute was confronted by the Pharasis, Jesus said, "He who hasno sin may cast the first stone." You are calling Mr. Williams a"rapist" when no mention of that fact is mentioned. Molestation can beseveral different acts without rape. If Mr. Williams were a habitualchild molester, this would have been brought out many years ago. Oneincident does not define the man. Have you ever taken anything fromwork, ie, pencil, eraser, etc.? Then you can be called a "thief". Dr.Rogers was not aware of this nor is Dr. Gaines condemning. Only God cancondemn and only God can change things. I'm fed up with the constantslander and belittling. I assure you, if God does not want Gainesthere, he will not be there.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: john
theres alot of broken glass to walk on with barefeet in this situation
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Gaines supporter
Themedia needs to investigate both sides of the story more fully. There isgreat support for Dr. Gaines' leadership in the midst of this tragicrevelation.
The naysayers have clouded the issue, misplacing the blame for thehorrible incident of 17 years ago. They have jumped past a right focuson the perpetrator to attack the Pastor and other leaders. Blinded byhate, they also publicly demean the victim in their sad attempt todefame the Pastor.
Itsounds to me that Bellevue members that are complaining about Dr.Gaines thought Bellevue was a perfect church prior to him coming, wellI can assure you things don't start coming out of the closet overnight.If these complainers would Pray for their pastor instead of trying tobash him & pray for their church maybe the devil wouldn't begetting so many footholds. I think the problem is these people don'tlike change, but as sure as we live in this world there is going to bechange. I'm sure Dr. Gaines didn't know what to do since some peoplehave already been throwing rocks at him almost since he got there.
My pastor happens to have been an associate pastor under Dr. Gaines forseveral years & he has nothing but good things to say about him.
God says blessed is the peacemaker not peacebreaker.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue member
The only thing Dr Steve Gaines is guilty of in my opinion is having abig and forgiving heart that by the way has not been shown to him bymany who call themselves members.I pray the Williams family and theGaines Family can forgive the callous way the congregation hasvictimized them in order to promote our own agenda's
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Wrong Family
Ithought Bellevue was a church of believers. How can you say thesethings against your Pastor and your brother in Christ. We couldn't bein the same family. Our Heavenly Father taught forgiveness andexemplified it also through his Son. He forgave the woman who committedadultery and told her to sin no more. So, let me ask all of you. He whois without SIN start throwing. If you are not without sin, then startpraying for your brother and forgive him. It was 17 years ago. Why makethis man and his victim, live in the past. No one's past should dictatetheir future, unless their is evil among you. Please STOP, airing yourchurch's business for the sinner to say" Oh, yea! told you they arejust like us. Why go to church? How effective can you be when you saythings about each other and about your Pastor. God forbid. Let's bringout the magnifying glass on YOU! What sins have you committed, lying,stealing, backbitting, adultery, fornication,lusting, etc. "He that iswithout sin cast the first stone". All of us live in a glass house andGod sees everything. Your sins just hadn't surfaced yet. Be careful howyou judge less you be tempted". Forgive and restore the brother inLOVE. It make help his victim to forgive and move on with their life.But if they are watching you, that will never happen.
Crying Tears of Sadness
WMCTV.COM Visitor: BLH
Iwas always taught that as a Christian, we were not judge the sins ofothers. There is only one Judge these men will have to answer to and itis not for us to worry about.We have to trust that God will take careof this matter.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: visitor 2
Sounds as if there is (and has been) a problem
with transparency in the church. Ministers are not
demi-gods; they are susceptible to sin too. This is
why it is so dreadfuly important that ministers be
held accountable, which, of course, requires a
smaller church body and personal relationships
with a pastor who knows individual names.
However, there is something to be said for
forgiveness when one has asked for it. I agree with
an earlier commenter: there is a difference
between forgiveness and consequences. The
minister MUST face those consequences (which
should definately take him out of a ministery
position); we MUST also forgive him if he asks for
forgiveness because we also have been forgiven
WMCTV.COM Visitor: 30 year member
Ifyou think the leadership at Bellevue is so honorable then why were themembers of Bellevue not given the customary two week notice prior tothe special business meeting when Steve Gaines was elected SeniorMinister? Why were not provided with the name of who we were voting onprior to the meeting? This too is customary.
I mourn every day about what is happening in my Church. I am alsodeeply grieved for the Williams family. I have known them for 30 yearsand I am still in deep shock. May God have mercy on us. Even withforgiveness there are actions that must be taken.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Proud to be a Christian
Iwonder how Jesus would have handled this situation? After all, if wecall ourselves "Christian", that does indicate that we follow Hisexample. Perhaps he would have handled it the same way he did with theprostitue. It's called forgiveness, and grace and mercy. How many ofyou would like your past sins put on display? Perhaps Dr. Spradlinshould consider his own past sins before becoming so judgmental. Lethim without sin cast the first stone. Last time I checked the Bible sinwas sin, there is no "big" sin or "little" regardless of our personalviews. Children should absolutely be protected. I am sure that Dr.Gaines insured that they were upon learning of this matter. How longdoes Mr. Williams have to pay for his past sins? Would forever make usfeel better? We prefer to humiliate him and make sure he is punished byour standards. Vengence is ours after all, regardless of what the Biblesays, right? Dr. Spradlin should study a little more closely the Biblethat he teaches. Dr. Gaines should continue to lead this congregationafter the pattern of Jesus.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: LAURA FORD
THEREIS A SMALL AMOUNT OF PEOPLE CAUSING DISCORD AND HURTING THE CAUSE OFCHRIST. BRO STEVE GAINES IS A GODLY MAN WHO IS LEADING THE CHURCH IN AGODLY WAY. HE DID INHERIT ALOT OF JUNK . IT FELL IN HIS LAP AND HEDEALT WITH IT . THE MAJORITY OF THE CHURCH IS BEHIND HIM. YE WITHOUTSIN CAST THE FIRST STONE. REMEMBER THIS BEFORE STRIKING OUT AGAINST THECHURCH; THE DEVIL ENJOYS THE DIVISION. I AM 110 ‰ BEHIND OUR PASTOR ANDHIS STAFF; CURRENT MEMBER OF BELLEVUE BAPTIST CHURCH!!! CAN YOU EVENIMAGINE TRYING TO FEEL THE LATE DR. ADRIAN ROGERS SHOES; I THINK BROSTEVE GAINES IS FOLLOWING VERY WELL!!pray for the church instead oftalking negatively ..
WMCTV.COM Visitor: A Bellevue Member for 29 years
KnowingAdrian Rogers as I did, I can say without hesitation, he didn't know.Over the years, I witnessed his rapid and just response to more thanone person on staff who needed to be dealt with. It was a sad time forall members, but thankfully, we had a Pastor who took God’s Wordseriously when dealing with our own. Had he known about THIS person, hewould have never allowed him to remain on staff for a day! As Joycesaid, the sex offender told her himself that the Pastor [Adrian] neverknew. You can’t get more clear than that.
About SavingBellevue.com, I am thankful for the site and the meninvolved. I especially thank Riad Saba for taking the stand he has, andkeeping his integrity intact. What an amazing Christian this man is...as Adrian Rogers often acknowledged. Had I not read Riad's letters onthat site, I would not have even known about the other issues involved.
1. The ridiculous mishandling of church funds... like giving money to achurch whose doctrines are not scripturally based... the elevatedsalary for Steve Gaines and others, etc. None of these expenditureswent through the proper channels.
2. To make matters worse, consider the intimidation shown to the meninvolved with SavingBellevue.com - - especially by Steve Gaines!Shameful!
3. Add to all of that, the issue of people in the church being told tobe SILENT [quit saying, "AMEN"] during the service for ANY REASON isoutrageous in itself. However, to be done because Steve Gaines had a"vison" in a dream that the offending member had a problem is, ineffect, saying that the vision was from God. Please!
Add everything together and you have a Pastor that has gone off thedeep end. Bellevue needs a strong, Godly, spiritual leader with a pureheart. If Steve Gaines magically became one on the spot, it would befar too late to undo the damage. How sad it was to see the Channel 5Newscast that showed the sanctuary almost EMPTY already!!! If a newPastor isn’t in that pulpit soon, I don’t believe Bellevue will survive6 months.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bill Moor
Ifa church with the state's largest number of members can't find aninvestigative committee to get the facts and sufficient evidence longbefore six months, the pastor or whoever is responsible, should resign.If Mr. Williams is guilty of molesting a child, ffire him NOW!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member Too
Pastor Gaines is a great Pastor and I support him
100‰ in the way he has dealt with this difficult
situation. The incident apparently happened 17
years ago and there is no evidence that anything
else has happened since. The man should certainly
be investigated, but he should be treated
compassionately. God changes lives, He changes
people. We know that. Had pastor Gaines
condemned this man for something he did 17
years ago, without a thorough investigation, he
would have been the worst kind of hypocrite. I
thank God for a Pastor
like Steve Gaines.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Nonmember, but praying
Whydo so many people consider Bellevue Baptist Dr. Adrian Rodgers' church?I thought it was "God's" church. Maybe this is where the problemlies.... God built that church - not Dr. Rodgers! From all of thecomments I've read, I'm getting the sense that much of Bellevue was andis a bunch of "Adrian worshippers." This portion of the membership arepushing the nonbelievers even further away with all of their bashing.Is that what God wants for his church? This isn't about Dr. Rodgers ORDr. Gaines, but rather the person who committed the crime. A trueChristian deals in love, compassion and forgiveness. Have Christianslost this somewhere along the way? I was saddened to hear that Ms.Rodgers and Dr. Spradlin felt compelled to comment in such a negativeway. The church needs prayer and support - not more bashing. How manynonbelivers will never know God now because of the negative commentsbeing thrown out by the church membership? We never know who islistening, and how what we say will affect the rest of their lives.This judgemental attitude is why so many people never cross the churchdoorway. Think about this, Bellevue, and pray hard!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: saved wife and mother
DRSTEVE GAINES ; DO NOT ALLOW THE DEVIL TO USE THESE PEOPLE TO DESTROYYOU. THE DEVIL WOULD LOVE NOTHING BETTER THAN TO DIVIDE AND CONCOREBELLEVUE BAPT. YOU ARE DOING A GREAT JOB. AS FOR ME AND MY HOUSE WEWILL SERVE THE LORD; AT BELLEVUE BAPT CHURCH. I TRUST YOUR JUDGEMENTAND AM PROUD TO CALL YOU PASTOR!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Disgruntled Christian
Preachersseem to think that they are not subject to the same laws as laypersons. Gaines is, in my opinion, a person who suffers from acuteegotism and arrogance. He should listen to Dr. R. G. Lee's sermon "PayDay Some Day" every morning before anything else.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Leslie
Ithink it is terrible the way people are attacking Bro. Gaines. A pastoris there to counsel the church family. What if he went to thecongregation with every matter that everyone came to talk to him inconfidence about? Then he would be criticized for not keeping theconfidentiality of counseling. PLUS - this man was hired by Dr. Rogers- NOT Dr. Gaines. If he has been in counseling for 17 years then Dr.Rogers would have known about it.
Idon’t go to church at Bellevue or any where as a matter of fact. I amcurrently looking for a new church home. I just wanted to state myopinion on the whole situation that is going on with Dr Gaines. I thinkthat the situation and the response of the the people is a bitridiculous and immature. I believe God is looking down in shame at howhis people are acting. Do you believe that God wants the church tornapart? God says that we are to love our enemies and that the greatestgift is love but nothing that I have seen from the people has been outof love. We as Christians are suppose to be living for God and reachingout to the lost and bringing him glory and no doubt that what was doneby this man is ungodly but Dr Gaines did not do anything wrong. If youwant to talk about being ungodly why don’t we bring up all of thethings in the past that everyone else has done that are sins. When thewoman that committed adultery was brought to Jesus he did not stone herbut he forgave her and drew a line in the sand telling them that if anyof them had not sinned then they could be the first to throw the stone.Before we start pointing out faults in other people why don’t we lookat ourselves first. Make sure that there is not a plank in our eyebefore we try to take out the spec of someone else’s eye. God has beenteaching me so much about how we as Christians treat other people andhow we judge them. It is not our place to judge for we are not perfectand have sinned also. A sin is a sin no matter what you do and if youhave never sinned then and only then do I think we have the right topoint out the faults of others. Do these people care at all about whatthey are doing to Dr Gaines and this other man and their families? Ithink that we should be showing them love and support and praying forthem. My family recently left what had been our church home for over 20years because of a ridiculous situation. God has been speaking to me onthis issue so much lately and I think that we as Christians need to tryand see the situation from God’s view and not be so stuck on ourselvesand what we want. We need to stop acting so foolish. No wonder theworld is getting worse and worse everyday. I believe it is because weas Christians are not setting a good example and we are the ones thatare suppose to be the light of the world and if I didn’t alreadypersonally know Christ I don’t think I ever would because of the way Ihave seen Christians act and how we seem to be so evil. God hasentrusted us with the responsibility of carrying his name and making itknown. Why do we take that for granted? I believe that we need to carrythat responsibility to the best of our ability and with pride.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue member
Blessyour hearts...how deceived you are if you think Gaines is the man forBellevue. Sure he was solemn this evening in asking to stay atBellevue. He's been called out, finally!! (By the way...what was heFINALLY doing in a Wednesday night service???) As many Bellevue folkshave thought that Paul Williams was a man that could be trusted (meincluded) and now we find out we couldn't...how do you know you cantrust Gaines??? I'm still a member at Bellevue but I had to startlooking for another church way before all the crazy things Gaines hasdone came out into the open. Even my mother stated how arrogant shethought he was when she watched him during Dr. Rogers funeral. I wastotally ready to accept Gaines as my pastor, especially since Dr.Rogers seemed to hold him in high regard...well let me tell you...Ibelieve that Dr. Rogers was deceived too. How many of us, if we were inDr. Rogers presence didn't always put on our BEST behavior!!! So didGaines!! I truly believe that Dr. Rogers would be very upset withGaines and not just in this situation but how Gaines has handled thingssince he got to Bellevue.
I'm glad that Saving Bellevue website is there for those who reallywant to know the truth in regards to Gaines and how he operates.
I'm sorry that this has happened at Bellevue. I've been there off andon for 20+ years. I moved back to Memphis partly because of Bellevue.It saddens me that someone came to Bellevue not to lead but for his ownagenda. Satan may be having a great time, but God might be allowingthis to happen for reasons He knows and we may know someday.
And by the way...I'm tired of hearing people (and even the pastor andhis minister of music) say "leave the church"...that's a very mature,Christian, family-building thing to say!!
I believe that Gaines needs to leave as he hasn't been honest, humble,or caring. How can you have a pastor like that? I believe that manyhave been blinded...remember in the last days there will be falseprophets, teachers, etc. Apparently those that are wanting Gaines tostay aren't ones that have been at Bellevue very long or ever heardwhat past pastors have taught us.
It's not an "us against them" situation...it's "right against wrong"...period!!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: A
Finally!!The membership of Bellevue waking up. The Paster Search Commity mademistake in selecting Steve Gaines. They could not have picked anyonemore the opposite of Dr. Rogers!
Dr. Rogers lived with a twinkle in his eye and a kick to his step on adaily basis because Jesus and integrity were his best friends.
He demanded transparancy!
His compassion was immeasurable but, never clouded his judgement ofright and wrong. Let's just cover a few things he did and would havenever done:
1. Dr. Rogers waited a year while learning the ways of Bellevue beforehe began making any changes. He showed maturity in judgement byallowing the membership time build faith and to respect him. 2. Hewould have never sent a hit crew to speak to a long standing churchmember about saying "AMEN" too loud and too often. If it was a problemhe would have graciously and quietly handled it himself. 3. If theintegrity of the church finances were being called into questions byfaithful longterm members, he would have immediately opened the booksin a way that would would silence the loudest voice of question. Hewould not dodge and squirm by pulling in a few comrades to vouch forhim. 4. He would never try to intimidate a deacon who is askingquestions by rounding up a posse, showing up to a gated communityunannounced, trespassing by climbing a 4 ft fence. Then to top it offminimize the story in front of the church with no apology to thedeacon. 5. He would not participate in a "Travelgate" scandal whereadditonal free trips were not applied back to the church in some way.6.Above all he would not leave even a "forgiven" admitted molester in achurch position where there was any possibility that he could re-offendwith another victim.
HELLO... the reasons molesters have to register their address isbecause they do it again. Yes, you forgive him, but you put him out ofharms way immediately. A long time ago Dr. Rogers told a story that Iwill never forget. He said he was at an office building and theelevator opened and there was an attractive lady on the elevator byherself. She looked up and waited on him to enter. He said," No thankyou, I will wait on the next." Then he shared that he feared that if hehad entered the elevator without anyone else and it for some unknownreason had a power failure ... it would be all of Memphis that he hadbeen stuck all afternoon with this attractive lady on the elevator.That's the kind of scrutiny that Dr. Rogers imposed on himself in orderto protect his reputation and the reputation at Bellevue. He was a manof high standards and character. That's why Bellevue went withoutscandal for so many years. If Steve Gaines had one teaspoon of the thesame character he would resign and take his posse with him before hetotally dismantles everything that Dr. Rogers worked so hard to acheive.
Mrs. Rogers ... PLEASE SPEAK OUT MORE!!
A Fellow Christian ...
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Peoplelisten to yourselves. You call yourselves Christians, but you areNOTHING like Christ. We are to love sinners and not the sin. We are toturn the other cheek. Listen to yourselves....you are making a fool outof our church not saving it. Let Br. Steve do his job, he's doing thebest he can.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: velma weaver
PASTOR GAINES LEAVING OR STAYING IS THE LEAST OF THE CHURCH'S PROBLEMS.THERE ARE OBVIOUSLY DOORS OPEN THAT SHOULD BE CLOSED.CHILDREN SHOULD BEPROTECTED AND IT TAKES MORE PEOPLE THAN GAINES IN THE CHURCH TO PROTECTTHEM. IF FINGERS ARE POINTED THEY SHOULD BE POINTED AT EVERYONE. THISIS A SEVENTEEN YEAR OLD ISSUE AND GAINES JUST SHOWED UP A COUPLE OFDAYS AGO. IT IS HARD TO BELIEVE THAT DR. RODGERS WAS TOTALLY IN THEDARK ABOUT THIS MATTER, SINCE IT IS SEVENTEEN YEARS OLD. DR. RODGES WASA MAN WHO ACCORDING TO HIS OWN ADMISSION TALKED TO AND RECEIVEDRESPONSES FROM GOD FOR YEARS. PERFECTION IS ONLY FOUND IN GOD AND WERECEIVE IT THROUGH CHRIST JESUS. BELLEVUE FAMILY ,ASK GOD FOR WISDOM,OBEY IT, AND LET'S GET THIS PROBLEM FIXED SO THAT PASTOR GAINES CAN DOWHAT GOD HAS CALLED HIM TO DO, AND OUR CHILDREN CAN BE SAFE. GOD BLESSYOU DR. GAINES, I KNOW ITS HARD PASTORING SO MANY PERFECT PEOPLE WHOKNOW JUST WHAT TO DO IN EVERY SITUATION AFTER IT HAS BECOME A MESS. YOUDID WHAT YOU THOUGHT WAS BEST IN A SITUATION WHERE PEOPLE HAD JUSTEXPERIENCED THE LOST OF A GREAT PASTOR. I PRAY FOR YOU>>>.VELMA
WMCTV.COM Visitor: christian
Howbout the fact that this was 17 years ago and he's had lots ofprofessional help. Are we going to subject him to a life only remindedof what he did wrong nearly 20 years ago. I think most of us have mademajor mistakes, grown and moved on. Jesus loves Paul, we should too. Weneed to look at it like Jesus would. He has a strong walk with the LOrdnow, but so many so called christians want to judge him for somethigndone 20 years ago. I'd hate to think what our judgement from the Lordwould be like if he were the same way. What Paul and his family needare PRAYER!! Quit being so selfish and argumentive and lift this guy upbefore the Lord!!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Stephanie Gatewood
Iam truly in disbelief as how fast we are to judge others. What is evenmore horrific is the fact that we are all sinners. If we have not notsinned, let us cast the first stone. I have am a Youth Leader atBellevue as well as a community leader, Satan is so very busy rightnow, and he is so very happy that it appears that his division isworking. I would strongly encourage the media to report on the issuesthat are most effecting the community, by all means, Leave Bellevue outof this, If in fact this were your employment record, would you want ithung out for all to see? I do think that it should have been addressed,but not in the avenue that it was taken. as it relates to asking Dr.Gaines to Resign, that is not the answer, we as leaders need to embracehim now more than ever, again, those who have not sinned, please by allmeans cast the first stone!! Let's lead by example, let's not conformto the rest of society, we need to pray for our leaders, is that notthe lessons that we have just been in constant study about?Spirino???"Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those wholove it will eat its fruit." Proverbs 18:21
WMCTV.COM Visitor: gary
DrRogers said Steve was the man. Our pulpit committee prayed and fastedand said Steve was the man. The church prayed and voted and said Stevewas the man. Steve said he was reading his bible one Saturday atBellvue and felt God was tellimg him to come to Bellevue. Was everybodywrong? Did we not hear from God? It seems to be very simple to me. IfBro. Steve was called to Bellevue by God, we best accept him as ourpastor. If he was called by God and we reject him, woe to us! As for meand my house, we will have to hear from the Lord before we abandonGod's choice... and it will probably have to be audible. Bro. Steve andDonna we are praying for you and standing shoulder to shoulder with you.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: A Friend of Belllevue
I am deeply saddended at the way this is going down and I can tell youno one goes to church for this kind of stress. In fact this stress iswhat has turned many people away for church. I have heard Dr. Gainespreach and he is a man of God, he made an adminstrative judgementalerror but that is no reason to cruify him. Paul Williams should havetaken a leave or quit long before now. Let's face it Jesus could nothave replaced Dr. Rogers and won every ones support at any church. Tothe church I hope you don't let the devil tear you apart, you have awonderful ministry and are doing many good things. A church is not justbricks and mortar but people working together for a common good. Pleasedon't let this tear Bellevue apart, Dr Gaines is a wonderful man andpastor, different from Dr. Rogers yes and I am sure everyone didn'tagree with Dr. Rogers. Our prayers are with you Bellevue, you do manygood and wonderful things and Dr. Gaines stay on target God will setthings right. A matter like this makes me want to stop going to churchand believe me many Catholic priest have gone down who were not guiltyand charged by individuals wanting to make money. No one wants to hurtyour or anyone else's children.I bet in hearing some of the youngpeople talk they are not as critical and condeming of Dr. Gaines asthere parent. Good luck Bellevue.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: C Van Marshall
Thankyou Dr. Mike Spradlin, I am so grateful that someone of your reputationhas finally stood up against the demonic forces and powers that arereigning over at Bellevue Church . Please know that opposition willonly increase now that you have taken a stand, It has before and restassure it will now, but be assured, God is with you and that you neednot be afraid of what man should try to do against you and or yourorganization.
love you Dr. Mike, God Bless you Brother!
Your friend C Van Marshall
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Brother in Christ
Ithink that some of the members at Bellevue are being very hypocritical.The Bible is very clear about Christians should be forgiving and gentlewith each other. This is a case of �He that is without sin cast thefirst stone�. I believe that if Jesus walked into Bellevue today Hewould not be accepted. Dr. Spradiln should be ashamed of himself beinga student and teacher of the Gospel knowing full well that Jesus wouldnot behave the way some Bellevue members are. I�m calling for hisresignation as President of the Mid-America Bible College. I pray thatGod will show His true love to Paul Williams and that maybe he can finda church that is living what it preaches!!!!!!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: My Kids Dad
I know Paul WIlliams personally and can tell you that he has minstered to me greatly and my family. I am a much godlier Dad because of Paul Williams.He and his wife love the Lord tremendously. I do not know if any ofthis is true. But his son is now married with children, and also agodly man. Paul's daughter is married to a full time missionary.
Paul has led a Bible Fellowship Class of young marrieds for more than a decade. Almost 95‰ of that class is active in ministry at church. Theyare not pew warmers or complainers. There have been over a dozen BibleFellowship Class teachers come from his class, several missionaries,deacons, and committee members, and chairmen. The effect of theministry of Paul Williams will effect generations. My children forexample have a godlier father because of Pauls investment in me and myfamily.
As for Pastor Gaines, he preaches with passion. He loves the Lord and does not compromise the word of God. He not only loves the Lord but he loves his church members.He has come into an organization and chose not to clean house but tryto love and work with the staff that was here. He is pastoring a churchalmost 10 times the size of his previous church. He is a man.He is going through a learning curve, but I am going to enjoy watchingthe Lord use him to grow my faith and the ministry of our church.
The fact that he is willing to stay on as pastor proves to me that hefeels he is where God wants him. Just read the comments of some ofthese wonderful nice loving church members. I wonder how many childrenare being served roast preacher every Sunday afternoon? Those are thekids I worry for. And yet despite the fact that these misled carnalfolk have taken God's judgment seat and condemned him, he still sayshe wants to stay and be our pastor. Maybe his middle name is Timex.
The person who says that for every person who is
complaining there are a hundred who would back
up "our beloved pastor" may be factual but I take
great offense to saying those who are concerned
can leave I have been a member of bellevue for 22
years, and have no desire to leave the place where
I was raised. Why should those of us who are
concerned about the way things are run walk away
and let a place we have loved for years be
destroyed by a man who has only been in power
for a year? To me that seems ridiculous!
Savingbellevue.com has done nothing but bring
together resources for people to gain knowledge
which is something every member of the church
should do. No one should be led blindly by man
WMCTV.COM Visitor: PK2
Well...SavingBellevue crew, you are getting what you want...attention. Jim Haywood,I fear God's wrath on you for "touching" His shepherd, Steve Gaines.Your website has accompolished much alright, the unbelievers areshaking their heads happy they aren't involved. Those who might havecome to our church and accepted Christ will probably never darken thedoor now. You have done a great job of slander, ridicule, reportingthings only heard of and causing most of us to become sick at ourstomachs at what we've read and seen. Oh yes, I saw the wonderfuldepiction of your grace and mercy as a Christian when the picture wasput on the site representing the deacons taking an oath. How could you?My children happened to walk in and see this and the oldest siad, "Howcan Christians hate so bad?". So thank you do all of you who aren'tpraying, reading your Bible but running your mouth and spitting ourchurch. Thanks to you my children will not come to know the Bellevue Ihave come to love. It isn't Steve Gaines fault but all of ours whopossibly didn't give him a chance to fill some very BIG shoes. Forthose who aren't Christians who have been drug into this, give Jesus achance...that's what he's all about. Maybe we should learn to forgive,reach out to others and support the decisions our leaders make. That iswhat the Bible tells us to do. Oh and by the way, ministers bleed justlike we do, when they go to the store the cashier doesn't say, "oh manof God? pass without paying, they hurt and their families hear all andhurt worse. They also put their pants on one leg at a time and sturgglewith hard decisions just like the average person. I have to say,although I don't think Steve says this, "if you don't likeit....leave"! I agree the PW thing is bad, really bad and he should nothave been around but I'm not ready to railroad my pastor or anyone elsehis actions. Let's all just pray and feel sure that God will be incontrol. He does have a plan for all of us and when we can't see hishand...trust his heart!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: My Kids Dad
I am telling you that there is no need to worry about whether or not Paul Williams was lurking the halls searching for a victim.
And your paranoiya is premature. It says you are not trusting Christand is simply ludicrous. Paul came in with his lovely wife, taught a9:30 sunday school class (something not required of him as a minister),and reported immediately to the invitation of the first service, thenattended the second service. Then many times he and his wife would goout and visit folk that had visited their class that morning. Paul and his wife love the Lord Jesus with all their heart and will continue to serve him whether as a minister or not.
God is not thru with Paul and his family, depsite this persecution.
These problems are family problems. They need to remain that. I wouldnot normally participate in this type of blog except I am reading fromfolk that know little and run off at the mouth (or keyboard in thiscase) and turn into a lynch mob. I want Memphians to know that it iswrong to sling mud against your own family in public. Yet they act asif they are heros. Thinking themselves to be wise, they became fools.Relax, God is in control. He knows how to deal with His own.
Hedoesn't sit by and watch and do nothing while a child of His habituallycommits unrepented sin. Pauls ministry could not have been effectivehad he been habitually in sin all these years. By the way Paul won manyawards for his public service as a fireman and is very intelligent. Hedidn't need to keep his job as a minister, he was called to be aminister. I think you should inspect the fruit before you call itrotten. As I said this is a family issue. A church family and a privatefamily. No one knows what really happened between father and son exceptthat father & son and God. If there were something inappropriateand it was NOT repented of, God would have dealt with it.
Remember that God loves you and your family. Jesus is watching over Hischurch. Had Paul been a problem the Lord would have seen to it that hewas removed. Are you guys trusting Christ at all? Sometimes I thinksome of you are in churchianity, not Christianity. You certainly cannottell me you were led of the Lord to make these comments about ourfamily in the public arena for unbelievers to judge. I know if you arelong time members then you have been taught the Word, but I think someof you are dull of hearing.For you Bellevue members out there that are torn up inside because of this. Rejoice! Focus on Jesus and be full of joy!
The enemy is trying to steal, kill and destroy. Do not let him. Stand firm in your joy of the Lord. He has conquered all of this, and Jesus will never leave you or forsake you. Treasure Him with all your heart.
Have a joyous and merry Christmas! I hope that this message has brought you some comfort, because it is all true.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue member
First of all, everyone needs to leave Dr. Adrian Rogers out of this.He OBVIOUSLY knew nothing of the molestation that took place 17 yearsago, because Williams JUST confessed it 6 months ago to Pastor Gaines.Dr. Rogers was a very traditional, conservative man and would havefired Williams immediately if he had any suspicion of those type ofsexual acts were going on between him and his son. Dr. Rogers was agreat man and pastor of our church. However, Pastor Gaines is a greatman and pastor, but he is not and will never do things the exact sameway that Dr. Rogers did them. Everyone is just going to have to acceptthat fact. Just because Pastor Gaines preaches with a different, more"modernized" style, several people are watching his every move, waitingfor him to mess up. Pastor Gaines was put in a tough position 6 monthsago, and he forgave Williams and trusted that he was making the rightdecision in letting him stay in the ministry, believing that Williams'problems were long out of the picture. However, now that it is comingout that Williams hasn't really gotten rid of his problem, everyone isblaming Pastor Gaines. Now, we, as Christians, cannot come down onPastor Gaines for trusting someone and wanting to forgive someone whocommitted a wrong over a decade before. Pastor Gaines is conducting theproper acts now by suspending Williams and sending him to counseling totry to help him. Now, we must pray for the Williams family, our church,and our pastor. We must stand behind our pastor and trust hisleadership and also be willing to forgive when mistakes are made.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Another Pastor
Absolutelyshameful and inexcuseable behavior by church members, a seminarypresident and a former pastor's wife who seem to have forgotten theteachings of Jesus in Matt 18 ... and even blaming Rick Warren ... andwe wonder why the church in America is in decline ... dear Lord,forgive us for we know not what we do!!!!!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Concerned
WMCTV.COM Visitor: 30 yr. member of Bellevue
Noone could have loved and respected Dr. Rogers more than my family. Hisgodliness,leadership , wisdom, and humility were unsurpassed. No onewill ever convince me that Dr. Rogers was taken in by Dr. Gaines orthat he would have so readily passed the pastoral leadership of BBC tothe kind of man those on savingbellevue.com describe. Most of thosefolks have done more damage to the cause of Christ and Bellevue than 10Steve Gaines' could do in a lifetime. For the most part what I've readappears to be a few pious people trying to impress each other withtheir knowledge of scripture. They should never assume that people haveleft Bellevue because of Dr. Gaines--some may have left because theydidn't like the vindictiveness of some members of the church. I don'tknow the truth about who knew what when about the PW situation andneither does anyone else unless they were directly involved. Commonsense would tell you that most likely there were others who knew aboutthis long before our new pastor even came. Could some of these bloggerswho seem to have spys every where checking on Dr. Gaines from where heeats to which movie he goes to. Let's face it-- these people have had agun at Dr. Gaines head ever since they realized he wasn't a Dr. Rogersclone and had his own personality. Maybe some of them have an ulteriormotive that we don't know about to destroy him. I just pray that the PWsituation is not the bullet they have been looki
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Cherising Truth
Forover 35 years I have learned from Adrian Rogers of God's love - and Icontinue to do so through his tapes/CD's and his messages still airedthrough Love Worth Finding Minisries, based here in Mphs. Thisremarkable man of God would be the first to tell you that he was notperfect - in fact, he pointed out that the Church is only a bunch ofsanctified sinners! As Christians, we should know what we are and neverlose sight of that - or stop depending on the saving Grace thattransforms us through Jesus Christ. I do not know how Paul Williamsand/or his family have lived this lie for so long. But I do know thatAdrian Rogers, though imperfect, lived what he taught. I was fortunateto see him "up close and personal" - I was able to observe his actionsin and out of the pulpit in many situations over many, many years. Iwas even the recipient of an apology from Adrian once for something sominor that I was amazed he would even bring it up to me!! But, itproved to me who he was - that he listned to God's Holy Spirit withinhim and acted in obedience to God's direction in His life--even when itwasn't comfortable or convenient or even when it was potentiallydetrimental to him, personally [remember the stand he took at theSBC???]...Adrian stood for Truth. He never backed down from truth - nomatter how unpleasant it was. And, if he had know the truth about PaulWilliams, he would have dealt with the situation as swiftly and firmlyas Jesus did when He drove the money-changers from the temple. Ibelieve he would have done it with a broken heart, but he wouldabsolutely not have allowed that unholiness to remain and disgrace ourGod or cause injury to the people of God. And, Joyce is of the samemoral fabric and integrity as her husband - so, if she says he did notknow, you can etch it in stone. I, for one, am gratful to God thatAdrian did not know. This is one heartache he was spared.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Southern Baptist Student
ThoughSteve Gaines may have made a mistake in oversight, what is really sadis that the Saving Bellevue people are using the scandal for their owncorrupt purposes. As a seminary student, I know that the way they havechosen to deal with problem is unscriptural and sinful.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: SO MAN
ITRULY BELIEVE EVERYTHING HAPPENS FOR A REASON SO I THINK EVERYONESHOULD STOP BASHING PASTOR GAINES AND LET HIM TELL HIS STORY OF WHY ITTOOK SIX MONTHS TO REVEAL IT. IM SURE HE HAS A VERY GOOD EXPLANATIONAND WAS PROBABLY ATTEMPTING TO PROTECT THE CHURCH AND ITS MEMBERS FROMANY EMBARASSMENT BUT REALIZED THERE WAS NOT WAY. JUST PRAY FOR HIM ANDWHAT HES DEALING WITH.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Saved by Grace. Praise to him!
Howdo I describe my heart? Broken inside, hurting, saddened. Grace andpeace to all my brothers and sisters at bellevue baptist church. Oh theday when Jesus will do away with sin and take us home with him. Myheart says not to say much but little. Lets not forget but be verymindful that we are all vile sinners. My prayer is that Gods spiritwould fill all his true children and cause us to totally submitourselves to him and his leadership. Only the holy spirit can enlightenour eyes to his will in all this. I leave one verse with everyone,everyone who is in the vine!
Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow." Isa. 1:18.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Yoong Kim
God'speople must be honest to the God and people among us. it was happened17 years ago. Dr. Gaines is morally responsble, but not deserved to beresigned. Some devils try hard to use it to expel Dr. Gaines. TheMid-America Seminary President, Dr. S. must zip his bad mouth. Shame onhim.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Marilyn G.
Iam so tired of the bickering about Pastor Steve Gaines. He was handpicked and approved by Pastor Adrian Rogers. People need to leave himalone. I would also say I wonder why this did not come to light whileDr. Rogers was at the helm. I think people need to stop crucifyingSteve Gaines and perhaps trust that he is dealing with the problem inwisdom and love. People need to stop pointing out all that is wrongwith everyone and perhaps look at themselves.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: David Fowler
Neitherthe people closely associated with the Savingbellevue website nor theMichael Spradlin are in a position to call for anyone's resignation.God is the only one to decide this issues. The Church is NOT suppose toreact and operate like the world. God does not consult popular opinionand He has not called Savingbellevue nor Michael Spradlin to speak onHis behalf. He solely moves through leadership and those in authority.And there are plenty of praying, sincere men at Bellevue in keyleadership positions who can and must discern the mind of Christ atthis time. Until then, do not let the foolish comments proceeding fromSavingbellevue and Spradlin be misinterpreted as the voice of God,because they certainly are not!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Christian Sister
Ibelive that it really doesn't matter what approach Dr. Gaines did orcould have taken; a hand full of people would and continues to findfaught. It's my belief Dr. Gaiens is called by the LORD and took theapproach of "What would JESUS do?" Yes, Dr. Gaines has inherited manyproblems that were previously hidden by prior and/or current leadershipat Bellevue. Is't it the oat of ministers to keep the confidentialityof those who confide in them? Therefore, how would the widow of Dr.Adrian Rogers know who and what was confided in her husband? I feelsure Dr. Gaines spends many hours in prayer (as did Dr. Adrian Rogers)and handles every situation based on the way God has lead him torespond. We all have skeletons in our closets. Therefore, put yourforked tounges away, pray for everyone and ask God that his will bedone.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: bellevue member
I have known the Williams family for 15 years. I have spent time intheir home and did not have any idea this had gone on. What PaulWilliams did was very wrong and he should suffer consequences. Itsounds to me like somebody brought this up after 17 years because theyknew it would rub Steve Gaines in the dirt. Please pray very hard forour church!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: A Christian
He who is without sin throw the first stone.
Would we have such controversy if it were a Catholic Church? We should!
I don't hear people saying Williams should be fired immediately orarested. All I hear is Steve Gaines should resign and he isn't thechild molestor! The worst that Gaines has done as perhaps used poorjudgement in letting this go for 6 months. If I were accused of this Iwould hope that I would not immediately be fired but time taken toinvestigate and then act accordingly.
Gaines took 6 months, I wonder why it took 17 years before someone came forward?
All this fighting and bickering isn't helping anything and the focus ison Gaines not the person who did the real wrong! What's wrong with thatpicture?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Concerned Citizen
"Blue Ribbon" consultant? Confidential internal investigation? Mrs. Joyce Rogers says? Stay out of Bellevue's "business".
I thought the "business" of Bellevue was to save souls, not face.Disgusting. The "business" of Bellevue looks like a sick version ofEnron in full coverup mode right now.
By the way, since when did a church start running "criminal"investigations? Is the Shelby County DA ignoring this? Is there aconflict of interest? If so, turn this over to the State AG office inNashville.
A crime has been committed, maybe more. Bellevue is proecting itself, not our children. Bill Gibbons, wake up!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Iwould like to say I feel it is a shame and disgrace that Christians areacting in this way. I fully believe that God called Dr. Gaines toBellevue. I can say now that an issue that existed 17yrs ago Dr. Gainesis now having to act on a problem that should have been resolved 17yrsago. I feel Dr. Gaines is a Godly man and has been under a microscopesince he walked in the door. Shame on any person who calls themselves aChristian and acting in a way to try and run a man away for somethingthat happened many yrs before he came to Bellevue. I support Dr. Gainesas my pastor and my church. Folks if you cannot see the "DEVIL" is atwork trying to ruin a great church and it's leadership. I will pray forDr. Gaines and his family each and every day and pray that he willoverlook a few spoonful of people trying to cause a problem and run himoff. God has complete charge of this matter. I must say I am verydisappointed in Mike Spradling in his comments to have Dr. Gainesresign. Dr. Spradling you need to be supportive and pray for yourpastor.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Sharon Carpenter
PaulWilliams has sinned and needs to face the consequences of that sin -which will probably mean a loss of his career and reputation, if notmore. Dr Gaines had to balance the weight of the offense (which wasgreat) in the scales of forgiveness, believing that the offense waslong time past and forgiven by those involved. Add the double edgedsword of confidentiality to the situation, and Dr. Gaines made adecision which, in retrospect, he'd probably reconsider. Haven't we allmade decisions that we'd like to change when all the facts came tolight? But Steve Gaines did not have the luxury of hindsight and Mondaymorning quarterbacking. He had to make the decision based on what heknew, was told and believed! I am glad that my pastor is a man whoextends grace to those who say they have asked forgiveness. He is a manwho has the heart of God, and the mind of God, if not the fullknowledge that God has of deeds done in the dark.
Having raised three children at Bellevue the past 13 years, I havenever experienced nor heard of any impropriety with kids. But I did notcheck my brain at the door of the church, either. My children knew totell me if they felt uncomfortable, and we had precautions in the formof family rules that were followed whether we were at the mall, a parkor at Bellevue. I have no doubt that children are as safe at Bellevueas they can ever be in this sinful world.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Dr. L. Joseph Rosas III
Itis sad to see Christians using the Bible as a weapon to accomplishpersonal agendas instead of humbly listening, hearing and obeying theWord of God. Repentance must begin at the House of God. When God'speople employee secular political means, no matter how nober their aim,God's work is hindered.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Former Member
Allof this, the website, this incident that happened 17 years ago, It'sall about people who where the "in crowd" when Dr. Rogers was there.Now that the new administration is in and changes are being made, thesepeople are on the outside and they don't like it! People haven'tchanged in 2000 years. Jesus came to earth and stirred the churchleadership up and they killed him for it!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: D Mancini
Iam a Bellevue member and am very sad that there is a division in ourchurch. Satan is absolutely delighted with this division. I support ourpastor, Steve Gaines. He is a humble man who is doing his best topreach God's word and lead our church according to Biblical principle.The personal attacks on Dr. Gaines need to stop. Dr. Gaines did notmolest children and he did not purposely try to put the children ofBellevue in danger. He simply tried to practice forgiveness for an actthat occurred 17 years ago. As soon as he became aware that this mightnot be a past issue, he took action to protect our church family. Ifyou were at our worship service this past Sunday, you would have seenin the pulpit a very humble man who is truly grief stricken because heloves our church and our church staff. DR. GAINES, PLEASE DO NOT LEAVE- OUR CHURCH PRAYED FOR A GODLY MAN WHO WOULD NOT BE AFRAID TO PREACHTHE WORD OF GOD, AND GOD SENT YOU TO US. And for those folks out therewho our still mourning the loss of Dr. Rogers, but are calling for Dr.Gaines to step down, please remember that Dr. Rogers also said thatSteve Gaines was his choice to take over our church - do you notbelieve that Dr. Rogers had the gift of discernment? Why would he everhave given his stamp of approval to a man that was not called by God tolead us? Please, please do not let satan have victory over our church.We children of God win in the end, but let's win this battle now, too,and get on with the business of spreading God's word!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: WMC Viewer
"Blue Ribbon" Team led internal investigation...Mrs. Rogers says...Spin control....
The situation at Bellevue is becoming more sad every day.
Guys, drop the "business" culture handling of this situation, and do the right thing.
Human Services (Tennessee) and the Shelby County DA need to handlethis, unless you want to cover up "criminal" activity. If you want todo this, you are no better than the pedophile himself.
The "business" of Bellevue is saving souls. Let Mr. Williams pay forhis crime and get along with his life. Your cover up and protect modecould be considered, and most likely is being considered, a publicmenace by most with small children.
These actions are a disgrace to what you profess. Go look into the mirror!
As for Mrs. Rogers, if you can truthfully say Adrian did not know ofthis, his "integrity" is most likely already compromised....
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Long time Baptist
WhileI agree that Williams should go and never come back, I disagree withthose that say that Gaines should step down. Gaines has a duty ofconfidentailty. I realize that this had to do with a abuse, however,this was confessed to a man of the cloth so to speak. Its like whensomeone goes to confession, or tells something to their attorney. Theperson that was told the information is not supposed to reveal what wassaid except in certain cases. This is one of those ethical danged ifyou do, danged if you don't. On one hand you want to make sure otherpeople are protected, on the other, you want to make sure the sancityof the parish/pastor relationship remains intact, in other words, ifyou do say something, then others who might want to discuss personalissues might think twice before speaking with you, and then might notget the help they need. And if he had not gained permission fromWilliams to address this in public, well, that would have been groundsfor a lawsuit. Oh, and I am a survior of abuse, so I know what kind ofsitiuation this is. I agree that Williams should have been dismissedearly on, then this whole mess could have been avoided.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: A Saint but not a member
Godis the creator of all things and sends watchmans over our souls. We cannot count people out but can count them in to be saved and set free bythe power of God just as we have. If we believe by faith that God is incontrol and knows and sees all, let's start praying for every soulinvolved. We all will be held accountable on judgement day for thewords we speak. I am so glad God is not like man.
My prayer is for Bellevue Baptist to overcome this by allowing agape Love to rule.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: 19 year member of Bellevue
Ittruly is sad that Dr. Gaines is having to pay for all the bad decisionsof the former administration and head of Bellevue Baptist. While Ibelieve Dr. Rogers was a Godly man I truly believe that he was a poorbusiness man. There have been a lot of "hidden" happenings at Bellevueover the last 30 years that unfortunately are just now coming to lightwith a new leader.
There were many things which happened at Bellevue over the last 19years of my time that the "congregation" was not aware of nor wereallowed to "vote" on for approval. Things just were done. Please mygoodness wake up and see that Dr. Gaines is only a martyr for the sinsof the past leadership.
This absolutely has nothing to do with Dr. Rogers "integrity", it hasto do with the "hidden agenda" of a leader. Most people are truly allabout themselves and their own personal gain.
Dr. Gaines did make a bad decision about Mr. Williams however I willnever believe nor should others that Dr. Rogers was not aware ofsomething like this from someone as close to him each day.
Dr. Gaines should see his job through and we as a city should be praying for him.
If we were all fired because of a bad business decision most of uswould be unemployed. If anyone should go it should be Mark Doughertywho is suppose to be "Dr. Gaines eyes and ears." I can guarantee Mr.Dougherty would and did protect Dr. Rogers from anything andeverything. Who knows what really has been hidden?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: FELLOW CHRISTIAN
I THINK MR GAINS SHOULD HAD MADE
THIS AN ISSUE TO THE CHURCH. CHURCH
MEMBERS PAY THEIR TITHES AND SHOULD
KNOW ALL BUSINESS OF A CHURCH.
BUT I KNOW DECONS HAVE A LOT OF
CONTROL OF WHAT IS TOLD TO THE MEMBERS. IF YOUR ARE GOING TO BLAME
MR GAINES THEN YOU ARE TO BALME THE
DECONS Also. AS GODS WORD SAID GOD CAN NOT FORGIVE US IF WE CAN'TFORGIVE OUR BROHTERS. MR GAINES NEEDS TO BE FORGIVEN AND NEW POLICIESNEED TO BE IN PLACE FOR THE FUTURE. AND THE PERSON THAT DID THIS CRIME17 YEARS AGO HE JUST
NEEDS TO BE STEPED DOWN FROM ALL
EVENTS WITH THE CHILDREN BUT STILL HAS THE RIGHT TO WORSHIP WITH HIS
CHURCH FAMILY. WE ARE NOT THE JUDGE ONLY THE LORD IS THE JUDGE
AND I AM SURE WITH DEEP PRAYER
THE LORD WILL LEAD THE CHURCH IN
WMCTV.COM Visitor: c. woods
"Thosewithout sin cast the first stone". Let us make very that the underlyingcurrent is not about money and power among the Bellevue Members.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: BELLEVUE MEMBER
DRGAINES DID WHAT HE THOUGHT WAS RIGHT SINCE THE MAN SAID THIS HAPPENED17 YRS AGO AND HE BELEIVED HIM. DR GAINES IS A WONDERFUL PREACHER. IBELIEVE THERE IS A WITCH HUNT TO GET RID OF DR GAINES. THE CHURCH ISBEHIND DR GAINES AND DOES NOT WANT HIM TO LEAVE. WE SHOULD ALL PRAY FOROUR CHURCH AND GOD WILL TAKE CARE OF EVERYTHING.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellvue Member
Judge not lest ye be judged.
I think the people who are calling for Dr. Gaines to resign are notChristian people, I think they are looking for someone who is going tobe exactly like Dr. Rodgers and that is never going to happen. Thesepeople probably forget that Dr. Rodgers himself hand picked SteveGaines to take his place. I think these people should be ashamed ofthemselves, I am pretty sure they would not want there dirty laundryaired in front of the whole congregation. Especially if it happened 17years ago.Furthermore if they do not like Pastor Gaines then theyshould just switch to another church.
This is the reason why people do not want to come to church anymore-ithas become a gossip fest. What ever happened to coming to church forthe love of Christ. I guess those people have forgotten about Christ.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: sad Memphian
Ihave to say that the crisis that has enveloped Bellevue has not startedwith the entrance of Dr. Steve Gaines. Dr. Rogers may not have known"anything" about the alleged molestation, but I can guarantee thatsomeone in our church did! The Lord calls us to forgive, but He doesnot say that we will be without consequence for our actions. Thispertains to everyone, not only Paul Williams or Steve Gaines.
The Bible also tells us that we are not to be contentious and causeproblems within the church. Their are proper methods for dealing withproblems with individuals within the church and the church as a whole.
It saddens me that people within our city and country are basing theirimpressions of Christians on what they are seeing out of some of thepeople associated with Bellevue at this time. Yes, it does come out ofother churches also, but Bellevue is a world renowned congregation. Wecan't forget that people are watching us and looking to the members andleadership for direction and hopefully a method to learn about Christ.
If I wasn't involved in a church and I saw what was coming out ofBellevue, I wouldn't want anything to do with the church. To me this isembarrassing. I want people to love my church and see it has animportant part of the community, not another story on the news inMemphis.
In the meantime, I will continue to pray for Bellevue and it'sleadership. This is not the time to change the leadership, as the nextperson will only "inherit" the problems again.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: BRM
I hope Dr. Gaines reads this. Please please know I am praying for you and your family and Bellevue Baptist Church.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue member 13
SteveGains may be a pastor but let us not forget that he is a man. There isonly one without fault and that is our precious Lord and Savior, JesusChrist. Steve Gains has brought much to our church. A rebirth, if youwill. Our church seems to have waken from a brief but very real, sleep.Every Sunday I am blessed and moved my his sermons and obviously I amnot the only one. Membership is up and our church is growing. AsChristians, let us not forget that God is in control. While there ismuch controversy regarding this issue, God has a plan. A very perfectplan. Let us not loose faith in our Lord. Satan is on the attack in ourchurches, our communities, our schools and our world. As Christians wemust be the example and not contribute to the agruments and the slandersurrounding our church; but, place our energies toward resolve.
Let's get past this and move on to what God has intended for Bellevue,some worship and fellowship! God brought Steve Gains and his sweetfamily to Bellevue for a reason. If there are some that are going tocontinue to fight this and fuel the fire of controversy...maybe theyneed to move their membership.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Divorced Bellevue Member
Ijust read the disturbing news that a minister had molested a familymember some 17 years ago and has been allowed to remain on staff atBellevue.
It's strange to me who determines how one sin is BIGGER than anotherone. For example, from what I understand, since I am divorced, I wouldnot be allowed to get married in the large sanctuary of the church andI've been divorced 14+ years, yet a child molester stays employeed bythe church of which I tithe to pay his salary! Imagine that!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Calling a Spade a Spade
Iread through all the comments and one thing that has not beenmentioned: this man, Paul Williams, is not a repentent man. A trulyrepentent person who sodomized his own flesh/blood child would havevoluntarily removed himself from church leadership immediately andwould never put himself in situations to be around children. Theseboundaries are essential for a repentant person because it honors Godby saying, "I love children too much to ever be allowed to do them anyharm." "I value my soul and know my own depravity and want to removeany obstacles to keep me from Christ." These are not just simpleboundaries, but holy boundaries to protect both victim, future victims,and abuser.
Folks, this man was not repentent if he was in form of leadership andespecially if he was overseeing childrens ministries of any kind.
Secondly, the leadership of church or even in the secular communitywould never have someone who has this type of history inministry/leadership position. Any church leader who allows a knownpedophile to be in leadership (and leadership over children - howutterly foolish is that?) is playing with fire. I am shocked that thisman is still on the payroll.
Pedophilia is a serious sin - it messes with the souls of children -sometimes scarring them so severely that they lose all respect forauthority figures and even God. Is it any wonder why Scripture isstrong when it talks about it would be better to have a millstonearound the neck than to cause a little one to stumble?
Bellvue obviously has no shepherd protecting the flock to allow apedophile on staff (on salary, no less). A shepherd always protects hisflock.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Keep my name secret too
Thisblog is the worst kind of gossip. At least when you gossip in personand you are about to stretch the truth (or even flat out lie) you cansay 'don't tell anybody I said this but...'.
Thanks to this blog, people can report what they want us to believe andsign their name as BELLEVUE MEMBER, FORMER BELLEVUE STAFF, BBC MOM,ETC.
Gossip and secrecy - and we are supposed to believe you are telling thetruth? That you have firsthand knowledge of the things you are writing?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Expel The Immoral Brother!
1 Corinthians 4:9-11
9I have written you in my letter not to associate with sexuallyimmoral people� 10not at all meaning the people of this world who areimmoral, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters. In that case youwould have to leave this world. 11But now I am writing you that youmust not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but issexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or aswindler. With such a man do not even eat.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: A Frequent Visitor to Bellevue
Dr.Gaines is an excellent pastor who delivers a fanastic, meaningfulmessage. How can a small number of people stir up so much trouble for athriving church which has qualified staff and wonderful volunteers?Leave Dr. Gaines alone and allow him to do what he does best--ministerand spread the word of God. I realize some people have a diffucult timewith change but Bellevue had to make a change--and don't forget Dr.Gaines was Dr. Rodgers' first choice. Dr. Gaines was respecting theconfidentially of Mr. Williams who has obviously been suffering for 17years with his mistake. Move on and get on with the big picture.Dr.Gaines is a competent leader and teacher.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
This is for all you members that have forgotten your Bible:
1 Corinthians 4: 12&13
12What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church?Are you not to judge those inside? 13God will judge those outside."Expel the wicked man from among you."
WMCTV.COM Visitor: BELLVUE MEMBER-JENNI
ITHINK WE HAVE FORGOTTEN ONE ESSENTIAL THING- CHURCH IS FOR SINNERS ANDIF ALL OF THESE PEOPLE MAKING ACCUSATIONS AGAINST PASTOR GAINES ARE SORIGHTEOUS THAN WHY ARE THEY EVEN AT CHURCH TO BEGIN WITH. I AM THEREBECAUSE I SIN AND I KNOW I DO AND I LOVE JESUS AND WANT FORGIVENESS ANDTHAT IS WHY I LOVE BELLEVUE BAPTIST CHURCH - IT IS A CHURCH OF LOVE ANDFAITH AND THAT IS WHAT PASTOR GAINES IS STANDING FOR-LOVE ANDFORGIVENESS
TO OPEN THEIR EYES, AND TO TURN THEM FROM DARKNESS TO LIGHT, AND FROMTHE POWER OF SATAN UNTO GOD, THAT THEY MAY RECEIVE FORGIVENESS OF SINS,AND INHERITANCE AMONG THEM WHICH ARE SANCTIFIED BY FAITH THAT IS IN ME.ACTS 26:18
I THINK IT IS A SHAME THAT WE AS A CONGREGATION HAVE SPLIT AND ALLOWEDSATAN TO ENTER OUR CHURCH AND DIVIDE US-PLEASE DO NO LET HIM CONQUERBELLEVUE.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Jack Frost
Icannot believe this. Hearing Steve Gaines speak it appears he is makingPaul Williams out to be the Victim. Poor Paul he is having to give upis Ministry listening to everyone who has been molested as a child.Then he turns around and does the same crime to his own son, what apervert.
Have some backbone fire the guy when you hear you have that type ofemployee and make sure it gets settled outside the church. But no youhave to bring this up to not only the church the but to the wholeworld. How do you think Williams son feels about what people aresaying. Did you ever think of that. Quote me a Bible verse because youwon't fine one. This goes way beyond sin. The laws of the land have bebroken and you kept it quite and allowed person to have exposure to thechildren of the church. If you trust him so much why don't you let himkeep you 13 year old daughter Steve.
This is the worst example of leadership I have ever seen. Bellevue itis time to wakeup. I guess you will take pitty on Steve and give him abig Christmas Bonus.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Stephanie Hunt
Iam a Bellevue Member, and have been for about 4� years. I supportBrother Gaines and our church. I noticed on the news this morning theonly comments you aired were negative. Since Brother Rogers died lastyear, it seems like Satan is attacking our church. We should not lethim succeed. Negativity against a pastor and church is just whatnon-believers are looking for because they don't want to go to churchand worship God in the first place. Some people just don't like toadapt to change. Every pastor is going to be different. If thisincident with Paul Williams took place 17 years ago, it should not havebeen aired to the church and the public. He should have been removedfrom staff while a full investigation took place, but not removed fromthe church as a member. If he has asked God for forgiveness withsincereity, it has been FORGIVEN AND FORGOTTEN. How many people havedone things in their past (perhaps before they were saved) that theywouldn't want aired to the public? Most everyone. It really saddens meto see what Brother Gaines and Paul Williams's families must be goingthrough especially at this time of year. I will keep them and ourchurch in my prayers, and pray that God's will will be done in this. Iam also very disappointed in Michael Spradlin and my insurance agent,David Matlock, that they would take a stand against our pastor andchurch.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Rev. Mike Einspanjer
Ihave said time and time again... Neo cons and these ultra right-wingsouthern Baptists are going to be the fall of us all. these folkspretend to be holier than thou, and in the end we find out they arechild molesters, thieves, and other assorted scum bags. Preaching onbeing more like Christ, and being the exact opposite. Apparently overon Appling Drive, they have hypocrisy down to an art form.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Jeff Williams
Bellevueseems to have a problem with a bunch of power-hungry crooks runnineverything at their church instead of the people. I bet most of thepeople who still support the ones already in charge don't really knowwhat's going on because they only listen to their pastor and he wantsto keep his high-paying job. Wise up, folks! Uproot the evil at yourchurch.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: SCS -16 year BBC Member
Ihad to speak out on behalf of one family who dearly loves and supportsDr. Steve Gaines and his lovely family. He has indeed been under amicroscope from Day 1 and continues to be scrutinized to a fault for amultitude of reasons, one being he brings his own style to our pulpit.It is embarrasing to me that he and his family have been "welcomed" toour city in a manner such as this. I pray that those who are speakingout against him in all forms of the media will look up and speak to ourLord instead.
I was there when Dr. Rogers said he chose Steve Gaines from Day 1 andasked the Search Committee "why it took them so long to find SteveGaines." I loved our former pastor and also love Dr. Gaines. Heshouldn't be expected to be Adrian Rogers. He can only be who he is,which is a different man with a different style than Dr. Rogers. We arerichly blessed to have him, just as we were Dr. Rogers.
I beg our entire divided city to allow Dr. Gaines to continue to spreadthe good news and hope, when we all so desperately need it.
Dr. Gaines, please be encouraged that there are untold numbers justlike me who love you, support your leadership 150‰, and ask you tocontinue serving Jesus with us at our beloved Bellevue. I once heard afitting adage that says "if you are pleasing everyone, you must bedoing something wrong." You are the right man at the right time for usand for Bellevue. Please hang in there for us and accept this oneapology on the manner you have been treated thusfar. We can do betterand I ask you to allow us to show you. You and Mrs. Gaines deserverespect and admiration from all, just as as we have for you.
Thank you for staying and forgiving us for the way you have been welcomed. We love you, Dr. and Mrs. Gaines. III John 2
WMCTV.COM Visitor: disappointed in mike spradlin
mike; you got your land ; you got your position; and you spat on thepastor's integrity. you are leading young pastor's in a horrible holierthan thou attitude. who are you; it saddens me to see you come to this......
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Painfully Observing from AR
IfDr. Spradlin's comment is an "if," then he spoke too soon to theconfusion at Bellevue. His comment my have its own repercussions forMid America. "Saving Bellevue" sounds more like Sacrificing theBrotherhood of Believer's for Self. "Greater love has no one than this,than to (stand up and crucify as many as possible on the speculationsof the angry crowd) or not. (John 15:13) All Christians will lose inthis conflict. God will win the war, but it looks as if He'll have towithout the Spirit-filled character of some of His own "soldiers."
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue visitor & fan
Fromwhat I have read and heard in the media, Dr. Gains acted out ofChrist's model when he taught the people on the Mount of Olives and thePharasee's brought in a woman caught in adultry. Jesus challenged heraccusers to cast the first stone. Then said "neither do I condemn you,go and sin no more". It was not long before Jesus died on the cross to redeemall of us from our sin. I want hope that I can be forgiven and canchange. Bellevue complainers, do not take that away from Memphis folks.I believe Steve Gains did not react based on the information he had atthe time, which he had every reason to believe. Any one of us wouldlearn from hind's sight when we learn the rest of the story. I respectthe man caught in the middle of this sensationalized, angry groupcausing dissention (just as much a sin). Put a lid on this!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: BellevueMemberfor12y rs
TheLord placed Dr. Steve Gaines at our church for a reason. I wish peoplecould see all the positive things he has done and all the people who hehas led to christ. If you don't care for him just find another churchto worship at. I loved Adrain Rogers and no one will ever replace himbut Steve Gaines is a great leader and teacher also.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Whywould Williams come clean with Gaines and not Rogers. I'm sure Gainestrusted Rogers desision to keep him on because it was not a BellevueMember but a family problem. I think Williams should be let go but notGaines. People who do not like Gaines are out to crucify Gaines. Youknow it was a religious crowd that Crucufied Jesus. I think all thiswas brought up just to add fuel to the fire at Bellvue, which wasstarting to die out. Funny, it sounds like an election year campain mudslinging. You act like Gaines was the molester. Give up Gaines haters.You destroy the Christian name and cause.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Member & Fmr Childcare Worker
Thefact as I see it is that certain malcontents decided they weren't goingto accept Pastor Gaines from the get go. Granted, Pastor Roogers was anexemplary Christian, but also a self-admitted sinner. To insist on theresignation of a man because of something that happened 17 years ago isproposterous. I never witnessed or heard of anything untowardlyhappening in the children's ministry. Let the "Saving Bellevue" unhappycampers go their own way and pray for forgiveness, they willundoubtedly need it.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Brad Perry(SoundGuy55@aol .com)
Myfellow Memphians�Bellevue Baptist Church has a long lineage of faithfulministers of the Gospel of Jesus Christ! Immediately after the churchUNANIMOUSLY confirmed Dr. Steve Gaines as pastor, our beloved pastoremeritus Dr. Adrian Rogers made the comment to the congregation askingthe pastor search committee, "What took you so long; I knew this wasGod's man all along!" It is unfortunate that a few members with theirlegalism, sickening blogs, and shameless sinful tactics have made sucha brazen attempt to overthrow a humble pastor! If we think back to sixmonths ago, when Dr. Gaines counseled with this minister, he had onlybeen pastor of the Mid-South's largest church and one of the largestchurches in the Southern Baptist Convention for a mere few months. Hemay have not handled it in the "correct" way, however, I have no doubtthat he handled it in the way he felt the Lord had led him. Dr. Rogershad around 34 years with Bellevue to learn and grow. Dr. Gaines hasonly been at Bellevue for 1 year and a couple of months. He has a longway to go to achieve the wisdom, understanding, and leadership of ahero like Dr. Adrian Rogers. The Bible says, "Do not judge, or you toowill be judged." It also says, "If any one of you is without sin, lethim be the first to throw a stone..." I am not implying that I haveembraced all of the "cosmetic changes" that have been made to thechurch since Dr. Gaines has become pastor; however they are only"cosmetic" and have not at all compromised the Gospel of Jesus Christ!It is well known that a proper practice is to ALWAYS QUESTIONATHOURITY. If we did not, we would be ruled by a Nazi government andwould have no freedom. Question authority to find that motives are pureand just. DO NOT attempt to overthrow authority on the mere intuitionthat motives are not just and pure. Until you have substantiatedevidence of unjust or impure motives, the best policy is to not implythat unjustness or impureness! That is what is sadly happening atBellevue, implication of incorrect motives by a minority of people whowill be dealt with by "the Judge" himself! This too shall pass and thequestion I would ask anyone from Bellevue is, "when this passes, willyou be souring in your own self-righteousness, or will you be focusedon our future and the will of our Lord Jesus Christ?" Looking forward,Bellevue has a beautiful and fruitful future! As for those who have anagenda to overthrow the Bible believing, God fearing, Christ honoringleadership of one of America's greatest churches, God knows themeditations of your hearts and will bless or condemn accordingly!Memphis, I love my church and am committed to pray for her. Please joinme in prayerful support of our pastor and people!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
For the first time in my life..I am ashamed to be a member of BellevueBaptist Church. Steve Gaines has torn down in one year..what took over30 years for Pastor Rogers to build. I guess we now know who Gods manis and who Gods man is not.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: an ex-Bellevue member
Therehas been NOTHING but controversy in one form or another sinceapproximately 3 months from when Gaines became pastor. What else has tohappen before his resignation is demanded and he is not given a choiceabout it. He has proven what kind of choices he makes.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Crystal Larkin Bellevue Member
Withthis issue happening 17 years ago there is no doubt that Dr Rogers hadsome kind of knowledge of this information, regardless if he sharedthis information with his wife or not. Dr Rogers was a great man andran a wonderful church !! Dr. Gains as well is a wonderful man and isrunning a wonderful, Christ centered, and GROWING church. Dr Gains hadthe right to keep this information private until other actions/claimscame about promting further investigation. Mr. Williams is not incontact with children, he is an Adult minister, and there was no needto suspend him at the time. With the current allegations, I commend DrGains and his leadership for his steps in prompting an investigation inseeeking help for Mr. Williams and the victim or victim's. My familyand I will continue to pray for the Williams family, Dr Gains and hisfamily and for the victim/victim's in these allegations. Dr. Gains weare proud to have you as our minister and continue to support you andyour decision making.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue bound
IfGaines had fired the man on the spot the savingbellevue bloggers wouldhave said "If Williams were good enough for Rogers who is Gaines tofire him." Leave Gaines alone. The guy is great. His parishoners seemto love the guy. Why let a few hundred people out of 30 thousand haveall the fun. Most of their membership are happy.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: WMC Viewer
Do the corporate spin-doctors hired by Bellevue have our Shelby County DA under their control?
Blueribbon firm for investigating?
Where is the Shelby County DA? Mr. Williams lives (lived) outside theBellevue compound, didn't he? He was, if not still is, a menace tosociety-at-large.
Some folks really need to wake up!
As for "integrity", Mrs. Rogers, if you can truthfully say Adriandidn't know anything about it; the integrity question is alreadyanswered. Think about it.
Thank goodness Tennessee Human Services is looking into this. Save the purchased spin for those who pay for it!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: A Memphis Father
CHILDRAPE IS NOT A CHURCH MATTER to be investigated and delt with at thechurch level. Child rape and child molestation is a felony crime in ourstate and in our nation. Child rape is a SERIOUS crime to beinvestigated by law enforcement and not pastors, associate pastors, orsome church committee. There are no exceptions for churches underTennessee law. The law also states that failure to report this crime bycovering it up is also a felony. Where are the police? Have they beencontacted by your "beloved pastor"? What exactly has Bellevue BaptistChurch done to inform the authorities of the CHILD RAPIST being one ofyour MINISTERS? How long is this still going to be covered up byBellevue Baptist Church before the authorities are officially notified?There is a CHILD RAPIST walking around Memphis streets. He is aminister of Bellevue Baptist Church, "on a paid leave". NO! NO! NO!THIS IS NOT A CHURCH MATTER - IT IS A MATTER OF BREAKING THE LAW ANDALLOWING THIS MONSTER TO RAPE AGAIN ANOTHER CHILD. Bellevue members,Steve Gaines, and those of you defending the actions of your church -please explain to me how all of this is biblical. How can you excusethis in any way? I don't give a rip about your pastor or any of you whothink that this is a "CHURCH MATTER".
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Belluvue Member
Letsnot only talk about the problems Dr. Gaines has inherited. Lets talkabout the ones he has created. He knows what he's doing. He knows thelies he tells, but he doesn't care. He has no shame for those he hurts,and those he hurts are afraid to speak out. Come forth. Tell the storyof what Dr. Gaines did. Be truthful my brothers and sisters in Christ.Don't fear Dr. Gaines. He is only human. He nor no man can hurt you.Dr. Gaines needs to get right with God. He preaches to us every Sundayon how we need to ask God to forgive us. He needs God to forgive him.He thinks we don't know. He think's we won't say. He has made a mocharyof the late Dr. Adrian Rogers. Dr. Rogers made this place a place ofworship. Dr. Gaines has turned this place into place of lies anddeceit. He does not practice what he preaches. He is no different thenthe men locked away in prison. Only difference is he hasn't been caughtand it hasn't been made public yet. His time will come. He ought notfear man. He ought to fear God. He has truly lost the respect of me andmy fellow brothers and sisters in christ.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: hurt
Thelaw states that anyone with knowledge of child abuse, which thisclearly is, is bound by law to report it. It doesn't matter how longago it happened. Dr. Gaines had a tough decision to make 6 mos ago, buthe should not have let 6 mos pass. Mr. Williams should have beenreleived of duty immediately. what about the victim?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Saddned by a loss:
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Patricia Patrick
Ifyou are not supporting the new pastor then you are not supporting thechurch. Please leave and form your own church. You can gossip and lieand BLOGG all you want at YOUR new church. You are all becoming veryannoying for the overwhelming majority at Bellevue. There were problemsat Bellevue before Dr. Gaines ever got there and Dr. Rogers knew it.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Deeply Angered
Remember this all you scribes and Pharisees:
Jesus bent down and began to write on the ground with his finger. Butwhen they continued asking him, he straightened up and said to them,"Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stoneat her." Again he bent down and wrote on the ground. And in response,they went away one by one, beginning with the e1ders. So he was leftalone with the woman before him. Then Jesus straightened up and said toher, "Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?" She replied,"No one, sir." Then Jesus said, " Neither do I condemn you. Go, [and]from now on do not sin anymore."
1stof all there has been no information given on the abuse. No one hassaid that he raped anyone let alone his son. 2nd the police cannot getinvolved unless the victim files charges and if it hasn't happenedagain in the 17 years the statue of limitations has run out. Dr. Gainescould have reported it to the authorities, but they may could not havedone anything about it. Dr. Gaines made a poor decision in keeping Mr.Williams on staff, but he is a man just like everyone else and makesmistakes. The only one that has ever been on this earth that was sinfree was Christ himself. As for Dr. Rogers knowing about this abuse, wewill never know for sure, since he is no longer with us to tell us oneway or another. Let him rest in peace. I do not think Dr. Gaines shouldresign from the Bellevue. God called him to this Church and God doesnot make wrong decisions. There are some in the Church that do not wantanything to change, but we can't bring Dr. Rogers back and there willnever be another like him. Stop trying to make Dr. Gaines fit Dr.Rogers shoes. It will never happen. The sad part about all this is thatmany people who may have come to know Jesus personally will not now. Ihave heard so many say they are glad they are not a part of organizedreligion or they are glad they arn't a Christian now. Instead ofpointing fingers we should be trying to maintain a Christ-like image.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Doyou all hear yourselves? Jesus' example, forgiveness, do not judge lestye be judged, etc...wake up folks! Yes, all these things apply to theunsaved because they don't know any better. This situation is amongstBELIEVERS.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Celeste
Ican not believe the lack of true Christian faith that is beingdisplayed by certain members of Bellevue Baptist Church. The ministerin question is being charged by John Q Public for CRIME HE COMMITTED 17YEARS AGO. That he also confessed about, and is seeking helpfor.Everyone knows that Dr. Gaines has only been the pastor for a year,so guess what? The other 16 years fall on Dr. Rogers.... let all youwho are without sin cast the first stones...
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Just a Bellevue Member
Thisis not something that should be deliberated in public with "IF, THEN".Rather, those entrusted with the responsibiliity to investigate--bothfrom the church and from the state--should be allowed to do their jobbefore anyone rushes to judgment--either of the minister in question orof Steve Gaines!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Sister From a Sister Church
Whenthings seem over complicated you have to have strong leaders with God'swisdom to make tough decision. Whether you are for or against SteveGaines, the fact is the church is increasingly dividing under hisleadership. We use to hear so much about "Jesus" from Bellevue and allwe ever hear now is so much about "Steve Gaines." Godly wisdom needs todictate in this situation so that Bellevue can continue to be thelighthouse to the community and to the world with the good news ofJesus not the bad news of Steve!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: My Home Town
Memphis- The home of the highest crime city in our nation. And it is also thehome of Bellevue Baptist Church. A Mega Church where you can be ahighly paid minister AND a child rapist. They don't care! They willjust pray for you! Their senior pastor will keep it confidential! Soyou don't have to worry about the cops getting you and putting you injail.
Hey, Memphis is a great place! Come on down child rapists! You can allget hired as Ministers at Bellevue Baptist Church! Then rape some kidswith no problems. They will even send you on a paid vacation if youtalk to the "beloved senior pastor". After all, it is not his moneypaying you - it belongs to the church, but so who cares! Oh, the"beloved senior pastor" is going to be there forever. The churchmembership just love him sooooooo much. You can spend a long time hereraping, molesting, and whatever other crimes you want to commit. Theywill just love on you and give you lots of money at Bellevue BaptistChurch in Memphis. You see, this is the Christian thing to do atBellevue Baptist Church.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Praetorian
Thisis a miscarriage of justice! Regardless of when it transpired, itshould have been reported to the local law enforcement IMMEDIATELY!Bellevue is neither trained or equipped to conduct an "investigation".The key point to remember here is the victim, e.g., Williams' son. He'sthe real victim here and little has been said about this from hisperspective. Is HE undergoing counselling? It's all well & goodthat the predator is, but what about the child? I have been watchingand reading about the mess that has been occurring since Dr. Gainesassumed the senior pastor duties in 2005 and I must say that I amappalled by the "glory-hound" that he is and portrays to the world. Heis interested in nothing except his own well-being and putting on ashow to the rest of the world..."See how spiritual & pious I am? You should be like me!" From the legal standpoint, placing Williams on suspension should haveoccurred as soon as it was brought to the attention of the churchleadership instead of waiting to announce it once the leadershiplearned that it was about to hit the wire services! So much for caringfor the flock! Gaines' "holier than thou" attitude and the attitudethat "I can do what I want" has done nothing but prove topeople that religion can't be trusted. People are talking about Satanstarting a fight within the church in an attempt to dislodge it. Ithink that Gaines' is being used as Satan's tool to accomplish thisgoal. Pride goeth before the fall, as they say, and Gaines' "pretension" of being contrite about staying on to the congregation is just a sham!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Praetorian
BTW...I forgot to include in my last post...why is Williams any different that Ron Moroney (formerFox 13 reporter) who was charged, extradited, tried, convicted,sentenced, and required to register as a convicted sexual predator? Answer: He's not and should face the consequences for his actions accordingly.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Martha Cole
Ido not have a church home where I live so I have depended on Bellevueand other great church's on TV for my Sunday worship. This makes mevery sad because it is the devils job to tear down the family and thechurch. This is why we must make sure our church leaders are what theword says they are to be.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: west tenn supporter
SteveGaines is a good man who made poor judgement. But who hasn't . Judgenot lest ye be judged It seems to me that Bellevue has been looking fora reason to get rid of him since day one and these are the same peoplethat voted him in. There is no telling how many people sit next to youin the pews every sunday who has done the same thing or somethingworse. So you better look at your own lives and not judge others
WMCTV.COM Visitor: D. Kennedy
Ijust wanted to say that I love to watch Dr. Gaines on Sunday morning. Iget up early just to listen to his wonderful messages before gettingready to go to my own church. I love the way he explains and makes meunderstand God's Word. Just get off his back and let him preach theWord of God!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: kevin chaney
youwill never find a pastor that will come close to this mans honesty. ihave known him all my life. this is not a problem he caused, and youcan not hold him for what someone else did...kevin chaney
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Actual Bellevue Member 2
Mostof the people at Bellevue completely support our Pastor, Dr. SteveGaines. He has acted with grace and discretion (as this is dealing withemployee confidentiality issues)since the offense does not directlyinvolve a Bellevue function. While our beliefs and theology neverchange, the real reason the "Saving Bellevue" website was created togive a minority group of church members who are not happy that theoverall culture at Bellevue has changed a voice, and they cannot cometo terms with reality. We loved Dr. Rogers. But, now Dr. Gaines is ourPastor, and we love and support him as well. We pray for wisdom for ourchurch leadership to know when to respond, and when it is best not toentertain website blogs whose only goal is to attempt to cause discordin the church, while the entire community watches this in the media.The church is handling the situation with the minister onadministrative leave. It would be best for the "Saving Bellevue"website small group to consider attending a different church if theycannot accept the reality that Bellevue is moving forward focusing onreaching the world for Christ in the everchanging environment of a lostworld, but with the same gospel and beliefs. Our church will bestronger as a result of these challenging days and we will appreciateour Pastor, Dr. Gaines even more once all of this is resolved.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Thereare a few people at our church that don't like Pastor Steve and theyhave been trying everything to get him out. If they don't like ourchurch they can leave and start there own church and run it the waythey want tooooo. God forgives our sin and we are suppose to forgive orgod will not forgive us. So you hand full of people that don't likePastor Steve move on and start trouble somewhere else.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: 5 Year Member of Bellevue
PastorGaines is a great pastor who God led to our church. There is a verysmall group of nay sayers with a megaphone. The other 29,600 of us lovehim and are sorry for the mess we have put him in, Pastor Gaines is ondealing with what was handed to him. Maybe in hind sight he may haveacted differently but had he recommened firing a minster for a sin hecommited over 17 years ago the nay sayers would have called for hisresignation for this. General public and media it should be knownPastor Gaines is loved and admired at Bellevue and I thank God he isstill our pastor. Saving Bellevue Group please stop letting satan useyou to destory what God has built over the past 100 years.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: WMCTV.COM Vistor
Iam not a member of Bellevue Baptist Church, so I am not sure how muchweight my comments have. In the last six months I have been attendingBellevue Baptist church every week. I have learned more about the Bibleand been ministered to more under the ministry of Dr. Gaines than Ihave been in my own church for years. The incidents that have occurredsince Dr. Gaines became associated with Bellevue have been there foryears so why has he become the whipping boy? It seems to me that themission of any church is to bring lost souls to Christ and to feed thesouls of those who have already dedicated their lives to Christ. Thismission has continued very effectively under Dr. Gaines ministry. Itseems to me that the members should extend to Dr. Gaines the love andChristian kindness they profess to believe and support himunconditionally. If I did have a legal vote at Bellevue Baptist I wouldvote to keep Dr. Gaines and give him my loyal support.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Susan Hill
Hasanyone given thought to the councilor that swept this under the rug?Shouldn�t he be prosecuted? I think that Pastor Gaines has beenoverwhelmed with the blog site and all of the pressure he was inundatedwith. We all thought that God was in the hiring. So what happened? Allof a sudden God made a mistake? Williams is an evil sick man and theauthorities should deal with him. But please� let�s remember that Godis in control. We need to support our pastor!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: bellevue member 25 yrs
Whatis every one going to do when they find out Dr. Rogers who brought PaulWillaims to the church caught wind of this and didnt do anythingeither. Who knows did he tell Ms Rogers
everything. Who blaims Gaines no matter what he does the anti Gainesgroup is going to find a problem with it. Maybe he would have donedifferently if He hadnt had so much crazy pressure on him for making afew changes when he got there. All this is going to do is get rid ofthe bellevue/rogers croud and leave the GOD/JESUS crowd. Not to soon!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Tosay that Dr. Rogers had knowledge is plain wrong. Dr. Rogers was aGodly man of integrity. A man who feared God and lived by truth. Hewould have dealt with it as soon as it was brought to light. In thepast, Dr. Rogers had to deal with a "moral failure" of a minister onstaff. He brought him before the church.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue Member
Ephesians6:12-- For our struggle is not against flesh and blood. . . . butagainst the world forces of darkness. . .against the spiritual forcesof wickedness in the heavenly places. We are fighting a much biggerbattle here--and it's not with each other--and it's not with SteveGaines. But we serve a BIG God and he will handle this situation--Hedoes not need help from us! I believe that Steve Gaines was called ofGod to be Bellevue's pastor. I support him and pray for him and hisfamily daily as he has been facing major opposition lately. I think weneed to consider our own sins. Just as Jesus told the Pharisees in John8:7--"He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw astone at her." None of us are in this category (without sin). We needto be lifting each other up instead of tearing each other down(Ephesians 4:29 & 32). We need to be praying for Bro. Steve and hisfamily and supporting them during this time.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: nts
Meetme at the Altar seems very appropriate at this time. Let's take thecover off everyone's pit of sin and air it before such a loving andcaring group of people. After all sin is sin in the eyes of God. Judgenot, that you be not judged. For with what judgement ye judge, ye shallbe judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to youagain. God is the only one that can call someone a hypocrite for he isthe only one that truly knows the heart. It is sad that you have placedMrs.Rogers in a position of defending Bro.Rogers. Her heart must bebroken to hear such doubt in people's mind. I believe that a complaintmust be filed and the person convicted of that crime before someone canharbor a criminal. To my understanding none of this has taken place. Myhusband has often said that christians are the only people he knowsthat shoot their wounded. He also says that he knows why God is God andnone of us are-confess your sins to God, He will forgive-people don't.They might be able to use your sin to make you look worse than them.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: A Catholic friend
Iam annoyed by members of Bellevue who look down their noses at me,being a Catholic. This just shows you we're all dealing with the samehumans with the same sins. Isn't this why God sent His only Son, toteach us and forgive us?
Finally, Satan works in the dark and he hides the truth and he hides from the truth. I think Jesus said the Truth will set you free?
I am not a member of Bellevue, I cannot and will not tell you how to run your church. All I can say is your actions say much.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: former member
Please,everyone remember that non church members and non christians arereading everything that has been written. These comments are onlydiscouraging to those who may be considering christianity. Why wouldanyone want to be a part of this? There is so much hatred and judgementon this comment board. I don't live in Memphis anymore, but i grew up aBellevue member. Dr. Rogers always taught us that we are a witness ineverything that we do and that you never know who you may turn awayfrom christianity because of your actions. Please stop making this sucha public matter....you are only hurting those who we need to bewitnessing to.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Confused
Itis reported that Bellevue has 30,000 members. It is reported that 500members showed their support on Wednesday night for how Dr. Gaines isleading his church. If my math is correct, that is 29,500 members notsupporting and 500 members in support. It seems that the members havevoted. Why do people refer to 29,500 members as "a few"?
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue member
PaulWilliams has served for 17 years under false pretenses. Sin hasconsequences even if it is hidden for 17 years. Steve Gaines is anaccomplice in this cover-up. Both of them should resign. They don'thave the integrity to be ministers. They care more about protectingthemselves than in protecting innocent children.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Another Bellevue Member
Dr.Gaines tried to handle this issue privately with Rev. Williams. TheBible says we should try to handle a sin issue privately with thesinner first; then if that does not work, tell two or three others; andthen finally, if all else fails, take it to the church. And if this wasan incident within Mr. Williams family, why didn't the familythemselves do anything about it? Sure, if these charges are true, thenMr. Williams should go. But 17 years is a long, long time for this togo unnoticed. But we shouldn't fire Pastor Gaines over this. We're notperfect, not one of us. But Dr. Gaines is not the accused. I'm thankfulthat an investigation is going on. I am praying for Mr. Williams,Pastor Gaines, and my church. The church will overcome this, God helpus!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Disgusted
TheBible clearly states the qualifications for being a minister. Theyinclude having a good reputation and being respectable. Paul Williamsclearly doesn't qualify to be a minister. He and Steve Gaines shouldboth know that. It doesn't take 6 months to figure that out.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: BBC member for 24 years
Wewere glad when Steve Gaines came to Bellevue but he's shown nothing butpoor judgement and a lack of wisdom since he came. He's impulsive andarrogant except when he's asking forgiveness for one of his blunders.This time his "mistake of the head" was illegal and put Bellevue atrisk for law suits. He has really done it this time and if he caredabout Bellevue he'd leave instead of continuing to tear our churchapart.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: M. A. Smiley
I have just read comments from current Bellevue members and I am
appalled at the venom in some of the remarks, the hate andnon-Christian atmosphere now in a wonderful church.. I was once aBaptist, but no longer, however,
when I cannot attend my church, I watch Dr. Steve Gaines and am amazedat his knowledge of the Bible, his goodness and words that
This "Event" happened 17 years ago, now coming to light but WHO else has known and not said a thing?
What sin has Steve Gaines committed? None as far as I can see. Morethan likely he took time to pray about the matter and then lo andbehold the devil's advocates arrived to take him down before he knewGod's plan.
Many have not given him a chance at Bellevue, many are not good Christian people.
And now the lawyers... We Americans are now a 'let's sue' society and who gains..?
I am reminded of Jesus' trials and see a good man being persecuted bysome of his congregation AND a Theological Seminary founded by BellevueBaptist Church.
God's mercy on all involved and Strength to a man I believe is a true Man of God.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Phillip Bivens
Steve Gaines is led by Our Lord in each step of his life. He and his church are in my prayers.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: another member
iwould agree that the offender should not have been on staff as a knownpedaphile. the problem: no one knew. once gaines found out he did reactslowly. i would agree he made a mistake. most people do. as far as iknow, what happened 17 years ago has not reoccurred since. i imaginegaines struggled with this thought before he decided to remove thepedaphile from his position. as far as dissatisfied members, if youdont like what is going on, you should not attend bellevue. he shouldnot leave bellevue unless it is by majority vote. there are probablyless than 150 people who are utterly outraged. 150 out of 30,000. noteven 1‰. everyone else is still in favor of gaines staying. im sureeveryone has heard the famous quote "dont let the few speak for themany". gaines supporters speak up! bellevue depends on it!
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Concerned member
AlthoughSteve gaines did not think there had been any further activity, he didno investigation in June or any time up until the truth came out frompeople involved. Ever since gaines came to bellevue there has beennothing but trouble. I have tried to be understanding toward him butthese "mistakes" keep happening and he keeps apologizing for hismistakes. It is becoming rediculous. Our church is being ruined byleadership who can't lead.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: Bellevue out of control
Ido not think we should kick out these "opposing" members, that iscertainly not christ-like at all. Our pastor should not want people toleave for not liking everything he does. With a church of this sizeeveryone will not be 100‰ happy. THe administration should try toaddress people's feelings and try to help satisfy the majority.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: christian of last days
STEVEGAINES ITS A CHOIR BOY COMPARE TO OUR PASTOR.MY SON (2ND.GRADE) WASBEATEN UP(brutaly)BY THE PASTORS GIRLFRIEND AND HER HUSBAND .WECOMPLAIN AND GOT LIED TO AND PUT OFF AND WHEN WE CONFRONT THE 2WHO BEATUP OUR SON WE were KICKED OUT OF OUR CHURCH.
HE IS APOSTATE.
WMCTV.COM Visitor: does gaines care about us?
Everysince gaines came he has made numerous changes. Why did he not takesome time, maybe a year, and try to get to know the people and whatthings the members like i.e. music. He comes in and has changed ourchurch so much. We no longer have the annual mother daughter retreat orthe children's summer sing musical. Also gaines did not want the youthchoir to use the choir robes to sing in. He does not have a heart forthe people of our church and does not have our best interests at hand.
Youneed to leave Dr. Rogers out of this. He knew nothing about it... Inthe end GOD will handle all of this.. We need to protect our childrenbut all this blaming everyone for ONE persons actions is not right...
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.Pedophilia and sexual abuse of children in Australia