- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 3, 2019

GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) - A pastor threatened The Greenville News in South Carolina over its coverage of a church and controversies surrounding its leaders, the newspaper reported.

“I cut people. I got a knife right in that pocketbook, Greenville News, come on. We done went through this. I’m ready. I’m still here, and guess who else is still gon’ be here?” Pastor Hope Carpenter, co-founder of Redemption World Outreach Center, said. The News reports that Carpenter called it out at Sunday morning service while speaking to the congregation at Relentless Church in Greenville. She also told Relentless pastors John and Aventer Gray that she supports them.

The newspaper has reported on controversies involving the married couple including John Gray’s disclosure on daytime television talk show “The Real” that he had an “emotional affair,” him gifting Aventer Gray a $200,000 Lamborghini Urus SUV for their eighth wedding anniversary, and the church’s purchase of a $1.8 million home for them, which Relentless Chief Financial Officer Travis Hays said then was necessary to attract a pastor of Gray’s “caliber” to Greenville.

Gray previously said no church funds were used to buy the vehicle and that money came from his other revenue streams.

The News has also published stories about John Gray and Relentless Church encouraging those in need to take money from offering plates, their support of Pickens County’s first homeless shelter, and hopes to take racial healing nationwide.



John Gray, an associate pastor of Joel Osteen’s Lakewood Church in Houston, arrived in Greenville last year after then-Redemption Pastor Ron Carpenter announced he was leaving to continue his ministry in San Jose, California, and asked Gray to assume the lead role for the congregation.

He is also known for his TV show “The Book of John Gray,” which is in its fourth season on the Oprah Winfrey Network.

Greenville is roughly 215 miles (345 kilometers) northwest of Charleston, and around 150 miles (240 kilometers) northeast of Atlanta.

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Information from: The Greenville News, http://www.greenvillenews.com

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