A Jacksonville pastor who confessed to sexual crimes against not one but two underaged girls and is a registered sex offender is still being allowed to preach at a church while children are banned from the congregation because Florida is as assed up as advertised.
Former Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church pastor Darrell Gilyard was released from the clink in December after he surrendered to cops in 2008 and admitted to committing sex crimes against two girls under the age of 16.
And now that he's back on the streets, he's found a new gig delivering sermons at Christ Tabernacle Missionary Baptist.
As pastor of Shiloh Baptist Church, Gilyard molested a 15-year-old girl and then sent a lewd text to another young girl.
And while God apparently forgives sexual acts against kids, the state does not. And so, as a registered sex offender and a person under sex offender probation until December of 2014, the Christ Tabernacle Missionary Baptist children need to be moved into a separate building while Gilyard preaches the Lord's Word.
Gilyard's assistant, Rebecca Smith, says not to worry. Kids are safe now because they're being herded into another building. Also, Gilyard's been praying. So, all is well.
Gilyard wanted to ease his way back into talking to people about Jesus with a weekly Bible study. But Smith said, no so fast.
"We've been in prayer, and I shared with him that God didn't call you to lead Bible study. God called you to preach," said Smith.
God also didn't call him to molest a young girl, but now we're just splitting hairs, amerite?
The main thing here is since Gilyard's return to the pulpit, the once-struggling Christ Tabernacle Missionary Baptist is seeing attendance on the rise, although he's not on the payroll.
For their part, the congregants have welcomed him back with open arms.
"That's what God would have us do," said congregant Lindy Brown. "He would have us to appreciate everybody for who they are, because none of us are without sin."
But not everybody is too keen on a dude who molested a kid suddenly being able to talk to others about Jesus.
The New Black Panther Party is also not too fired about the whole idea and once even protested Gilyard at the church.
"We came because the children who we should be teaching and preaching cannot come out today," said Mikhail Muhammad, the group's leader.
"The black ministers in the city of Jacksonville ought to be ashamed of themselves. How can you say you're a follower of Christ but you won't stand up and speak out against this injustice?"
"He's preaching the Lord's word," said Lindy. "He can be wherever he wants to."
Except go anywhere near the children, or talk to the children, or otherwise have any sort of communication with children. Other than that, he's golden!
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