OWN Network Cancels ‘The Book of John Gray’ Reality Show & More…

Hello World,

Welp, there is one less pastor on television as of 2020…For some that may be the good news but for others, not so much. I will let you be the judge of that…

Pastor John Gray’s local newspaper The Greenville News reported that the Relentless Church pastor’s show The Book of John Gray is “not being renewed for a fourth season on the Oprah Winfrey Network.

The website of the show at Oprah.com describes The Book of John Gray as a ‘dramedy docu-follow hybrid about the life of John Gray and his uniquely humorous way of helping people.’

Officials at the network did not respond to follow-up questions about why the show was discontinued.

Gray and his wife, Aventer, meanwhile, are considering other TV and film opportunities, according to Holly Baird, their spokesperson.

John Gray has been associated with celebrities, renowned musicians and star athletes. On Wednesday, Aventer Gray shared photos on Instagram of her and John Gray on a yacht with actor Tyrese Gibson and his wife, Samantha Gibson, during a recent vacation.”

But frankly, Pastor Gray’s show being canceled is not even the worst of his current troubles…

You can read the rest of the article HERE and another one HERE.

And it was a year ago that I wrote this post: Why Pastor John Gray & His Wife May Not Be Wrong to Host A Relationship Conference in February After Cheating Rumors & Divorce Discussions…

And then there was this post I wrote last April: Hope Carpenter, former First Lady of Pastor John Gray’s Relentless Church, Threatens Greenville News With a Knife, Saying ‘I Cut People!’

If you’ve lived a few years by now, you know that the book of all of our lives have inspirational chapters, tragic chapters, fast-paced ones and slower than slow ones. From the looks of it, Pastor John Gray and his family have had a series of chapters that I’m reasonably sure that he hopes the “author and finisher of our faith” didn’t have to write. Here’s hoping that Pastor John Gray carefully reviews these past chapters of his life (as we all have to do) and continues to seek God’s direction what has yet to be written…

I wish all of God’s people well in this chapter of 2020.

Any thoughts?

Greenleaf Recap Season 4 Episode 9: God’s Justice…

Hello World,

Do you know what’s unjust? The fact that only ONE more episode is left in Season 4 of OWN’s “Greenleaf!” So please take all of the time you need to enjoy this Greenleaf Recap Season 4 Episode 9: God’s Justice…

In the Name of Justice…

This week’s episode begins with Judee, Grace and Connie, the head deaconness, meeting with Clara to discuss Clara’s vote in the upcoming Deacon Board meeting. These unlikely Three Musketeers try to convince Clara that Harmony & Hope having more board seats (a 50-50 split between H&H and Calvary though) will not affect Calvary’s independence. But after having been schooled by Lady Mae at her engagement party, Clara has questions. “What about leaving room for God?” she asks. Since Grace now knows that she will be at the helm after the board’s reorganization, she has an extra incentive to get Clara to see things her way and she does. She explains that H&H is willing to “pour millions” into the church and that an even split of votes will mean there will be more conversation before voting. Clara says, “I will see y’all at the meeting, and I will vote ‘yes.'” Shortly afterward, Karine comes to collect her grandmother. At this point, all of the deacons have been met with except for Connie, and you know how she will vote.

After the meeting is over, Grace speaks with Lady Mae on the phone. She tells her mother how Clara will vote. Lady Mae tells her daughter that Bishop plans to meet with Connie to discuss her vote. At this point, I must admit I’m a bit confused. It seems that Bishop doesn’t want Connie to vote yes although Grace wants her to do so.

Following that conversation, Phil DeMars meets with Grace. As he walks into her office, she asks, “Pastor DeMars, How can I help?” Phil replies with, “By resigning.” He tells her that he has proof that she lied to keep her son out of jail. Apparently, he doesn’t mind if the “wheels of justice” rolls over both Grace and A.J. She has until Sunday to decide if she will resign before he goes to the police. “God is good,” he says with a devilish smile as he strides out of Grace’s office.

At the Greenleaf estate, Kerissa attempts to be persuasive as well. Jacob is on his way out as he is going to see Dante at his new sports bar “Buckets.” (That’s kind of a cute name for a sports establishment, right?) “Before you go, ask your mother about the house,” she says. Yes, Kerissa is still trying to find out who will inherit the Greenleaf estate in the event of the demise of the elder Greenleafs. But Jacob refuses to do so. “That’s rude,” he says. She attempts to explain to her husband that she only wants to know because she wants to determine if they have a share in the home. And if so, she wants to be able to sell the share to get money to buy a home. Still Jacob refuses. “I’m happy living here,” he says. “I’m not,” she says. But Jacob tells her that if she wants to know so badly, she can ask Lady Mae herself. He even offers to pray for his wife as she approaches Lady Mae! LOL. She gon need it…

If anyone needs prayer before he or she approaches somebody, it’s Bishop. He comes up on Connie outside of her home (I think) to discuss her vote in the upcoming meeting. He tells her the H&H people are “carpetbaggers with Bibles.” She says that H&H is “marching the church into the pages of history.” He wastes no time in telling Connie that he knows that she took a bribe to hand over Calvary to H&H.  He also tells her that he knows she gave the money to her daughter for safekeeping. Connie says, “I’m not going to dignify that madness with a denial.”  Bishop tells her that everyone will find out about the money if she doesn’t vote against H&H having more board seats. Again, Bishop’s stance is puzzling as it goes against what Grace wants.

Another curious confrontation occurs when Judee approaches Karine about getting Calvary’s bylaws. Apparently, this is the third time that Judee has asked for them but for whatever reason Karine is stalling. Finally, when Judee is about to make her present the bylaws at that moment, Karine tells her that if she changes screens on her computer, she will lose the Amy Grant tickets she is getting for Judee at Judee’s request. Now Amy Grant is not an artist I ever expected to hear mentioned on “Greenleaf!”

I guess Jacob has prayed for Kerissa because she approaches Lady Mae and asks her who will inherit the house after her and Bishop are dead and gone. Of course, Lady Mae takes this as an opportunity to tell her that she is the one who cleared out the safe as she was going to be “jacked by my son’s wife.” LOL! But she does answer Kerissa’s question though. Grace, Jacob and Charity will have equal shares. I kinda think Lady Mae didn’t tell her the whole truth though. Why? Because Lady Mae is always a step ahead of her daughter-in-law. With one more episode, we will find out sooner rather than later…

In the name of some kind of justice, we know that Charity is stabbing her sister in the back. And Grace suspects that as well which is why she approaches her sister about Phil. “What proof does Phil have that I lied to the police? Tell me Charity.” Charity plays dumb. “I don’t know what Phil has.”

Grace knows that Charity knows. She tries to appeal to her reasonable side by telling her that she is playing with her son’s life which could be ruined if the truth comes out. Charity still continues to play dumb. Actually, she’s not playing. “I haven’t done anything Grace. You brought this on yourself.” I hope when Charity realizes that she was played Phil, she says the same thing.

Justice League…

Judee is loitering in Phil’s office. When Phil asks why, she tells him she is simply waiting for her Amy Grant tickets and a copy of Calvary’s bylaws. She then asks him how his relationship is going with Charity. “It’s going very well,” he replies. But Judee knows the man. She tells him that he doesn’t love Charity. And if he does, is it because she’s black? Wait…What? Did she actually ask him why he chooses to love a black woman? That’s a weird question for a white woman to ask a black man about a black woman, right?

Nevertheless, he tells Judee that she and Charity are very similar underneath their skin. For starters, they are both the daughters of important men, and the fact that they don’t get their just due in the shadow of their important fathers. Judee asks Phil if the three of them can have dinner together. Phil obviously questions Judee’s motives, but she says, “I would never do anything to stop you from being happy.” Additionally, she questions Phil about why he doesn’t think that Grace has a chance to be named the long-term pastor of the church. “I have a feeling,” Phil says. She tells him she is feeling steak for dinner.

Feeling bad about his last interaction with Dante, Jacob finally gets over to Buckets to see Dante. He explains his feelings to the former NBA baller and apologizes. Dante says its all good. In fact, Dante actually wants to cut a check for Excellence Preparatory now. After having a conversation with the general manager of the Memphis Red Devils, he now believes a donation to the school would be a good look for him and get him a spot on the team again. He asks Jacob if his wife can set up press conference to get the word out about his good deed. After that, he gives the check to Jacob right then! I wonder how much he gave Jacob!

When Phil approaches Charity about having dinner with Judee, Charity wonders how much information has Phil given to Judee. “Does she know about Grace?” she asks. Phil assures her that she doesn’t know about Grace. Reluctantly, Charity agrees to have dinner with Phil and Judee if they eat sushi.

Speaking of Grace, Sofia knows about Phil attempting to blackmail her mother. While Grace and Sofia are together in their suite, Sofia calls A.J. to explain why he must come back. She doesn’t reach him, but she does leave a lengthy voice mail. “My mom could go to jail. If she goes to jail, I’m gonna lose my mother.” She tells him that although he may have reasons to be upset with Grace, he should consider Sofia’s feelings. “I haven’t done anything. I don’t deserve this.” I’m glad that Sofia is done punishing her mother for making a youthful decision to give her son up for adoption. She tells her mother that she is not going back to Hampton University – at least for now. “If I don’t stay for this, what would I stay for?” Amen, Sofia.

In Bishop and Lady Mae’s suite, Bishop approaches his wife-to-be. “I’m debating whether to tell you this,” he says. “But I’m feeling confident it will work out.” He tells Lady Mae about his conversation with Connie. “I’m flabbergasted,” Lady Mae says. This isn’t the first time this season she has told him to not use that information to get Calvary back. She wants clean hands in attempting to get back the church. She explains that “ungodly things” cannot be used in “Godly love.” But she does know that Bishop, however misguided, acted out of love, and she’s grateful for that. “If I didn’t have you, I would be drowning in a pool of hopelessness,” she says. And yet, she feels that “move against Connie is going to be our undoing.” She tells Bishop that she is going to her prayer closet where she will be until morning!

Grace should be in her prayer closet, but instead, she has to entertain the selfishness of her sister-in-law. Kerissa speaks with Grace about buying Jacob’s share of the Greenleaf estate. She explains that she and Jacob need more money to move out of the family home. She wants out like Jonah in the whale. Kerissa says that it should probably go for $1 million, but that they will accept anything over $2500,000. Grace actually tells her that she can swing it. And then this chick ask Grace where she got her money?! Aine that crazy?

Back at Calvary, Connie tells Judee and Phil that the motion to expand the deacon board must be amended. It can longer be a 50-50 deal. “The current members have to maintain control,” she says before explaining that Bishop knows about the money that H&H gave to her. Judee agrees to a 60-40 split and asks Connie who told Bishop about the money. Connie tells her that she suspects Karine is the culprit. Once Connie leaves, Judee wonders if the Greenleafs are experienced blackmailers. She fires Karine but not before calling her, “Little Missy.” Next, she goes to see Grace in her office. “Whose side are you on?” Judee asks. Grace tells her, “I need to know what you’re talking about.”

When we return to Greenleaf estate, both Kerissa and Jacob are in a good mood, and they do what two married people often do when they are in a good mood at the same time. I will give you a hint: Candles are everywhere you look in their suite. Kerissa has money from Grace apparently, and Jacob has money from Dante apparently. They can buy a house now! Life is good for the couple, at least during this episode. But somehow, I don’t think that will be the case next week. These two never realize when they are out of their league..

Poetic Justice…

Phil has to please two women – Charity and Judee. He brings the two of them to a restaurant where both steak and sushi are served! Judee lets it slip that she and Phil used to date.

One half this equation is the topic of discussion for Grace and her parents. She tells them that Charity will not admit what she knows about Phil’s blackmail. Bishop says that Charity is so hypnotized by Phil that she cannot even tie her shoes. Grace asks her parents for advice. She doesn’t know if she should step down or stay and fight. Lady Mae advises her daughter to tell everything to the congregation on Sunday including the fact that she lied to protect her son. That way everything would be in the open. “Let the church decide,” Lady Mae says. She explains that “this world is just a waiting room for the next.” And as a result, Grace needs to care for her soul if she intends to go to Heaven. “You speak your own truth,” she adds. Bishop has completely opposite advice. “You do what’s best for your son.” This sounds like good advice until Lady Mae ends with, “You do what’s best for your soul.” Amen.

Sofia no longer seems concerned about her soul and flaunts her new friendship/relationship with Dante at his new sports club Buckets in front of Zora and Nicki, Dante’s ex-girlfriend. Of course, fireworks ensue within the crew at the grand opening event. Sofia is basically mad and jealous bout Zora’s friendship with Nicki.

Charity is mad and jealous too after Judee’s revelation, but once Charity and Phil are alone in his car, he tells Charity that his relationship with Judee ended a long time ago. Doesn’t Charity know that Judee is married? I would be asking about that first! Did Phil date Judee when she was married? Charity wonders if she is being used, but Phil placates her by giving her the key to his apartment. He then tells her that she should feel free to peruse his apartment where she will find a page in his prayer journal that is dedicated to her and all of the things he wants to do for her. He ends with, “I love you.” He explains that he only agreed to dinner with Judee to “get her on our side.”

Sooner than I predicted, Jacob and Kerissa, unlike Charity and Phil, will be unhappy again very soon. Fernando Amable calls Kerissa to tell her insider information about the Greenleaf estate. We have to wait until next week though, the finale episode, to find out the particulars!

In the mean time, Judee has finally received a copy of the bylaws and discovers that in the event of a tie, the most senior member of the board can break the tie. That means Connie is the tie breaker! Uh oh. And keep your mouth open because more is coming.

On Sunday morning, Pastor Grace steps into the pulpit like she owns it and asks the church to turn to Luke 22:40 where they will focus on what happened in the Garden of Gethsemane. But then, A.J., clothed in white, walks in and Grace is shook. “I’m sorry church. There’s been a change of plans,” she says. “Effective immediately, I’m stepping down as pastor of Calvary Fellowship.” Yes, that’s right, Bishop’s advice prevailed, but maybe Lady Mae’s advice prevailed as well. Maybe she did what was right for her son and for her soul…Is that justice?

ONLY ONE MORE EPISODE LEFT, SAINTS…

Thank you sooo much for reading my Greenleaf Recap Season 4 Episode 9: God’s Justice… and my other recaps so far. If you would like to keep up with OWN’s “Greenleaf,” and my recaps, please click on this link to subscribe to my blog 🙂!

Any thoughts?

 

 

 

 

Greenleaf Recap Season 4 Episode 6: The Stranger…

Hello World,

Will Charity ever stop choosing the wrong man? That question and more will be answered in this Greenleaf Recap Season 4 Episode 6: The Stranger…

Stranger Things…

It still strikes me as strange that after three seasons of functioning more as sworn enemies than mother and daughter, Lady Mae and Grace are kind to and understanding of one another this season. This is never more apparent than it is when Grace finally confesses to her mother that she has a son.

This week’s episode picks up after Grace’s confession. “Don’t you have anything to say?” says Grace. “I just told you that I have a grown son.” Had this been last season, Lady Mae would have probably accused Grace of trying to destroy the family and launched into one of her dramatic monologues. But this is a new day. At this point, Lady Mae only asks to see a picture of A.J. She follows up with asking Grace if she has prayed about the matter. She ends with, “So may I meet my new grandson?” Grace says she wants the family to meet him, but she is unsure of where he is as they recently argued. She also tells Lady Mae that her son has a prison record.

Just then, Charity walks into the kitchen and senses the tension. “What happened now?” she says. Lady Mae says, “This has to be kept in the family.” Charity says, “Who else would I tell?” We know that Phil DeMars is going to find out about all of this just as soon as she can leave the kitchen.

In the next scene, Grace calls A.J. again but has to leave a message. “I know you’re upset about the money. I told the family about you. They want to meet you. Tonight if possible.”

Later, Lady Mae and Bishop discuss the strange turn of events. “What has you so so transfixed?” Lady Mae asks Bishop. Bishop reflects on a conversation he had with Gigi 25 years ago. She had left home and called him from somewhere in Chicago. “She called, needing money. I thought she was obstinate, righteous and proud, but she was really pregnant, scared and lonely.”

Lady Mae wants to make things right with Grace and A.J. as well. “We need to graft him into the family and put him where the sun would do him some good.” I like that metaphor. (a plant metaphor for the Greenleafs)

At Calvary, Jacob walks up on Karine looking at a video of that strange fight that Jacob had with all of the Memphis Red Devils. She tells him he is now known as, “Pastor Holyfield.”  But he laughs it off despite the fact that the altercation cost him his job.

Strange Bedfellows…

As predicted, Charity runs to Phil DeMars to blab about Grace’s new son. “Stand up,” she tells him. Once he stands, she says, “You’re going to need to sit down. Grace has a secret son. She gave him up for adoption. She’s supposed to be the good one,” she says with glee. But Phil doesn’t immediately respond the way she had anticipated he would. “It’s not like she had an abortion,” Phil says. “He’s an ex-con and was in jail for five years for burglary,” she offers. “But that’s more about him than her,” says Phil in response. These two, not-so-strange bedfellows I’m afraid. They are just thirsty, I swear! She tells him that she hopes to meet A.J. that night as the family wants him to come over for dinner. Before she leaves to snoop for more dirt, Phil tells her that her hair looks nice. I must admit that it does. It is swept to one side and very curly.

Jacob sees Charity leave Phil’s office and asks, “Are you in trouble with Phil too?” Charity has to come up with a cover quick. “I called Judy Whitmore and told her we weren’t singing that song anymore.” “But I heard Carlton practicing that song with the choir,” Jacob says. Charity keeps it moving to keep from answering more questions.

Speaking of answering more questions, Grace realizes why she was unable to get in touch with A.J. for a while. “Hey, it’s A.J. I’ve been arrested,” he says once she answers the phone. She takes off for the Memphis police station. A.J. pleads with his mother to be his alibi. Apparently, he was arrested for a pharmacy robbery, but he wants Grace to say she was with him at his apartment the previous evening. He remembers that Aaron the attorney said that Grace was very kind, even to a stranger. “Pretend I’m a stranger. I can’t go back to jail.”

You can see that Grace is struggling with his request, but in the end, she decides to stick out her neck for her son for once. The police officer, who makes her sign a sworn statement, also makes sure that she knows that “lying to a police officer is a crime.”

Back at Calvary, Phil and Jacob finally meet regarding Jacob’s fight. “I was breaking up a fight,” Jacob explains. But y’all know Phil aine tryin’ to hear his explanation. Basically, Phil says it’s above him now as Bob saw the fight on television. Jacob wants to fight Phil, but he keeps it together although he is tempted to give him a taste of what Phil saw on television.  “You better leave before I do something I regret.” So Jacob is officially and completely unemployed.

Kerissa has a meeting as well. She meets with the buyer of their land. She confronts him about his connection to Harmony & Hope Ministries. In an effort to extort him for more money, she tells him that she will tell her husband about that connection. Kerissa wants out of the Greenleaf estate and NOW! “This check isn’t even half enough of what we need.” The buyer doesn’t seem all that fazed by her threat, but he does give her more money. He also tells her that she has to keep quiet now. But after the business is over, he makes a move on Kerissa! He tells her that her husband is only giving her “half of what you need. I would make sure that you were always taken care of.” Y’all know that got Kerissa excited, but she keeps her wits about herself for the time being. She tells him she may just take him up on his offer  but only”after the check clears.”

And Kerissa ain’t the only one who contemplates stepping outside of the marriage. In the next scene, Jacob holds his cell phone in his hand as he stares at the top contact: Tasha Skanks…(I think Tasha is a better match for Jacob actually. Yes, I’m saying this again…)

Hey Stranger…

But before Jacob can act on his thought, Kerissa walks into his office. “Hello Handsome, I was just thinking about you,” she says to him. She tells him that she managed to scrape up a few more dollars to put an offer on their dream home. They plan to go out to dinner to celebrate, but Lady Mae calls.

“I think you should come home.” She tells him that Grace has a son and he needs to meet him tonight. But Kerissa aine tryin’ to be second, even to Grace’s secret son, especially since Lady Mae delivered the news. “Can you put me first?” she asks. “Can you man up and be my husband for once.” She reminds him that he has lost several jobs lately and she hasn’t made a big deal of the sad situation. She has a point there. But Jacob has made up his mind. “Are you coming or not?” he says. “Does it look like I’m coming?” Kerissa responds bitterly. Well, Jacob’s rejection was the incentive she need to call the buyer back. “The check cleared,” she says.

At the Greenleaf estate, A.J. finally gets the opportunity to meet his family. “Welcome to the family,” Lady Mae says. (Did y’all catch when she asked to Marisol to put up all of the valuables before he arrived though? LOL) Lady Mae and Bishop agree that he’s a “perfect mix” of Grace and Noah. If you say so…”How would you like to meet your cousin?” Lady Mae asks. She explains that Zora lives in the “hippie bungalow.” (If Kerissa and Jacob ever move, will Zora willingly move with them? Hmmm…I wouldn’t…) She takes him to Zora’s spot and Zora is Zora after her grandmother leaves. “So A.J., you wanna get high?” He says, “I thought you were a Christian.” Zora comes back with, “I’m Christian, not crazy.” Smh…

Unfortunately, an uninvited person shows up at this overdue family reunion. A detective wants to see Grace. He tells her that he doubts what she said about A.J. and his alibi and accuses her of concocting the story with him. Apparently, security footage  at the police station shows Grace having a serious conversation with her son. Grace accuses the police officer of trying to pin something on her son.

But Lady Mae is not unconvinced that her grandson is not guilty of robbing the pharmacy. “Did you do it or not?” she asks A.J. after she tells Zora to make herself scarce.

“Could you please answer the question?” But before he can answer, Charity shows up with a baby blue balloon with the words “It’s a Boy” on it. This chick…

Lady Mae is only momentarily interrupted but gets back to her interrogation. “A.J., would you answer the question?” A.J. still says nothing. That sets Lady Mae off and she goes into one of her signature speeches. She says,”You’ve never met anyone more formidable than me. I’m a formidable adversary and I’m even more formidable as a friend…I’m more useful to you than riches.” Worried that the family’s last remaining connection to Calvary could be tarnished, she advises Grace to get right with God. “As a Christian and as a member of your church, I’m imploring you. You go down to that station and tell them the truth.” A.J., who still hasn’t answered any of Lady Mae’s questions, leaves.

As all of this was unfolding, Kerissa was with that buyer, a white gentleman. She complains to him about Jacob. “I found the house, I found the money. He can’t even tell his mom no for one night.” He takes her rant as an opportunity to comfort her. “What are you doing?” Kerissa says. “You know what I’m doing,” he says just before he kisses her. She collapses into his arms like the morals she claims to have…

Once she gets home, Jacob asks, “Where have you been?” Of course, she lies about her whereabouts. But Jacob doesn’t seem all that concerned at the moment. He was just waiting for her to come home to be with Winkie as he has to return to Calvary for some business.

Grace also leaves the estate to follow her son back to his apartment where she finds him packing. “Don’t you want a family after all this time? If you leave like this, they’re going to think you’re guilty.” Despite Grace trying dissuade him from leaving, A.J. doesn’t want to chance being locked up again. (Why didn’t he answer Lady Mae’s question?) She gives him her car keys. “Take good are of yourself,” she says. “You do the same,” he says before throwing the keys back to her. I didn’t expect that…(Did y’all see when he packed those pills in his bag? He did hit up that pharmacy…But maybe not for money…Maybe he’s sick…He could be on drugs but he wasn’t all that excited when his cousin tried to get him to get high with her..)

Now that Charity has more information on A.J., she rushes back over to Calvary where Phil is still working. She tells him that A.J. is a robbery suspect and that Grace offered herself as an alibi. “She’s lying.” Charity says. And she tells Phil that she has recorded Grace saying she’s lying. That bit of information gets Phil hot and bothered. They begin kissing as if she has told him the most romantic sweet nothings. Why can’t she see that Phil is using her?

Speaking of romance, for the first time since season 2, I think, we see Bishop and Lady Mae in bed together. They are just lounging, but it shows that they are getting closer. He tells her a story about a girl that he was told about before he met the girl. “You’re going to love her,” he was told. He said that stranger was more wonderful than he had ever imagined. “What’s to come is just like that girl. It may be better than you think.” Bishop tells Lady Mae that she was that stranger. He’s trying to get Lady Mae to continue to hope that they will get Calvary back although their situation continues to deteriorate.

Finally, at Calvary, as Jacob goes to his office, he hears a couple laughing together in Phil’s office. He peeks into the glass door and sees his sister Charity all up in Phil’s arms as they passionately kiss…Just a Judas…betraying her family with a kiss…Unless Charity gets some intense therapy, I think her men picker is just broken…Until next week, y’all…

Thank you sooo much for reading my Greenleaf Recap Season 4 Episode 6: The Stranger… and my other recaps so far. If you would like to keep up with OWN’s “Greenleaf,” and my recaps, please click on this link to subscribe to my blog 🙂!

Any thoughts?