The Book of John Gray: "Christianity Does Not Make You Perfect"
Pastor John Gray and his wife, Aventer, landed a show on OWN as a part of the channel’s popular Saturday night programming lineup.
"The Book of John Gray" features the life of John Gray, Associate Pastor at Joel Osteen’s world-famous Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas. Known for his larger than life sense of humor and his special ability to connect with peoples’ hearts, he brings a message of hope and faith to everyone he meets. A healer, a husband, a father, and a bridge-builder, he’s not your daddy’s preacher.
Raised by a single mother, John began preaching at the age of 21, toured as a singer with Grammy award-winning Gospel recording artist Kirk Franklin, and is renowned for his ability to blend comedy, music, and entertainment into a unique style of preaching. While he admits that he has faced his own enormous struggles and could easily have become a statistic, he has instead risen to prodigious success and is now trying to be the role model and father that he never had. John will give viewers unprecedented access into his life with his wife Aventer and their ministry as they help people in their community overcome life’s challenges, while John also faces his own relatable struggles and triumphs as a husband and father.
Pastor Gray spoke with THAheadline about giving the world access into his life and being vulnerable as a Christian on national television.
"Whatever I am off the pulpit is what I want to be on it. So, if I am broken behind the scenes, I am broken in front of the people. There is this idea, this facade that faith and religion somehow anesthetize you to pain and real issues, but that is a lie. I think people need to see the scars and flaws in order to understand that it is not men that you should be worshiping, it is God you should be worshiping. I think for me, it was important for my wife and I to offer a real picture," said Pastor Gray.
He continued, "Whatever the camera catch, is what it catch. Good or bad. This is who we are. The vulnerability comes from just being honest about our process. Faith is not perfection. Christianity does not make you perfect."
The premiere season will introduce the dynamics within the Gray household including John’s emotional struggle with diabetes and Aventer’s medical challenges. Among the people that John will work with and guide are a woman whose home was destroyed by a flood, causing her to lose her faith; a father concerned about his daughter’s dangerous addiction to alcohol; a couple trying to overcome infidelity on their path to the altar; and a military veteran who is trying to work through the trauma of sexual abuse suffered while serving her country, which brings up demons from John’s own painful past. Aventer also brings her motherly touch of ministry to the series as well, helping a woman find comfort in her difficulties with fertility and mentoring a group of African-American teens.
“The Book of John Gray” is produced for OWN by Leftfield Pictures, with David George, Jordana Hochman, Joe Weinstock and showrunner Rob Cornick as executive producers, alongside Jason Kennedy (E! News) and Rich Wilkerson, Jr. as consulting producers.
To see full episodes, clips and more of "The Book of John Gray", click here. Be sure to tune into the series premiere of "The Book of John Gray" on Saturday, April 15 at 10 p.m. ET/PT.
Check out Gray's response to being vulnerable on national television and remaining true to himself below.