Denver’s Pastor Gil Jones and his destructive pursuit of women

Westword.com profiled Gil Jones, most recently pastor of The Village church in Denver, “where ordinary people bump into Jesus.” Jones, who was divorced, apparently pursued multiple women in his congregations at all times. When the women discovered that they were not exclusive and broke off involvement with Jones, he exploded with angry and profane text messages — not exactly what he preached to the faithful.

Although the article doesn’t state this, Jones sounds like a classic sociopath pretending to be a spiritual leader.

There’s nothing holier-than-thou about Gil Jones, on WestWord.com.

Link shared by a Lovefraud Facebook fan.


10 Comments on "Denver’s Pastor Gil Jones and his destructive pursuit of women"

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  1. blossom4th says:

    Gil Jones sure knew how to appeal to the eyes and ears of his congregation!Evidently he was good at appealing to fleshly desires too!But what he wasn’t good at doing was covering over his feelings of anger and betrayal!Well,how should those young women that he dated feel?!!! He fails as a spiritual man!!! He’s a ‘wolf in sheep’s clothing’!

    Such men really concern me.My husband is one.He has fantasies of being “chosen of God”.Thus far those fantasies haven’t been challenged.But I have a feeling they will be soon.I don’t think his reaction will be a peaceful,care-less one.

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  2. revjanice says:

    I know I read somewhere when a friend first suggested my ex was a sociopath that most CEO’s are one. And I believe many lawyers, clergy and other high profile jobs are as well. It is a power game. And sadly even as I am clergy,ministry provides the perfect storm, because your only real boss is “God”, and people are feeding on your every word. It is easy to let it go to your head.
    My ex has managed to play a similar game as the guy in this article, because even after loosing standing in our denomination he still managed to get employed at a church from another denomination. And it is my understanding the sr. minister has taken him under his wing as a mentor. Believing my ex has been unjustly treated by my denomination.
    My ex is very charismatic and a powerful preacher, able to think fast on his feet. He never used notes and often had props. When we worked together I was all but invisible and opted to do the more behind the scenes stuff, because of this. I remember now how he was often trying to trip me up in worship. He would often tell me he wanted me to do x, y and z this week, only to ask me to do a, b, and c once we were actually in the sanctuary beginning a service. And he would violate my trust by telling stories about me that I thought were private between husband and wife, intimate embarrassing stuff.
    He loved the shock factor in worship. He would show movie clips that were R rated and he would often keep count of how many swear words he could get into one worship service. I may be a prude, but I want to get away from the worlds profanity at least while I am worshiping. I do not know what it says about our culture that it is these type of services that seem to draw in the crowds.
    As a person of my generation I love the more upbeat music, sermons that are more than a talking head, and new things like drama, poetry readings and dance in worship, but not vulgar stuff.

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  3. Redwald says:

    Readers’ comments on a news article are often instructive, for better or for worse. It’s just too bad that some of those responding to the Westwood article, people personally familiar with Gil Jones’s conduct, are nevertheless inclined to see alcoholism as his root problem, as though it were somehow the cause of his other behavior. Apparently they’re trying to blame his pathology on his alcoholism instead of blaming his alcoholism on his pathology. Clearly this is one more place where some of the people could use educating about psychopaths.

    On the other hand, Stephanie Engels went to the heart of the problem when she remarked that

    you can’t help someone who looks you in the eye and tells you one thing, and then goes off and does something else.

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    • Redwald – Many, many people blame sociopathic behavior on alcohol or drug addiction. I’ve heard from many Lovefraud readers who tried everything to get their partners sober, thinking that would solve the problem. But when sociopaths get sober, they are still sociopaths.

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      • Redwald says:

        That’s very true, Donna. Alcohol often gets the blame for “making” people do things that in reality have quite a different cause. I don’t believe alcohol “makes” anybody anything—like “making” them aggressive or violent, for instance. That’s to say, alcohol doesn’t “make” anybody into anything that they weren’t already! What alcohol really does is to release inhibitions and “let out” whatever it is that somebody has inside them. If that “something” is harmless, the effects of alcohol can be relatively benign. But if that “something” is malignant, watch out for what alcohol can let loose!

        It’s been said that humans have three “basic” moods: “Sad,” “Mad,” and “Glad.” Even tiny babies can exhibit all three of these moods. Despite the angry and violent behavior often blamed on alcohol, a moment’s thought should tell us that the large majority of people don’t get that way when they drink. Rather, what strikes me is that the metaphors we associate with drinking are nearly all about positive moods, about happiness! We talk about people being “merry,” “lit up,” “feeling no pain,” “jolly,” in “good cheer” or “high spirits,” and so on. For most people, by lifting inhibitions and relegating trivial cares to the back of the mind, what alcohol does is to let out the “Glad” mood. Many people are more inclined to sing or dance under the influence of drink. These are things people do when they’re happy , not angry.

        People of course can and will do “silly” things, “embarrassing” things, careless or ill-judged things if they’ve had too much to drink, things they may regret when they’re sober. But this is still not the same as the aggressive and abusive things some people can do when they’re in quite a different mood.

        Then too, businessmen hoping to make a major and highly profitable deal have always recognized the value of getting the prospective client in a receptive mood by treating him (or her) to a good lunch or dinner with liberal doses of beer, wine, or liquor. The client would hardly be likely to sign on the dotted line if what alcohol did was to engender an angry or belligerent mood instead.

        Most people, in short, tend to be “happy drunks.” What alcohol usually lets loose (for better or worse) is the “Glad” mood.

        This isn’t true of everybody. Some people may have a melancholy disposition, or a lot on their mind due to bad luck that’s befallen them in life: a heap of regrets that they’re inclined to “let out” after they’ve had a few. These are the people who may try but never succeed in “drowning their sorrows,” sorrows that only bob to the surface all the more obstinately when fueled by alcohol. With these people, what alcohol lets out is not the “Glad” mood, but the “Sad” mood. Then what we get is the “maudlin drunk” who “cries in his beer,” as the saying goes. Here again, alcohol is only letting out what was already inside the person. While that may be depressing rather than convivial, at least we can empathize with someone who’s in the “Sad” mood without getting abused in return.

        Despite all the complaints their behavior causes, it’s only a minority of people who do get aggressive or violent when they drink. Once again, it’s a case of ten percent of the people causing ninety percent of the problems. Then we get our “raging drunk,” for whom what alcohol lets out is not the “Glad” mood or even the “Sad” mood, but the “Mad” mood. When that happens, watch out! Here again, alcohol was only letting out what was already inside that person. It didn’t “make them mad.” They were “mad” inside to begin with. And if they do stop drinking, the chances are that much of that “Mad” mood is going to come out another way. Then we get our so-called “dry drunk,” who’s still hard to live with even when sober.

        None of this is to deny that alcohol can be a problem in and of itself. Of course it’s a bad idea to drink too much or too often, worse still to do both. And it does seem that alcohol can be physiologically addictive for a certain small minority of people. However, once again I can’t ignore the causal connection between alcohol abuse and personality disorders. Often it’s a personality defect that leads someone to drink too much in the first place.

        Oddly enough, this may occur for one of two opposite reasons. Psychopaths are likely to use alcohol (or other drugs) to stimulate themselves, to relieve their inner boredom. In contrast, there are quite a few other people around who are not psychopathic but still have anger issues (and possibly other personality disorders) who “self medicate” with alcohol in an attempt to soothe their inner dysphoria. In either case, what the booze is likely to do is to let out the “Mad” mood—with deplorable results.

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        • Thanks Redwald. Also, sociopathy and substance abuse are genetically related. That means the same genes are associated with both conditions.

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        • Stargazer says:

          Great post, Redwald. I think this is also true of certain medications like Prozac. They can bring up unresolved rage for a depressed person. It was always odd to me that the drugs were then blamed for causing rage in people or for causing them to feel suicidal. The drugs were actually doing what they were intended to do – bring a person’s repressed feelings to the surface, which is the only real cure for depression. Since many people are afraid of strong feelings like rage, it’s easier to blame the drug. It’s a bit of a catch 22 in a society where rage is an unacceptable emotion, and there aren’t many places a person can go to release it. We all would prefer a drug that will just take us to our happy place and circumvent any unpleasant emotions.

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  4. Barb says:

    Worst experience ever on a job: a young female sociopath ‘whose only boss was God’ and now at 43 she is proselytizing via radio and telecommunication. I saw through her from the beginning. I am firmly convinced she stole an antique brooch off of my coat (she had even admitted to a life of theft beforehand) and ‘did herself over’ until she became much more glamourous. She paraded herself in front of the guys at work and managed to get me removed from that scene so that I was stuck in a ‘hidden’ office area. Not one of the our supervisors would recognize what had happened and I was only a temp.

    I located a book titled “Sisterhood Betrayed” as it was all about women in the workplace. It taught me that the best thing to do about this is to find a better job and be successful at it. Since my husband worked at the same place as ‘little Miss Phony-Baloney’, it was easy for my success to reach the ears of said sociopath. I was, indeed, very successful at a company near our home that was written up in the papers daily. My job was also much more fascinating and I frequently acted as receptionist. I even met our state representative as he was curious about the company that was making all the news.

    My husband told me that the resident sociopath acted angry at work, frequently slamming things around and not talking to anyone (he liked to brag about me at work).

    I think religious sociopaths are easy to spot and see-through, but only a handful of others than myself recognized this girl for what she was. Hope she has matured since then…

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  5. Babs94540 says:

    It scares me how this kind of thing just does NOT surprise me any longer. Yet another pastor or priest is screwing around with his parishioners? ((( Yawn ))) At least this one hasn’t been sexually violating children.

    Even that doesn’t surprise me any longer, either, but hearing/reading about a person in an authority position who uses their power position to target children for abuse or exploitation can still rile me up pretty strongly. Anyone who hurts kids better not be doing that where I can get at them.

    I think the older I get, the more cynical I get about… a lot of things!

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  6. Stargazer says:

    Well this hits close to home, as I live in Denver and have lived in Lafayette as well. I probably know people who attend these churches. I had no idea this was going on but it doesn’t surprise me. I have become very cynical of churches themselves and those who hold power there. In fact any place called “Scum of the Earth Church” is probably a bright beacon to sex offenders and other sociopaths.

    In reading several of the articles about this guy, not one person gets that his lack of moral character and pathological lying may point to an actual disorder. They all think he can be helped with rehab. There still needs to be more education about sociopaths – if parishioners knew exactly what they were dealing with, getting him out would be a slam dunk. There would be no confusion or ambivalence. I think churches who by their very nature advocate forgiveness especially need to be educated about sociopaths. They need to hear the word, linked up with the behaviors, and “no cure”. The duped parishioners still don’t get it. There needs to be education in every walk of life.

    The spath I once dated would also apologize every time he behaved badly. The seemingly sincere apologies can be quite endearing.

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