Chicago Radio Host & a Former Bodyguard Say James MacDonald Asked Them to Arrange Murders

By Julie Roys
James MacDonald

Chicago radio personality, Mancow Muller, says disgraced megachurch pastor, James MacDonald, asked him to find a hitman to kill someone. MacDonald’s former bodyguard is making a similar claim. 

Muller said MacDonald— a celebrity pastor who was fired from Harvest Bible Chapel in February—asked him at least twice in 2018 if Muller knew a hitman MacDonald could hire. Muller said he thought MacDonald was joking at first. But during a conversation in December, Muller said it became clear to him that MacDonald was “really serious.”

Similarly, Emanuel “Manny” Bucur, a deacon at Harvest and former confidant and volunteer bodyguard of MacDonald’s, said MacDonald asked him in 2015 to kill MacDonald’s former son-in-law. Bucur added that MacDonald offered to help him dispose of the body.

Bucur said he was upset by the request but didn’t report it because he figured MacDonald had spoken in anger and simply had a momentary lapse in judgment. Plus, Bucur said he has four daughters and understood MacDonald’s rage toward a man who had allegedly hurt his daughter.

Bucur agreed to tell his story anonymously on a podcast of Muller’s, which was recorded on Thursday but has not yet aired. Bucur said during the recording session, he heard Muller’s story for the first time and hours later, decided to go on the record with me.

Give a gift of $30 or more to The Roys Report this month, and you will receive a copy of “The Way of the Dragon or the Way of the Lamb” by Jamin Goggin and Kyle Strobel. To donate, click here.

“When I heard that (MacDonald) was crazy enough to ask someone else to basically do the same thing . . . I figured, okay, this guy’s unhinged.”

“When I heard that (MacDonald) was crazy enough to ask someone else to basically do the same thing . . . I figured, okay, this guy’s unhinged,” Bucur said. “This is a problem. It’s a pattern here.”

Muller told me he doesn’t know the identity of the person MacDonald allegedly wanted to kill in December. Muller said he got the impression that the person was a rival who was bad-mouthing MacDonald and perhaps “snooping around.” Muller said he definitely didn’t think it was MacDonald’s former son-in-law. Muller said he urged MacDonald to leave vengeance to God, “who punishes worse than man.” 

I repeatedly called and texted MacDonald over the weekend to comment on both Bucur’s and Muller’s accounts, but he did not respond.

Muller began attending Harvest in 2014 and became friends with MacDonald in 2016. That friendship ended earlier this year when Muller’s view of Harvest and his former pastor soured. Muller now accuses MacDonald of stealing millions from congregants and calls Harvest a “cult.” In February, Muller aired vulgar comments by MacDonald that were recorded on a hot mic and MacDonald was fired the same day.

Muller at Camp Harvest with MacDonald.

Nathan Murray, an Indiana pastor who says he’s been a friend and spiritual mentor of Muller’s for more than 10 years, said Muller told him in January about MacDonald’s alleged murderous request. Murray said Muller was “freaked out about it” and in a “kind of Jim Jones shock.” Murray said he recognizes that Muller is a “shock-jock” who “exaggerates for a living.” But Murray said he can tell when his friend is serious, and Muller “was pretty dead serious about it.”

Muller said on Thursday he filed a report with police where he lives in Wilmette, Illinois. He added that he’s terrified of MacDonald, who he believes is “dangerous” and may be targeting him. Muller said police are increasing patrols around his house and Muller also has hired private security.

Wilmette Deputy Police Chief Pat Collins told me that Muller came into the station on Thursday and said there is an active investigation. Collins would not comment on the subject of the investigation. But he said my open-records request for Muller’s police report about MacDonald was denied and that police are not releasing Muller’s report until after the investigation is complete.

Bucur told me that on Thursday, he also gave a statement about MacDonald to police in Bartlett, Illinois. According to Bucur, Bartlett police called him on Friday and said they had talked to Wilmette police, who confirmed that Wilmette Police are investigating MacDonald. Bucur said Bartlett police said they would not be opening a separate investigation, but instead would allow Wilmette to handle the case. I called Bartlett police for further clarification, but they declined to comment.

According to Illinois law, a person who requests or encourages someone to murder another person is guilty of solicitation of murder—a Class X felony carrying a sentence of 15-30 years in prison.

Discussion Allegedly Turns Murderous After Visit to Creation Museum

Bucur said MacDonald asked him to kill MacDonald’s son-in-law, Tony Groves, during a motorcycle trip to the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky, from July 31, 2015, to August 2, 2015. Bucur said five others from Harvest were also on that trip—Harvest former Assistant Senior Pastor Rick Donald, former Elder and Executive Director of Harvest Bible Fellowship Kent Shaw, former Elder Marcel Olar, and church members Tom Moore and Steve Lupella.

Bucur said MacDonald’s request took place during breakfast at a restaurant in Indiana on the last day of the trip. Bucur said he was seated immediately to MacDonald’s left, Lupella was on MacDonald’s right, and the rest of the group was seated across the table or at the ends of the table.

Bucur said MacDonald was preoccupied with something on his phone, which he was holding with both hands under the table. Bucur said he glanced down and saw that MacDonald was on a porn site and asked, “Is that what I think it is? Are you on a porn site?”

Bucur, MacDonald, and others in front of Creation Museum.

Bucur said MacDonald then told Bucur in hushed tones that he feared that his son-in-law, Tony Groves, had posted something damaging to his daughter, Abby MacDonald, online, and that’s why MacDonald was searching porn sites. (Bucur said he never saw anything that Groves posted, nor did James MacDonald ever tell him that he found anything that Groves had posted.)

Bucur said MacDonald added that Abby and Groves were getting a divorce, and that Groves had cheated on Abby multiple times. (Groves and Abby divorced in April 2016. Prior to that, Groves was arrested twice and charged with domestic battery—once in 2012 and once in 2013. At least one of those incidents reportedly involved a “girlfriend/mistress.” I called Groves for comment. He said to call back later, but when I did, he didn’t pick up or respond to my messages. I also reached out to Abby MacDonald for comment, but she did not respond.)

Bucur said that MacDonald then leaned toward him until MacDonald was inches from his face and said that he needed to ask him something based on what Bucur had just heard. Bucur said MacDonald then asked Bucur if he would be willing to “take Tony out” for MacDonald.

Bucur said he replied, “Are you asking me what I think you’re asking me?”

Bucur said MacDonald said yes and noted that with Bucur’s background (as a combat marine veteran), it shouldn’t be too hard to kill Groves and get away with it. Bucur said MacDonald added that he’d help Bucur dispose of the body and no one would know.

Bucur, foreground, with MacDonald, background on the right.

Bucur said he replied, “Absolutely not! We’re not having this conversation and we’re not talking about this ever again.” Bucur said he didn’t think any of the other men at the breakfast table overheard his discussion with MacDonald.  I reached out to all five of them, but only Steve Lupella responded.

Lupella said he remembered sitting on the other side of MacDonald from Bucur during breakfast and seeing MacDonald on his phone for a long time. Lupella said he also remembers observing Bucur and MacDonald have a private conversation. Lupella said he didn’t hear what Bucur and MacDonald discussed but said Bucur was clearly upset and withdrawn afterwards.

Lupella said Bucur normally rode alongside MacDonald on bike trips, but that day Bucur dropped to the back of the pack. Lupella added that after the group stopped at a Dairy Queen later in the day, MacDonald took off before everyone else and headed home alone.

Lupella said a couple weeks later, Bucur told him that MacDonald had asked Bucur to kill Groves or find someone else to kill Groves. Lupella said he assumed MacDonald had just spoken in anger and didn’t really mean it.

Looking back, Bucur said he wishes he had gone to police immediately. He said at the time he was enamored with being in MacDonald’s inner circle and “duped” into believing MacDonald was a man of God. 

Spying and Intimidation

According to two former Harvest employees, a year or two before the incident Bucur described, James MacDonald had instructed them to spy on Groves.

Tom Hackl, who worked part-time at Harvest as a men’s ministry assistant, said the instructions to spy on Groves came from his supervisor, former Harvest Director of Biblical Soul Care Garrett Higbee. However, Hackl said he believed that MacDonald was behind the spying.

I talked to Higbee and he confirmed that MacDonald gave him instructions to monitor Groves, which Higbee then relayed to Hackl. Higbee said MacDonald was concerned that “there was some kind of impropriety going on with his son-in-law, and he was trying to enlist some guys to check it out for him.”

Though Higbee participated in the spying, he said he felt uncomfortable with it and told MacDonald that he should get a private investigator. “I let James know it was paranoia,” Higbee said, “and he needed to stop doing this because he was going to end up in trouble.”

“I let James know it was paranoia and he needed to stop doing this because he was going to end up in trouble.”

Hackl said shortly before Christmas in either 2013 or 2014, he got a text from Higbee directing him to go to an apartment where Groves might be and to look for a car with a certain make and license plate. Hackl said he went to the apartment, found the vehicle, and then communicated the information to Higbee. Hackle said Higbee told him to remain at the apartment until further instruction.

Hackl said Higbee then directed him to go to the door of the apartment and confront Groves. Hackl said he refused and Higbee backed down.

However, Hackl said he then began getting texts from someone who identified himself as “someone important to the MacDonald family.”  Hackl said the person strongly urged him to confront Groves, saying, “As a man of God, you need to do this.” Hackl said he texted back and forth a few times, but then drove away.

Hackl said he was fired in late December 2014 and told his position didn’t exist anymore. Hackl said he believes the real reason he was fired was because he refused to spy on Groves.

Hackl said a year later, the church rehired him for another position. But after a few days on the job, Higbee told Hackl that the church was withdrawing its offer because someone didn’t think Hackl was the right person for the job. Hackl said Higbee wouldn’t say who the person was, or why the person objected to Hackl. Higbee told me he can’t remember who the person was, but thinks the directive came from someone in human resources.

Guns and a Pattern of Violence

In my December WORLD article, “Hard Times at Harvest,” I recounted several disturbing stories concerning James MacDonald’s reportedly angry and violent nature. One involved MacDonald repeatedly stabbing a picture of a former pastor with a butter knife. Another recounted a time that MacDonald made a target out of pictures, including the wives of elders, and shot at it with a pellet gun. And a third, told how MacDonald displayed a “pattern of uncontrolled anger” while teaching high school students at Harvest Christian Academy, allegedly calling them names and threatening them physically.

Former employees at Camp Harvest tell additional, disturbing stories about MacDonald. Bill Pease, who worked as property manager at Camp Harvest from 2005-2010, said he once saw MacDonald shoot a deer at “point-blank range” and said MacDonald didn’t stop shooting until he was out of ammunition.

Former Camp Harvest groundskeeper, Mike Hulburt, attended the same shoot in which MacDonald allegedly unloaded on the deer. Hulburt said the shoot, which occurred in 2008, involved MacDonald and 8-10 of MacDonald’s friends. He said the deer were mangled afterwards—“a stinkin’ mess” with holes throughout their bodies, including bellies, legs, and hind quarters.

Another time, Pease said MacDonald’s assistant called him and asked him to retrieve a gun and $1,000 cash from the glove compartment of MacDonald’s car. According to Pease, a church employee had hit a deer while driving MacDonald’s car back to Chicago from the Camp. (Pease said MacDonald had flown home in a private jet.)

Pease said the car then was towed to a body shop in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Pease said the next day, MacDonald’s assistant called Pease and asked Pease to retrieve the gun and cash from the glove compartment of MacDonald’s car. Pease said he then called his friend, who owned the body shop in Grand Rapids, who looked for the gun and cash but didn’t find it. Pease said when he called MacDonald’s assistant back, she said she had just discovered that the employee, who had gotten in the crash, had retrieved the gun and cash already.*

Bucur told me that MacDonald almost always carries a gun in his car. 

Podcast Coming

Muller billed the podcast he recorded on Thursday as the “nuclear option”—a last resort he said he’d produce if MacDonald didn’t confess and show remorse for his actions. MacDonald has been silent since Harvest fired him. And on Thursday, MacDonald reportedly informed Harvest that he is pursuing arbitration concerning his termination and ownership of Walk in the Word—MacDonald’s broadcast ministry, which used to reach millions. 

Fotopoulos and MacDonald

Muller was expected to release the podcast on Thursday. But he told me on Friday that police had requested that he wait a day or two before releasing it. Bucur told me he appears on the podcast anonymously as “George.” He said also on the podcast is an anonymous guest and Constantine Fotopoulos, a former church member and close friend of MacDonald. 

Muller texted me that he’s grieved to go public with something so sordid concerning his former friend and pastor. “Nobody wanted ANY of this,” Muller said. “We wanted to worship Jesus Christ and instead we got the devil’s messenger in Boss MacDonald. This is more hassle and heartbreak then most can imagine. I’m still a believer in Christ but believe MacDonald has pushed many towards being agnostic or worse.”

UPDATE: Mancow Muller’s podcast is now live. 

*Correction: The original version of this story reported that Pease had retrieved the gun and cash himself. 

  • 4


Keep in touch with Julie and get updates in your inbox!

Don’t worry we won’t spam you.

More to explore

131 thoughts on “Chicago Radio Host & a Former Bodyguard Say James MacDonald Asked Them to Arrange Murders”

  1. @bob: It’s a terrifying thing to file a police report on a public figure. Manny Bucur and Mancow Muller believed so strongly that MacDonald was “soliciting to murder” that they overcame their fears and went to the police. There are serious legal consequences for giving false evidence.

    It’s also dangerous to publish false material. If Julie were uncertain of the evidence she’s been given, she would not risk losing all she owns to a libel suit.

    We can be sure that this story is extremely accurate.

  2. “… come forward and speak out before he really hurts someone.”
    Before he REALLY HURTS someone.??!!

    What a shallow and flippant remark.!!
    KingRat and his Clan have REALLY HURT thousands of people.!!
    Men, women and children… Spiritually, emotionally, physically, monetarily …
    The walking wounded are STILL suffering each and every day.!!
    Not to mention those who may have been so traumatized they took their own lives.

    This short-sighted comment needs to be immediately rewritten..

    … come forward and speak out before he really hurts someone ELSE.

  3. SadnessInCali

    Hmmmm… you must be a real treat in social circles and one of many side kicks in the hyper Charismatic Movement! Your commentary is less than helpful or compassionate to the masses suffering under the weight of YEARS of spiritual abuse!

    Troll some other blogs to spew your self righteousness! 24 hours of tongues …. give me a break!

  4. my anger revolves around the fact that thousands of people in this church and the elders allowed this maniac pastor to thrive for years and years and did nothing. well, maybe some tried but if you have thousands of people in a church and those thousands are supposed to be believers led by the Spirit of God, this man should never have risen to the level he did. my anger is over celebrity pastors who remain unchecked for decades because people are too busy idolizing that pastor to get in tune with God who was probably telling them to flee the church for years. I stand by my comment because most in that church need a wake up call to the gospel. the gospel is not “follow a popular preacher and make him wealthy,” the gospel is follow Jesus to your death. I am not in the hyper charismatic movement. I am a missionary on furlow. and I pray in tongues all the time and love it. there is a time for compassion, and I feel compassion for the baby Christians in this church. but I feel anger toward the many, many elders and members of this church who turned a blind eye to so many things. hey, wake up and stop following man. they all poop. to hell with celebrity pastors who use tithes and offerings to make themselves rich. to hell they will go. may the Lion roar.

    1. The thousands of people at this church did not know he was like this. Before all this happened only those closest to James and in leadership knew his true colors. The “many many members” and attendees knew nothing about him other than what he presented when he was preaching. It is possible to preach one way and live another. Most of us that attended did not attend because James was a “celebrity”. Far from it. Please talk to some Harvest members because clearly you did not attend or know the hearts of those who did. Those of us who left left because of James’ character. We did not ignore the type of person he is because we idolized him. We truly did not know

      1. Jim, one day I was at WalMart. I walked out and there were two people asking others for money. Begging I guess. They were homeless. They were telling me and a friend how they were going to use the money to get an apartment so they could go to bible school. My friend was wanting to help them. The Holy Spirit told me, “These people are not wanting to go to bible school. They are frauds. Rebuke them.” So, I told them God told me they were hypocrites and what else he told me. They started cussing me out and wanted to assault me physically. They blasphemed God. Their true colors came out and the SPirit was right. The Holy Spirit lives inside every born again believer at this church. He was warning and speaking. You guys were not listening. The ones that were it seems were villified. My exhortation to you is to start listening. Pray in tongues alot. God is with us and wanted years ago for something to be done about James. Seems idolization took the place of God here. I too used to idolize and follow. But I got burned and learned. You guys got burned, now it’s time to learn. I bless you. Repent and grow from this. Do not allow another pastor in your pulpit like this. And pay him modestly. Very modestly. And perhaps change much more. God is telling me to tell your congregation to repent. I stand by what I hear God saying. Repent. I’m with you guys in compassion, but my compassion is a plea to repent. That is compassion. You are my family in Christ and I want you to grow and not let this happen again. The gift of discernment and the voice of the Spirit must be loved more than a popular preacher. I listened to James once and felt a hardness in my heart, that something was off. You guys felt it too but disregarded it for years. Been there myself and done that. It always leads to something bad happening. Let the SPiriit lead you and march with HIM.

        1. You make some good points. First, sometimes fear tries speak louder than the Spirit, but if we repent, He is there to guide us in His way.

          Curiously enough I ran into MacDonald this past summer and when I asked the Spirt how to pray for Him, He said “For his pride.” That he would repent. So I did.

          I got the sense God has been trying to get his attn to offer James a chance at repentance and to use His Mercy but since McDonald seems to be hardening his heart, he is using judgement.

          Just look at the examples of Israel in the OT. He wants us to have soft hearts.

          Even so, God is sovereign over sin and He does judge fairly and rightly. He will not be mocked.

          Have soft hearts and Listen to the Holy Spirit.

        2. What are you talking about? You clearly are missing what I wrote. Most members did not know his behavior outside of the pulpit. You CLEARLY have never stepped foot in a harvest. James was inaccessible to most – and most members did not even know that he was that inaccessible as they were on different campuses and never saw him in person. He was a man on a screen to most and that’s it. When he preached at Rolling Meadows or Elgin he would usually disappear right after making it very hard for anyone to even have a second conversation with him. As far as the other campuses such as mine, we never saw him in person. James was only present when he would pop up on the screen and then he was gone. The only thing many knew about him is what he preached. If you were just a member who served occasionally at a campus he did not preach live in, you most likely had no clue the type of person James was. This is why most were genuinely shocked when all this information started coming to light. You are playing a dangerous game by assuming that all these Christians, some of them are the most faithful who have sacrificed so much for the sake of Christ, don’t listen to the spirit. You have NO clue what we knew or didn’t know. To assume that all these people loved James more than Christ and would rather listen to him rather than the spirit is far from the truth.

          1. Jim, do you missed the fact that 5000 people left the church? You weren’t able to discern there was a problem? All of them were pointing a James…

            I’m with the comment made…anyone who didn’t know what was happening, didn’t want to know.

        1. Completely agree. Prayingtongues is basically saying “I know you and others went to HBC (and I didn’t and have no idea what the culture was like) and are claiming you didn’t know anything about James, however, you really did know and you just did not listen and thus you are at fault for him remaining on the pulpit.” Give me a break.

    2. I would also like to say that we shouldn’t cast aspersions on current or former members of HBC, or on staff members who have left and/or didn’t know what was going on. I believe that very few people knew how bad things were with Mr. MacDonald and about the financial misdeeds and everything else.

      Everyone here is saying that the congregation is to blame, but at the end of the day you can’t blame sheep for the existence of wolves and I believe many of these staffers have suffered more than anyone.

      We should all want justice to be done but I think we have all gotten carried away in blaming everyone who was ever there. Almost everyone was there for the right reasons and to serve Christ, and we should be praying for them.

      1. MarcAnon- I soooo agree. People who were not there should not be assuming from a distance. People who live busy lives, read their bible and have a passion for worship had no way to see behind the curtain. I for one am stunned because I do have discernment and am spirit led. I was only there for one year due to relocation, which I now see as a blessing. It has still shocked me and I now see things through very cynical eyes.
        But let’s let the blame go where it belongs. That doesn’t stop with one man. But it certainly doesn’t include every believer who attended services. God knows every heart.

      2. Mark, how did everyone miss the 5000 that left? Again, if it were a dozen or even 100 people…I get that. But literally 5000 people had left.

  5. HBC is a CRIMINAL Org.

    No, seriously, Harvest Bible (puke, literally) Chapel is a bonafide certified CRIMINAL organization.

  6. The McDonald saga sadly continues to spiral downward. My Mom used to tell us as children “The truth comes out if it takes 100 years”. Thank GOD that He is in control and will not be mocked. The church must be cleansed of all these so called “ministers” who are simply charlatan’s living high and dragging countless people down. Doesn’t anyone fear the Lord anymore?

  7. Regarding harsh words being posted to this comment thrrad, “Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness but rather expose them.” Ephesians 5:11.

    “In your anger do not sin.” Ephesians 4:26.

    The spirit under which James MacDonald allegedly operated was angry and abusive. By contrast Gods holy people speak truth with courtesy.

    1. Fisher, We also need to remember that Jesus condemned the Pharisees for their hypocrisy. “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. (Matt. 23:27) and “You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. (Matt. 12:34) We find throughout Scripture when harsh words need to be spoken to those who are blind to the truth and their own sins like JMac and his demonic underlings.

  8. it is shocking how cruel and evil the 501c3s network has become, as shown by their top leaders – aka, the “evangelical machine” – be they Protestant or Vatican/Jesuit leaders… praying many come out and start home-churches ~ thank you for exposing the evil you can see sister – May God bless you for it! ~ a fellow laborer, SH

  9. “Power concentrated is power abused.”
    “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

    You can take those quotes to the bank and cash them.

  10. Please stop. How in any way is this Christian or loving? You are just accusing. Do you know more than a few people who attended Harvest?? Most of us that attended Harvest had NO clue what was going on with James. Especially those of us who were members and small group leaders but did not know James personally. Many of us did not hero worship James but in fact preferred when our own campus pastors would preach. There are many well meaning Christians at harvest that did not make it or James an idol but truly did not know what was going on. It wasn’t that they didn’t listen but did not have the information. Yes TED was there but I know so many people who either knew nothing about TED or what they knew was very little. I’m so sick of others calling followers of Christ cult followers and idolaters when they know nothing about them.

    1. You have the Holy Spirit in you. He leads and guides us into truth. He was speaking but it seems many were not listening. Now, in my personal life I’ve had the Holy Spirit talk to me and warn me, and when I didn’t listen, things went BADLY. This is what happened here. NO doubt the Spirit was leading and speaking and no one was listening. Too busy idolizing. Let’s get real here. And repent. Now what is happening? The world sees another megachurch pastor fall, this time HARD. It’s a stain on the gospel. Instead of fighting my truthful words, pray about them. I’m not here to coddle a congregation that should have listened to the Spirit but didn’t. You had 30 years to discern his character. And do something about it. We are to be led by the Spirit, and when we don’t, it can sometimes lead to tragedy. We must repent of shunning the Spirit and not shunning evil. Why were 10k people not listening to the Spirit here? I’m sick of celebrity pastor idolization. You can villify my posts or soak them in and repent.

      1. Going back to your first comment, Maybe you can soak in the feedback and learn that your good points are lost in a cruel delivery. Just trying to help this dialogue. Fair enough?

    2. The sad thing, Jim, is that those campus pastors (i.e., Jeff Donaldson at the campus I used to attend) are complicit in supporting James and maintaining the status quo, thus benefiting from James while leading us). You may not have worshiped James, but you fed him with your tithes and offerings. Harvest will never survive without James, because whether you supported him or not, the structure of the church and all its financial decisions were based on him, and the debt load alone left by him will inevitably cripple Harvest. And now that you know what’s going on, you are responsible for either moving on to a God-fearing church, or cleaning up the church’s hold-over finances and removing anyone that supports/ed James. This bride of Christ needs to be purified, not just given a bath.

  11. On the surface, I would find this very hard to believe. However, this is coming from Julie and Mr. Muller, who have been dead on accurate about everything they have ever reported on Harvest and James MacDonald. Apart from this, there is a well documented pattern of violent behavior and intimidation of others from MacDonald, including efforts to destroy the lives of people who criticize him, and a deeply ingrained belief that no rules or laws apply to him. I wish I didn’t believe a man who was once a pastor could be capable of this, but sadly I do.

    I am praying for everyone at the church, so many must be hurting, and that God would reform MacDonald’s heart and bring justice everywhere it is needed here.

  12. All “mega churches” are set up for this to happen again and again. As it did happen in the past. America needs a radical come back to original New Testament model of the church and this can happen through home churches only, at least initially.

    MacDonald is not the only cheat and faker nor the only criminal among so called “pastors.” These pretenders lead their money making theaters dead and devoid of the presence of God byt offering instead much of emotions which crowds confuse with The Holy Spirit and on this induce confusion thieves in the name of God thrive.

  13. I’m not sure where my follow-up comment may have gone, but I just wanted to say that I don’t feel like we should beat up on the congregation, who couldn’t have known all this was going on backstage, or former staffers who would almost all have been in the dark. I am praying for everyone from Harvest (past/present/future) and that God would restore this church to being a mighty congregation that exalts him all over the region.

    1. Jessica Hockett

      But they know now. More has been exposed about James MacDonald and Harvest Bible Chapel in these 7.5 months than in the 7 years prior put together–and that’s saying something. When people know but choose to stay–especially where HBC Leaders are still covering the financial sins and child abuse mishandling–they stay at their own peril. Calling them out of HBC is a truthful, loving act. The light has been turned on. Choosing to turn it off (or go into a room that’s dark) is unwise indeed.

  14. “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over.” Matt 18:15

    1. And if they don’t listen, bring it to the church. And if they don’t listen then we are to consider them as unbelievers.

      In this case, we had the church not listening and fulfilling its role and we had James not listening.

      In these cases it then falls to 1Tim5 where it says they are to rebuked publicly…which is where we are now.

      Those who are doing the public rebuke are the ones being vilified.

  15. Greg Bradshaw is Evil

    Fisher, thanks for the iron sharpening, I feel your words may have been directed towards me, as your comment came very close right after mine; I do retract the modiconed “s” word.

    Everything else about Greg Bradshaw is both factual, necessarily spoken in light of the current situation, and biblically accurate.

    I was in Crystal Lake and I saw his gross evilness up close and personal if anyone EVER, EVER!!… dared question Son-of-Satan James MacDonald. And I have trustworthy godly witnesses that saw it all too.

    He has travelled warmly in that disgusting brood of vipers for decades and needs to be removed. Now.

    Again, thanks!

    1. Hey there “greg bradshaw is evil”. Thank you for your kind reply. James macdonald operated in a spirit of anger and abuse which(so it appears) led him to contemplate murder. Few reading this blog are megachurch pastors with that kind of power, but we can all go down the same slope from sarcasm to anger to hatred to… Yes, even murderous thoughts in our hearts. Not good for our souls to be sure.

      Its hard to be angry and not sin. Its hard to speak truth in love. Its hard be bleeding on a cross or dying from stoning (stephen) and in the same moment be filled with compassion that cries out “father forgive them.”

      I definitely want to be that kind of person! Speaking truth with boldness like Jesus and Stephen. Dying with grace filled words on my lips.

  16. Praying in Tongues, Please remember Gal. 5:22-23 (NLT) 22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in OUR lives: LOVE, joy, peace, PATIENCE, KINDNESS, GOODNESS, faithfulness, 23 GENTLENESS, and self-control. There is no law against these things! There is no need for being cruel and mean-spirited.

  17. Julie –
    In John 16, Jesus said that the Holy Spirit would focus on HIM ( Jesus ). America is filled with celebrity-egos who have invaded our pulpits, fed the sheep garbage, and were never called into the ministry. We need John the Baptists who will decrease themselves and increase the Savior, and exhort Christians to search their hearts to determine if the really ARE saved, and to feed those sheep God’s Word.

  18. … and instead of people leaving churches all over the country and going elsewhere, why don’t Christians start kicking out pastors who are hirelings and then start begging God ( in a MASSIVE revival of prayer ) to bring in a true earthly shepherd?
    Spurgeon said that the prayer meeting is the “grace-o-meter” of a church. Most churches have abandoned the prayer meeting, and that is probably the main reason things are such a mess in our churches and why people can’t find a decent one to attend.

  19. Hey there GJ- you are right Jesus used “strong words”. I also notice a difference between speaking hard truths and ridicule. Many people have detailed how James MacDonald bullied them through mocking tones and harsh words. We can operate in that same spirit of anger/biting sarcasm or we can speak truth graciously. In this regard Julie sets for us a good example.

  20. SadnessInCali

    After all of these revelations… can you imagine the talk around the Mac’s dinner table? The daughters-in-law pondering an exit strategy? The daughter actually confronted with the fact that her dad was willing to kill! Kathy??? The ramifications of this is endlessly tragic! Sadness

      1. SadnessInCali

        No Bassy…. the word ‘kill’ has an ! Point after it but with the font and color of this commentary thread it did bleed together (no pun intended). I meant what must Kathy be thinking?

  21. I was just reading another blog and the people on there are blaspheming God because of this. And you guys want to tell me I’m “mean”? Wake up. This entire church needs to repent for this national disgrace . You forgot God in all your James Macdonalding. Your new pastors, are they of the same character as your previous elders?, need to call a prayer meeting for all of you and spend time repenting and seeking God and fasting. Stop the game playing if you’re a real church. Do not ever pay a pastor more than what the Spirit says. Make sure all things are transparent in the leadership. Don’t sit on the pew and listen, pray and be a part. Pray in tongues all the time. Ask for discernment. Speak up when things aren’t right. Leave any church whose eldership is giving you a check in your spirit. Read 2 Corinthians 100 times and let it soak in.

The Roys Report seeks to foster thoughtful and respectful dialogue. Toward that end, the site requires that people use their full name when commenting. Also, any comments with profanity, name-calling, and/or a nasty tone will be deleted.

Comments are limited to 300 words.

Leave a Reply

The Roys Report seeks to foster thoughtful and respectful dialogue. Toward that end, the site requires that people register before they begin commenting. This means no anonymous comments will be allowed. Also, any comments with profanity, name-calling, and/or a nasty tone will be deleted.
MOST popular articles


Hi. We see this is the third article this month you’ve found worth reading. Great! Would you consider making a tax-deductible donation to help our journalists continue to report the truth and restore the church?

Your tax-deductible gift helps our journalists report the truth and hold Christian leaders and organizations accountable. Give a gift of $25 or more to The Roys Report this month, and you will receive a copy of “Unafraid” by Carey Scott.