Well-known author and pastor John MacArthur is recovering from a “very successful” procedure to “clear some blockage in his arteries,” his California megachurch, Grace Community Church (GCC), announced late Friday.
The announcement comes after two weeks of reported health problems for the 83-year-old pastor.
MacArthur first fell ill on Sunday, January 1st. MacArthur preached at the first service at GCC that day, but was replaced by Mike Riccardi, GCC pastor of Local Outreach Ministries, at the second service.
“Just so you know, Pastor John had a bug this weak and preached our first hour but asked if he might be able to take a break for the second hour,” Elder and Staff Pastor Tom Patton told the congregation.
The next day, GCC sent an email update on MacArthur’s health, noting that MacArthur had “felt lightheaded” the day earlier.
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“We are pleased to report that he is doing well,” the email stated. “He was under the weather last week but after seeing a doctor on Sunday and getting much needed rest from a busy holiday week, he is now much improved and feeling fine.”
However, MacArthur did not preach the following Sunday. In explanation, Patton told the congregation that MacArthur would be taking “just a rest” for the next few weeks.
Then, last night, in its weekly newsletter, GCC informed the church of MacArthur’s procedure.
“Thank you for praying for Pastor John over the last two weeks,” the newsletter read. “After a week of tests, a procedure took place earlier this week and it was very successful. Our pastor is recovering at home and is doing well. He will take the next few weeks off from preaching to recover and to prepare for Shepherds Conference.”
An update posted later on GCC’s website added that the procedure “was needed to clear some blockage in his arteries.”
History of obscuring MacArthur’s health problems
GCC has a history of obscuring John MacArthur’s health problems.
In December 2020 and January 2021, while embroiled in a lawsuit with California and Los Angeles County for defying bans on indoor worship, MacArthur was absent from the pulpit for several weeks.
MacArthur has since admitted that he had COVID.
Yet, at the time, GCC said MacArthur was “resting” and preparing for the upcoming Shepherd’s Conference. The church also did not respond to articles by The Roys Report (TRR) with evidence GCC was covering up a deadly COVID outbreak at the church.
On April 9, 2021, MacArthur reiterated in a declaration to the Superior Court of the State of California that his earlier absence from the pulpit was because “I decided to rest and instead let another Pastor preach.” MacArthur added, “(T)here is nothing sinister about me letting another Pastor preach. I am 81 years old. I do sometimes take a break from preaching.”
However, in August, just before GCC settled its lawsuit with the state and county, MacArthur admitted both the COVID outbreak at GCC and his own bout with COVID.
Days later, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted to pay GCC $400,000 to settle its legal battle with the church.