#44 Molested at 7, Drug Dealer at 13, Ex-con Pastor since 2001 Part 1 – Pastor Pete Cropsey
Pastor Pete Cropsey had a brutal past. From a violent molestation in Mexico at age 7, to his journey through heroin smuggling, burglary, prison, a motorcycle club and then accepting Jesus at Calvary Church where he became a Pastor. This is an incredible and inspiring three part story of redemption.
“For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves” – Colossians 1:13
- Pastor Pete’s dad left at 4 when he was shooting pictures for movie business. His mom took him to Puerto Vallarta at 7 years old.
- For the first 6 months he had to fight every day to try and prove himself.
- At one point, he met a man named Chewy who took him under his wing and taught him to bow hunt, spear fish and ride horses. Soon this man began molesting Pete which led to 2 years of abuse.
- Towards the end of the abuse Pete heard God say, “I love you and I will never let you go”. A week later his dad called him back to the states to live with him.
- At 9 and ½ he moved back to LA with his dad. Pete’s stepmom Lynn became a wonderful support for him.
- When he got to the house there was a sign that said no clothes allowed. As a 10 year old was listening to Joni Mitchell and David Crosby.
- Pete told his dad about the molestation one night and his dad spit in his face, slapped him and called him queer. His stepmom fought with his dad, came into the room and stayed with Pete for a while.
- Pastor Pete spent his adult life trying to prove to his dad that he’s not gay.
- Next he moved back with his grandmother and at age 12 met his friend Jimmy and became a drug dealer, hustling kids in front of Taco Bell.
- At age 13 he was smuggling Heroin across the border.
- Pete’s first felony was at 13 for burglary of Sneider’s clothing and drugs at a Doctor’s office.
- In Juvie he began writing, became very popular and got paid to write to attorneys and judges.
- Pastor Pete’s father committed suicide because he had brain cancer. When Pete went through his personal effects and realized his father had that bad reaction because he himself had been molested and never came to terms with it.
- When Pete met a guy named Max who seemed so cool, he became a hero and Pete began dealing heroin for him.
- Soon Pete began doing heroin and after his first taste he became a slave for the next 20 years.
- Pete got to know the guys from the Vagos motorcycle club and hung around until he was asked to prospect. This was a year long process.
- While he was in the club he became a Christian and went to bible college, but even though he knew his life was changing he didn’t want to abandon his brothers. He finally went to national and asked if he could leave the club. He had become the National Sergeant at Arms and earned respect and so they allowed him to keep his stuff. They always treated him with honor.
- Pete’s passion for reading led him to read books from all religions at a young age, but the verses he heard and read from the bible are the ones that rang true. Spirituality is plagued with relativism, but the bible is black and white.
- Pete had heard God, but in prison wasn’t ready to serve. He was prideful and didn’t like authority and had to portray this tough image because of what had happened in Mexico and with his father.
- Pastor Pete told the story of his molestation publically at a meeting and was set free by the act. So many people suffer and hold it inside.
- “The purpose of worship is to open our hearts to God and let him wash us off” – Pastor Pete. Be vulnerable before God.
- Pastor Pete believes he was saved as a kid, but didn’t know what the gospel was and therefore he was a difficult child to the Lord.
- Aha – moment – In 1997 Pete had gotten out of prison and had a room providing security for prostitutes at the Carousel Inn. The special unit busted in on him and found his weapons. His parole officer said, “if you go to a meeting at 4PM, then I’ll put the weapons away.” Pete could not account for the time between then and the meeting, but somehow he ended up in Costa Mesa and went in.
- Pete always had felt disqualified from being accepted by God, but when he got to the meeting he ran into a guy he knew named Cecil who was doing well and it made him listen. Everyone in the meeting had been a slave to something and he felt like he belonged.
- Although he continued to use drugs Pete attended the meeting for 30 days in a row, he just couldn’t fully commit.
- Soon he was caught with a gun and sent back to prison for 2 years. This was the first time in his life that he didn’t think he belonged.
- When he got out he went straight back to the meetings in Costa Mesa and stayed for about a year until his hunger for God outgrew his need to be there.
- Pete found Calvary Chapel in Laguna, but was called away and became a rancher in Colorado.
- When he returned to Laguna years later, Pastor Joe was preaching and Pete received Christ that day in 1995.
- Pete began sweeping floors and cleaning toilets for the church and was happy to be there.
- Soon Pete moved to Kuwaii to work on a ranch, but when he was forced to come back to California he went to ministry school for 2 years and became a minister at Calvary Church.
- A friend in Kuwaii named Steve asked Pete to come back to Hawaii to set up a Calvary Church with him and after receiving signs from God he did.
- After 2 years in Kuwaii, his Pancreas shut down and he again was forced to go back to California. This time he was angry at God for taking away something he had worked so hard for. Pete was lost again to drug addiction after many years clean.
- When Pastor Pete got clean he ran into the woman he had always loved. They’ve been married for 14 years and have 2 kids.
- She had to teach Pastor Pete how to be a husband and a father and has done so.
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