Former pastor Jack Schaap, stripped of his leadership and convicted of taking a minor across state lines for sex, has been replaced at his former church by John Wilkerson.
First Baptist Church in Hammond, Ind., shared recently that Wilkerson, who has preached at the church before, would be the new pastor to lead the congregation.
In its statement, the megachurch reveals:
During our Sunday evening service on January 13, our church people voted to have John Wilkerson as our next pastor with a 94% vote. John Wilkerson and family were contacted after the vote, and they have accepted the pastorate and will be here on February 17th.
Wilkerson and his wife have nine children, one of whom recently passed away.
The Christian minister has been pastoring at First Baptist Church of Long Beach, Calif., and last preached at FBC Hammond on Jan. 9, 2012 — and you can view that sermon at the church’s YouTube page.
Schaap meanwhile pleaded guilty to taking a 17-year-old across state borders for sex — an act he claimed he did not know was illegal. The disgraced pastor is accused of using “an iPad, iPhone, digital camera, voice recorder and two computer flash drives in the commission of his crime with the young girl,” according to reports. He’s facing at most 10 years in prison and a $50,000 fine plus a minimum of five years of court supervision upon his release.
During one court appearance, it was reported by CBS Chicago:
Before his court appearance, Schaap looked at his wife, said, “I love you baby,” gave her a very strong embrace and long lingering kiss.
In the courtroom, upon hearing he would be taken into custody, he winked at his wife, mouthed the words, “I love you,” and walked away.