Political operative Roger Stone is planning to tell the story of re-committing himself as a Christian at a Mt. Juliet, Tennessee church on Aug. 30 after being convicted in an investigation of collusion to assist President Donald Trump's campaign, for which the president granted him clemency in July. The Tennessean reports that Stone will speak about his own spiritual journey throughout his conviction after being asked to appear by Global Vision Bible Church Pastor Greg Locke.
"I was unfairly persecuted by a politically motivated prosecutor during that period," Stone told the outlet. "I prayed to God to deliver me from persecutors during that period. I was reborn as a Christian." Raised as a Catholic, Stone said he admits he "fell away," adding that he now wants to talk about his faith, "because no matter what your problem is, God can deliver you too."
Locke told The Tennessean he was moved to ask Stone to speak after his participation in a recent conference call for Evangelicals for Trump, for which the pastor serves on the advisory committee. "I think his testimony is powerful," Locke continued. "It's a clear and solid testimony of being led to Christ. I think people need to hear it and give him a chance. ...People are going to be shocked to hear him apologize for certain things and to quote scripture."
Stone was convicted in 2019 of lying and witness tampering during the investigation into collusion between Russia and Trump's campaign but was pardoned by Trump just days before he was ordered to report for a 40-month prison sentence. Locke said that his speaking engagement has certainly garnered multiple phone calls from people who have spoken "(only) cuss words about having him," but also there has been a "barrage of online support."
Stone addressed the criticism himself, saying, "Those who want to criticize, help yourself. I came out of it because of my reaffirmation to walk with Jesus. It doesn't matter what they say. (God) knows what is in my heart." Locke said politics would surely be a topic of conversation when he meets with Stone at the upcoming service. "We're one election away from losing everything," Locke said. "We really don't have anything to lose and I expect we'll speak out about what we consider to be the issues."