Rick Joyner

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Rick Joyner

Rick Joyner (born 1949) is an American public speaker and author. He founded MorningStar Ministries with his wife in 1985.[1]

Morningstar Ministries[edit]

Joyner was born in Raleigh, North Carolina[2] and grew up in Richmond, Virginia.[3] With his wife, Julie, he founded MorningStar Ministries in Jackson, Mississippi in 1985.[4]

By the mid-1990s Joyner was president of MorningStar Publications, located at that time in Charlotte, North Carolina.[5]

By 1994, Joyner appeared in news reports[6] regarding his participation in plans to build a biblical theme park, in particular, with Reggie White, who had been unsuccessful in his attempts to purchase the Heritage USA theme park property.[7]

The ministry hosts multiple conferences annually, with Christians from across the country and globe attending.

In 1997 Joyner purchased 320 acres of land in Wilkes County, North Carolina near Moravian Falls and moved the headquarters of MorningStar there from Charlotte.[3]

In 2004 MorningStar purchased part of the Heritage USA complex (originally established by Jim Bakker and PTL in Fort Mill, South Carolina) for $1.6 million.[8] The complex has been renamed Heritage International Ministries Conference Center.[9][10] Joyner also promotes the "Kingdom Business Association" which is located in the same complex.[11]

Christ's Mandate for Missions (CMM) merged with MorningStar Missions in 2009. [12]

Advisory and other leadership roles[edit]

Joyner has been a part of the Apostolic-Prophetic Movement and an advocate for the Fivefold ministry and has been considered a leader in this movement since he published "The Harvest" in 1989, in which he predicted there would soon be a Prophetic Movement and a separate Apostolic Movement.[13] In the mid-1990s Joyner was one of the all-male members of the "International Advisors-At-Large" to the evangelical Christian women's organization Aglow International.[14]

Joyner is also the founder and president of "the Oak Initiative."[15] This non-profit organization is for Christians who desire "to Unite, Mobilize, Equip, and Activate Christians to be the salt and light they are called to be by engaging in the great issues of our time from a sound biblical worldview."[16]


In 1998 Joyner's "MorningStar Ministries" was grossing $7 million a year, and that year it was denied a religious property tax exemption by the North Carolina Department of Revenue for an airplane, four tracts of vacant land, and two residential houses — one that Joyner lived in and one where Don Potter lived and had a recording studio.[17] Department director John C. Bailey said, "[w]ith MorningStar there are a lot of tracts with costly improvements that affect tax liability significantly... If we did not limit exemptions, it would increase the burden on people, like you and me, who own homes that are not affiliated with any group.” MorningStar appealed the Department of Revenue's denial.[18][needs update] Also, Joyner's MorningStar Fellowship Church filed a $20 million lawsuit against York County, South Carolina over the unfinished 21 story hotel on their property that Jim Bakker had started in the 80s. The latest news is that MSFC has filed an appeal of Judge Hall's ruling “that MorningStar has not provided substantial evidence to back up its claims.” The building has never been finished and the county found the church in default after they missed a deadline to show their ability to fund the project.[19]

Controversy has also accompanied Joyner's support for Canadian revivalist Todd Bentley. Bentley has claimed that God heals the sick, and sometimes even raises people from the dead in his meetings—including three people in Pakistan[20]—reports of which were carried by Morningstar TV[21][22] which is part of Joyner's Heritage International Ministries. ABC's Nightline[23][verification needed]) reporting concerning the "Lakeland Revival," before his marital problems became news, that "Not a single claim of Bentley's healing powers could be independently verified."[24] However, the Charlotte Observer reported on the same series of meetings, "The revival's media relations staff has tried to document healings. They e-mailed the Observer information on 15 people reportedly healed, providing phone numbers for each and noting that 12 had received medical verification. The Observer contacted five, plus three whose names were not provided, including Burgee. Each said God had healed them through, or related to, Bentley and the Lakeland services."[25][26]

Joyner's public relationship with Bentley began when he appeared on stage in Lakeland with other church leaders to “lay hands” on Bentley.[27] After Bentley's divorce from his wife in 2008,[28][29][30] Joyner decided to oversee the process of "restoring" Bentley along with Jack Deere and Bill Johnson.[31] Joyner made the announcement of the remarriage on March 9, 2009.[32][33] He also released a statement as to why he chose to be a part of this restoration.[34]

There has also been some controversy about Joyner joining the Knights of Malta: Order of Saint John (chartered 1888). Joyner released a long statement explaining who they are and why he joined.[35]

Joyner is a promoter of the Seven Mountain of Influence Theology, which advocates the need for Christians to be involved in leadership in the seven spheres of cultural influence.[36] Joyner promotes the ministry of Lance Wallnau who teaches on the 7 Mountains of Influence Theology. MorningStar Ministries carries a long list of materials by Wallnau.[37]

In March 2021, Joyner urged Christians to own weapons to prepare for what he believes will be an inevitable civil war in the United States against those who he says stole the 2020 presidential election from the Republicans.[38]

In popular culture[edit]

In April 2013, Joyner and his daughter, Anna Jane Joyner, a climate change activist and founder of Good Energy, participated in the Showtime documentary Years of Living Dangerously, a 9-part series focused on climate change. In the fourth episode, celebrity Ian Somerhalder follows Anna Jane as she tries to persuade her father, a climate change denier, to change his mind about global warming.[39][40]

Personal life[edit]

Rick and his wife, Julie, have five children: Anna, Aaryn, Amber, Ben, and Sam.[41] All of his children disagree with his political views.[42]


  1. ^ MorningStar Ministries, About MorningStar Ministries, Official Website, USA, Retrieved June 18, 2017
  2. ^ Stolberg, Mary (September 7, 1999). "Negativity Scene:Bias Affected Ruling, Leader Says". Winston-Salem Journal. p. A1.
  3. ^ a b Railey, John (December 20, 1997). "Ministry Based on Prophecy Sees Place in Wilkes County". Winston-Salem Journal. p. B9.
  4. ^ "Rick Joyner Author Profile | Biography and Bibliography | NewReleaseToday".
  5. ^ Chapman, Dan (June 2, 1994). "NFL Star Will Bring Message of Hope". The Charlotte Observer. p. 1A.
  6. ^ "Bible Built".
  7. ^ Chandler, Charles (February 7, 1999). "Reggie White Envisions Religious Theme Park Near Charlotte". The Charlotte Observer. p. 1H.
  8. ^ Tribble, Sarah Jane (September 29, 2004). "Former PTL Land Goes to Ministry". The Charlotte Observer. p. 1Y.
  9. ^ HIMCC Staff (December 25, 2016). "Heritage". HeritageConferenceCenter.org. Fort Mill, SC: Heritage International Ministries Conference Center (HIMCC). Archived from the original on 10 January 2017. Retrieved 25 December 2016.
  10. ^ "Heritage Conference Center · 375 Star Light Dr, Fort Mill, SC 29715".
  11. ^ "About Us".
  12. ^ "MorningStar & CMM | EagleMissions". Archived from the original on 2012-03-26.
  13. ^ The Harvest, pages 60-67 ISBN 978-1-59933-104-1
  14. ^ Griffith, R. Marie (2000). God's Daughters: Evangelical Women and the Power of Submission. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. p. 151. ISBN 9780520926172. Retrieved December 24, 2016.
  15. ^ "Board Members | the Oak Initiative".
  16. ^ "Our Purpose | the Oak Initiative".
  17. ^ "NCDOR" (PDF).
  18. ^ Stolberg, Mary (September 7, 1999). "Tax Haven on Earth? Religious Groups Add Voices to Growing Chorus Seeking Exemptions". Winston-Salem Journal. p. A1.[full citation needed]
  19. ^ "MorningStar appeals ruling on Fort Mill tower | The Herald". Archived from the original on 2015-08-01.
  20. ^ "Controversial Evangelist Todd Bentley Claims 3 Raised from Dead in Pakistan Crusade". 18 December 2015.
  21. ^ MorningStar Ministries Staff (September 28, 2015). "Three People Raised From the Dead in Pakistan" (excerpt of full video). YouTube. Retrieved 2015-12-14.
  22. ^ Bentley, Todd; et al. (September 25, 2015). "Three People Raised From the Dead in Pakistan". morningstartv.org. Retrieved December 14, 2015.
  23. ^ Kofman, Jeffrey; Yiu, Karson; Brennan, Nicholas (July 9, 2008). "Thousands Flock to Revival in Search of Miracles". ABC News. Retrieved July 7, 2008.
  24. ^ Lake, Thomas (June 30, 2008). "Todd Bentley's Revival in Lakeland Draws 400,000 and Counting". St. Petersburg Times. Archived from the original on July 4, 2008. Retrieved December 13, 2015.
  25. ^ Chandler, Charles (June 19, 2008). "Tattooed Preacher Says God Heals Through Him". The Charlotte Observer. Retrieved December 24, 2016.
  26. ^ Reed, Travis (July 28, 2008). "Florida Revival Drawing Criticism—And Thousands of Followers". The Pantagraph. Bloomington, IL. Associated Press. Retrieved December 13, 2015.
  27. ^ Revival Alliance Staff. "Public Statement on Todd Bentley from Revival Alliance". Archived from the original on November 21, 2008.
  28. ^ McMullen, Cary (August 12, 2008). "Evangelist Bentley, Wife File for Separation". TheLedger.com. Lakeland, FL: Gatehouse Media. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  29. ^ TFFM Board of Directors (August 15, 2008). "From the Board of Directors". Abbotsford, BC, CAN: The Fresh Fire Ministries (TFFM). Archived from the original on August 20, 2008.
  30. ^ Roach, David (August 19, 2008). "Faith Healer Todd Bentley Separates From Wife, Draws Criticism From Charismatics". Baptist Press. Archived from the original on 2009-01-12. Retrieved December 13, 2015.
  31. ^ Gaines, Adrienne S. (March 10, 2009). "Todd Bentley Remarries, Begins Restoration Process". Archived from the original on March 14, 2009. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  32. ^ Joyner, Rick (2009). "Todd Bentley Begins Restoration Process" (Special Bulletins). MorningStar Ministries. Morningstarministries.org. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  33. ^ Grady, Lee (March 11, 2009). "The Tragic Scandal of Greasy Grace". Archived from the original on January 2, 2010.
  34. ^ http://www.freshfireusa.com/writings/view/172-SPECIAL-BULLETIN-Todd-Bentley-Restoration[dead link]
  35. ^ "Knights of Malta Rick Joyner". 13 June 2017.
  36. ^ "Church Planting and the Seven Mountains | MorningStar TV". www.morningstartv.com. 26 April 2017. Retrieved 2019-05-22.
  37. ^ "Lance Wallnau Biography | MorningStar Ministries". www.morningstarministries.org. Retrieved 2019-05-22.
  38. ^ Fearnow, Benjamin (17 March 2021). "Pastor Rick Joyner Urges American Christians to Prepare for Civil War". Newsweek. Retrieved 22 March 2021.
  39. ^ "Coal--Climate Connection To Hit TV Screens Nationwide | PlanetSave". planetsave.com. April 2014. Retrieved 2019-05-22.
  40. ^ University, Santa Clara. "Anna Jane Joyner". www.scu.edu. Retrieved 2019-05-22.
  41. ^ The back cover of "The Harvest, 20 Year Anniversary Edition"
  42. ^ Kristof, Nicholas (March 27, 2021). "He's a Famous Evangelical Preacher, but His Kids Wish He'd Pipe Down: The Rev. Rick Joyner has called on Christians to arm themselves for civil war. But his children would be on the other side". New York Times. Retrieved March 27, 2021.

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