157 thoughts on “Trophies”

  1. I’m only just less perturbed by this than I am other preachers who feel it necessary to pose for pictures/selfies with their recent “trophies” – ‘precious souls’ that they “bagged and #tagged for Christ.”

    1. Oooh… Even more so if that person is a celebrity! I can remember the excitement when some actor or someone else famous ‘came out’ as a ‘Christian’. Kind of ignored the fact that their lives didn’t reflect it, or when they also said that they believed in Buddha also or that they didn’t think that Jesus was necessarily real, or when they left the faith for something else…

      What (if anything) made them more important than the homeless guy sitting in the bus shelter across the street? Did anyone talk to him about who Jesus really is? Would he be as welcome in their church as the flashy/trashy actress with her fourth husband? Last I knew, we’re equals before God. Bagging a celebrity doesn’t give you street cred there.

        1. I meant KIM jong il, darn that George. Of course the Kims are in charge of North Korea anyway.

  2. “They’re from North America, they’re from Alaska….”

    And, he’s founder of a college! I wonder if they teach geography. May be time for a remedial course.

    1. I thought the same thing, bro. Once had an athlete coming to my college who said he was happy to be playing in his home state of Waco. But the founder of a “college?” sheesh.

        1. Perry does better on the days when it’s his turn to use the one brain cell he & Sarah Palin have between them.

    2. Alas, nothing gets by the people here; I was hoping (in vain) that I could point this out… it struck me immediately “…wait! Alaska is part of North America”. Unless, of course, he meant “north America” instead of “North America” (the latter being a continent, and the former meaning the northern sections of the United States).

  3. I don’t care that he hunts, but his self-righteous attitude about bow hunting is very annoying. I guess since I hunt for food with a rifle instead of trophy hunting with a bow (likely a state-of-the-art compound) I’m a lesser species.
    When he starts using a handmade recurve, I’ll be impressed.

    1. Honestly, a lot of bow hunting (and a lot of rifle and shotgun hunting, too) is done on game ranches where the game is brought to feeders or kept in pens or otherwise practically tied to a tree. Shooting fish in a barrel is mind-blowingly difficult in comparison.

      Dick Cheney’s infamous Texas hunting accident happened at one of these “canned hunt” resorts, where cage-raised birds that have never flown free in their lives are released out of small boxes just a few yards from the “hunters,” so they can blast away while the disoriented birds are still trying to get their bearings.

      The reason I know so much about this is that it’s becoming a big industry here in Texas. Some of the ranches here in South Texas (the original home of cowboying) have abandoned cattle (except for a few decorative Longhorns) because breeding deer and exotic animals and charging city slickers to hunt them turns out to be more profitable, with less financial risk.

        1. Yes. It happened on the Armstrong Ranch in Kenedy County, Texas, not far from Kingsville, where I spent part of my childhood, and a bit northeast of where I live now.

        2. … Unless Cheney ALSO shot someone in North Dakota, but if so, I haven’t heard that story yet.

      1. I figure from the girth of Gomez that he goes on “canned” hunts. I doubt he gets far from the truck. I know I shouldn’t assume, but from his I Physique seen in the “TV demon” video, I don’t see him as much of a hiker.

        I prefer the old fashioned find my own animal style of hunting, which may be why I have a lot of peaceful days in the woods without a dead animal to worry about.

      1. I can’t be as certain as BG, but his attitude in that video does seem to be of someone that kills caged animals for mantle pieces.

        I normally don’t think of hunters as dainty princesses, this guy appears to have reduced it to that to display what he thinks is a masculine display.

    1. You make a good point. I know that it’s quite easy to drop $10K on a guided Alaska hunt (and by law almost every out of state hunter here has to have a guide, with a couple exceptions).

      Who paid for all those (guided) hunts?

      1. Well remember, since he has this marvelous “educational” facility (Rats. I need to practice saying these things with a straight face!) the school must have budgeted moneys to go collect specimens.

        What could be better? Noah collected live animals. He was so behind the times! This pastor, “President” of the college, whatever, dispatches them before collecting them! Who needs to let them live without disturbance anyway? Since we are the Lords of Creation, told by God to rule over it, we need to do some destruction and killing to keep the critters in line and show them who is boss, haymen?

        1. This is probably why he is exhibiting his dead animal zoo at the college. Then it becomes a business expense, and he can try to have the college/church cover the cost of his trips.

          Just a theory.

      2. (Someone on SFL’s facebook page posted the following)

        Some basic guide hunt prices:

        Grizzly bear $4500-$16,000
        Black bear $2,350-$3,500
        Moose $14,500-$17,900
        Caribou $4,800-$7,000
        African Safari $6,000-$40,000 (depends on the animals)
        European hunt $3,500-$16,600
        (Depends on the animals)

        Those prices don’t include airfare, lodging, gear, etc.

        1. Not counting travel and lodging expenses, and not counting the cost of transporting the carcasses (or at least hides, horns, etc.) back to Elgin and having them stuffed and mounted, that sounds about right.

          My brother, who lives in Alaska, could actually shoot moose in his back yard if he wanted to, but he doesn’t want to.
          And my other brother, in Illinois (near Gomez’ place, in fact), could shoot deer in his yard, except that hunting in town is illegal.

      3. That reminds me: I live near a bison ranch, as in “they switched from cattle to bison, slaughter a few every year, and sell the meat and capes.” The main road out of town runs right through this ranch and bison may be seen on either side of the road, along with Scots Highland cattle, horses, and the occasional bear.

        I just learned yesterday that the ranchers also charge rubes (cough Ted Nugent cough) $10,000 to shoot them. Plus the cost of transportation to and from, lodging, meals, skinning, and packing!

        1. What great sport!
          Bison are famous for their tendency to just stand still while hunters pick off the whole herd, one at a time. That’s how “buffalo” became a synonym for “stupify.”

          That reminds me of a famous sentence:
          “Buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo.”
          It makes sense (and is grammatical) if you apply three meanings of “Buffalo”: noun (a bovine animal), verb (to fool, bewilder, confuse, or stupify), and adjective (from that city in upstate New York).

        2. Useless information……The city of Buffalo was named after the Indian word “buff-lo” (sp?) which means rapid water. Which would be in reference to the Niagara River.

    2. No kidding.
      All those international hunts are mighty pricey.
      Those in the U.S. are too, unless you hunt only on your own or public land (which is obviously not what this show-off does).

    3. I, too, wondered at the cost of going to Eurasia, and those -stan countries, and hope that the church was not paying for them.

      If he’s paying for them out of his own salary, I really don’t have a problem with it — people are entitled to spend their money on whatever they like, and if he enjoys hunting, so be it.

      I would really like to hear some of those “stories” and to find out if he was really doing hunting, or just going somewhere when there are so many animals penned up that one cannot miss. The latter is not really being a “big-game hunter”, in my opinion.

        1. Do you know what his salary is? I have no idea.

          And what I said was that I have no problem with a man using the money he’s earned on his interests – whether or not he deserves the money he is earning is a completely different topic.

          Some “pastors” give every appearance of being in it for “filthy lucre” – they command higher salaries than anyone in the church, and then have their “in” buddies bring up ways to “honor” the pastor, supposedly without his knowledge; a former “in” deacon once gave me the lowdown of what really went on behind the scenes.

          Such pastors frequently mention how hard they work, and paint their job as the hardest one that existing, carrying his burdens, his family’s burdens, the church’s burdens, and every church member’s burden as well, and how that preaching a message is akin to 8 hours of manual labor, etc, etc.

          The the “in” staff member or deacon will, a few weeks later, send the pastor out of the room, and propose a “secret” 10-year anniversary gift of $10,000, because of “all the pastor has done for us”.

          Another trick that is used (Jack Hyles was the master of this) was to take a pretty low salary from the church, but have the church pay for most of your needs – and THEN have a book and/or tape ministry – you insist that people buy your tapes and books, and pocket the money, with no accounting to anyone… and if you’re bold enough to call them “church ministries”, you don’t pay income tax on those funds, either. Now you can boast of turning down raises and having a very small salary, while, in reality, you’re very wealthy.

        2. Guilt Ridden, I agree that whatever his salary is is his to spend. I also think it is wrong to live high above the people feeding you. I have often wondered about what a pastor’s salary should be. I don’t think he should become overly prosperous from the sweat of his congregation, but he shouldn’t be kept poor as some churches seem to believe. My opinion, and if I ever become a pastor I hope I will have the good form to act on this, is he should probably make the equivalent of the median salary of his congregation. Maybe that would help keep him rooted in reality.

        3. No, I don’t know what his salary is (or even if he gets one), but if he goes on all these fancy, exotic hunting trips around the world, either he gets paid a very high sum, or he is independently wealthy, or his church or his college or some wealthy patron pays for the excursions.

          I don’t think that ministers should live in abject poverty, but I don’t think they should live like kings, either. Whatever they get paid is, in a real sense, money that might otherwise be used in ministry. It’s true that some ministers plow most of their own paychecks back into ministries, but I don’t think global big-game hunting qualifies there.

          Although IBF people don’t seem to talk about it much, many churches have a theology of “stewardship.” The idea is that we are only temporary stewards of those resources Providence has entrusted to us, and the faithful response to that trust is to use what we don’t need for our own material needs in a way that serves God and God’s creation.

          So it’s true in a way that everyone, including pastors, can spend their own money however they want, but it’s also true that faithful living includes using what we have wisely and constructively, even if we are lucky enough to be economically secure.

        4. Let’s not get carried away, BG. I’ve been to Dubai, and believe me, Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum is in no way jealous of this lifestyle! And i agree with GR on this one. His salary and how he spends it is his business. I find it distasteful – which is one reason why I don’t nor ever shall attend his compound church or subscribe to his cult brand of Christianity. But it is still his business.

        5. Dr. F, you don’t think he should be accountable to his members, if not the public, for how he’s spending their money (the public because tax accounting and tax exemptions are involved)?

        6. It is Mr. Gomez’s right to spend his salary on hunting safaris. Regarding his salary, my only hope is that he has cancelled any contribution that he might have been making to World Vision. Even though they changed their mind on the Gay thing, they are a wanna-be compromising organization. If he contributes to WV he’s a dirty compromiser.

        7. Well, he is accountable, legally. The IRS can audit him at any time, and I’m assuming that someone pays his salary (that is actually a pretty big assumption given some of the nepotism I’ve seen in IFB, but still). I think I am more concerned with his lack of wisdom than his church’s lack of wisdom.

      1. I know what our congregation paid for whether they realized it or not — sent our pastor to Suriname, India, Australia, New Zealand, Cambodia, Pau Pau New Guinea, and I know the congregation paid for the 2 week VACATION not missions trip they took in Hawaii!

        1. Can I respectfully ask people to NOT send IFB pastors, missionaries, and evangelists to Australia? I LIKE this country. Thanks πŸ™‚

    4. Not only on hunting trips, but also on the taxidermy! That sort of thing is not cheap!

      I imagine that money could have been better used for the ministry…

      1. You ain’t just a-woofin’ there, pardner!
        Mounting a deer head starts at about $400-500 and goes up from there (you could probably get it for less if you want it to look like crap, but who does?).
        Full-body mounts cost much more.
        Those bears (I can see several of them) probably cost as much to stuff as it costs to keep the lights on for years at his “church” and “college.”

    1. I was able to shoot some giraffes once in Kenya. Shot them with a Nikon N-80. You wouldn’t believe the size of the thorns they eat, with no more trouble than one of us eating a carrot stick. Shot a few Cape buffalo also. I remember thinking, “Wow. I’m close enough to hit him with a baseball.” Seemed a bad idea, though.

      1. Normally, a man’s testosterone level decreases after the age of 40. Typically, after that age, his desire to hunt/kill decreases. Preacher Gomez is WAY past 40.

        I’m not (per se) anti-hunting. I’ve hunted in years past, but only when living in Bush Alaska and couldn’t afford to bring meat in by airplane. I was never a trophy hunter. I’d much prefer to hunt big game with a Nikon too.

        1. I think we have the right attitude toward hunting here. For those who don’t already know: if you trophy hunt for moose or caribou in Alaska, you must salvage the meat. You can’t take the antlers from the kill site until all of the meat has been packed out in edible condition. Give it away if you can’t use it, but it had better be edible when you do. (And if one more boatload of spoiled moose meat is palmed off on local villagers, they may go to court to demand the right to keep the trophy parts in such cases!)

      2. I am not a hunter, although I have no problem with the idea. However, I find the idea of shooting any animal for sport to be extremely distasteful, and the idea of shooting an animal like a giraffe for any reason at all to be disgusting. I actually believe that these animals are God’s creation created for his glory, not for the glory of my living room.

        1. Amen. Although if I personally had to shoot an animal in order to eat it, I’d be a vegetarian.

        2. In The Alice B. Toklas Cookbook, Ms. T. writes that French gourmands consider that the only proper way to kill squabs so they retain maximum flavor is to smother them, and the French poultry mavens are very disparaging of people who are so gauche as to wring their necks, drown them, or cut their throats.

  4. I can’t even look at stuffed game trophies in threatening poses without thinking of that Far Side cartoon where a guy shoots a bear that’s peacefully drinking at a pond, and the next thing you see is the bear’s carcass posed on two legs, claws out. You know those animals were just minding their own business when this yutz came around.

    1. Or were dragged up to him on a rope by the hunting guides.
      Seriously, they’ll to that if they have to so they can make good on the guarantee that their client will get a trophy for the fee of several thousand dollars he’s paid.

      1. Argh. That’s unsporting and possible immoral, I’m not sure. Then again, I am a vegetarian and find the idea of killing animals just to appear macho awful. (If someone is hunting for food, okay fine.)

  5. I’m assuming there’s a picture that goes with the post? I have a blank space, despite refreshing multiple times. πŸ™

    I wanna be outraged, too! πŸ˜‰

  6. The fact that the American IFB speakers our pastor brought home with him all seemed to think hunting was important (and we needed to know that) seemed weird to me. It was one of those weird times when they seemed to be wanting to teach American culture as much as their theology iykwim.

    1. It’s more like a fetish of some Americans.
      We want to think we’re rugged individualists, surviving by our wits in the wilderness.
      Almost nobody in America lives that way now (and far fewer ever did than most of us believe), but that’s how we want to see ourselves.
      Also, we want the world to see us as dangerous. We are, but not because of hunting skill or being good with firearms.

      1. Real survivalists don’t survive by their wits. They survive by putting a few basic principles into practice and working hard consistently. And it is a real pain in the ass, which is why humans haven’t lived this way in the majority since the late Quaternary period.

        1. And in all of the traditional cultures I’m aware of, people who lived off by themselves got the side-eye; people didn’t do that unless there was something deeply wrong with them. At best they were pitied for having no family.

        2. Absolutely! In fact, the man apart was nearly taboo in ancient Greece. It usually meant either an outcast (someone too demented, dangerous, or dumb to live in society) or a warrior – someone so strong that they could take whatever they wanted from most people. Plato wrote some interesting stuff about this.

  7. Yeah, because that’s what Jesus did. He went out and killed a bunch of animals so he could fill the blank walls in Jerusalem. Especially he went after “smart” animals so he could brag about it.

  8. I’ve always been pro-hunting… but I think that hunting merely for sport is wasteful.

    Did he really need that entire wall full of deer that he shot with an arrow?

    I know it’s so “liberal” to bring the Scriptures into it, but perhaps I Pet 5 is appropriate here:

    Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.

    The last time I checked, I was pretty sure that “all of you” included pastors of big churches. πŸ™‚

    1. Just to be perfectly clear about this, I don’t object to hunting when it’s done right (what constitutes ethical hunting is a whole other long discussion).
      What I object to is
      (a) Being a total jerkwad about it; and
      (b) Blowing vast sums of your church’s and school’s money on your personal hobby.

  9. This, of course, brings up the really hard question — which is more offensive: Keith Gomez’s trophies, or Greg Neal’s trophies?

    (I vote for Greg Neal’s, as that is more harmful to a person’s eternal soul).

  10. Now that I’ve read the article accompanying the video, all I can think is, “This joker thinks deer are smart??”

    I guess they’re smarter by comparison. πŸ˜€

    1. Speaking of mounting people—
      When Bullet, Roy Rogers’ dog, died, Roy had him stuffed and placed in his museum. When Trigger died, he too was sent to the taxidermist. When Dale’s horse, Buttermilk, passed, his skin was preserved and stretched over a plaster form and put on display.
      It sure makes you glad Dale out-lived ol’ Roy, doesn’t it?

      1. Last I heard, the Roy Rogers and Dale Evans Museum had close, and no one was sure where Bullet, Trigger, and Buttermilk ended up.
        Anybody have an update?

        1. Branson, MO at one time. I think that museum closed also. They are probably in storage somewhere waiting for a wealthy pastor to buy them as relics for his church.

  11. Per the article:

    “More than a college, the setting evokes that of an exotic safari, what with 226 animal mounts on display, including white-tailed deer, zebras, warthogs, waterbucks, impalas, buffaloes, blue wildebeest, bear and much, much more.

    We make Cabela’s (hunting store) jealous,” joked pastor Keith Gomez, an avid bow hunter who is responsible for about half the collection.

    The rest of the animals were hunted by Gomez’s friend Mike Miller, owner of M.J. Miller & Co., a jewelry company in Barrington.”

  12. I went to providence back in 2003. That place is a whole new level of crazy. We were told to do more than our required 5 hours per week of soulwinning/bus visitation as a tithe to preacher. There were a few cover ups for his son because of his sexual harassment “errors”. They hosted “preachers” like Phil Kidd for chapel. Nuff said.

  13. I am sorry if this has been said before but I don’t have time to read all comments right now.
    This really didn’t seem odd to me. The IFB’s fixation on soul winning and keeping a tally of how many souls have been won this week, year, lifetime is right in line with this.
    This pastor simply has trophies of animals he has hunted as decoration. And somewhere, his church has decision cards or tally marks for the amount of souls won. And they probably have an image of their crown with the number of jewels they have earned when they enter heaven. Its a trophy based faith.

  14. I’ve seen his collection at the college. i remember when i was there they were going to give him some award for hunting “the big five” does anybody have any idea how that would cost to hunt in Africa and bring back to the states? also I’m new on but I’ve been posts and comments the past few weeks

    1. I do. The countries that allow “big 5” hunting require a bore of at least .375 caliber. In other words, a caliber like the Weatherby 400 magnum or a .450-400 nitro express. These rifles generally start in the $5,000 range, but can easily cost upward of $10,000. Ammunition is around $7 per bullet (Hornady .450-400 is $137 for a box of 20 rounds). Now the actual safaris have all kinds of prices, but there are some that “guarantee” you will bag something. This is important, because it actually ends up being cheaper in the long run. The hunt trip generally runs in the $25,000 range (google it), but you can pay half that or twice that. Then there is airfare, lodging, etc. All in, I’d say a cool 100 grand. He probably rented the firearms.

      Side note, if you do intend to go after the big 5, remember to use a smaller caliber for the lion and leopard. The larger “elephant” rounds will go right through a cat, and while it will probably die from its wounds, it will have plenty of time to kill you first. I recommend Zimbabwe, which will let you hunt with a 7mm. A ballistic tip 7 WSM is a good choice.

      1. OK, now I’m starting to wonder how he affords this… $100 grand would buy a LOT of vacations of the kind I take – it’s hard to imagine spending this kind of money, and I assume over and over again for all of the countries he’s named… I didn’t know pastors had it that good.

        Now I wish I knew someone who went to that church who could tell us what he makes.

        1. if its anything like a budget of a church that i know and have seen a budget at meeting for before. might be interesting. they give the pastor and assistant a nice salary. now in that take home pay, you dont have topay for your housing bill cause the church pays for that. then they have a vehicle budget so they can pay the insurance and get new vehicles. then they are given a gas budget, then a food budget.then theres health insurance. all paid for by the church budget. the take home pay is pretty much vacation money. the pastor and family go on minimum four vacations a year and they say they dont make that much money. not to mention providence baptist college and many others give 25% off college tuition to men and 50% to women if their parents work as a pastor or some other full time christian service which isnt fair for other students whose parents are not full time christian service. they give them special priviledges cause of the parents name,and title and not something they earned

    2. Welcome, Cubsgirl! You’d better stay away from Keith Gomez. I hate to think what he’d probably do to a cub if he found one.

      I seem to remember that “the Big Five” of African big game is elephant, lion, leopard, rhinoceros.
      I’m thinking hunting those, including the travel, permits, guides, expensive hunting gear (you can’t bring down an elephant or rhino with any old rifle), and skinning the corpses and transporting the hides and having them mounted and curated, would cost upwards of a couple of hundred thousand, with half a million not being far-fetched.

      But that pales in outrageousness compared with the fact that elephants and rhinos are highly endangered and anyone who shoots them just for fun is a hemmorhoid on the anus of the world.

      1. I see Dr. F posted his shopping list at the same time I put mine in. He’s either a smarter shopper than I am, or he’s not including everything in his cost calculation.

        Anyhow, we agree that this kind of pastime is anything but cheap.

      2. I accidentally dropped an animal from my list. The African “Big Five” is usually listed as elephant, rhinoceros, lion, leopard, and cape buffalo. The cape buffalo is said to be the most dangerous and maybe the most difficult to hunt.

      3. I have to agree, what possible purpose, beside the obvious making up for the lack of… you know, is there in shooting these wonderful animals? πŸ˜₯ T_T
        Much better to stick to hunting mosquitoes and moths.

      4. thanks for having me aboard. however, i have no associations with Gomez, the church, or the school. when i was there i experienced the most fake and the most unfriendly welcome. the students that talked to us were forced to and you could tell they were not happy about it.the rules at this college were ridiculous.the dress code there that girls got in trouble for was absurd. i don’t remember how many times they tried getting me in trouble for wearing denim let alone no nylons. i couldnt do it. however had a fun trip to chicago when off campus. only reason i went

        1. big Gary, i went with a youth group that was checking out the college. this was a couple years back when i had went. however, there would be no way i could survive in that place if i went to school there

  15. Since I am a pastor I don’t have enough time off to hunt or the budget to travel far from home. But I do enjoy it.

    This site seems to have as many anti-hunters as it does anti-fundies reading it today. So let me remind you if you love to seem animals in the wild, encourage hunting! The best way to ensure the health of a species is to allow hunting.

    1. I’m sorry for repeating myself, but, RevKev,
      I don’t object to hunting when it’s done right (what constitutes ethical hunting is a whole other long discussion).
      What I object to is
      (a) Being a total jerkwad about it; and
      (b) Blowing vast sums of your church’s and school’s money on your personal hobby.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.