Gary Weatherly was born and raised in the Central California Valley, surrounded by oil fields and cotton fields. When Gary was thirteen years old, his mother and father divorced and “normal” life ended for him and his younger brother, Brian. He began to rebel against any authority and started moving toward a life of violence and crime.
When Gary was sixteen his Dad was “at his wits end” with his wayward son and so he sent him to spend a summer in Dayton, Ohio with his grandfather, Earnest Weatherly. This was a turning point for his life because his grandparents were praying Christians. And because of their prayers, Gary missed his flight from Los Angeles in June of 1956. That TWA flight collided with a United Airlines flight and both planes went down over the Grand Canyon. All onboard both planes died. God had a plan for Gary’s life, although he didn’t know it at the time. He was on the next flight and spent that summer with his wonderful grandparents. Because of their prayers, Gary turned away from violence and crime and began to move toward a relationship with Jesus Christ.
However, Gary didn’t make a commitment to Jesus until years later, after five years of college and twelve years in the music business under the influence of money, sex, drugs, alcohol, and rock ‘n roll. But God, in His great love saved Gary from sin and death. (Read Ephesians 2)
In Costa Mesa, California, Gary made a real commitment to Christ and began to grow as a Christian under the ministry of Pastor Chuck Smith. There, in 1974, he learned the meaning of the “Love of God.” He began to serve the Lord by taking the Gospel wherever he could. He preached and ministered in music with Christian bands and by himself, on the streets, in Rescue Missions and prisons, visiting Juvenile Halls and convalescent homes. He also ministered in music & the word at evangelistic outreaches and churches.
In 1978, God called Gary to a Prison and Juvenile Hall Ministry in Napa, CA. As Gary served God there in the beautiful Napa Valley, the Lord brought Debbie into his life, and they fell in love. And in 1979 they were married. To support his family and the Ministry, Gary gave music lessons and did odd jobs. Eventually, he opened the Napa Valley Art Studio and Gallery with James Michael Orr, another Christian artist. Sales of Gary’s “Napa Valley Scenes” supported his ministry, and brought the Gospel message to thousands of people who purchased them in the wine country gift shops.
God eventually moved Gary out of the Art Gallery into the office of Pastor-teacher as he taught home Bible studies in Napa, Fairfield, Sonoma, and Santa Rosa, finally moving to Santa Rosa in 1982 and establishing Calvary Chapel of Santa Rosa.
Gary and Debbie are blessed to be the parents of five children; Matthew, David, Michael, Faith, and Douglas. Michael Weatherly is currently serving the Lord as Pastor at Calvary Chapel of Santa Rosa.
“We pray for the day when we will all worship together before the throne of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.” -Pastor Gary