native of Warren, David Gray converts to Catholic media mogul | News, Sports, Jobs
David L. Gray is an American Catholic theologian, historian and media mogul.
He is also a native of Warren.
The man who grew up in several parts of Warren is now president and publisher of St. Dominic’s Media Inc. Gray also hosts a weekly radio show on Guadalupe Radio Network.
According to his website, Gray speaks on a variety of topics ranging from liturgy and theology to the debate on critical race theory and secret societies.
He also debates with the appellants the tastes of bourbon and donuts. The show airs at 5 p.m. local time every Wednesday on 38 English-speaking radio stations.
Family is important to this Catholic convert. But looking back on his upbringing in a diverse Warren, Gray said his changing family situations affected his young life in negative ways.
A WARREN EDUCATION
“My parents, Gwendolyn McCullough and Oscar Scott never married; so, until my mother married Roy McCullough, we lived with her parents on the east side of Warren – 2476 Brier St. SE – where my aunt Gloria Gray still lives today, and I went to Willard Elementary until in second year. After mom and Roy got married, we moved in with him to the northwest side of Warren on Lexington Avenue near Jamestown, and I started at McGuffey in third grade, ” Gray remembers.
“At the time, I didn’t understand what was going on, but I didn’t adjust well to being the only child who now has siblings and ended up failing in fourth grade and having serious loneliness and depression issues. “
Gray said school officials put him in learning disability classes.
“It was weird back then because I didn’t have a learning disability, but that’s exactly what they recommended to the kids who failed,” Gray said.
After his mother divorced when he was in seventh grade, Gray said he returned to Brier Street with his grandmother and started at East Junior High.
“It ended up being a good thing because the special education teachers in East realized that I didn’t have a learning disability. They told me they were putting me back in regular classes. “You don’t belong here. “ Gray said. “Ordinary! It felt good.
In high school, Gray said he lived with his mother in Warren Heights.
“But she sent me back to live with Grandma because she didn’t like the people who were my friends in Warren Heights,” he said.
During his years at Warren G. Harding, Gray said he did normal things such as orchestral, track and field and professional accounting.
In the high school orchestra, Gray said he enjoyed playing the trumpet until he was kicked out for what Gray said he was “a clown.”
“To this day, I hate that this has happened because I really liked the trumpet”, he said, “But I’ve been able to enjoy it again lately with my eighth grade daughter playing the trumpet.”
Being in special education all these years made him struggle with confidence, and he had to work even harder with the lessons, Gray said.
“There are some things that I did not know or did not know how to do, like studying and writing articles” he said.
One of his teachers, Phyliss Wing, made a point of making sure Gray graduated on time, he recalls.
Gray recalled these academic difficulties when he met a failed student later in his life as a young mentor for the Ohio Guidestone.
“I would take the time to work with them and talk to them or their parents if necessary… and I would push them and show them how to study, write and prepare for the tests” he said.
Regarding his religious life, Gray said he was “Nominally Protestant”.
“I have never been ‘to church’ as they say, but I often attended Grace African Methodist Episcopal Church on Tod Avenue with my grandmother. When I was in 11th grade, I asked him if I could be baptized. I didn’t even know what it was, but I knew it made you a member of the church, but she said I wasn’t ready. he said.
A STORY OF CONVERSION
His search for the truth began after graduating from Harding in 1991, when he attended Central State University.
When he was at a low point in his life, Gray said he found the Catholic Church 15 years later in 2006.
“A series of bad decisions … put me up against nine years for an embezzlement offense,” he said.
In the county jail in 2004, Gray said he decided to kill himself.
“It was then, as I was trying to kill myself by suffocation, that I heard an audible voice saying, ‘I love you. I’m here,'” Gray said.
That night, Gray said he read the four gospels for the first time in his life.
“I was completely stunned, and I was also upset that I hadn’t believed it earlier. So, I decided to follow the One who saved my life ”, Gray said.
Gray said his historical research led him to the Catholic Church.
“I didn’t want to be Catholic, but I was convinced, both historically and theologically, that the Church of the Apostles still exists in the Catholic Church today – most obviously with the unique teaching on the Holy Eucharist “, he said.
After serving six and a half years in prison, including ministering with other inmates, Gray said he encountered another life crisis after his release.
RETURN TO WARREN
In 2011, Gray himself divorced and had to return to Brier Street SE.
“It was funny to be back in this neighborhood as a Catholic. I could still see St. James – now called something else – and JFK from my home, and I had friends who attended these schools. I remember the nuns of Notre Dame who lived near Willard Elementary School, but the only thing I knew about the Catholic Church was that they were “different,” as my grandmother would say. he said.
He said he didn’t remember seeing black people entering these churches.
Now back home, Gray said he travels to St. James for daily Masses, serves at the altar and works at the St. Vincent de Paul Center on Niles Road SE to help serve the Church. food for the needy.
Gray eventually decided to attend church regularly at St. Dominic in Youngstown, where he learned Dominican spirituality from the brethren there.
He moved again in 2014 and two years later married another Warren native, Felicia Ziegler-Gray. In 2017, the Grays moved to Belleville, Illinois, a suburb of St. Louis, and have four daughters.
Gray said his generation in Warren didn’t focus on their children’s family values.
“My generation didn’t do what we needed to do for Warren. All my friends had babies but didn’t have a family ”, he said. “In the summer of 2013, some of my friends were walking the streets at night and engaging young people there, and it was crazy because we asked them who their dad was, and it was almost always someone we knew about school and here is their child at inappropriate times doing inappropriate things.
“We would ask them what you wanna do with your life, and it was always them who wanted to be an athlete or a rapper. Kids just want to be what they consider successful. I didn’t know what I wanted. be at that age, but one day I saw my dad Oscar working at Packard spinning around a thing all day, and I knew I didn’t want to do that for the rest of my life. didn’t seem like a success for me ”, he said.
Her aunt Gloria Gray, who lives in the same Brier Street house where Gray grew up, said her nephew often kept in touch with calls, cards and letters.
“What a wonderful, caring and polite nephew is David”, she said. “He’s always put others first, I’m not surprised he’s done well in life.”
Gray said he was fortunate enough to go to college, earn a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Central State University and a Master of Arts in Catholic Theology from Ohio Dominican University.
“Looking back now, I think my dad was successful – it just depends on how you define success. He was healthy and was a good father and didn’t hurt anyone, ”Gray said of Oscar Scott. “He tried to start a family – failed a lot, but being a good father was important to him. I know my hometown would be better off if we just took over the family and fatherhood. All of my childhood friends had two parents at home. I don’t know why we didn’t imitate that.