Teri Copley: Sonset Ministries
Teri Copley: Sonset Ministries Reprint permission by FreeMP3bible.org
This interview was conducted by the founder of freemp3bible.org. Lee has graciously given us permission to reprint the interview on Christian Hollywood. However, included in this interview are exclusive comments concerning Teri’s experience with Playboy and nudity, which only Christian Hollywood has been given special permission to print.
Teri Copley began her rise to stardom in the early 1980s. The strikingly beautiful young woman earned starring roles working with actors such as John Turturro, Tim Daly, Stepfanni Kramer, and Carman.
Now, her ministry, Sonset Ministries, aims to give back to the city that introduced her to the world. FreeMP3Bible asked Ms. Copley to tell us a little bit about herself, her story, and her God. She graciously gave us some of her time and answered some questions that might just help answer a few of your own.
How would you describe God during your childhood? Was He talked about in your house?
Teri Copley: I grew up in a home where Christ was never mentioned. My mother was from a non-practicing Catholic family. My grandfather didn’t believe in God due to heartbreak in his childhood years. I became aware of Christ through my friend’s parents. I must say even as a child I loved Him. I didn’t have understanding but He made Himself known to me as a child. I knew He wanted me to do something.
Did He cross your mind as you worked your way through the Hollywood maze?
TC: He would always enter into my life he never gave up on me, but I was deaf and blinded to understand Him. I was in darkness while I was in Hollywood … but I still had a love for Him.
What sorts of pressures were you under as a beautiful young starlet in Hollywood?
TC: None that were evident. I guess it’s the subtleties you don’t really see until you look back. I really just wanted to be understood … I wanted to be loved.
As you rode the rocket ship to fame, did you ever look back and wonder if this was truly where you wanted to be – who you wanted to be?
TC: No! I loved it while I was in it. I wanted to help people. I knew I wanted my life to be about what I gave and not what it gave me, but I was self-centered.
In 1990, you gave your life to Christ. How did that happen?
TC: I was doing a movie and one morning I felt a tapping on my finger waking me up and saying, “Isn’t the sun beautiful”? I responded by saying, “Yes, the sun is beautiful”! I fully woke up and got on the floor and said to the Lord, “Lord, you’ve given me this life and I’ve made a mess of it; please let me serve you”! I don’t even know how those words came to me because it was more that I understood. I saw myself carrying my dead body across my arms and laying it at the feet of Jesus. I was a new person! I felt Him with me from that moment on and I didn’t understand a thing. I just knew it was Him and He loved me a lot!
The Enemy walks seeking whom he may devour. As a new child in Christ with such strong ties to Hollywood and its money, power, & fame, how did you resist his lies?
TC: I found something far, far better: the love and manifest presence of God. It’s better than all the riches and fame anyone could attain.
He continually looks for breaks in the armor of a Christian. When he brings up things you did in your former life, what do you do to turn him away?
TC: Well, it depends how it’s brought up. If it’s a whole bunch of things he tries to attack the mind with… I worship! If it’s through people and them saying things… I hear them and I try to see the hurt or whatever he is using in their heart and I, with love, try to give them understanding. Sometimes I tell them I’m sorry! I let them know I was lost and weak and never meant to hurt them or cause them to stumble. I do not get offended… because as I see my own weakness, I can also see their’s and as I have compassion for mine – I try to have the same for others.
Recently, the label of “Christian” has been thrown around even more than ever in the entertainment arena even causing friends (such as the members of the rock band “Creed”) to walk away from each other. Some claim “Christian” when it suits the moment. How would you say that you have been able to avoid any controversy over the validity of your walk with God?
TC: I lost some friends because I didn’t have in common the things I had in common with them before. It still is the same this day with people I haven’t seen for a while. I haven’t been questioned about my validity as a Christian. I have a very close friend that walks with me. I think also the Bible says,”You will know them by their fruits”; I think people can have a love for the Lord and never really know Him, but He IS faithful.
When did you found Sonset Ministries?
TC: About 3 years ago.
Who are your more active partners and what are their roles in addition to your own?
TC: My friends Delynn Buonvicino and Romona Jones; we all just put it together, but Delynn does most of the organizing… she’s really efficient!
What is the goal of this ministry in particular?
TC: We wanted to go the ground where we came from and bring the reality of the very present Lord to them. Sometimes people will go to an event before they will go into a church.
When was your last “tent revival”?
What does it take to produce something so unusual in an effort to reach the lost?
TC: A lot, a lot of time and money.
What are your plans for Sonset Ministries (in the future)?
TC: We are planning to put up a tent this early May!
Your book, “Conversations Between a Girl and Her God”, allows readers to follow your spiritual growth in a simple, easy-to-read manner. Do you have plans to write another book?
TC: Yes, I am finishing, “Fits, Mis-fits and Counterfeits” and I will be doing another Girl and Her God Book, called, “Visions and Visitations Between a Girl and Her God”.
It is noted that you are available from time to time for speaking engagements. Tell me about what one would expect to glean from that experience.
TC: My heart’s desire is that everyone comes to know Him face to face, that everyone will allow themselves to utterly abandon themselves to intimacy with Him. I speak about a “life on Earth as it is in Heaven … being fully restored to the garden”. I love that!
Is this your full time job?
TC: No, not yet… but I desire it to be! ASAP! I don’t like being distracted!
Who is Teri Copley now?
TC: Just a girl who loves her God!
God has brought you so far in a brief amount of time. Where do you think He will take you next?
TC: I have spent a lot of time trying to foresee that, but I just don’t know. I only pray that I never settle for the outer court life or even the Holy place life… I really want to abide in the Holy of Holies. That’s where every promise of the Bible is made manifest. The perfection of His love made complete on earth as it is in heaven. Restored to the garden!
Christian Hollywood Exclusive:
Concerning Teri’s pictures from Playboy: She said that while she regrets having done it, she uses the experience to speak about how the things in your past can be brought up by the enemy to try to derail your walk with God. She has used this point at home with her children who no doubt surf the web. They have learned that one moment can last a lifetime. Below is the answer in detail. – MP3
All of God’s children have lived on the other side of mercy & done things that may or may not be exposed after one finds his way to the redeeming love of Christ. I know that I am certainly no different. My question is that while doing Google searches for events relating to you and Sonset Ministries, it is impossible to avoid finding pictures of this or that from one time or another. You now live on the side of grace and I would never dream of bringing up any hurtful thing. My question, as a parent myself, is how these things do or do not affect your children and your efforts to teach them to always walk in the Light of Truth? Trust that I ask this not as a writer, but as a fellow Christian first and as a reverend second. Your answer could give real insight to certain questions that I have been asked to answer here by those I come into contact with during the course of my ministry.
TC: That’s simple… They know I’ve done things that I am not proud of and that out of it they see how much God has done with me. They always say to me, “Mom because of your life and what God has done with you I believe He is real”. However it does not alter the fact that they stray and make their own mistakes. That is really sad … to see the mistakes you’ve made in the past and see your children make bad mistakes too! (By the way)… the only nudity I ever did was the Playboy pictorial (1990). The naked stuff they claim I did was NOT me, but rather a body double… (“Down the Drain”). There is another rather exposing shot they say is me, and it is not. I have written them several times asking them to tell the truth and take the one that is not me off, but they don’t care. I don’t mind talking about it either… not proud, but not ashamed either… just wish I hadn’t.
Teri’s Comments Concerning the Hurricane Katrina (Rita came after the interview)
The events in the Gulf Coast can exhibit God’s love if we allow ourselves to be open to Him. This is what Teri Copley had to say about Hurricane Katrina on September 1: “When tragedy hits, only those who are struck by it can really know the depths of the pain it causes. I will however say, that it is a wonderful time to gently and lovingly share the Lord to them. He can be a great comfort in times when natural circumstances have failed us. My prayer is that the Lord will reveal Himself to those that don’t know Him and where there is fear and anger, He will cover them with faith and His great love.” – Teri Copley
To contact Teri for speaking or other engagements, please contact her at MP3BIBLE@freemp3bible.org. We will update her contact information when her website is complete. To purchase her book, “Conversations Between a Girl and Her God” Click Here
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