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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Rep. Matt Shea to take over as campus pastor at Covenant Christian Church after failing to file for re-election

Matt Shea speaks to the congregation at Covenant Church on Sunday, May 31, 2020. The Rev. Ken Peters announced Shea as his replacement after the longtime and controversial state lawmaker failed to file for re-election. (Covenant Church livestream)

State Rep. Matt Shea, who after being ousted from the House Republican caucus failed to fail for re-election last month, will serve as the next campus pastor at Covenant Christian Church in Spokane.

The Rev. Ken Peters announced his replacement during services Sunday morning. Peters, one of the organizing pastors of the Church at Planned Parenthood, will leave Spokane to start a new church in Knoxville, Tennessee, called “Patriot Church,” he told his congregation Sunday before introducing Shea.

“This is God moving generals around,” Peters said, referencing the miniseries “Grant” currently airing on the History Channel about the Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant during the Civil War.

Shea has spoken openly about his religious beliefs during his time as a state legislator. In October 2018, he took credit for a document called “The Biblical Basis for War” that included a prescription for “killing all males” if they did not submit to “biblical law.” Shea claimed the document was a series of sermons and that the message was being taken out of context, but the document prompted concern from elected officials.

An investigation followed, finding that Shea had engaged in acts of “domestic terrorism.” He was then ousted from the caucus.