Chat Room: Ronnie Hepperly

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By Lance Coleman

Pastor Ronnie Hepperly
Age: 50
Married to Jeannie. They have two children, Bryan Hepperly and Hank Hepperly, and a 6-year-old granddaughter, Kayleigh.
Occupation: Senior pastor, RIO network of churches.

What was your first paying job?
"Putting up hay for Herb Myers in Townsend when I was about 13 years old. Right after that, I went to work for Hugh Myers at Cades Cove Riding Stables."

If you were stranded on an island, what one thing would you take?
"A loaded gun. You never know when you might need one."

If you could do one impulsive thing, unrestricted by cost, what would it be?
"Hold a crusade/revival right in the middle of Baghdad, to shine the light in some unusually dark places."

What task or activity have you still not gotten around to doing?
"Build a fence around my pasture."

What’s your favorite quote?
"Let’s roll.’ The quote is Todd Beamer, who was killed aboard Flight 93 on September 11, 2001. "Mr. Beamer said this on the phone right before he and other passengers on this flight attempted to overtake the hijackers. Their courage and sacrifice probably prevented that plane from hitting the White House or somewhere else in Washington."

What are you guilty of?
"Probably being too confrontational."

Do you think there is life on other planets?
"I don’t know, and I really don’t care."

What is your favorite material possession?
"My Harley Davidson Electroglide Classic, black with flames."

What are you reading currently?
Hepperly said he is reading "The Bible," "The Heavenly Man" by Brother Yun, several John Maxwell leadership books, "Anointed for Business" by Ed Silvoso, "Intercessory Prayer" by Dutch Sheets and "Spirit Led Preaching" by Greg Heisler."

Who has been the most influential person in the 20th century?
"Probably Ronald Reagan, since a lot of the things that he implemented still effect the world today."

Why did you pursue the career you chose?
"I felt like God had directed me this way."

What is one word others often use to describe you and why?
‘"Driven. I’m motivated to keep going forward and to continue reaching new areas."

When you were 5 years old, what did you want to be when you grew up?
"I can’t remember that far back, but, when I was 12 or 13 years old, I wanted to be a veterinarian."

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
"I would have started doing what I do now much earlier."

What is your passion?
"Sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as I can. I’m passionate about seeing lives changed and about helping hurting people, both here in Blount County and around the world."

With whom, living or dead, would you most like to have a long lunch?
"Smith Wigglesworth, an evangelist who did unusually supernatural miracles in the early 1900s."

What do you hate?
"Injustice, hypocrisy and unfairness."

What is your dream vacation?
Hepperly says his dream vacation is an Alaskan cruise.

Rebels, Tornadoes, Mountaineers or Governors?
"Both of my sons graduated from Heritage High School, so I guess I’d have to say Mountaineers."

What is the best book you’ve ever read?
"The Bible."

Would you travel in space?
"Sure. Why not?"

If you could go back in time for a week, what time period or year would you visit?
Hepperly says he would want to visit 1875 in the period of the Wild, Wild West.

What character in a book or movie would you most like to be?
"Joshua in the Old Testament."

What is your favorite sport and favorite sport’s team?
"What I used to like to play was football. Now, I like to watch the Ultimate Fighting Championships."

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