Outrage: Is COGIC paying for victims silence on clergy sex crimes?

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A three part GCM Watch Special Report

Just by reading Superintendent Larry Weem’s airbrushed website, you’d never know  three years ago, he was minutes away from going on trial for the sexual assault and abuse of five women under his employ at the Church of God in Christ (COGIC) Saints Academy in Lexington, Mississippi. Some graduates of the school have said it to be a breeding ground of sexual misconduct and includes among its alumni false prophetess Jaunita Bynum. Still, according to Christianity Today, COGIC pumps $1.4 million into the school annually.

All of the attacks on the women occurred while Weems (pictured left) was in his official capacity as head of the school. Weems also served as pastor of  Davis Temple in COGIC’s Mississippi Southern First jurisdiction. In addition, he was the jurisdictions head secretary. Weems also worked as a national trustee overseeing some 400 acres of property and equipment owned by the “national church” in Mississippi.

Then in a stunning reversal of events, Weems offered to pay off all the plaintiffs and ended what would have certainly been a public airing of his sordid sexual attacks against the women. And jail time.

Media interviews of the women reveal that Weems was a sexual predator with few restrictions. He believed the women under his employ were objects meant to indulge his sexual needs at whim.

Algenia Randle is one of five women who filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against Weems, her former boss. Randle complained that the pastor sexually assaulted her at St. Academy in Holmes County. The wrongful termination case was settled out of court.
“It has been a long time. We are just glad it is over and are pleased with the outcome. We’re glad that
it’s over. That’s the main thing,” said Randle. Another woman said it’s not over. A Texas woman who decided not to sue described an incident during a church trip.
“When I woke up, Larry Weems was on top of me grinding himself through my clothes and I told him
to get up and get off of me,” said the woman.
Another woman who sued the church wants him held accountable publicly.
“He needs to be registered as a sex offender so people need to know what he is and what he is about,”
said Earnestine Deering who filed a lawsuit. The women claimed they first tried to settle the case with church leaders but did not get far.
“My response was to be fired after they lied and said it would help us and said they would protect us. All we got was fired,” said the woman.

Weems, a married man with 3 adult children, even attacked one woman on the job. Described by her lawyer as a traumatic experience for her client, the woman said: “[Weems] would start out with a conversation and end up with his hands on me in this closet, and pulling my breasts out and spitting on them.”

The attacks came to light in April 2006 during the late G.E. Patterson’s administration. But like all the sexual crimes cases committed by COGIC clergy, not one individual in leadership would even so much as apologize to victims. Victims can expect nothing but cold, arrogant silence from COGIC bishops even when the perpetrator has been found guilty. That’s the culture of cover up and concealment which has allowed the Church of God in Christ to effectively keep its members from discovering the stunning sexual crimes committed by men posing as church leaders. Secret payoffs, which in most cases contain gag restrictions have allowed the church to keep the “dots” separated.

Wolves covering for wolves?

Weems was certainly guilty and knew that going into the trial.  Its not clear whether it was his personal lawyer or COGIC lawyers who convinced him at the last minute to take a dive, pay off the women and avoid the trial, but he did.

In the corporate world such crimes would rapidly transition the most promising of careers. But COGIC seems to operate under a different philosophy. Or at least made Larry Weems an exception to its rules.

As mentioned, Weems held a number of national and state positions as well as the local pastorate of a church which doubles as the jurisdictional headquarters. But instead of being disciplined for his egregious actions, Weems still operates as a church pastor and jurisdictional secretary.

The latter is especially troubling. COGIC jurisdictional secretaries have access to personal information on all pastors and members of their respective ecclesiastical territories. Having Weems operate in this position given his crimes presents two severely problematic scenarios. If there are other sexual predators in Mississipi, Weems authority allows him the ability to shield them. His own latent dishonesty certainly brings that into question. Secondly, with Weems in such a position, would he use personal information against others who may be committing sexual immorality?

The hush money trail

Is the church using hard-earned church money, given to them by church elders, women who pay to carry the COGIC name to pay off sex abuse victims in exchange for silence?

In the Weems case, a report by WAPT ABC in Jackson said the victims were prohibited from saying who paid the money to them.

Upon hearing details of the Weems case, one COGIC pastor who asked not to be named, told GCM Watch “if COGIC used national church funds to settle Weem’s sexual abuse case without discipline, I’ll never pay another church report again!” The pastor said that if the national church is using the money paid to them by honest, faithful credential holders, it should be subject to full investigative disclosure.

Although current Presiding Bishop Charles Blake stated in 2007 he would make it a priority to “take positive steps to seriously investigate every case of alleged sexual abuse by the clergy”, he quickly –and without explanation– retracted the statement. It was even scrubbed from COGIC’s official site.

Blake’s removal of his promise may be why so many victims report COGIC leaders refuse to even acknowledge sexual attacks against them. That’s what the women said happened when they reported Weems.

The women claimed they first tried to settle the case with church leaders but did not get far.
“My response was to be fired after they lied and said it would help us and said they would protect us.
All we got was fired,” said the woman.
At least two of the five alleged victims said they have had a hard time finding work. As for Weems, the case was settled and he is still the pastor at Davis Temple and the superintendent of the school. Weems refused to comment on the case. WAPT tried to contact Weems’ bosses, the local superintendent and the bishop of the Church of God in Christ in Memphis, but none of the calls was returned. The lawsuit was settled for an undisclosed amount and the victims could not say if the church or the pastor paid them.

In addition to having his sex crimes bills paid, Weems still holds the same positions of authority he had before his crimes. Other than removing him as head of the school, COGIC has given no indication Weems faced any church discipline [read what should happen when COGIC pastors commit sexual malfeasance] for his actions.

In part 2 of this special report, GCM Watch will look at money and the main characters in COGIC culture of cover-up with clergy sexual crimes.

Appendix: Known COGIC clergy sexual crimes

HIV positive  pastor arrested for sexual abuse Jan 2009 (KY)
Pastor arrested for sexual abuse of 4 boys Jan 2009 (MD)
Pastor settles out of court for Saints Academy sexual assaults April  2006 (MS)
Music minister convicted of molestation of  5 boys Dec 2007 (NC)
Pastor arrested for fondling teen Dec 2007 (OH)
Pastor murdered, new details surface Aug 2008 (AR)
Pastor arrested for sex with teen student April 2008 (MA)
Pastor molests troubled teen May 2008 (TX)
Bishop convicted of multiple child molestations Feb 2008 (GA)
Woman sues COGIC; alleges childhood sexual abuse by pastor June 2007 (WA)
Former  member reports sexual abuse to COGIC legal department Sept 2008 (GA)
COGIC entertainer a convicted pedophile Feb 2007 (MI)
Youth leader charged with molestation of 13 year old girl (MO)
COGIC sued for $10 million over sexual abuse of teen Nov 2003 (OR)
Prominent pastor sued for sexual abuse Feb 2007 (TX)
Pastor arrested for indecency with male minor July 2005 (NV)
Pastor indicted for impregnating 13 year old girl Nov 2007 (TX)
Asst Pastor sentenced for molesting 13 year old boy Mar 2006 (IL)
Deacon charged with lewd public act May 2008 (WI)
Youth minister arrested for sexual assault of teen Nov 2002 (CO)
Pastor convicted of rape of 19 yr old member Aug 1992 (IA)
Clarence Garrison (employee of Bethel COGIC) convicted of indecent liberties with a child (KS)
Pastor Rueben Thompson arrested for 5 counts of incest 2007 (FL)
Pastor Issac Goodwater indicted on two counts of “coersion” of girls 2003 (CT)
Bishop JD Husband admitted guilt for sexually molesting underage boys and youth 1991 (GA, TN)
Supt Leon Dupree convicted of assault and rape 1988 (NY)

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56 thoughts on “Outrage: Is COGIC paying for victims silence on clergy sex crimes?

  1. Tell me that people can sit silently while crimes take place…Elder, did you run across anything that gives a reason that the women still didn’t pursue this fella criminally…I mean a settlement is one thing, but this fell committed a crime, why no crimina charges?

  2. Hello Pastor Burnett good question and one that came to my mind as I was researching this. I am attempting to contact someone associated with the case. Hopefully they can provide that answer. I will update the article, if and when I get that information.

    Something’s not right about that, because sexual assault is a crime. Maybe MS law allows some loophole.

  3. My question as well Pastor Harvey, if a man (whether in the church or not) committed a sexual crime against me, the first place I’m going is to the police…not some “church board.” (Of course, that would be after my brother’s probably whooped his tail…LOL!) But all joking aside because this is no joking matter, I just don’t get it. I guess we are all missing a BIG piece of this sad puzzle…May the Lord continue to expose these
    perverted souls for the preying wolves that they are and heal all those that have been hurt by them.

    Sister Pat

  4. Sister Pat, I think that a lot of women are ignorant of what they should do FIRST in these cases. Youre right, the first place you should go is to the police. I think the women reported it to COGIC first because in this context they were Weems’ employer. That probably is a major mistake and some predators probably know that. The FIRST thing that should happen is the incident should be reported to the police. I’d like to hear from any women this has happened to who can explain maybe why they didnt go the the police first.

    Reporting it to church authorities first allows them time to dilute the seriousness of what happened in my opinion.

    For the most part, women and potential victims need much more education. But the problem is that the church with its male dominated heirarchy is not going to do it. Seeing that I question why the Women’s department doesnt make this a major educational project since women make up the majority of those in the pews and perhaps give the bulk of the money. Especially since their motto is “Better home, better schools, better communities, better world.” Then again, no one may not be connecting the dots that this is even a problem.

  5. The sad thing is that the church water it down in the first place, a brother thats does this should be reported to the police and put out of the Church if they are unrepentant.

    1 Timothy 5:20
    Those who sin are to be rebuked publicly, so that the others may take warning.

    1 Corinthians 5:5-7
    5 deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.[a]
    6 Your glorying is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? 7 Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, since you truly are unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us.

    Hard scriptures!

    I am all for Mercy, LORD knows I need it but there must be correction in the body, in love and humility.

  6. Some of the women (and men) don’t go to the police because they are taught that disputes within “the Body” should be handled in that context. They may also be afraid of losing their fellowship and their reputation within the church or denomination. Many church leaders and congregants blame the victim. They are seen as the Delilah to their Samson. In fact most cases a re more like David and Bathsheba; for King David horribly misused his power and authority to fill his sexual appetite.
    They may be labeled a “tool of the enemy”; “the devil’s mistress”, “Jezebel” and many other appellations that blame the victim and leave room for the restoration of the mand o’ gawd.

    A church must make it known that to sexually abuse, harrass, or torment another is a sin and a CRIME. Until the denominations go the police the people will always struggle with coming forward or going to the authorities.

  7. Weems is only one of many criminals hiding behind the pulpit and positions. Its now called black collar crime.

    What allows people like him to remain in position despite what they’ve done is that people are inclined to blame the victim. Its classic church ignorance based on the belief that “the leader” isnt possibly capable of doing something wrong.

    Additionally its rather juvenile and shortsighted to think that in aftermath of the trauma of sexual assault a person would not need financial compensation to handle counseling, medical and legal bills.

    Youre right dickkopf, God allows the release of information because without it sexual predators like Weems would keep right on committing these heinous acts. The ONLY reason he stopped (if he has) is because the lawsuits exposed him.

    I would encourage people not familiar with what happens to the victim, to read this and be educated.

  8. Eld Jimmy, I personally know what youre saying as true. I endured 4 years of sexual molestation because the abuser threatened me many times with exposure. He said he would tell everybody about me and caused me (a young boy) to believe that I was the one who was wrong. In the smalltown COGIC church I was in, that terrified me and kept me silent until it became unbearable. I knew nothing about going to the police, it wasnt even a concept in my mind. But I did give a letter he wrote to me to my church leaders as evidence. Needless to say, it didnt improve life for me at all.

    The idiots who blame the victim are about as shallow, cold and callous as it gets. Thankfully the eyes of the Lord are in every place beholding the good and the evil.

  9. Ex-minister pleads guilty to child sex abuse counts

    GCMW: Thanks, Trisha we linked to this at the bottom of the story on Weems.

  10. The Church leaders have taken the place of God in many peoples lives so why would we expose the evil especially when we shouldnt “touch the LORD’S anointed!”

    This makes me sick to my stomach! I am sick and tired of Superstar Christians and people flocking to where ever something new and exciting is. It is the people of God who encourage these leaders to think of themselves more highly than they ought to by putting them on a pedestal. The only infallible is Christ, everyone else as far as the Church is concerned is and should be subject to righteous judgment.

    May The LORD strengthen and use all who have been abused by spiritual leaders to encourage others who may go through this abuse and to expose the enemies stronghold in the church as far as not saying anything is concerned.

    God bless!!!

  11. I guess it all comes down to the “mindset” of an individual. I was just brought up that if ANYBODY touches me in a way that they are not supposed to, tell it to the authorities…Don’t care who, don’t care where. However I can thoroughly understand a young child being mentally scared to death by exposing someone that’s abusing them, but a grown person…again, I guess it’s just the mindset of the individual. I don’t care about position, titles, fame or fortune, whatever, you touch me, you are going down…fortunately for me, that’s how I was raised…but I guess it’s unfortunate for other’s that have gone through such a terrible ordeal, especially to be abused by a family member or someone you really trusted!

    As a woman, I’m speaking directly to other women…you need to open your mouths and not keep silent if you are being abused or harassed! No job, title, position, status or loss of “friends” is worth the pain and suffering you will or are currently enduring by keeping quiet and not exposing the wolf. Go directly to the authorities. Take a witness if you have one. Do not have faith in a “system” or denomination that continues to “cover up” these perverts. You would not allow any “joe schmoe” on the “street” to touch you so what makes you think someone in a “collar” that has clearly misued their title and position and assaulted you be any different. I don’t care how long you sat in that ministry. GET OUT! You are much more valuable and precious than what this person may have brainwashed you to believe. They are not allowed to use and abuse you because they stand in a pulpit, count money, sit on a board, lead a choir, carry the pastor’s briefcase etc…Know your worth in God, you are not just some man’s “sexual gratification toy!” You are a member of the body of Jesus Christ, not just some denomination or some man’s property or possession. Rise up my sisters and do not allow yourself to be a victim any longer. God will hear your cry and deliver you out of all of your afflictions. Judgment awaits these hierlings! Remember, God will always make a way of escape…that is, if you want to escape. I say this in total love and I’m praying that websites such as GCM Watch will continue to cry aloud and “educate” the body of Christ. These false shepherds are not coming, they are already HERE, in choirs, in youth programs, in women’s programs, on deacon/elder boards, they are here and we as saints better become wise as serpents and pray for discernment like never before in this apostate church age that we are “now living in.”

    I’m sorry Elder Foster, but my heart is heavy for the body of Christ and I am standing as a voice in the wilderness, crying out prepare the way of the Lord…He is coming back, and He will execute righteous judgment upon all. We must awake from our sleep
    and arise from the dead, Christ has given us light. No longer walking as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. So we cannot be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And I know that God’s will is not to continue to let ANYONE sexually abuse you and you keep silent!

    Stand strong my Sisters, and having done all to stand…STAND! God will see you through. I’m praying for you! Sister Pat

  12. Sis Pat thank you this is no light matter. Sexual violation leaves deep emotional, relational and spiritual scars that can possibly devastate a person whether male or female, adult or child.

    You have spoken well. I pray that the women reading this (and I know there are many) will speak up and not be a partaker of another’s sin with your silence.

    All we can do is our part. God has given us a voice to speak out against the “powers that be” and the wolves which hunt for victims among God’s flock and the vunerable. If we do our part, certainly God is not slack in bringing justice and correction.

    Thanks again.

  13. Pastor Foster and others on the inside

    I ask this question with sincerity to any of you familiar with the ins and outs of COGIC. Please forgive me if my questions comes across as ignorant.

    Question: How much power do the top bishops have over the COGIC flock? Where is the discipline? Where is the correction?

    I heard a ministry associate say recently that a lot of the issues and scandals(known and unknown-probably more to number that are unknown), it was revealed to that minister that the leaven of Catholicism was manifesting itself in COGIC. There are so many back door deals, negotiations, people buying seats(positions, rankings, privileges, favor) i.e. bribery, extortion, and so many of the bishops, top to bottom had SO MUCH DIRT on each other that if one of these scandals really broke out it could potentially split COGIC or even worse destroy it.

  14. Ron we are working on parts 2 and 3. No publish date has been set so please check back on occasion.

  15. EW, I dont consider myself on the inside. Trust me you would know if I was.

    Having said that I will leave your questions open to those who are. I think it a sad thing that some people would not want to look critically at their own organization due to organizational pride and maintaining an image before people. Sounds pharisaical to me.

    Sure there are some awesome things about COGIC and we applaud them for that. But there is a darkness lurking inside too and we must challenge that. To ignore any sin in one’s midst whether private or corporate is an invitation for destruction. Just because an organization like COGIC has grown large and is now acceptable as a pentecostal/holiness denomination and “stands against homosexuality” on paper, doesnt mean that it is to be given a free pass on other critically important issues like clergy sexual abuse and misconduct. Which they have had –at best– a lethargic attitude. Shouting, dancing and speaking in tongues wont resolve that.

    Whether judgment is eventual or immediate is in the hands of God. I do know that corporate repentance will possibly turn the judgment of God. That depends largely upon the spiritual disposition of leadership. Nineveh comes to mind.

  16. Read the article on Jerome Pitchford, “Deacon Charged With Lewd Act”. This person lives in Milwaukee. I live miles away from this person, but at a time like this, he needs friends. Would like to become his friend and correspond with him. Does anyone know how I can write to this young man? If you do please reply to this. Thanks.

  17. Your blog reports one COGIC pastor saying “if COGIC used national church funds to settle Weem’s sexual abuse case without discipline, I’ll never pay another church report again!” But earlier the case was described as a “wrongful termination lawsuit.” Whatever the other salacious details of Mr. Weems behavior towards these women, they sued over his firing them not over sexual abuse. They had to be suing the national church, as the Church (not Weems) employed the workers at Saints Academy. It is disingenuous to call this hush money.

    In fact, if your reporting is correct, the settlement of the wrongful termination lawsuit should in no way preclude them from filing criminal or civil charges against Weems personally for sexual harrassment.

  18. Pastor Foster.

    Thanks for posting my previous posts and responding to questions that I have posed. Please continue to cry loud and spare not.

    I am writing today to let you know that justice has been served in the case of Tony Malbrough (formerly of new Community COGIC and Safe Haven Ministries COGIC). On Wednesday, July 29, 2009, he received 20 years for molesting boys that attended his church. I will forward you the article when it is available online.

  19. Joseph, unfortunately you love covering for the home team. So its expected that people like you full of “COGIC pride” would attempt to excuse every culprit and place the blame on others for calling attention to the major failure of your church’s leadership to act with integrity and honesty towards victims. In doing so you become a partaker of Weems and COGIC’s sins against these women.

    This was caused, initiated and carried out by Larry Weems. If he was innocent there was no need to pay off the women. You and your faux offense at “salacious details” (one line to be exact) is laughable. Was the line too graphic for your innocent ears? Weems and COGIC refused to talk about the case, refused to answer questions, refused to return phone calls, refused to do justice. That’s their m/o. But of course you dont see that. Instead you see a line or two start coughing up red herrings about “salacious details”. Please try a better approach because this one smacks of juvenile thinking.

    No woman deserves for any reason what Larry Weems did. If it were your wife, I would daresay you would be trying to run cover for him and his bosses in COGIC. Perhaps you overlooked the glaring fact the women were fired because they reported his sexual assaults to the church.

    To be specific you should go back and read everything, not just what you wanted to read to make your point. The women clearly were prohibted from saying who paid them off as condition of receiving the money. Now, why in your estimation is that stipulation included? Do some research for yourself and you’ll find out its a pressure tactic of defense lawyers to muzzle the victims thereby allowing perps like Weems and his bosses to cover up what really happened and maintain their sanctimonius image in the eyes of the people.

  20. Pastor Foster,

    Here is the article I promised.

    Ex-minister gets 20 years on four sex abuse charges
    Pleaded guilty to three counts for fondling boys
    Friday, July 31, 2009
    By BETHANY RODGERS

    Staff writer

    He started asking questions one Sunday morning when he noticed his son was dragging his feet, as if he dreaded going to church, said a local father Wednesday at a former preacher’s sentencing for sexual abuse.

    That morning in January, he found out that three of his sons had been molested by Tony Ray Malbrough, a close family friend whom his children referred to as “uncle.”

    Malbrough, 44, of Indian Head, a former minister at the New Community Church of God in Christ, was sentenced Wednesday to 20 years in prison for abusing four boys.

    At the hearing, Charles County Deputy State’s Attorney Anthony B. Covington read a letter written by one of the victims.

    “I’ve never hated anyone in my life, no matter how they treated me, but I believe I have developed a hatred for Tony Malbrough,” wrote the victim.

    He said the molestation happened almost every day over the summer of 2008, many times beginning when Malbrough overpowered him during wrestling matches. The victim said he “allowed it to happen” because he felt that if he took the abuse, Malbrough wouldn’t hurt anyone else.

    After the victim went away to college in the fall, he tried to get back to normal and forget the abuse, but he couldn’t.

    “I lived in the gym at school, preparing for when I got home,” the victim wrote in the letter, describing how he bulked up to defend himself.

    When the victim came home for Thanksgiving break, he was able to fight Malbrough off during an encounter, locking the older man outside his house before shutting himself in a bathroom.

    “For some reason, one locked door wasn’t enough,” he said in the letter.

    On Jan. 18, when his father called him at school to ask whether he had been abused by Malbrough and to tell him about the molestation of his brothers, the victim immediately broke down crying.

    While he didn’t ask the judge to give Malbrough a specific sentence, the victim did write that he hopes “whatever is decided will help me step up from this storm and move forward.”

    Malbrough pleaded guilty to three counts of child sex abuse in May. He also entered an Alford plea to a fourth count of abuse, meaning he didn’t admit guilt but did acknowledge that the state’s evidence could lead to his conviction if he was brought to trial.

    At his sentencing, Malbrough apologized to the victims.

    “I hurt my wife, my children, my church family and my pastor,” he said softly before several times repeating “It won’t happen again.”

    He said that his actions were influence by his own abusive childhood and that he “feels so bad for … the poison that I’ve passed on to other people.”

    Circuit Court Judge Steven G. Chappelle sentenced Malbrough to 40 years of incarceration, but suspended half of the prison term.

    As he issued his sentence, he urged the victims’ family not to feel ashamed.

    “In many respects, your sons are to be greatly admired and are heroic for having come forward,” he said.

    Source

  21. Thank you so much Trisha for keeping us updated on this story. These monsters need to be locked away and prayerfully submit their lives to Christ while in jail. Only he can deliver. Other than that they will continue to damage other children.

    Its also interesting the young man’s motivation for keeping quiet. That’s what disgusts me about the blame the victim crowd. They have no idea of what trying to survive sexual abuse will cause you to do.

    I pray that the victims’ families will be compensated financially to help handle the after effects of the evil.

    Have you heard anything on the 100 million dollar lawsuit filed against COGIC in this case?

  22. Pastor Foster,

    I haven’t heard anymore about the lawsuit, but I will keep you posted.

    Thanks for getting the word out. I pray that God will continue to strengthen you to do this work. I know it is not easy because the enemy would rather consume you than be exposed.

  23. Reply to Godlysoldier;

    There’s a lot of psychology that goes into a clergy manipulating, deceiving, and exploiting an adult woman. Society, especially the church, tries to label adult women of clergy abuse as “consensual affairs” because they believe an adult should know right from wrong. Many people try to put themselves in the situation of these women without actually knowing what it is like to experience something like being abused by clergy. It’s the most profound and tramatic event that can happen to an adult woman besides death itself. They’ll say things like, “I would have never done such and such, or there’s no way he would have made me do this or that”, but the truth of the matter is that most people who says that really don’t know what they will do if place in a situation as women who has been abused. Most adult women don’t just “let” or “allow” a clergy to sexual abuse them, because the sexual abuse process doesn’t start off right away. If you read many of the articles on the internet about clergypersons who have abused adult women, you’ll find out most all of them have the same profile, and what’s so startling that all the victims’ stories are similar. If a clergy would come out in the first counseling session and tell an adult woman of his true intentions with her, the woman would report him to the cops and church officials. So, the clergyperson knows this, and that’s why they are very methodical, covert, and subtle in targeting and abusing their victims.

    By the time the abuse has occurred to the woman Godlysoldier, they generally are in shock and are pure disbelief. Most adult women of clergy sexual abuse still returns to the church and tries to act like nothing happen, because its there mental defense of trying to block out happen to them because most victims at first blame themselves. But what happens is the clergy who abused them tries to tell the woman they abused that it won’t happen again, or they make threats to the woman, or they may tell them how it will hurt the church. Clergy’s who abused woman are methodical and out of every case I’ve read online from varies sexual abuse in different denominations, all of these clergy’s operate the same. People tries to argue that the women trusted their pastor too much and that the pastor is only human, but those are futile arguments. In order for any pastor messages he’s preaching to be effective we all have to open up our vulnerabilities to let the message he’s preaching penetrate our hearts. This is the same thing that occurs behind close sessions counseling, and because of the position of “pastor”, we automatically assume the pastor can be trusted because of that title.

    It’s like when you go to a doctor for the first time, or if you ever had been in the emergency room and a doctor whom you never met asked you to undress. The majority of us automatically do exactly what the doctor says because number one;” Trust his title as doctor”; and number two “We trust he doesn’t have an alternative motive except helping treat my ailment”. These women at All Saints College weren’t just abused the first day on the job, they were setup day one. Over a period of time Larry Weems preyed on these women vulnerability and emotions, and when he had them to point where he thought he could sexual abuse them, he moved in. I guarantee most of these women didn’t know what hit them but the time that happens.

    I encourage you to just go to “Google” and type in “Adult Clergy Sexual Abuse” and there’s are many clergy abuse supports groups dedicated to helping adult women who have been sexual abused, and it gives great information into how this happens. Also I’ll like to recommend you Goggling “Coercive Persuasion mind control” by the late Dr. Margaret Singer of UC Berkeley”, and Baylor Universities study on Adult Woman Clergy Abuse that was done last year with a $200,000 grant by the Ford Foundation, which was just release it’s finding from actually case studies of adult woman who have been abused by clergy. Here’s the links to some of them I’ve just mentioned:

    http://www.baylor.edu/clergysexualmisconduct/index.php?id=64489

    http://www.educatingtoendabuse.com/id22.html

    http://www.factnet.org/coercivemindcontrol.html

  24. V – I think your comments are right on! I know several women who experienced horrific abuses by one pastor/Bishop, and the pattern was nearly always the same in each case. It is as if men with this sickness know how to pick their victims. They gain their confidence, get them to talk about their past, then reel them in by being sympathetic and loving, and making them feel that they are special and that they can provide him a special kind of relationship that he’s been unable to forge with others – not even with his wife! He makes them believe that they are actually helping the ministry by being his special friend and confident. What person coming in to a holy body after being beaten down by sin and shame doesn’t want to feel special – right? And by the “Man of God”! Wow! It’s too good to be true! By the time they realize just how sick their abuser is, they’ve been drained spiritually, physically, emotionally, and financially; and often when their abuser senses that they are cracking and becoming increasingly unstable, they begin dropping negative comments about the victim – just in case the victim decides to talk – so no one will believe them. They say things like: “She’s been trying to come on to me.” “I sense that she’s not stable – maybe even dangerous!” “She had the nerve to ask me for money!” “The devil is trying to take her mind.”, etc. So, the members, having NO DISCERNMENT, and being forever faithful to the corrupt, abusive leader, begin trying to protect the abuser – praying for him, asking others to “pray against the spirits trying to hurt our dear visionary leader”, etc. It’s sad, but it happens everyday. So, the victim gets booted, and the abuser gets promoted up the ladder in the Church, making it even harder for the victims to be heard. But I am confident that God is indeed going to do something about this – even if he has to use the “world” as his instrument of judgment. No one can defame His name and abuse His sheep and prosper forever.

  25. Amen, Concerned Saint. God is not asleep and though these injustices have gone on for a long time, God will be just when he strips away and destroys the “image, name and assets” of those who have promoted these wicked men. He has given sufficient time for repentance and restitution,but instead they have gotten high powered lawyers and circles the wagons to defend their “image”.

    I know too of several cases where the abusers were slick in picking their victims, cultivating them emotionally and then only after their mental state was pliable adding the sexual assaults. Once that has begun as you said, the vilification of the woman (or parents of a child) begans so as to protect the wolves image and standing.

    I was really shocked to read the cruel comments at cogic yahoo in response to this article. It was almost typical to what you said even down to calling the women “whores”. Compassion for victims: ZERO. Compassion for the criminal: 100%.

  26. Here’s my comment on the YAHOO BOARD I wrote this morning:

    Only read this if the shoe fits; I will try not to long-winded but I feel I must comment on this. You guys areso blind, and than you get on this blog talking about these women just wantmoney or why didn’t go to the police, or there should be laws to protect churches from paying out huge lump sums. Then you try to attack DL (PastorFoster) of Gcmwatch.com for trying to expose the corruption in COGIC and
    churches to protect your…
    more

  27. My family has belonged to COGIC before I was born. My grandmother (shes deceased) worked in the COGIC womens department of NE Michigan. She worked under every supervisor since Mother Mary Johnson, whose husband founded COGIC in MI. Mary Johnson even licensed her as a missionary. When she passed she was eulogized by Bishop Brooks, who was her bishop and also the 1st assistant presiding bishop of COGIC. My grandmother definitely live what she taught others to live, she thought it was wrong for women to wear pants, and she didnt wear them.

    My grandad on my fathers side is a COGIC superintendent and pastor in NE Michigan under Bishop Brooks. I can honestly say without hypocrisy that my grandad lives what he preaches to his congregation. They know him as pastor, but they only see him in church. I know him personally and behind closed doors and I can honestly say that there are no skeletons in his closet. The man you see in the pulpit preaching on Sunday morning is the same man you see at home on a Monday morning. My dad is also a COGIC pastor, and I can say the same for him. No I am not a preacher of any sort. But I want all of you to know that not every COGIC pastor is a hypocrite and liar, preaching one thing, and doing the opposite. So no, not all COGIC preachers are corrupt, I know this personally.

    Regarding the sexual abuse allegation, it puts COGIC in a difficult position. Those charges are serious charges, so you must have serious evidence, it just cant be a he said-she said. If I were a bishop, and a pastor under me was accused of something like that, I would only remove him in light of compelling evidence. Because I have enouh sense to know that people can and do lie. Whats to stop anyone from making a false statement of sexual abuse, especially if money is involved?

  28. However, one day my mom said something very interesting. My mom has worked for several state supervisors in the Womens department. She particularly worked close with Mother Cranford, a supervisor here in MI who died in 2006.

    Mother Cranford, being a state supervisor, was privvy to alot of information other people wouldnt know about and she told my mother one day and im paraphrasing “If you really knew what was going on in this church, it would make you want to leave.”

    She also told my mother on more than one occasion “Dont be impressed because these preachers can carry a tune and rile the audience, pay attention to the kind of life they live.”

    I think these are two interesting statements from a state supervisor who knew the going ons.

  29. A simple comment, maybe men shouldnt be allowed to counsel women alone or women should counsel women?

    I agree with V and Concerned saint, how emotionally draining and shocking it must be to be abused by the person who you are putting your trust in.

    There was a man I know that said “some are sent” and “some went”, we have to wonder if it God who has called some of these people or they called themselves.

    What I see is that once someone thinks someone can “preach” and get the church happy, this is a Pastor or a leader. Pastoring is not about getting the church hyped up but sound teaching and watching over souls. Many preach and have no love for the sheep!!!

    God bless!!!

  30. c11, thanks for your very interesting comments. Thank God for your grandpa and it would be nice if we could personally vouch for each pastor, but we cant. That’s why there are rules, procedures and the Bible to help us handle the wolves in sheep’s clothing.

    Like you said you have enough sense to know people lie, but you have to use that same sense to know there are way too many sexual predators posing as pastors. Even Jesus warned us about this. In fact Jesus said “But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea. Mark 9:42

    Since Jesus treated it with such severity, why is the church being so soft on this issue? Frankly, I could care less if COGIC is in a “difficult position”. Think of the children (boys and girls) and vunerable women whom these predators have stalked, manipulated, abused, and violated their innocence. That’s where our concern should be.

    These women who know what wickedness is going on yet they are silent and complicit will fare no better. Concealing these monsters out of “respect” for their office or fear of their fake anointing is just like agreeing to it.

  31. Let me clarify when I said it puts COGIC in a difficult position. Since sexual abuse is serious, it usually requires hard evidence to be proven. A lot of pastors are dependent on their church for their livelihood. Not saying that they are all about the money, but a lot of churches do give their pastors modest salaries to live off of. If a man is removed from his pulpit, based upon an unfounded allegation, it can devestate that man financially and his reputation, and if he is later proved innocent or not guilty, he may be able to turn around and sue the church if they acted in haste with removing him.

    Thats why I say a pastor should only be removed in the face of hard evidence, not just based on an allegation, unless there are several credible witnesses to verify such a claim. I mean, you are a pastor and whats to stop any of your members or just someone coming in off the street looking for a quick buck of accusing you of sexual abuse?

    On the other hand, when there is hard evidence, the pastor should be removed and disciplined and taken to the police if necessary.

    As for the supervisors in question, I know from talking to my mother that they have no authority over a pastor and therefore cannot remove a pastor, they are strictly over the women. So they really cant do anymore than anyone else can when ot comes to the disciplining or removing of a pastor.

  32. C11, Id like to challenge you or anyone else, anywhere to cite just one case where a COGIC pastor suffered like you described because of a patently false allegation.

    In contrast, I have already cited at minimum almost 30 cases to the contrary. That doesnt include all the ones which are known by certain people, but have been concealed.

    Meanwhile they act like all is well.

    While I do understand that people are capable of creating lies out of thin air, currently exists nothing (known) like you have described.

    If a pastor gets involved sexually with someone (that’s called sin) and suffers behind it, he will have to deal with the consequences as God allows them. David did.

    The lesson: prevention is better than cure.

    Youre wrong about the women. They only think are have been deceived to think there is nothing they can do. Maybe that’s why the men dont want women in positions of real authority.

  33. I admitedly cant find one, but I was just trying to present a balanced argument. Just so people can have a chance to see it from two points of views.

    But I think COGIC should say something instead of ignoring it.

  34. I live I’m Jackson,ms and have attended services at Davis Temple on mAny occasions. I also attended the trial in Lexington and was sickened by what I saw. There wAs hard core evidence thAt wAs going to be presented such as a written stAtement from the former secretAry of the school thAt stated she sent several letters concerning the sexul harrasent to the heAdquRterS in Memphis and nothing was done. She informed them that of nothing was done she would quit; this lady was A member of cogic. There were lAdies there to support WeemS from his church dressed whAt looked like blAck nun outfits. They were extremely rude to the victims as they passed through the hAllwAys. They were there in full support of their pastor. I was in extreme unbelief at the actions and attitudes of the “missionaries” toward the victims. To top it all off Weems received a promotion to superintendNt following the triAl(no disciplinRy action) by Bishop Hollis Musgrove. He is now pursuing his next goal of becoming Bishop. If he is not deAlt with Others will suffer at his hands. It was obvious they settled to even keep the evidence from being displayed to the many church members in attendance. My heart went out to the victims; their pain and shAme was evident.

    GCMW: Thank you, GG. As I suspected Musgrove (like Bishop Haynes) was derelict in his duties. This is what happens to victims who have the nerve to stand up against their attackers. And this is the church, not the world.

  35. Pastor Foster, I didn’t excuse Elder Weems (or any other “culprit”) or place any “blame” on you for calling attention to the major failure of my church’s leadership “to act with integrity and honesty towards victims.” But if the church was sued for wrongful termination (as a commenter to the Dallas Observer’s “Unfair Park” blog posted two years ago), settlement of that suit should not be characterized as a payoff for silence. A settlement isn’t a dodge from responsibility for the unfair firings: it is a tacit acknowledgment of guilt! It’s effectively an admission that the only reason they were fired was for whistle-blowing.

    Maybe you are trying to say that the wrongful termination suit was settled ONLY to avoid having the charges of misbehavior by Elder Weems aired in open court. I’m sure the church did want to avoid that… but look at the quotes from the women and the case as you outlined it. The church, as their employer, would have probably been found GUILTY of wrongful termination in court. The church took the appropriate action by settling: they were probably guilty, so they should have paid up!

    What you want to assert–that the Church of God in Christ has paid hush-money to COGIC victims so that they WON’T expose sexually predatory preachers–is not demonstrated by the Weems case. Do some investigative journalism, then. Go out and find a credible story of a victim of sexual abuse that was actually paid hush money. Then the “Is COGIC paying for victims silence on clergy sex crimes?” headline will be unassailable.

    When you post it, I’ll be reading. I greatly appreciate what you (and moreso what Julie Lyons, late of “Unfair Park”) have done to expose abusers in the church. Both blogs are in my favorites. But I reserve the right to comment when I think you’ve stepped over into needless exaggeration. I view it as constructive criticism… not an attack. If you disagree, fine. But there’s no reason to label me as a blind COGIC apologist.

  36. Thanks for not excusing Larry Weems because there is none for him. Read Godly girlz comment.

    If Im not mistaken your usual complaint against what I write is that you believe it to be sensationalistic, salacious, etc. As I explained before that’s a perspective you hold and one I dont share. If that is a concern of yours (which you brought up on cogicyahoo) then you should tell people like married Superintendent Larry Weems not to put his hands on any woman’s breasts. He has a wife, let him do that to her. If he creates the news with his actions, dont expect me to play shy about what he did. Even if a woman gives him permission, its a SIN and he should walk away from it. Is he saved at all if he thinks he can do these things?

    Your contention if Im understanding you is that sexual abuse does not equal wrongful termination, thus the charge of hush money is not applicable.

    If that is what you are arguing, I disagree. In this case, the wrongful termination suit was only a result of inaction on the part of the church in response to charges of sexual misconduct. One prompted the other, thus they are connected. The ABC report said the women were prohibited from saying who paid them the money. At the very least what does that suggest to you?

    Why would the Church of God in Christ pay victims money with the stipulation that you cannot say who paid it to you. If Weems was guilty sans a trial, why would it matter if it was known who actually paid out the money? If it was just about wrongful termination, its really extreme to prohibit victims from saying who paid them. What is COGIC hiding?

  37. @V, Thank you for the links in reference to the issues we are discussing. Very informative and enlightening. I truly understand that women in these cases have clearly been manipulated and taken advantage of. It goes back to my original comment when I said it is the “mind set” of an individual. I truly believe that.

    All cases point to women that were in a position to be manipulated and down right “deceived.” As a matter of fact, all
    psychological points aside, it’s just down right deception. And we know that there is nothing new under the son.
    While I will not at all claim to be an expert in the psychology field, I do take my wisdom from the Word of God and the Holy Spirit. Just as satan used deception in getting 1/3 of the angels that were in heaven with God to revolt and follow him, how much more will satan use his “ministers of light” to deceive the sheep. And that’s exactly what these men are. They are not men of God, they are minister’s that satan has transformed as angels of light. And their primary goal is to do whatever the fleshly, demonic spirit that they are controlled by tells them to…and satan’s primary goal is to take us out, by any mean necessary.

    These wolves prey on, not pray for, the vulnerable. As the case studies show, they purposely and meticulously seek out those that they can deceive, manipulate and use for their own selfish gain and gratification. The flip side is that they cannot deceive “all.” Satan could not deceive all of the angels to follow him. These pimps cannot deceive all the women they want to pray on, otherwise, we all would be drinking the kool-aid and ending up in a ditch from following a blind leader. Many will, but not all. So once they see that the “mind set” of some one woman cannot be manipulated, they move on to another that can…an so on and so on and so one.

    I recall years back when this video called “Pimps Up Hoes Down” came out, one of the pimps interviewed said, after just talking with a woman 5 minutes, he knew whether he could get her on the street or not. My point, some he could and did, others he could not.

    My own experience of being fleeced by a pulpit pimp for almost 10 years until I came into the knowledge of the truth that no one was prospering but the pulpit pimp helped me to open my eyes to truth and get the heck out of that church. If you really have “true friends” in church, they will support you…if not, shake the dust and move on, because I know a Friend that will stick closer than a brother! If we have to suffer persecution, then let it be for righteous sake, for standing up, for crying out and not keeping silent about a wolf on the prowl that’s abusing you or anyone else.

    When perception is off, then reception is off and deception is “on.” I totally understand the subtle mind control tactics and the whole point of my earlier comment was if you find yourself in it, get out. Once God has allowed the light to shine on that darkness…do not stay…do not be like bewitched like the Galations were. We can not allow that serpent of old, the devil to continue to deceive us as he did Eve in the garden…We are to have the mind of Christ, and wear His armor daily.
    The belt of truth will be able to let us discern what’s proper and what’s not proper. It’s not proper for a married man, bishop whomever to touch you…the bible says that any form of sex outside of marriage in prohibited. So truth will tell you that though this is my Bishop, though my husband may be tripping, though this is my job, you still cannot touch me or I cannot have relations with you. We’ve got to check a person’s motives. Why would that Rabbi not come around that lady when her husband accompanied her to church, but was all up on her when the husband was not there?

    (at work will continue)

  38. Godly soldier, excellent well rounded comments.

    Its a fact that Allen cultivated unhealthy dependence on him and his words at Shiloh. The man was a spiritualist in pentecostal clothing.

    I personally heard him preach several times (at my local church) and it felt like slime. Being a person who studied the word for myself, I could tell he was spouting lie after lie. But I was in no position to say anything. Or at least I thought. I was under the “touch not mine anointed” spell. After his preaching and he went into the money madness, he was clearly misogynistic.

    Allen bewitched the people at his church. Davina Kelly fell into that trap, but Im sure she wasnt the only one. In spite of her own frailties and faults,she is one God is using to help stop this monster.

    Thank God for that.

  39. Excellent comment Godlysolider, Excellent. Those links are very helpful and they helped me to understand how these clergy manipulate this women. People fail to understand that there can never be “consent” by a victim whether a child or adult when you’re going to counseling. I pray that all get vindicated through the trials in the Allen case and the one in Seattle, Wa against COGIC.

    I am glad you understand how these clergy’s prey on unsuspecting women. Like T.O. says, “GET YOUR POPCORN READY” because on 9/21/09 in Tarrant County District Court 236th, under the honorable Judge Tom Lowe, Shermam Allen and COGIC dirty is all going to be let out.

  40. Amen V. I pray God’s justice will totally prevail on this side of heaven, and if not, you best believe it will on the other side should Allen not truly repent.

    I just get so passionate when it comes to issues like this because of the foundation my mother laid upon me and my sisters growing up. She “ingrained” in us and I quote “I didn’t raise any of y’all to be no punching bags or to let any man abuse you!”
    My mother was (and is) just straight up “crazy” (and I mean that in the most loving BUT sincere way…if y’all only knew the stories I could tell you…whew!)

    Anywho…I give God all the glory for the wisdom He has instilled in me once I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior. If it had not been for His love and grace and the fruit of the Holy Spirit in my life, if I was to come into a situation such as Davina Kelly, I would straight up have a “prison ministry” because I promise you the brother would be “6 feet under!” Y’all pray for me because with all that my mother ingrained in us concerning these issues, I know that it would take every ounce of the Holy Ghost in me to keep me from…uh…”retaliating”…That’s all I’m going to say about that!

    My heart just broke when I read Davina’s story. I think I experienced every range of emotion over reading her story. I pray that God fully restores her and that He will continue to use her as a voice crying out so that no other woman will ever have to experience what she went through at the hands of so called “clergy.” God’s justice shall prevail!

  41. I am just praying for Justice Godlysoldier. God says in Isaiah 61:8-9 that He hates inquities and love justice. So my prayer is Justice.

  42. Jesus tells us, “Do Not Judge.” If your religion practices judgement or rebuke we need to rethink our religion. Jesus tells us, “Fear Not.” If you are afraid of anything even death you need to rethink your religion. If your religion puts men over women you need to rethink your religion, this was not what Jesus taught. If women do not hold or can not hold the same status as men in your religion we need to rethink our religion. Jesus taught a message that was ALL inclusive and put No-One above another except the “Father Within.”

    In closing many things are attributed to have being taught by Jesus but they do not come from and were not taught by him but by other men who were not in the spirit of Christ. Check you teacher, know your teacher, and when you come to realize that your teacher is the “Holy Spirit” sent by “God the Father” you will know that you too are in the Kingdom that Jesus died to tell you about.

    [edited GCMW]

  43. I understand from a relative that was a part of this case, that Bishop GE Patterson didn’t want the COGIC to be exposed so they paid these women off at any cost. These women went to the national church for help and the church turned them away and told them they were lying.

    One woman stepped up that could close this case and financially close the COGIC and it never went to court. Every one got paid except the woman that could put Larry away. She didn’t want money she wanted justice. They didn’t hear her, the women’s lives were so torn they settled for the money.

    I was 5th generation COGIC and I know this church from the inside out and the COGIC doesn’t stand for righteous, just money and women. You might find one or two true pastors as God said in the bible but if you research the COGIC, 80% are either drug users, adulterers, wife beaters and especially child molesters and pedophiles and homosexually and on the down low. But the national board that governs the COGIC isn’t squeaky clean either. Bishops paying child support and the list goes on and on. Larry Weems will probably be promoted to bishop over Southern Mississippi and the real people of God won’t even pray him out of there. It’s very sad. The pastors and superintendents won’t even stand up against him. They don’t want to loose their churches or districts. And Larry Weems bishop, Bishop Musgrove is just as bad. This is why judgment begins in the household of faith – the church! There will be no other comment from me. God bless the victims of the COGIC

  44. NS, there is such a deep sadness in my spirit to read this because I know it is true. Those who truly care for the church should do what is in their power to save it from wolves. Its easy to tell who is truly concerned about the church. Listen to the wisdom of Solomon:

    1 Kings 3:16One day two women [a] came to King Solomon, 17and one of them said: Your Majesty, this woman and I live in the same house. Not long ago my baby was born at home, 18and three days later her baby was born. Nobody else was there with us.
    19One night while we were all asleep, she rolled over on her baby, and he died. 20Then while I was still asleep, she got up and took my son out of my bed. She put him in her bed, then she put her dead baby next to me.
    21In the morning when I got up to feed my son, I saw that he was dead. But when I looked at him in the light, I knew he wasn’t my son.
    22″No!” the other woman shouted. “He was your son. My baby is alive!”
    “The dead baby is yours,” the first woman yelled. “Mine is alive!”
    They argued back and forth in front of Solomon, 23until finally he said, “Both of you say this live baby is yours. 24Someone bring me a sword.”
    A sword was brought, and Solomon ordered, 25″Cut the baby in half! That way each of you can have part of him.”
    26″Please don’t kill my son,” the baby’s mother screamed. “Your Majesty, I love him very much, but give him to her. Just don’t kill him.”
    The other woman shouted, “Go ahead and cut him in half. Then neither of us will have the baby.”
    27Solomon said, “Don’t kill the baby.” Then he pointed to the first woman, “She is his real mother. Give the baby to her.”

    Those who have no love for God’s church or his people (false teachers and prophets) can be identified because their words seek to conceal and hinder truth from coming forward. Truth brings freedom. John 8:32 They would rather see the church destroyed than to see people treated justly according to God’s wisdom. Those who remain silent and complicit are just as guilty as the ones committing the acts. And they should know God will avenge his own.

  45. April 27, 2006

    Women, church settle lawsuit
    • Said religious school fired them after sexual harassment charge

    By Jimmie E. Gates

    jgates@clarionledger.com

    Five Holmes County women on Wednesday settled a lawsuit alleging they were fired from a religious school in Lexington after accusing the school superintendent of sexual harassment.
    The confidential settlement was reached in Holmes County Circuit Court to avoid a trial.

    The women sued the Church of God in Christ Inc., headquartered in Memphis, which has about 5.5 million members, and Larry Weems, who was superintendent of Saints Academy and College. The international church operates the religious school.

    “We are glad it’s over, and we can now try to heal from it,” said Algenia Adams Randle, one of the women. “Our lives had stopped due to this ordeal. … We are very satisfied with the outcome.”
    The women worked at Saints Academy and College in Lexington until 2004, when they said they were fired by Weems.

    Weems, pastor of Davis Temple Church of God and Christ in Jackson, was hired as superintendent of the school in August 1998.
    The women alleged Weems harassed or sexually assaulted them and committed other unlawful and lewd acts. And when they reported it to board members and others affiliated with the school and church, Weems fired them, the women alleged.

    “This litigation has been pending since April 22, 2004,” said the women’s attorney, Felecia Perkins of Jackson. “We’re happy that these women received some measure of justice. It was very traumatic what they went through.”

    Weems couldn’t be reached for comment, but his attorney, Kelsey Rushing, said of the settlement, “We have resolved it. … It’s an amicable resolution, and we hope everybody can move on.”
    Church of God in Christ attorney Tommie Stingley Jr. couldn’t be reached for comment late Wednesday.

    WAPT.com

    Pastor Settles Sex Assault Lawsuit

    POSTED: 7:31 pm CDT April 26, 2006

    JACKSON, Miss. — A local pastor accused of sexually assaulting five women has settled the lawsuit out of court.
    Larry Weems, the pastor of Davis Temple Church of God in Christ, was also the superintendent of several local churches and Saints Academy in Holmes County.

    The suit alleged that Weems forced the women, who worked at Saints Academy, to perform sexual favors for him over a 2-year period.

    The women said when they filed complaints with the church’s national organization they were ignored and then fired.
    “It has been a long and we are just glad it is over … we’re pleased with the outcome and glad that its over, that’s the main thing,” said Algenia Randle who filed the lawsuit.

    Terms of the settlement were not disclosed.
    But the suit may not be over, another victim scheduled to testify on Thursday said she still wants Weems held accountable.

  46. Here we go again..referring to Genesis. I guess we should be put to death for eating pork, etc. WHY don’t you quote all the other atrocities that God condemns in Genesis? Your hypocrisy smells. Tell me why Jesus never mentioned homosexuality in the NT? WHY do preachers always refer to Genesis. I am NOT condoning what these men did to children, but let’s be honest. These men were not truly CHANGED by God to begin with. I mean, their hearts were not changed. I am gay. I am a Deacon in my church and never have I molested a boy or girl or made any untoward attempts at such a thing. I know that is wrong in the sight of God. God knew I would be gay when I was born. I love God and He loves me.
    Your video is full of judgement. How come there is no talk of the adultery that permeates the church by ‘straight’ ‘pastors’? Let’s see a video on that!

    Judge not, that ye be not judged.

  47. Uh Roman, what on earth are you talking about? This sounds like a lost foreign language. I dont get your point nor is it clear what “video” you are referring to.

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