…but remains silent and inactive on another for sexual immorality. It appears the leader of the nation’s largest black pentecostal denomination is demonstrating that the love of money really is at the root of its dismal record on dealing with sexual offenders and predators carrying the COGIC name.
Case in point, on March 9th, The Commercial Appeal reported that Dickerson LS Wells, a Memphis based pastor and “senior executive administrator” to Presiding Bishop Blake had “resigned” but COGIC officials refused to say why he left.
But Thaddeus Matthews, a Memphis based radio talk show host reported on his blog that Wells had stolen $20,000 of COGIC’s money. That prompted an immediate visit from Blake who flew in to personally ensure Wells was no longer in position.
“Sources within COGIC state that Dickerson L.S. Wells pastor of Bethel COGIC here in Memphis who also serves as a trustee of the national organization was asked to resign his position of superintendent By Presiding Bishop Charles Blake after it was found that Wells had diverted church funds for his personal use.
As Superintendent here in Memphis Wells was the highest ranking official of the national church having control of church funds and properties. Its said that Wells diverted a $20,000 check belonging to COGIC for his own personal use.
Sources state that Bishop Blake flew into Memphis several weeks ago and ask the stealing preacher to step down.”
So why hasn’t Bishop Blake flown into Birmingham, AL and told Bishop Peter Wren, Sr. to resign? That’s very easy to answer. If an official in COGIC steals money, they’re worse than an infidel but if they are a sexual predator its not a big deal. Well, it is on paper but who cares what a “zero tolerance” policy says? After all, its just a diversion tactic to stop people from asking questions and demanding truthful answers.
Business as usual?
So is this about protecting the “name, image and assets” of the organization while ignoring the hurt, pain and devaluation of the people of the organization?
In November 2009, COGIC officials stumbled and fumbled over whether to remove a local church minister who was arrested for rape of a 16 year old girl. The church’s pastor refused to remove the man claiming he could only required “pray and forgive”. After considerable outcry from outside organizations, church officials finally settled on an unusual resolution. They brought in the jurisdictional bishop to be the church’s CEO. Later, the minister was removed. We daresay had the minister stolen money, the removal would have been swift.
If you think that’s stretching the truth, look no further than the case of COGIC’s highest ranking homosexual sex predator, the late General Board Member John Husband.
According to reports by the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Husbands stole $500,000 dollars of church money. But before any of that came to light, it was an open secret known by both peers and subordinates that the bishop was engaged in numerous homosexual sins. Yet, nothing was done. But when Husbands stole the money (reportedly to pay for medical bills) COGIC quickly moved in the discipline him. In fact, the discipline was the severest on record. Husbands was defrocked and [sort of] excommunicated from COGIC.
As COGIC Bishop Neaul Haynes of Dallas reportedly said in reference to sex weirdo Sherman Allen, “old habits die hard.”
Dear Bishop Blake: please go back and listen closely to the November 2008 message of the man you fired for stealing money. You might just learn something about yourself and your leadership.