Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Looks like the bishop is in trouble
Shocking lawsuits have accused a top church leader of sexual misconduct. Two separate lawsuits were filed late Tuesday against Bishop Eddie Long, of the New Birth Missionary Baptist Church. . . .
Two lawsuits filed late Tuesday in DeKalb County accuse Bishop Long of inappropriate sexual relationships with two young men from his church.
Maurice Robinson and Anthony Flagg, both in their early 20's, claim in their lawsuits that, "Long utilized his spiritual authority to coerce certain young male members and employees of defendant New Birth into engaging in sexual acts and relationships."
The suit claims the congregation is likely unaware of the practices. But it also says church money was used to foster the relationships.
Robinson, in his suit contends Long used, "monetary funds from the accounts of defendant New Birth to entice the (young men) with cars, clothes, jewelry, and electronics.
Robinson, claimed his long time bishop, who cared for him as he was growing up in the church would use "the Holy Scripture to discuss and justify the intimate relationship."
New Birth is the location of the new 180 student DCSS Leadership Academy Charter school, which pays $122,000 annually to lease the space according to this letter from New Birth to Melvin Johnson, New Birth member, board member of LPA, board member of the private school inside New Birth and former DCSS administrator.
For more on the story, read this article at the AJC.
UPDATED REPORT - A third accuser has emerged --
And now a fourth...
Another update --
Now it's national news, with an article in USA today and a spot in Jimmy Fallon's monologue. And just dang is even Bill Maher didn't use this story to kick off his "New Rules" segment. If you can stand it, listen to B.J. Bernstein describe the sexual meetings in this CNN post.