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While the media has moved on to to other matters and most of the cameras have been put away, Bishop Eddie Long has returned to a relatively routine life as the pastor of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church.
Bishop Long delivered a rousing sermon on Easter Sunday, even targeting the //www.bvblackspin.com/2010/09/21/bishop-eddie-long-multiple-men-alleged-he-coerced-sex-from-them/” >four men who alleged that he sexually abused them. Seemingly emboldened by the news that a settlement, regarding the allegations, will be reached soon, Bishop Long proclaimed:
“You ain’t messin’ with me. I shall rise again and I ain’t going through this. You have to go down there and let the devil know that what they thought was gonna kill you, didn’t kill you. What they thought was gonna bring terror to you, didn’t bring terror to you and you made the enemies public spectacle.”
Local news channel WSBTV2 of Atlanta even went so far as asking a few attendees how they felt now that it seems Bishop Long is out of the woods:
Reporter: “Are you now relieved that this settlement is now going to be over?”
Church Congregant: “Yes, I am.”
Second Congregant: “I love my church, I love my pastor and I love the service.”
And it gets better.
The judge, Johnny Panos, overseeing the settlement had this to say about the closing of the case:
“Why wait till the summer? Why wait to the fall? Get it done now, and what better time to do it but holy week.”
Are they serious?
I really hope that for everyone’s sake, Bishop Long is innocent, innocent of every allegation that has been laid at his feet, because the thought of him being guilty and actually taking part in raping any one of these accusers while they were minors and then getting off scott-free is horrifying.
It is horrifying because that would mean that his family, his congregation and even the named judge who was so eager to get Long off before the end of Easter weekend were all complicit in protecting and delivering a pedophile.
Maurice Robinson, Anthony Flagg, Jamal Parris and Spencer LeGrande each accused Long of abusing his position as an esteemed father figure and sexually assaulting them repeatedly.
According to the lawsuit, Long alleged:
“Long shared a bedroom and engaged in intimate sexual contact with plaintiff Flagg, including kissing, massaging, masturbating of plaintiff Flagg by defendant Long and oral sexual contact.”
But Parris said the most publicly when he spoke with MyFox5, saying:
“This man turned his back on us when he had no more need for us,” Parris said. “That’s not a father, that’s a predator.
“We would have to be the craziest kids in the world to want to come out and admit to another man touching on us publicly. To really believe this is about money would be absolutely ludicrous.
“But that man cannot look me in my eye and tell me we did not live this pain. Why you can sit in front of the church and tell them that you categorically deny it. You can’t say that to our face. And you know this. You are not a man, you are a monster.“
The black church needs to take a look at itself. Our pastors are not God; they are human just like everyone else. Our desire, though, to see them as holier than the rest surely blurs the truth and could mean that we have allowed a ruthless abuser to have his way with our children, making us the only ones to blame.
Watch part of the sermon //www.wsbtv.com/video/27652842/index.html” >here.
People around the world look to pastors, preachers, bishops and reverends for spiritual guidance and inspirational nourishment. In the black community, popular clergymen such as Bishop T.D. Jakes, Prophetess Juanita Bynum and Rev. Al Sharpton are held in high esteem and have much influence over congregations and countless followers alike. Take a look at them and other influential black spiritual leaders.
Influential Black Spiritual Leaders
//www.aolcdn.com/photogalleryassets/bv-ent/452417/jakes-bynum-sharpton-450kc030409.jpg” rel=”enclosure” title=”FilmMagic / Getty Images” type=”image/jpeg”>Influential Black Spiritual Leaders
//www.aolcdn.com/photogalleryassets/bv-ent/452417/bishop-t-d-jakes-450ms123108.jpg” rel=”enclosure” title=”Michael Loccisano, FilmMagic” type=”image/jpeg”>Influential Black Spiritual Leaders
//www.aolcdn.com/photogalleryassets/bv-ent/452417/rev-jeremiah-wright-450ms123108.jpg” rel=”enclosure” title=”Chip Somodevilla, Getty Images” type=”image/jpeg”>Influential Black Spiritual Leaders
//www.aolcdn.com/photogalleryassets/bv-ent/452417/juanita-bynum-450ms123108.jpg” rel=”enclosure” title=”Chad Buchanan, Getty Images” type=”image/jpeg”>Influential Black Spiritual Leaders
//www.aolcdn.com/photogalleryassets/bv-ent/452417/bishop-eddie-long-450ms123108.jpg” rel=”enclosure” title=”Johnny Nunez, Wire Image” type=”image/jpeg”>Influential Black Spiritual Leaders
//www.aolcdn.com/photogalleryassets/bv-ent/452417/rev-al-sharpton-450ms123108.jpg” rel=”enclosure” title=”Ragozzino William, Getty Images” type=”image/jpeg”>Influential Black Spiritual Leaders
//www.aolcdn.com/photogalleryassets/bv-ent/452417/bishop-noel-jones-450ms123108.jpg” rel=”enclosure” title=”Vince Bucci, Getty Images” type=”image/jpeg”>Influential Black Spiritual Leaders
//www.aolcdn.com/photogalleryassets/bv-ent/452417/jamaal-bryant-450ms123108.jpg” rel=”enclosure” title=”Reggie Anderson, Empowerment Temple” type=”image/jpeg”>Influential Black Spiritual Leaders
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