In the wake of a highly publicized sex scandal, Bishop Eddie Long's Lithonia, Ga., megachurch appears to be floundering.
Attendance at New Birth Missionary Baptist is down and the church has had to make dramatic cutbacks.
"Now there are a whole bunch of people trying to figure out what their place is, what's going to happen to the church, and what's going to happen to them," a church source told the website Elev8.
This week Bernice King, the youngest daughter of Martin Luther King, Jr., confirmed her departure as an elder at Bishop Long's church. King said she is leaving to start her own ministry.
Last week, Bishop Long reached a settlement in a sexual misconduct lawsuit involving four young men. The men accused Long of abusing his spiritual authority and making improper sexual advances. Long has denied the charges.
King said her decision to leave had nothing to do with the case.
How do church scandals, especially those involving head pastors, affect church congregations? How can church congregants find healing after disallusionment and hurt from scandal?
"I think scandals cause alot of diehard church members to re-examine their allegiances and committments to their perspective churches and congregations." These wicked frauds in religion play with thousands of loyal and dedicated members emotions and different aspects of their faith. No one should have their faith and belief system shattered by the imperfections and flaws of those that supposed to spiritually lead and guide them by no means." Religion is not a game,its not meant to be hollywood and its not meant to be some soap opera, people are seeking real spiritual guidance," (THACHILLONE)