Monday, October 30, 2006

In The Beginning ( A Timeline) Part 2

1992-1994 (continued)
I found this video of Sally Jesse Raphael from 1995. I never remember hearing about this little special at church. Not even my friends ever talked about it, I wonder if they even saw it?

Here is the Link: Sally Jesse Raphael, 4/19/1994

Lets just stop and think about it for a minute. We now have had two major television networks run hour long specials about CHHC, but why did the majority of us continue as normal??

March 1999
A fire destroys the home of the Paulks. Bobby Brewer is credited
with saving Norma Paulks life.

Sidebar---I remember very vivdly when this happened. After the fire the Paulks moved into a mobile home until the house was rebuilt. Many months after this I began to hear the fire was done on purpose. According to MY sources, Norma was trying to hurt herself and lit the place up....I'll get back to this in more detail later.

April 2001
Jessica Battle files suit with the Dekalb County Courts, accusing Paulk of molesting her since
she was 7 years old, and later having sex with her when she was 17.
Paulk denied all claims, and even had Jessica's grandmother, Lynn Mays, speak to the congregation in support of Paulk.

Jessica's case is settled out of court for un undisclosed amount of money.

Sidebar- For my generation this was the largest scandal to date. We all knew Jessica the dancer. She was a few years older than me, but she was a small celebrity at the church. So when these allegations came out it was a shock. I knew something was wrong if Paulks "beloved" dancer was being "influenced by demons" What a bunch of bull! Anyway the rumor mill was crazy. Was Jessica's mom involved? Did other pastors know? I remember going to church just to see if anyone had any new info on the whole thing.

"Beat the Giant" or "Kill the Giant" one of those, was the largest attempt to collect money from the church that I can remember. We were told to the Giant represented our money problems.
Why money problems you ask? According to Paulk, it was because we were trying to pay off the church loan, pay the staff, keep the lights on, blah blah blah. And since we had lost so many members the past few years, we needed to start "Double Tithing". That would make up for it!!! Smart!

When the case got settled out of court, all talk of the Giant slowly went away. Did we ever beat the Giant? I figured that the "undisclosed" amount of money that settled the case, came from those eager Giant "killers" or members if you prefer, that helped pay all those court fees. How stupid could we be? "Evil Jessica" had won right? NO we got dupped again into paying for Paulks sexual affairs, all the while believing his lies and singing "Move with the Clouds", or if you were in the young crowd it was "Stomp".

I feel bad for all that Jessica went through. So part of all this blogging is for her too.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

In the Beginning ( A Timeline ) Part 1

May 30, 1927
Earl Pearly Paulk Jr is Born.

Paulk Graduates from Emory University's Candler School of Theology, and pastors
Hemphill Church of God.

Paulk and family leave due to rumors of an affair with a staff member. Paulk later claims to admit to having this affair. Returns later to found Gospel Harvester Church in Inman Park.

Chapel Hill Harvester Church is born in South Dekalb.

Paulk is ordained as a "Bishop" by Bishop Bob McAlister.

October 13, 1991
A brand new building is opened. It is called The Cathedral of the Holy Spirit.

May 1992
Don Paulk, brother of Earl, admits to sexual indiscretions outside of his marriage.

June 1992
Soon after, the church begins to lose members. Which in turn causes the loss of money and staff members.

November-December 1992
Six women come forward to reaveal they have had sexual relationships with members of the Paulk family.

The Fall of 1992 would begin a small window into the personal lives of the paulk family. I remember when this scandal broke, Earl Paulk denied the charges with everything in his being.
Those of us that stayed believed he was telling the truth.
I break into the Timeline here to expand more on this FIRST CATHEDRAL SCANDAL.

In 1993 A current affair ran a story on Tricia Weeks and others, telling of their experince with the Paulks.

Here is Part One of the Special:

Here is Part Two of the Special:

During the course of the following months there were numerous articles on the "Scandal" I've copy and pasted what I could find Below. I find it very disturbing that while all of these allegations were being repeorted, why weren't WE THE CHURCH being told any ounce of truth!

You may also be saying to yourself..."I don't remember all of this coming out at the time of the incident?? Strange there it was in black and white. I know personally I was only around 12, so I wasn't interested, but what about my parents?

My Personal Guide for you ---Red Type=Scandal Green Type=Money Blue= A Paulk Speaks!

An Instance of Wolves In Shepherds' Clothing?; Sex Allegations Hit Popular Georgia Church
Gustav Niebuhr
Washington Post Staff Writer
1245 words
3 February 1993
The Washington Post
(Copyright 1993)
For years, Chapel Hill Harvester Church billed itself as a place of "refuge and reconciliation," a spiritual oasis for the walking wounded in the transient suburbs east of Atlanta.
On billboards and in TV commercials, the independent, charismatic church reached out to troubled teenagers, divorced adults, addicts and alcoholics, among others. In an area churning with white flight, it preached a soothing message of racial harmony, offering common ground for blacks and whites to share worship.

Services rocked with vibrant music and vivid dramas; pastors proclaimed "words of knowledge" they said they got straight from God. Membership exploded. The church won plaudits from politicians and police. In 1982, the founder and senior pastor, the Rev. Earl Paulk Jr., took the title "bishop." And in 1991, for social work with local poor, the church was named one of President George Bush's "points of light."

But these days, Chapel Hill - which recently moved into a new, 7,000-seat sanctuary on its 100-acre campus and rechristened itself the Cathedral of the Holy Spirit - is itself deeply troubled. Paulk and three other pastors, his younger brother Donald and two nephews, have been accused of sexual misconduct by former members - who, in making those claims, have squarely punched one of the hot-test buttons in American religion today.

Concern over clergy sexual misconduct - driven by accusations and lawsuits by aggrieved parishioners nationwide - rages like prairie fire in many religious circles. Last year, one denomination, the Christian Reformed Church, officially declared it a "sin" and instructed local congregations to draw up procedures to deal with it. Another, the Church of the Brethren, adopted a code of ethics with penalties for errant clergy that range from probation to outright defrocking.

Thanks to the uproar at Chapel Hill, the issue has also begun to stir secular authorities in Georgia. State Rep. Gail M. Buckner, an Atlanta area Democrat, said she wants to introduce a bill into the Georgia legislature mandating prison terms for clergy sex abusers, similar to one enacted last year criminalizing sexual abuse of patients by psychotherapists. Because of constitutional guarantees of church-state separation, "it is a very difficult piece of legislation to accomplish," Buckner said, but added, "I haven't given up."

The negative publicity has taken a toll on the church.
Since last year, thousands of members have quit, and weekly donations are down to about $70,000 from around $170,000, forcing the church to discuss a new payment schedule with bondholders of its approximately $20 million debt, said O. Jackson Cook, Chapel Hill's attorney
. In November, sensing a conspiracy, the church filed a $24 million lawsuit against seven former members, alleging they were trying to wreck Chapel Hill economically.

Although the suit was withdrawn last December, Cook said "there was a group of people who were actively soliciting members not to participate and not to contribute." Based on his interviews with other church members, he said, he identified as "a ringleader" Paulk's former spokeswoman and the ghostwriter of his autobiography, Tricia Weeks.
Until she quit Chapel Hill in 1991, Weeks was one of the church's most visible staffers. Now, she is Paulk's most persistent critic, accusing the tall, silver-haired cleric of using a warped theology to push her into an adulterous relationship of more than two years.

"He continually said the Kingdom of God is built on trust," and that certain "special relationships" outside marriage were "honorable to God," said Weeks, who, like Paulk, is married. "It left me feeling I was not trusting God or spiritually immature," she said, if she did not agree to an affair.
"It was the closest thing to mind control you have ever seen," said Weeks, who teaches English in a local high school.

"We categorically deny that," said Cook, who has advised church officials not to comment on the allegations. "I think Tricia Weeks is living in a fantasy world and her idea of a relationship with Earl Paulk is a delusion. She may believe it, but it is absolutely not true."
Shortly after Chapel Hill filed its lawsuit, naming Weeks among the defendants, she called a news conference. Three other women joined her - two saying they previously had been coerced into sexual activity (that stopped short of intercourse) with the Rev. Duane Swilley, a Chapel Hill pastor and a nephew of Paulk's, the third saying she had been involved with another Paulk nephew, the Rev. Alan Mushegon, pastor of a separate, independent congregation across town

Cook discounted the claims against Swilley, who he said has completed a church-run counseling program for ministers who have experienced problems.
"There were some allegations of touching," Cook said. "My God, it's charismatic religion - people touch each other in church all the time." Mushegon is represented by Cook's partner, Ernest D. Brookins, who was not available for comment; however, Cook called the allegations against Mushegon "totally discredited."

(In a separate, earlier news conference, another church member said she had an affair with the Rev. Donald Paulk. The church does not dispute this, saying through Cook that Donald Paulk has been relieved of all but administrative duties and that the church has reached "an accommodation" with the woman.)
In the meantime, the church has been hit with other charges, leveled by former members who accuse Paulk of acting as an ecclesiastical dictator who threatened hellfire against those who did not give heavily to the collection plates.

Thumbing through a copy of a book called "Toxic Faith," the Rev. Barry Smith, who resigned from Chapel Hill last year, accuses the church of being so authoritarian that questions about finances were placed off limits by Paulk. "He taught us that when God speaks, there is no questioning," said Smith, 31.
Johnny Enlow, 33, a former deacon, said that during the building of the cathedral, the pastor demanded his flock "double-tithe" - contribute 20 percent of their income - or risk damnation.

"It got to the place where people felt they were outside the will of God if they didn't double-tithe," Enlow said. In 1991, his last full year there, he gave $15,000. "That was over one-third of my total income," he said. "And I wasn't even close to being a top giver."
Judy Hough Finan, 27, one of the two women who said she had sexual involvement with Swilley, said Paulk's frequent preaching on the need for members to obey church authority made a
powerful impression on her mind. "I really thought those people knew everything. They would never tell a lie," she said. "If my feelings and their feelings didn't match, they were right." She added ruefully: "I've been duped - big time."
But in meetings with staff still at Chapel Hill, Cook said he found no evidence to support any of these charges.

"The place appears to me to be run very democratically," he said. "At no point in private conversations with these people {at the church} did I find a discordant note, not even the slightest evidence of anything other than a great love of the church and respect for Earl Paulk."
PHOTO,,The Atlanta Journal-constitution Caption: Bishop Earl Paulk Jr., left, and his brother, Donald Paulk, conducting services in 1990. Tricia Weeks, right, has accused the bishop of talking her into adultery.


Copyright 1992 Cable News Network, Inc. - CNN
December 18, 1992
Transcript # 243 - 5
SECTION: News; DomesticLENGTH: 406 wordsHEADLINE: Sexual Misconduct Accusations Rock Atlanta ChurchBYLINE:

PAT ETHERIDGEHIGHLIGHT:The Cathedral of the Holy Spirit in Atlanta is under intense scrutiny over allegations that church leaders committed acts of sexual misconduct over many years. Church membership and donations have plummeted.

BODY:CATHY MARSHALL, Anchor: In Atlanta, a once-world-famous family ministry has been brought down. CNN's Pat Etheridge has the story of a church profaned by charges that the ministers had more on their minds than salvation.

PAT ETHERIDGE, Correspondent: It is one of Atlanta's most prominent churches, but the Cathedral of the Holy Spirit is swirling in accusations of sexual scandal. Rebecca Moses and five other women claim they were seduced by married church pastors. REBECCA MOSES: Don Paulk told me that he wanted a sexual relationship with me, and that such a relationship would not be wrong in the eyes of God. Pastor Paulk told me that such a relationship would, in fact, be beneficial to the church.

ETHERIDGE: Pastor Don Paulk admits having the affair, but is refusing to discuss it on camera. In a written statement, he claims he was the one who was seduced by Rebecca Moses. It reads, in part, 'I know how what it was like for Samson to place his head in the lap of Delilah. My accuser also found my weakness, and she exploited it to the fullest degree. She violated every intimate covenant that exists between a man and a woman.' The church is headed by Don Paulk's brother, Bishop Earl Paulk. He denies a coverup.

Bishop EARL PAULK, Cathedral of the Holy Spirit: If there was an affair of any kind going on, it was totally beyond my knowledge, and I'd be investigated and tested in any form to prove that's true.

ETHERIDGE: In Thursday's edition of the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the women charge both brothers, and two of their nephews who are pastors at another church, with a long-term pattern of sexual misconduct. Four of the women say they first attended the church as teenagers, and became involved in a youth ministry. They refer to the Paulk pastors as uncles. The ministers took advantage of that trust, the women say, at vulnerable periods during their lives. Ms.

MOSES: Time and again I tried to break away from the influence he held over me, but his control over me was too strong and the power he held over me reached back into my childhood.

ETHERIDGE: Tammy Faulkner says she was seduced by a nephew of the Paulks, Reverend Allen Mashagen.

TAMMY FAULKNER: No one should use their positions to get sex, lest of all a minister.

ETHERIDGE: In its heyday, the Cathedral of the Holy Spirit was telecast internationally, and was even recognized with a Point of Light award from President Bush. But, in the wake of the recent allegations, church membership and revenues have plummeted, resulting in massive staff layoffs. Pat Etheridge, CNN, Atlanta.

There ae about 12 more articles with the same theme. If interested I can put them up later.
However, I felt that these 2 were enough for now.

Remember, this is still 1992-1993!

My Reason

I was a member of CHHC for most of my life. Like many people who grow up in church, it was something that I just knew. I went to church on Sundays, sunday nights, wednesday nights, thursday nights, and sometimes even Saturday's. My main purpose in putting this info out there is simple. I know there are many friends of mine that still attend. Blind to what has taken place there over the last decade. I know there ae many friends who are aware of what is happening but refuse to REALLY see what has happened. Its not right to sweep this under the carpet anymore and let "the family" handle it. YOU NEED TO KNOW!

I'm not only going to discuss the sexual scandal, but the very untalked about financial scandal.
Where DID all that Tithe money go??